The Toronto Star’s 2012 Cookie Calendar Countdown: Day 3: Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Date Drop Cookies

My BFF, Anne, is here visiting from Calgary…one thing we have in common is a love for dates.

It was serendipity when I read The Toronto Star’s Day 3 Cookie Calendar Cookie was Geoff Fleming’s Great-Grandmother’s family recipe from Germany…Date Drop Cookies. Click here for the original recipe at The Toronto Star.

“Oh, you have to make them!”, exclaimed Anne. So we did!

Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Date Drop Cookies

Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Date Drop Cookies

Oh my gosh…delicious! Each one is a Ittle nugget of yumminess!

I replaced the butter with Earth Balance Vegan Sticks (for a soy free version replace butter wit Earth Balance Soy Free Buttery Spread ), the egg with 1/4 cup cinnamon applesauce and omitted the walnuts.

“Aren’t you glad I made you make them”, Anne announced. “Oh my, yes!”…Anne knows me only too well!

Unfortunately, I could not interest the boys…my husband, Andy, on the other hand, couldn’t keep his hand out of the ‘proverbial cookie jar!’ He justified himself by stating, “But they’re so small”!

If you love dates as much as we all do…this is a must try recipe…sure to please those with or without dairy, egg, soy and/or peanut/tree nut allergies!

My parting gift for Anne…

A package of Dairy, Egg. Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Date Drop Cookies for Anne

…a package of Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Date Drop Cookies to tide her over on her flight home.

If you are wild about dates…you may want to try my Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Date Squares that I made Anne last year. Click here for the recipe.

Tip:  Next batch will be made with whole wheat flour…I think it will complement the richness of the dates similar to my Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Date Squares.

Advertisements

The Toronto Star’s 2012 Cookie Calendar Countdown: Day 1: Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Diwali Chai Snickerdoodle

So excited…Jennifer Bain, Toronto Star Food Editor’s 2012 Cookie Calendar Countdown has begun. Click here to learn more.

Day 1 was Ajitha Cyriac’s ‘chai inspired cookies’ she adapted from a Snickerdoodle recipe to please her four kids. Click here for her original adapted recipe in the Toronto Star.

I further adapted her adaptation to please my own boys’ food allergies.

Dairy, Egg, and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Diwali Chai Snickerdoodle Cookies

A plate of Dairy, Egg and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Diwali Chai Snickerdoodle Cookies

I replaced the butter with Earth Balance Vegan Sticks, (for a soy free version use Earth Balance Soy Free Buttery Spread) replaced the eggs with 1/2 tsp of baking soda added to the dry ingredients and 2 tbsp of water added along with the pure vanilla and omitted the pistachios.

The timing was perfect…I had a houseful of hungry boys still around from Matthew’s birthday sleepover party…eager to try cookies.

After a lunch of leftover pizza…the boys tried one. Matthew liked them…Michael made a face after the first bite…Carson thought they had a nice buttery aftertaste and William thought they would be more suited to adults as they were not very sweet.

That evening, Andy and I had the pleasure of attending a Christmas party at our friends house. Our hostess has two boys who are also not too fond of ‘Indian sweets’ as Ajitha was quoted in the Toronto Star.

I packaged up the Dairy, Egg, and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Diwali Chai Snickerdoodle Cookies to bring as part of my hostess gift.

Hostess gifts: Package of Dairy, Egg and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Diwali Chai Snickerdoodle Cookies and Glass Urn with Pomegrante and Greenery

She was thrilled to receive her special hostess gifts.

In addition to the Dairy, Egg, and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Diwali Chai Snickerdoodle Cookies, I decided to bake some kid friendly cookies that I know both my boys love at Christmas time…Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Gingerbread Men.

Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Gingerbread Men

One can never go wrong with Gingerbread Men…they are irresistible.

Four packages of Dairy, Egg, Soy and Gingerbread Men Cookies

Therefore, I made up 4 packages as there was another family attending the party with their two girls. Their mother was pleasantly surprised!

I am looking forward to adapting more of Jennifer Bain’s Cookie Calendar Treats as the month continues. Stay tuned!

