Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Apricot Oatmeal Muffins

The muffin for today’s Allergy Friendly Muffin Monday was chosen especially for my Mother’s Day breakfast.

Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Apricot Oatmeal Muffins

Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Apricot Oatmeal Muffins

Full of oats, bran and plump apricots…perfect with a cup of tea!

I have been holding on to this recipe for awhile…waiting for the perfect time to give them a try…Mother’s Day breakfast was ideal. This recipe is from the June 2002 issue of Canadian Living Magazine. Click here for the original recipe.

Adaptions:

1)  I replaced the buttermilk with 1 cup of Natur-a Rice Beverage or Natur-a Soy Beverage mixed with 1 tbsp. white vinegar left to set while I measured the rest of my ingredients.
2) I replaced the egg with a flax egg…1 tbsp. of flax meal mixed with 3 tbsp. water and left in the refrigerator over night or until it thickens.
Update:  3) I added 1 tsp pure vanilla to the wet ingredients.

Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Apricot Oatmeal Muffins

Thanks to a reminder from Candace…I baked the Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Apricot Oatmeal Muffins in my silicone muffin cups instead of paper. The muffins popped out perfectly.

Enjoy!

Enjoying my Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Apricot Oatmeal Muffin

I think next time…a touch of ginger would be a nice addition. In the meantime, a drizzle of local honey was the finishing touch.

I packaged up a few Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Apricot Oatmeal Muffins for my mother-in-law for Mother’s Day…she was quite pleased.

A few Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Apricot Oatmeal Muffins for my mother-in-law to enjoy

Don’t worry mom…I have popped a few in the freezer for your next visit.

P.S. Go Leafs Go!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Oatmeal Wild Blueberry Muffins

Todays Allergy Friendly Muffin Monday is an attempt to entice my boys to try one of my healthier muffins, scaled down…whole-wheat/bran muffins filled with fibre do not tempt them.

Hence, this weeks muffin is a reconfiguration of last Monday’s Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Oatmeal Lemon Raspberry  Mini Muffins. Click here for the link.

Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Oatmeal Wild Blueberry Muffins

Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Oatmeal Wildblueberry Muffins

Andy loved them…Matthew liked them…I preferred the heartier version of the whole-wheat flour and oatmeal combo…MIchael has yet to try them…it’s the oats that is putting him off.

It can be such a hard balance…trying to please each of their individual palates, yet, at the same time, creating a healthy snack.

I kept the ingredients simple…unbleached all-purpose flour, quick oats, brown sugar, rice milk, egg replacement…to highlight the star of these muffins…frozen wild blueberries.

Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Oatmeal Wild Blueberry Muffins

Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Oatmeal Wild Blueberry Muffins

Dry Ingredients

2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
1 cup quick oats
1 cup demerrera sugar
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp kosher salt

Wet Ingredients

1 1/4 cups Natur-a Rice Beverage or Natur-a Soy Beverage mixed with 1 tbsp. white vinegar…let rest while measuring ingredients.
2 tbsp. water
1 tsp pure vanilla
1/3 cup canola oil

Add In
1 cup frozen wild blueberries

Topping
whole oats and frozen wild blueberries

Directions
In a large bowl, combine the dry ingredients.
In another bowl, combine all the wet ingredients.
Gently stir in the frozen blueberries into the dry ingredients.
Add wet ingredients to dry and continue to gently stir until just combined.
Spoon into 12 paper-lined muffin cups.
Top with a sprinkling of whole oats and 3 frozen blueberries on top of each muffin.
Bake at 375 F for 20-25 minutes or until the tops are golden on the edges.
Let cool on cooling rack for 10 minutes before turning out to continue to cool.

Enjoy!

Enjoying a Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Oatmeal Wild Blueberry Muffin with a cup of tea

Just look at all those yummy wild blueberries!

Variations:
For a lemon blueberry version…add 1 tbsp. of lemon zest to the dry ingredients.
For a cinnamon blueberry version…add 1 tsp of cinnamon to the dry ingredients.
For a gluten-free version…replace all-purpose flour with a gluten-free flour blend and use gluten-free oats.

How do you manage to create healthy allergen friendly options to please your individual family members?

Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Orange Date Bran Whole-wheat Muffins

It’s Allergy Friendly Muffin Monday!

