Barbecued Chicken Fajitas

Tired of the ‘hum drum’ rotation of pasta, potatoes, rice and quinoa…I decided to switch up our dinner for something that everyone could make their own…Barbecued Chicken Fajitas.

Michael's Barbecued Chicken Fajita

Fajitas are fun because everyone can make up their own unique creation.

With a simple base of marinated chicken…the fixings were a ‘mix match’ of summer offerings…guacamole, corn salad, salsa, lettuce, and cheddar cheese (Daiya Cheddar Style Shreds if you have a dairy allergy)…

Toppings for Barbequed Chicken Fajitas, side salad, carrots and cucumber slices

were some of the toppings I had on hand…

Barbecued Chicken sliced with warmed tortillas for fajitas

to add to the barbecued chicken and warmed up tortillas. (microwaved on high for 25 seconds covered with paper towel)

With a side salad and nacho chips with salsa…the boys, my mom, sister-in-law and I were all set to create our ‘masterpieces’!

As I had set out grated cheddar cheese as an option (Michael has a dairy allergy)…Michael was the first to put together his fajita in order to eliminate any cross-contamination of the cheese with the other toppings.

Michael's Barbecued Chicken Fajita with salsa and lettuce

Michael opted for the simplicity of just lettuce and salsa.

If food allergens are present at a meal…I always have the rule that Michael serves himself first. Good thing…in this case, with the cheddar cheese…it was amazing how quickly everything seemed to get cross-contaminated with ‘bits of cheese’.

I misjudged the appetites of these growing boys as Michael would have loved to have had another fajita…lesson learned.

The recipe for the marinade for the chicken comes from The Globe and Mail from May 16, 2012…Grilled Chicken Tacos. Click here for the recipe.

Using boneless, skinless chicken thighs was a nice change…better priced too!

Everyone enjoyed the fun of putting together their own Barbecued Chicken Fajita!

The beauty of fajitas is the many varieties of toppings that one can come up with…what are your favourite toppings?

Michael’s Guacamole

At the beginning of the summer, my eldest son, Michael, had requested to try some new dips.

With his multiple food allergies…dairy, egg, beef, sesame, fish, shellfish, peanut/tree nuts, mustard and raspberries…Homemade Guacamole seemed to fit the bill!

My son enjoying his Guacamole with tortilla chips and salsa

Simple healthy ingredients…Guacamole was the perfect ‘summer time dip’ to throw together for a tasty afternoon snack for my growing teenager!

Avocadoes are full of omega-3 fatty acids, Vitamin C, E and carotenoids…making them a powerhouse of ‘goodness’ I am pleased to see my son enjoy.

Using ‘The Barefoot Contessa’s Cookbook’ recipe for Guacamole as a guideline, I quickly put together a personal serving of Guacamole.

Michael’s Guacamole

1/2 a ripe avocado, diced
1 tsp freshly squeezed lemon juice
1/8 tsp minced garlic
1 tsp of finely chopped red onion
1 small ripe tomato, diced
sprinkle of salt and pepper to taste

Combine all ingredients in a small bowl. Mash the avocado while mixing all the ingredients. Served along side tortilla chips and salsa.

Chunky version of Michael's Guacamole

Enjoy!

Tip: I dipped a few carrots in for a change…yummy!

P.S. Frankly, I enjoyed the Guacamole to be left chunky…Michael insisted the avocado be mashed.  One of the pictures is the chunky version and the other is the mashed. Either way…delicious!

P.P.S. I would love to try adding chopped fresh coriander or ‘heat it up’ with a little tabasco sauce!

How do you like your Guacamole?

Our Allergen Friendly Easter Dinner

Easter weekend was particularly festive! It was a double celebration…

my birthday 2012

it was also my birthday!

The day started out with Easter Sunday Mass followed by a quick change for my long run…17 km!

Longest run of my life to date!

The boys had fun diving into their Easter bags that the Allergen Friendly Easter Bunny left for them.

Boys Easter bags 2012

A cupcake container filled with Guardian Angel Solid Chocolate Eggs free of dairy, egg, and peanut/tree nuts (I divided a package of  eggs between them), gum, Yummy Earth candy drops in Pomegranate Pucker…their favourite, a package of Surf Sweets Jelly Beans for Michael and Gummy Bears for Matthew, a can of Sparkling SanPellegrino Limonata or Aranciata (Orange) and to top it off…a Maple Sugar Easter Bunny!

Boys allergen friendly candy for Easter 2012

The Easter Bunny even had them hunting for an extra special ‘Easter Treat’ for the boys to share.