Have you started your holiday baking? What are your favourite family go-to holiday cookies? Are you following along with The Toronto Star’s Cookie Calendar Countdown?

Happy Hallowe’en…celebrating with Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Zebra Cake and Gingerbread Ghosts, Bats and Cats

Happy Hallowe’en!

Happy Hallowe'en 2012

This will be the first Hallowe’en that both my boys will not be ‘trick or treating’ in the neighbourhood.

It is a bittersweet moment…on the one hand, I feel relieved that there will not be any peanut/tree nut candies and chocolate bars to worry about passing through our door yet on the other hand, I will miss the anticipation and excitement of the boys getting all dressed up and preparing to head out for a fun filled night of ‘trick or treating’ with their neighbourhood friends.

With both the boys in highschool…the teenage years is my new ‘norm’. My little boys are growing into young men.

Michael, my eldest at 16, has not been ‘trick or treating’ for quite a few years now. He enjoys answering the door and handing out all the candy to kids. This year, both Michael and Matthew will herald the door…I must say, I like to get in on the action too! Seeing the little kids all dressed up is my favourite…especially the neighbourhood kids!

Last year, I put on a Hallowe’en party for the boys’ neighbourhood friends. Click here to view. This year, the boys did not seem as interested.

One is never too old for treats…so I will be surprising my boys with some special Hallowe’en treats.

Hallowe'en treats for the boys

 Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Gingerbread Ghosts, Bats and Cats, black licorice, Yummy Earth candy drops and small packages of Yummy Earth Gummy Bears. 

I adapted this cute Zebra Cake from a Robin Hood Flour advertisement in one of those little booklets of recipes and coupons.

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

I replaced the butter with Earth Balance Vegan Sticks (for soy free use Earth Balance Soy Free Buttery Spread), replaced the 2 eggs with 4 tbsp of water and 1 tsp of baking soda, replaced the milk with Natura Enriched Rice Beverage and omitted the almond extract. The original recipe can be found by clicking Robinhood.ca

Kids will really enjoy the preparation of this cake…scooping the vanilla and chocolate batter in to the cake pan is the perfect task for ‘little helpers’.

Scooping the vanilla and chocolate batter in cake pan for Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Zebra Cake

I think this is the perfect cake to celebrate Hallowe’ena cake disguised as a zebra!

Enjoying a slice of Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Zebra Cake

Enjoy!

Tip: I baked the cake for 40 minutes…next time, I would bake it a bit longer as the centre of the cake was a little undercooked…Matthew didn’t mind but Michael found it ‘too soft’.

P.S. How do you navigate Hallowe’en with your children’s food allergies? Click here for my chronicles on our journey with Hallowe’en.

P.P.S. My thoughts and prayers go out to all those struggling in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy.

Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Strawberry Pie…a tasty flop!

Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Strawberry Pie is one of the best tasting ‘flops’ I have ever tasted!

Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Strawberry Pie

Absolutely delish!

The crust was light and crispy, the filling was bursting with the taste of freshly picked strawberries and biting in to plump whole strawberries…oh my…was an added bonus!

A slice of Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Strawberry Pie

The slicing and presentation, however,  was a bit of a ‘goopy mess’…not sure if the filling set properly or long enough.

Having never tasted nor made a Strawberry Pie in my life, I am still not sure if this pie turned out the way a Strawberry Pie is meant to…any thoughts…tips?

To me…this Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Strawberry Pie was the ‘bomb’! 

I couldn’t stop raving about how ‘yummy’ it was…and according to my boys…”That’s all that matters, mom!”

Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Strawberry Pie was a ‘labour of love’…presented to my husband for his Father’s Day dessert.

The recipe was adapted from Canadian Living’s Country Cooking Cookbook…another recipe I have been longing to make from this cookbook.

This recipe requires a few steps, some patience with time to prepare and set.

Well worth the effort!

Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Strawberry Pie

Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Strawberry Pie

Pastry:

1 cup plus 1 tbsp of unbleached all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp kosher salt
1/3 cup canola oil
40 ml water

In a large bowl, mix the dry ingredients.
In a liquid measure, mix the wet ingredients.
Make a well in the middle of the dry ingredients and add the wet, stirring gently with a wooden spoon until just mixed.
Pat dough into a ball and place on a floured piece of wax paper.
Place another piece of wax paper on top and proceed to roll out the dough to fit a 10-inch (25 cm) pie plate.
Tip: Dough should be rolled out very thinly.
Carefully peel back the top piece of wax paper keeping with the dough attached and scraping up any dough that sticks to the bottom piece of wax paper.
Tip: This sounds finicky…it can be, however, do not fret…pastry is very forgiving and can be patched up once in the pie plate.
Place circle of dough in pie plate, flute edges and patch where necessary with excess dough.
Press dough into the pie plate and prick all over with a fork.
Bake at 450 F for 10-15 minutes or until nicely browned.
Press out any bubbles that may have occurred during baking and let cool completely.

Baked Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Pastry Shell

Strawberry Filling:

8 cups of strawberries divided (4 pints)
1 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup cornstarch
1/2 cup water

In a food processor or blender, puree 4 cups of strawberries until smooth.
In a medium saucepan, measure the sugar, stir in the cornstarch then blend in the water and pureed strawberries.
On med-high heat, bring mixture to a boil, stirring constantly.
Reduce heat and simmer 1-2 minutes, stirring constantly,  or until translucent and slightly thickened.
Press mixture through a sieve and let cool.

Assembling Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Strawberry Pie:

Arrange washed and de-stemmed whole strawberries, tips up, in the cooled pastry shell.
Pour strawberry filling over top and refrigerate for at least 2 hours or until set.
Tip: I highly recommend to make this in the morning in order that the filling has ample time to set before dessert time!

A slice of Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Strawberry Pie

Enjoy!

Tip: I omitted 1 tbsp of butter (which I would have substituted for Earth Balance or Soy Free Earth Balance) to the strawberry filling just before the mixture is pressed through a sieve…not sure if this would have helped with the setting of the filling or not.

P.S. The next day, the pastry remained crispy and the filling firmed up a ‘wee bit more’…I am ‘in love’ with this recipe!

Question: Do you have a favourite Allergen Friendly Strawberry Pie your family loves!

Have you been out strawberry picking yet this season? What will you be creating with all your sweet berries?

Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Strawberry Shortcake and Sultana Scones!

Happy Birthday Mom!

Visiting my mom on her birthdayIn honour of my mother’s 75th birthday today, we are celebrating with Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Strawberry Shortcakes.

Mom's birthday Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Strawberry Shortcake

One of my mother’s favourite treats!

My mother is a Type 1 Diabetic…these Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Strawberry Shortcakes are low in sugar, can be cut in half to control carbohydrates and are allergy friendly for my boys to enjoy…perfect!

My mother loves whipped cream…I, on the other hand, am not a fan…not only that, but my eldest son, Michael has a dairy allergy.Typically, Strawberry Shortcakes are topped with a dollop of whipped cream…what to do?

Enter…Coconut Whipped Cream…so simple. Just place a can of Coconut Milk in the fridge overnight. Scoop out the firm coconut milk on the top…whip and et voila!

Coconut Whipped Cream for Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Strawberry Shortcakes

Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Strawberry Shortcakes are adapted from a recipe from one of my favourite cookbooks…Canadian Living’s Country Cooking. The recipe for Scones With Currants is easily adapted to be dairy, egg, soy and peanut/tree nut free.

I omitted the currants in half the recipe for the Strawberry Shortcakes and added Sultana raisins in the other half for a delicious selection of Scones with Tea!

Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Sultana Scones with Strawberries and Tea

High Tea anyone?

What better way to enjoy watching Queen Elizabeth’s celebrations for her 60th year in reign!

Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Strawberry Shortcakes

Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peantu/Tree Nut Free Strawberry Shortcake and Coconut Whipped Cream

2 1/4 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
2 tbsp granulated sugar
2 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp kosher salt
1/2 cup Earth Balance Vegan ButterySticks (soy free version: Soy Free Earth Balance Natural Buttery Spread)
1 cup Ryza Rice Beverage mixed with 1 tbsp of white vinegar

In a large bowl, stir together flour, sugar, baking powder, gaking soda and salt.
Cut in the Earth Balance using a pastry cutter or two knives until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs.