I am a ‘bran fan’Raisin Bran, Bran Flakes, Weetabix…does anyone remember the cereal Pep? Loved it! Topped with something sweet…my favourite was a layer of Demerara sugar…I was ready to start my day.

I have always been a ‘muffin fan’…so it was natural for me to transition my love of bran, muffins and allergy friendly baking into one.

Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Orange Date Bran Whole-wheat Muffins

Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Orange Date Bran Whole-wheat Muffins

Moist, rich in flavour, with a touch of orange sweetness…these muffins satisfy my bran muffin cravings.

I re-discovered this recipe from my clippings file…Canadian Living Magazine’s March 2001 edition. Click here for the original recipe.

Just a few adaptions to make this recipe dairy and egg free.

1) Replace the 1 1/3 cups buttermilk with 1 1/3 cups Natur-a Rice Beverage or Natur-a Soy Beverage mixed with 1 tbsp. white vinegar
2) Replace 1 egg with 1 tbsp. flaxmeal mixed with 3 tbsp. water and left to rest in the refrigerator over night.
3) For a touch of orange in the recipe…replace the flax egg water with 3 tbsp. of freshly squeezed orange juice and add the zest of one orange to the dry ingredients.
4) To up the fibre…I replaced the 2 cups of all-purpose flour with whole-wheat flour which increased the whole-wheat flour in the recipe to 2 3/4 cups.
5) I placed a bit of date on top of the Dairy, Egg ,Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Orange Date Bran Whole-wheat Muffins before I sprinkled the tops of the muffins with All Bran Flakes before baking.

I think the combination of the molasses, dates and bran create a rich, moist flavourful muffin that will change your mind about bran muffins if you’re not already a ‘bran fan’!

Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Date Bran Whole-wheat Muffins

This past Saturday I was at the Kniterary…the lovely ladies in my knitting class and I were starting the heel on our stripy socks. (my sock is the longer one top right)

A basket of Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Date Bran Whole-wheat Muffins surrounded by the unfiinished socks the lovely ladies at knitting are working on

For sustenance…the lovely ladies enjoyed sampling my Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Date Bran Whole-wheat Muffins.

I was surprised to learn…all the lovely ladies at knitting were ‘date bran fans’…not necessarily ‘raisin fans’.

One of the lovely ladies at knitting suggested the addition of orange. I couldn’t resist… I had to make a batch the very next morning.

Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Orange Date Bran Whole-wheat Muffins

A Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Orange Date Bran Whole-wheat Muffin ready to enjoy with a slice of orange

Dates + Bran + Orange = Perfectly yummy! 

Enjoy! 

P.S. My neighbour, Joanna, also writes a blog., That Thing I Made..today it was a very personal and heartfelt one concerning her friend with a brain tumour. I would have been honoured to join her ‘Team Running For Love’ but unfortunately, I will not be available.  My thoughts and prayers are with her and her family during this very scary time. Click here for a link to her story.

Update: Carla @ My 1/2 Dozen Daily has generously offered to put names in draw to win one of her beautiful hand-made summer tote bags to anyone that donates a minimum of $10.00 to the Brain Tumour Foundation of Canada. Click here for more details on her blog.

Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free English Muffins

What a treat…Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free English Muffins with my favourite topping…homemade Strawberry Jam.

A Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free English Muffin with homemade Strawberry Jam

Oh so yummy! Crispy on the outside with a soft, chewy, craggy inside…this adaptation of an English Muffin surpasses anything purchased in a package at the grocery store!

I couldn’t resist trying to adapt another one of Canadian Living Magazine’s December 2012 ‘Griddle Me This’ recipes…English Muffins. Click here for the original recipe.

I replaced the warm milk with Natur-a Soy Beverage (for a soy free version use Natur-a Rice Beverage), the melted unsalted butter with canola oil and the egg with 1 tbsp of flax meal mixed with 3 tbsp of water that has been refrigerated for at least 15 minutes to set. (add the egg as in the original recipe)

A bit time consuming…but when there are no other options for an allergy friendly English Muffin…one finds the time. Perfect for the weekend!

Who wouldn’t want to wake up to the smell of a perfectly toasted Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free English Muffin before heading off to school/work?

I surprised the boys after school with the smell of my first batch of Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free English Muffins cooking on the stove top and baking in the oven…my timing was perfect!

Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free English Muffins cooking in a cast iron pan.