Guardian Angel Tasting Box of Chocolates of the boys special Easter Treat

A box of Guardian Angel Chocolates Tasting Box free of dairy, eggs and peanut/tree nuts.

Caramel and Honey…yummy!

Guardian Angel Caramel and Honey chocolate

A truly decadent treat the boys have never indulged in due to their food allergies. Chocolate Ganache is their favourite so far…still Maple Jelly, Salt Flower Caramel and Coffee left to sample.

All my favourites were at hand for our Allergy Friendly Easter Dinner:

To start, we noshed on Spicy Edamame Dip from Trisha Yearwood’s cookbook, Home Cooking With Trisha Yearwood:Stories & Recipes To Share With Family & Friends. I love this dip with raw veggies such as sugar snap peas, carrots and peppers, where as, Michael loves the dip with Rosemary crackers by La Panzanella.

Allergy friendly appetizers of fresh veggies and Spicy Edamame Dip with rosemary crackers

Taking a break to toast my birthday with a glass of Prosecco!

Toasting my birthday with a glass of Prosecco

I roasted a Chicken with Lemon and Rosemary for the boys.

Roasted Chicken with Lemon, garlic and thyme

While Andy barbecued a New Zealand Mediterranean Seasoned Boneless Leg of Lamb.

Barbecued Seasoned New Zealand Boneless Leg of Lamb

Yummy!

Our main dishes were accompanied with Roasted Asparagus and Roasted Mini Potatoes with fresh thyme…

Roasted asparagus and mini potatoes

and of coarse…freshly baked homemade French Stick.

Dessert was my favourite cake…Carrot Cake…now…Dairy, Egg and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Carrot Cake with Tofutti Cream Cheese Icing decorated with grated carrot and Surf Sweets Jelly Beans.

Dairy, Egg, and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Carrot Cake

I was afraid that after a week of trying three adaptions of Carrot Cake…we would all be Carrot Caked out! Thank goodness for hungry neighbours!

Before we indulged in Carrot Cake…the boys had fun outside with the sparklers!

Boys outside with sparklers

My Aunt Frances’ adapted Carrot Cake was the winner!

A slice of Dairy, Egg and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Carrot Cake

Yummy!

Happy Easter!

P.S. I will be posting my Aunt Frances’ adapted Carrot Cake recipe on Wednesday.

Our Superbowl 2012 Allergen Free Party

The Superbowl is a perfect excuse to have a party!

superbowl party 2012

With my husband off to an all ‘boys’ Superbowl bash…I thought it would be fun to have our own Superbowl bash with my boys and their friends. With a twist…as hostess I would cater it as an allergen free feast!

A few munchies to start:

Dairy Free Onion Dip with Ruffles Potato Chips, Homemade Pita Chips recipe by Giada de Laurentiis,  Veggies and Spicy Edamame Dip  by Trisha Yearwood from the Toronto Star and Hot Air Popcorn. (I spray the popcorn with Canola Oil and sprinkle with freshly cracked Sea Salt)

The Spicy Edamame Dip is the first dip I made for Michael…he loved it!

Superbowl party munchies

Followed by the main course:

Allergen Friendly Chicken Wings, Slow-Cooker Sweet and Sour Sticky Ribs, Homemade French Fries and French Stick.

Superbowl party 2012 dinner

Dessert was something special!

With Valentines Day just around the corner, I thought I would treat the boys with something decadent…something chocolatey!

Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Heart Brownies and Brownie Pops!

Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Decadent Brownie Pops and Hearts

Half the hearts are Iced in Chocolate and the other half are iced with a Dairy Free Chocolate Icing and drizzled with chocolate.

Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Decadent Brownie Hearts

I just used heart-shaped cookie cutters to cut out the brownies. First, I cut some Brownies without the Chocolate Icing.

cutting out heart shaped brownies I brushed them with melted Enjoy Life Chocolate Chips and dusted with a little Icing Sugar.