Cutting in the Earth Balance into the flour mixture

Let the Ryza and vinegar sit for 5 min. Add all at once to the above mixture and stir with a fork to make a soft slightly sticky dough.
Flour your hands, so as the dough does not stick, and divide dough in half…add 1/4 cup of Sultana raisins to half the dough and press each into a ball. (I goofed and forgot this step…I ended up just pressing the Sultanas into the dough before rolling it out)
On a lightly floured surface, knead each ball gently 10 times.
Pat dough out to a thickness of 3/4 inch (2 cm).

Shortcake dough rolled out to 3/4 inch thicknessUsing a 2 1/2 inch (6 cm) floured cutter, cut out rounds.
Place on a parchment or silicone lined baking sheet. Combine the scraps together to repeat creating another round of cut outs.

Shortcakes/Scones on parchment lined baking sheetBake at 425 F for 12-15 minutes or until the scones are golden.
Let cool on a cooling rack.

Shortcakes/Scones cooling on cooling rack

To assemble the Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Strawberry Shortcakes:

Slice scones in half, top with sliced strawberries (we found local Ontario strawberries) and top with a dollop of whipped cream or whipped coconut cream.

Dig in and enjoy!

P.S. I thoroughly enjoyed making these whilst watching the Queen’s celebrations for her 60th reign…I was rolling my dough to ‘God Save The Queen’! My mom and I were literally glued to the television…we were almost late for church…then it was back to the ceremony! We have taped it for a later viewing…can you tell I have ‘British Blood’ in me!

P.S. I feel the need to highlight my mother on her special day…she truly is an inspiration for all those living with or without diabetes.

I have only ever known my mother as a diabetic. Testiing her blood sugar, giving herself needles, being careful about what she ate…these were all ‘normal mommy’ things to me. I can remember thinking it odd to see someone else’s mother eating cake or sweets. I would never think to offer a ‘mother’ those things. I would be in ‘awe’ just watching them!

When you think of it…my life now has not been that much different than when I was growing up. I am still living within a family with limitations…redefining what is ‘normal’…educating others along the way.

My mother set such a great example of how to live life to the fullest even when faced with a life threatening medical condition…she is my inspiration! Thank you!

Happy Birthday Mom!

My Secret Sister Gift Arrived!

Yesterday was a very beautiful day.

I woke up in an incredibly ‘happy’ mood…I had this feeling that ‘today’ was going to be ‘the day’ that my Secret Sister Gift, that Carla @ My 1/2 Dozen Daily hosted, would arrive!

Michael spilling his morning Dairy Free Hot Chocolate all over the kitchen table and floor two minutes before he had to leave for school, crazy drivers at the local grocery store, and even burning my first batch of Dairy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Rice Krispie Squares, using the last of my Earth Balance Vegan Sticks which meant walking to the grocery store in the baking heat of the day to purchase another box…could not damper my enthusiasm for the day!

Upon my second attempt at melting the Earth Balance and marshmallows the doorbell rang. There, sitting on my front porch, was the gift I had been waiting for…

My Secret Sister Gift on my front step

my Secret Sister Gift!

Unable to leave my post at the stove for fear of burning a second batch…I placed my Secret Sister Gift on a chair and quickly finished making the Dairy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Rice Krispies.

Upon finishing, my cell phone alerted me to a text…it was Michael…”It’s really hot out can you pick us up?”

As you know, Michael suffers from eczema…heat is a major trigger for him…as it was 30 C without the humidity factor, he was wearing his school uniform with pants carrying a heavy backpack and the fact he had papers to sort and deliver with his brother after school to deliver in this heat wave…

I left the Dairy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Rice Krispie Squares to cool with my Secret Sister Gift!

Dairy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Rice Krispie Squares cooling by my unopened Secret Sister Gift

First thing Michael said to me upon entering the car, “So…did you get it?” …”Yup!”, I answered smiling.

Now that both boys were home…my Secret Sister Gift was ready to be opened!

Wow! “Red wrapping paper with white polka dots!” Michael exclaimed, “No way!”…”How did you know?”