Matthew perfectly pried open his Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free English Muffin with a fork and spread it with a layer of Vegan Becel Margarine.

Matthew's Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free English Muffin spread with Vegan Becel Margarine

He savoured every bite.

Michael enjoyed his spread with Vegan Becel Margarine with the addition of a drizzle of his favourite topping…local honey.

A Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free English Muffin with local honey

Andy enjoyed his toasted Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free English Muffin for dessert…slathered with Vegan Becel Margarine and homemade Strawberry Jam. “This is really good!”, he exclaimed with a note of surprise in his voice.

“This would be awesome as a breakfast sandwich!”, he announced excitedly. As Michael is allergic to eggs…perhaps a Peameal Bacon Sandwich?

Delicious straight out of the oven yet perfectly wonderful toasted the next morning for breakfast, snack, or even dessert!

Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free English Muffins are yet another great option for my teenaged son who arrives perplexed at the breakfast table every morning as to what to eat along with his Dairy Free Hot Chocolate.

P.S. Between the Dairy, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Crumpets and the English Muffinsthe English Muffins were the favourite. Michael is already hinting for me to bake up another batch!

P.P.S: The link to the Canadian Living Magazine recipe for English Muffins is missing a couple of important paragraphs in their directions. Below are the missing paragraphs that start after the 1 1/2 hour rest period.

“Mix baking powder with 1 tbsp water; stir into dough. Heat griddle or cast-iron skillet over medium heat; brush with some of the oil.  Sprinkle with some of the cornmeal.  Drop dough by scant 1/4 cup onto griddle, leaving 1 inch (2.5 cm) between each.  Cook until bottoms are browned, 7 to 8 minutes.

Brush each top with oil and sprinkle with 1/2 tsp cornmeal.  Flip and cook until browned, 7 to 8 minutes.  Repeat with remaining dough.”

Tip: Michael toasted his Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free English Muffin whole…then pried it open to reveal a warm interior perfect for his toppings. He also tried toasting his English Muffin sliced.

Andy toasted his Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free English Muffin whole, without any slicing at all…he just spread the Vegan Becel Margarine and homemade Strawberry Jam right on top.

Michael agreed that his father’s technique was the tastiest! Preferring honey to the jam.

A Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free English Muffin spread with Vegan Becel Margarine and drizzled with honey

Enjoy!

Dairy, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Crumpets

Tea and Dairy, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Crumpets anyone?

Dairy, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Crumpet with homemade Strawberry Jam

Or in my boys’ case…a mug of Dairy Free Hot Chocolate!

I am always on the look out for breakfast ideas to adapt…Michael tends to fall into a ‘breakfast rut’…whereas, Mattthew is quite content with his bowl of hot oatmeal with milk and pure maple syrup. 

Pre-packaged crumpets at the grocery store (may contain dairy, sesame seeds, and/or egg) are off-limits due to his food allergies. Enter Canadian Living Magazine’s December 2012 article, ‘Griddle Me This’, to the rescue!

I was so excited to find a recipe for Crumpets that I could easily adapt. With no egg in the recipe, I just had to substitute Natur-a Soy or Rice beverage for the milk. Click here for the original recipe.

A bit time-consuming, as the batter needs to rise for an hour in a warm draft-free place. ( I turned on the oven for a few minutes to take the chill out, turned it off, and then placed my bowl covered in plastic wrap inside to rest)

I improvised with the 3-inch ring mold and used a 3 inch fluted cookie cutter…worked fine but could only make one crumpet at a time.

Cooking Dairy, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Crumpets in a cast iron pan

Upon turning the crumpet over, I started another crumpet.

Michael’s eyes lit up when he heard that I was making Dairy, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Crumpets for an after school snack.

Matthew hovered over me…anxiously waiting a fresh from the grill, allergy friendly crumpet… “Are they ready, now?”

The boys loved them!

A Dairy, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Crumpet with Vegan Becel Margarine drizzled with local honey.

The boys’ favourite topping…Vegan Becel Margarine drizzled with local honey.

All but three, Dairy, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Crumpets, were gobbled up.

Enjoying a Dairy, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Crumpet

Michael enjoyed one toasted for his breakfast along with a mug of Dairy Free Hot Chocolate before he headed off to school.

Enjoy!