Heart shaped dairy, egg, soy, and peanut/tree nut free brownies spread with melted enjoy life chocolate chips and dusted with icing sugar

I then iced the rest of the Brownies, cut out my heart shapes, drizzled with the melted chocolate and dusted with icing sugar.

heart shaped dairy, egg, soy and peanut/tree nut free brownies iced and drizzled with melted enjoy life chocolate chips and dusted with icing sugar

Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Decadent Brownie Pops

For the Brownie Pops, I simply mixed together all the scraps of Brownies left over from cutting out the hearts. Rolled them into little balls and put them in the refrigerator to firm. I then stuck a cookie stick into the Brownie Ball and brushed them with melted Enjoy Life Chocolate Chips.

brushing dairy, egg, soy and peanut/tree nut free brownie pops with melted enjoy life chocolate chips

The finishing touch…topping each with a Gimbal’s Cherry Lovers heart-shaped candy.

dairy, egg, soy and peanut/tree nut free brownie pops

Did you know that Gimbal’s candies are free of 8 major food allergens: Peanut/tree Nut, Dairy, Egg, Gluten, Soy, Fish and Shellfish. I happened to stumble upon a jar at HomeSense…perfect for Valentine’s Day!

The Half Time show did not appeal to the boys. They took the opportunity to emerge from the ‘man cave’ and devour the Brownies…I was surprised the boys had any room left for dessert.

As Michael’s friend Chris simply put it, “There is always room for dessert!”

I packaged up a Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Decadent Brownie Pop to take home for Matthew’s friend’s sister…she loves my Brownies!

dairy, egg, soy and peanut/tree nut free decadent brownie pop wrapped up to take home

Tip: Plenty of leftovers for dinner tonight…perfect! I love it when I can get two meals out of one!

P.S. Carla @ My 1/2 Dozen Daily presented her Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Bread. Love that she uses the Bread Machine to make her dough! I will definitely have to try her recipe and method for her loaves of fresh bread.

P.P.S. My update on Week 1 of my Decluttering my Personal Space will be up on Wednesday. Superbowl Party preparations took a little more time than I had anticipated.

There just is not enough time in the day! lol

Dairy Free Onion Dip and Superbowl Sunday

Superbowl Sunday is this weekend…perfect excuse for a party!

dairy free onion dip with rippled chips

My husband has been invited to a ‘Boys only’ Superbowl Party, so I have decided to have one of our own with the boys.

Not that I am at all interested in football throughout the season. Although, I have to admit, I like watching the Superbowl…or is it the half time event that appeals to me? Either way, the party is on!

My boys have been watching the lead up to the finale and are also keen to watch the showdown between the New York Giants and the New England Patriots. Michael is cheering on the Patriots and Matthew says it’s “the Giants all the way!” The boys are each inviting a friend to join in on the fun!

What’s a party without party fare!

Munchies will include: Matthew’s favourite, Lay’s Salt and Vinegar Chips and Michael’s favourite, Ruffles Rippled Chips with Dairy Free Onion Dip. (recipe featured below)

Homemade Allergen Friendly Pita Chips and Dip will also be on the menu. Although, I think I have since finished this dip and will have to whip up a new one! (recipes from EveryDay Italian by Giada De Laurentiis)

pita chips and white bean dip

Michael loves these Pita Chips…as do some of his friends! The White Bean Dip is great for dipping veggies in too! (It is green due to the overabundance of parsley I like to add!)

Tip: When purchasing pita bread for the Homemade Allergen Friendly Pita Chips, make sure to read the ingredient list for possible allergens. I used Pita Gourmet.

Main dishes include: Michael has chosen Allergen Friendly Chicken Wings  with a Dairy Free Dip (combination of Tofutti Sour Supreme, minced garlic, dried oregano and italian seasoning, salt and pepper to taste). Matthew has chosen Slow Cooker Sticky Ribs . There will also be some cut up veggies for the dips.

Dessert: I am going to be creative with my Dairy,Egg,Soy, and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Decadent Brownies. Stay tuned for a posting next week. Just in time for Valentine’s Day!

A couple of years ago, Michael took an interest in Onion Dip. “Mommy, can you try to make me an Onion Dip for my chips?” When I ask him today why he wanted me to make it he replied, “I don’t know. I just wanted to try it.”

Well, I am glad he did because it is a winner!

I love the Barefoot Contessa! Her Pan-Fried Onion Dip is fantastic! It is easily adapted to satisfy and fool even those without dairy allergies or intolerances.

Dairy Free Onion Dip

Follow the Barefoot Contessa’s recipe for Pan-Fried Onion Dip making the following substitutions:

4 tbsp of Earth Balance for the unsalted butter
1/2 cup Tofutti Non-Dairy Spread for the cream cheese
1 cup Tofutti Sour Supreme for the sour cream and mayonaise

Enjoy with your favourite chips!

dairy free onion dip with rippled chips

P.S. I will be posting pictures of our Superbowl feast on The Food Allergy Chronicles Facebook page.

Question: What are your plans for Superbowl Sunday?