P.S. To save time, I cut the recipe in half…next time I would use a proper 3-inch ring mold and make a full batch, freezing any leftovers to toast for a quick breakfast or snack.

Tip: If you find yourself, like I did, forgetting to add the canola oil…don’t worry…gently mixing it in after the hour rest works fine.

Fish, Shellfish, Egg, Peanut/Tree Nut Free Pad Thai

The opportunity for my eldest son to try tofu finally arrived!

Fish, Shellfish, Egg and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Pad Thai with broccoli

Fish, Shellfish, Egg and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Pad Thai!

Here is the background story:

For many years, I avoided soy in Michael’s diet…it was an allergy that he eventually outgrew. Michael’s remaining multiple food allergies, dairy, eggs, beef, fish, shellfish, peanut/tree nuts, sesame, mustard and raspberry, left him limited in his protein intake.

It has been quite the challenge to increase the protein in his diet. When beans were given the okay he just looked at me and said, in his sarcastic teenage voice, “Oh yeeeeah! Beans are not what I want to be able to eat.”

I get it, beans are not on the top 10 most desirable foods to eat as a teen!

Tofu has also, never appealed to Michael. I have to admit, my lack of experience with tofu was also a bit of a barrier. So you can imagine my shock when he announced that he would like me to add tofu into his diet!

To understand this transformation, I need to go back a few weeks to our Church Christmas Bazaar.

At our Church Christmas Bazaar,  Michael bid on and won a 6 month VIP membership to Extreme Fitness. Part of the membership included a fitness test. It came as no surprise when Michael came home after his fitness test and announced that the person who evaluated him concluded that Michael needed to up his protein intake…he came home that day wanting to have, of all things, quinoa.

I love quinoa…I prefer it to rice. Quinoa is a gluten-free seed very high in protein. Click here to read Allergic Living Magazine’s Shelley Case RD’s ideas of how to use and prepare the different forms of quinoa.

Michael enjoyed his rice topped with quinoa that night at dinner.

Last week, Michael mentioned he would now like to try tofu. As the only dish I have every made with tofu was Pad Thai…I decided to adapt my favourite recipe.

My favourite recipe for Pad Thai comes from the May 1993 issue of Canadian Living Magazine. Unfortunately, I could not find the original recipe online. The following, Fish, Shellfish, Egg and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Pad Thai recipe, is an adapted version to suit our families tastes and allergens.

Fish, Shellfish, Egg and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Pad Thai

1 pkg (454 g) Rice Stick Noodles (blue package)
1 cup low sodium chicken stock
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup low sodium soy sauce
6 tbsp lime juice
4 tbsp ketchup
1/4 tsp hot pepper flakes (I omitted as the boys do not like the spice)
3 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into chunks
1 pkg (350 g) extra firm tofu, cut into small squares
1 red pepper, diced
6 green onions, chopped
1/4 cup canola oil
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 bunch of fresh coriander, chopped
2 cups bean sprouts, rinsed (unfortunately, the ones at the store did not look fresh so I omitted them in this version)

Bring a large pot of water to boil.
Add the package of rice noodles.
Boil for 3 minutes…or until the noodles are completely cooked.
Drain, rinse and set aside.
Meanwhile, in a liquid measure, stir together the chicken stock, sugar, soy sauce, lime juice, ketchup and hot pepper flakes (if using).
On medium-high,  heat 1 tbsp of the canola in a large skillet.
Add the garlic and chicken cubes. Stir fry until no longer pink inside. Transfer to a bowl.
Heat remaining oil in the pan. Add red pepper and tofu, stirring occasionally until lovely and brown.

Browned tofu and red pepper

Re-rinse the rice noodles (they will have stuck together) and add to the pan.
Stir in the sauce and cooked garlic chicken.

Pouring the sauce in Fish, Shellfish, Egg and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Pad Thai

Sprinkle in the chopped coriander and green onions and stir-fry until heated through.

Fish, Shellfish, Egg and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Pad Thai

Enjoy!

Fish, Shellfish, Egg and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Pad Thai

Lovely with some steamed broccoli.

Overall opinion: Andy and I loved it! The boys did not hate it nor did they love it…it was okay…I’ll take that.

Tip 1: Andy and I sprinkled hot pepper flakes over our dishes…we like our dish hot, hot, hot!

Tip 2: Michael thought it was a bit sweet…perhaps next time I would reduce the sugar.

Tip 3: Even better the next day re-heated…looking forward to leftovers for dinner tonight!

Tuscan Chicken With Parsley Orzo…one of my husband’s favourite meals

Tuscan Chicken with Parsley Orzo has been one of my husband’s favourites meals since the first time I made it back in March 2001.

Andy's plate of Tuscan Chicken with Parsley Orzo

Easy to prepare, great for entertaining and any leftovers can be frozen for a later date.

Saturday night is the one night of the week that Andy and I set aside the time to prepare something special for dinner. Even in the midst of the boys’ crazy hockey schedules…we work hard at trying to come up with a ‘tasty solution’ for dinner. (The boys still enjoy their barbecued ribs, rice and corn night)

Unfortunately, this past week, has been a difficult one for me health-wise…the bit of running I added to my power walks has backfired…it aggravated my pinched nerve.

As a result, Andy took charge of Saturday night’s dinner…of course, he chose one of his all-time favourite dishes…Tuscan Chicken with Parsley Orzo…yeah!

This recipe originates from a Canadian Living magazine…Diane Clement’s Tuscan Baked Chicken with Orzo recipe was highlighted. Click here for an adapted version of Canadian Living’s recipe printed in the Vancouver Sun newspaper.

Andy and I like to make this meal together…as he barbecues the chicken breasts, I prepare the sun-dried tomato topping and prep the orzo. Once the chicken is in the oven, the fresh vegetable (usually broccoli) is put on to steam and the orzo dish is assembled. (Andy did a great job of prepping and preparing the entire meal as I sat on the sidelines…thank you, thank you!)

I have taken the liberty of adapting the original Canadian Living version to suit our personal tastes and dairy allergy…omitting the parmesan cheese in the orzo, allows Michael to enjoy a sample.

Michael's ribs, rice and corn with a sample of Parsley Orzo

Tuscan Chicken

6 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
2 tbsp olive oil
1 onion, finely chopped
3/4 cup dry white wine
1 package of sun-dried tomatoes, not packaged in oil, thinly sliced
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
cracked pepper to taste
fresh basil leaves, thinly sliced, for garnish

Barbecue chicken breasts, 5-6 minutes a side..place in a 9 by 13 casserole dish.
While chicken is barbecuing…in a saucepan, saute onion in olive oil until softened.
Add white wine, balsamic vinegar, sun-dried tomatoes and a few grinds of black pepper.

Sun-dried tomato topping for chickenPour over chicken breasts, arranging sun-dried tomatoes and onion mixture evenly over the chicken breasts.

Barbecued chicken breasts with sun-dried tomato topping ready for the ovenCover with foil.
Bake at 350 F for 20 minutes.

Baked chicken with sun-dried tomato toppingGarnish with slivers of sliced fresh basil.

Parsley Orzo

Parsley Orzo in a saucepan

1 cup orzo (I use Seme di melone by De Cecco)
1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
half a bunch of parsley, rinsed, dried and chopped
salt and pepper to taste

In a pot of boiling salted water, cook orzo according to package instructions.
In a large pan, heat olive oil on medium heat.
Add drained orzo, parsley and salt and pepper to taste.

Tuscan Chicken and Parsley Orzo ready to be served

Enjoy!

Tuscan Chicken, Parsley Orzo and steamed brocolli

Delish!

Tip 1: By not adding the parmesan cheese to the Parsley Orzo, as in the original recipe…Michael is able to enjoy this meal with us.

Tip 2: This dish can easily be made ahead of time…just pop it in the oven for easy entertaining!

P.S. Andy loves to grind fresh parmesan over his Parsley Orzo, as seen in the first picture at top.

Do you have a favourite meal you enjoy as a couple?

Allergy Friendly Pork Bourguignon

As a child growing up, one of my favourite meals my mother would make for the family was Beef Bourguignon.

A thick and flavourful sauce surrounding chunks of tender meat and mushrooms…welcoming at the end of a blustery Fall day or in the middle of a frosty Winter.

It soon became my husband, Andy’s, favourite meal…that is…with the addition of potatoes and carrots! Blasphemy…according to my mother!

Along came the children…food allergies and all…one just so happening to be to beef. Away went the recipe.

It has been many years since I have had the pleasure of enjoying the intoxicating aroma and delectable flavour of my favourite childhood dish…enough so, that I decided it was high time to reinvent it!

I introduce to you…Allergy Friendly Pork Bourguignon!

Pork Bourguignon with a slice of Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free French Stick

Not only is this dish amazingly delish…it is super easy to prepare!

A bonus in my books!

Basically, one puts all the ingredients in a pot and leaves it to braise…the longer the better!

Recently, on our trip to Stowe, Vermont, I brought along our slow cooker. I thought this recipe would be perfect for dinner after a day of skiing in the mountains…and it was! 

Timing for the veggies was a little off…but a quick high simmer on the stove cooked them up in no time for my hungry crew!

I also packaged up the pre-measured flour, salt, pepper and herbs in a ziplock bag . Just unzip and toss…as if you had a ‘store bought’ seasoning mix!

This recipe comes from Canadian Living Magazine. The recipe came from a special magazine published especially for Christmas 1977. It was called, The Best of Canadian Living’s Cooking, 101 Fantastic Recipes.

Allergy Friendly Pork Bourguignon

2 lbs boneless rib end pork roast, cut into cubes
1 pkg of pearl onion, peeled or 1 onion sliced
2 crushed garlic cloves
3 tbsp unbleached all-purpose flour
1 tsp kosher salt
1/4 tsp pepper
1/2 tsp dried thyme
1 small bay leaf crumbled
lots of cremini mushrooms, destemmed, peeled and quartered
1 28 oz/796 mL can of crushed tomatoes
1 1/4 cup vegetable broth
1 cup red wine

Combine all the dry ingredients in a large oven-proof dish or in a large slow cooker.

dry ingredients in large oven proof pot for Pork BourguignonPour in the can of crushed tomatoes, broth and wine and stir to combine.

wet ingredients added to pot for Pork BourguignonBake at 350 F for 3 or more hours.
In the last hour of cooking, I like to add peeled and sliced carrots, cubed peeled potatoes, and sweet potatoes. (a new addition as Michael and I love them)

peeled, cubed and sliced veggies added to Pork BourguignonThe amount of veggies is at your own discretion. Apparently, according to my boys, I put too many potatoes in and never enough carrots!


For the slow cooker, I have only cooked this dish this way the once while on our trip. I put it on low for about 8 hours…as we were away all day. The timing was a little off for adding the veggies so I am guesstimating here…I added them for an hour still on low but that was not enough…so I turned it to high but it was still not enough…so I took out what I thought we would eat and heated it up to a high simmer on the stove in a large pot until tender…perfect!

Pork Bourguignon ready to be ladled into bowls

Delicious with a tossed salad and fresh homemade Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free French Stick warmed up in the oven.

enjoying a bowl of Pork Bourguignon

Enjoy!

Tip 1: I brought along two of my Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free French Sticks wrapped in foil and popped them in the freezer when we arrived at our ‘little cabin in the woods’ in Stowe, Vermont. I reheated the bread, from frozen, in the oven at around 350 F for 20 minutes or so.

Tip 2: Great re-heated the next day or take out the potatoes and freeze. Potatoes tend to get mealy when frozen.

Question: Have you ever travelled with your slow cooker?


Dairy, Egg, and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Chocolate Yule Log with Chocolate Bark

A Christmas tradition, I am so happy to be able to recreate, is serving a Yule Log for dessert on Christmas Day.

Dairy, Egg, and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Chocolate Yule Log with Chocolate Bark

dairy, egg and peanut/tree nut free chocolate yule log

Last year, was my first year attempting to put one together. The idea was sparked by Guardian Angel’s Allergen Free Yule Logs.

I believe, it was in my Allergic Living magazine, that I first spied Guardian Angel’s advertisement for their Allergen Free Chocolate Christmas Log.

I was so excited…even more excited when I was able to purchase one for our Christmas dinner. Located in the freezer section at Metro.

Our first store-bought cake…I kept it as a surprise…I came out with it on a platter still in the protective wrapping.

Oh, the look on my boys’ faces when they realized what was being presented for dessert.

It was a very exciting moment…in the boys’ words…”Cool!”

As much as they loved the idea of a cake from outside of our kitchen and the fact it tasted good…they informed me that they liked my cakes better…in particular, my icing.

In Matthew’s word: “I like yours better…I’m not just saying that…”

I was determined to create our own Allergen Free Christmas Yule Log.

Dairy, Egg and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Chocolate Yule Log with Chocolate Bark

dairy,egg and peanut/tree nut free chocolate yule log

Half the recipe for Dairy, Egg and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Chocolate Birthday Cake.
Line a 1″ deep jelly roll pan (approximately 9 by 13″) with parchment paper and spray with canola oil.
Pour batter into pan and spread evenly.

dairy, egg and peanut/tree nut free chocolate cake batter in pan for yule log

Bake 350 F for  12-15 minutes.
Let cool in pan for 10 minutes.
Turn cake out on an icing sugar lined tea towel.

dairy, egg and peanut/tree nut free chocolate cake on icing sugar lined tea towel

Sprinkle with icing sugar and roll cake up carefully from the long end.
Let cool on  rack.

rolled up dairy, egg and peanut/tree nut free chocolate cake in tea towel

Make half the recipe of Dairy Free Vanilla Icing and Chocolate Icing. I added a bit more water to each of the icings so it was easier to spread on the cake.

Unroll cake when cooled. (Do not fret if the cake cracks.)

dairy, egg and peanut/tree nut free chocolate cake unrolledSpread the cake with Dairy Free Vanilla Icing…pushing together the cracked edges and spreading icing to cover. See…no problem!

dairy,egg and peanut/tree nut free chocolate cake iced with vanilla icingCarefully roll up cake and wrap snuggly with plastic wrap and refrigerate.
Unwrap plastic wrap from cake and spread with Dairy Free Chocolate Icing.

Last year, I spread the cake with the Dairy Free Chocolate Icing to look rough like bark, sprinkled it with icing sugar and decorated it with a Santa and Christmas tree.

dairy,egg and peanut/tree nut free chocolate yule log without chocolate bark

This year, I couldn’t resist trying something different…chocolate bark!

Chocolate Bark

The idea for covering the Yule Log with chocolate bark came from a recipe from the Canadian Living Special Cookbook Edition, Fall 2011. When I saw the picture with the log covered in chocolate bark…I had to try it. So glad I did! Easy to do and it looks terrific!

In a bowl over a saucepan of hot water, melt 1 cup of Enjoy Life chocolate chips.
Spread the melted chocolate to a thickness of 3 mm on a parchment lined cookie sheet.

enjoy life chocolate chips melted and spread on parchment paper for chocolate bark

Refrigerate for 10 minutes.
Break the chocolate into 3 by 1″ pieces, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until firm.

 melted enjoy life chocolate chips broken into pieces

Press the broken pieces of chocolate on to the iced cake and dust with icing sugar.

                                                              Ta Da!

dairy, egg and peanut/tree nut free chocolate yule log with chocolate bark

Not quite sure how well the cake will cut with all the broken chocolate on it. Will update after Christmas.

Update: Dairy, Egg and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Chocolate Yule Log was scrumpdillicious! Is that a word? It is now!

slice of dairy, egg and peanut/tree nut free chocolate yule log

Slicing the Yule Log wasn’t as difficult as I had imagined…just make sure the cake is kept cool for slicing…I used a bread knife.

slicing the dairy, egg and peanut/tree nut free chocolate yule log with bread knife

Everyone loved the chocolate bark! A very tasty addition.

Inviting the neighbourhood kids in this afternoon, to share what’s left of the Dairy, Egg and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Chocolate Yule Log, after the boys have a game of road hockey.

Tip: For a Soy Free Icing use Earth Balance Soy Free Vegan Spread.

P.S. I am putting together an Allergen Friendly Christmas Dinner for Michael to take to my in-laws: Roast Turkey with Dairy Free Gravy and Stuffing and Dairy Free Garlic Mashed Potatoes. I made the Dairy Free Stuffing the day before so it was ready to stuff the turkey early in the morning.

Can you believe, I was able to pick fresh parsley from my garden for the stuffing!

I will also be bringing a Dairy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free French Stick for everyone to enjoy. Will be bringing a cutting board and bread knife.

P.P.S. Do you have a favourite recipe you have adapted for your Christmas dessert or dessert in general? Have you tried the Guardian Angel Christmas Logs?

Merry Christmas!