Inside my Secret Sister Box

I had told the boys to expect my Secret Sister Gift to arrive yesterday and there would be gifts wrapped in red wrapping paper with white polka dots…I must say…they were very impressed with my ‘Super Mom’ skills.

To be honest…I did a little sleuthing…put two and two together…and went on a hunch.

A lovely letter revealing the identity of my Secret SisterMutant Supermodel…was tucked inside.

However, Matthew was more interested in the opening of the gifts…the boys were each glad to help.

Secret Sister gifts revealed

A beautiful journal to write in, a lovely tea box and tea mug, Veg News magazine (a magazine I love to ‘treat’ myself too), and a gorgeous handmade ‘Nubby Scrubby’ that matches my kitchen!

Handmade 'Nubby Scrubby' that matches my kitchen

Seriously, do I have to use it as a cloth…it seems too pretty!

Of course, this gift was not in the picture as I had to put it on right away!

Beautiful apron from my Secret Sister

I LOVE it! How did you know I live in my kitchen…in an apron!

Thank you, thank you, thank you Mutant Supermodel so much for all the lovely gifts and kind words in your letter! I appreciate the time, effort and thoughtfulness of your gifts.

Mutant Supermodel ended her letter to me by writing… HAVE A BEAUTIFUL DAY!

Sipping my tea in my new tea mug and apron from my Secret Sister

Sipping my tea, in my new apron, from my new tea mug…it truly was…thank you!

P.S. Mutant Supermodel became a recent subscriber to my blog, wrote some lovely comments on some of my posts so I checked out her blog and came upon this…click here.…go figure, my hunch turned out!

P.P.S. Strangely enough…I completed a circle of Secret Sisters…click here to see what I mean!

P.P.P.S. This Sunday May 27, 2012 is the big day…Andy and I will be running in Whitby’s 1/2 Marathon starting at 7 a.m.! My first…Andy’s third…should be a great day!

Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Mini Vanilla Cupcakes for Easter

My boys find it hard to resist my Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Vanilla Cupcakes…therefore it was easy to come up with a ‘special treat’ for them for this Easter!

Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Mini Vanilla Cupcakes for Easter!

Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Vanilla Mini Cupcakes for Easter

So fun!

As Matthew is not a jelly bean kind of guy…I made some just for him.

Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Mini Vanilla Easter Cupcakes with and without Surf Sweets Jelly Beans

Just follow my recipe for Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Vanilla Cupcakes. Click here for the recipe. I halved the recipe to make 24 mini cupcakes and 3 regular cupcakes. Any leftover cupcakes can easily be frozen for a later treat.

To make the Easter basket design on the mini cupcakes: I used a Round Tip #12 decorating tip. I swirled the icing around twice on the edge of the mini cupcake leaving the centre open. Filled the centre with 3 Surf Sweets Jelly Beans. So cute!

To make the swirl top: I used a Round Tip #12 decorating tip. Starting on the outer edge of the mini cupcake, I drew the tip around the edge, moving it closer to the centre each time around until I was in the centre and then drew the tip upward.

Perfect for a Tea Party!

Easter Tea Party with Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Mini Vanilla Cupcakes

Tip:  These Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Vanilla Cupcakes are just as tasty without any icing…I can vouch for that! I had a hard time keeping the boys away from eating all the mini cupcakes before I had them iced!

Question: What ‘special allergen free treats’ will you be baking this Easter?

Gluten, Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Shortbread Easter Cookies

Spring has arrived…

spring crocuses blooming

…and Easter is fast approaching!

Gluten, Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Shortbread Easter Cookies

Another holiday is upon us…for those of us with food allergies…it can be rather stressful!

Family and friends getting together to celebrate usually means food will be involved.

Hence…the stress!

In the beginning, my eldest son, Michael, could not consume wheat, dairy, egg or soy products. This made baking a nightmare!

Remember, this would have been 16 years ago…not much was known about celiac disease and gluten intolerance or food allergies in general.

Groceries stores did not stock alternate beverages to milk, Enjoy Life did not exist, nor did many of the great companies out there for those with food allergies and/or intolerances.

Basically, you were on your own when it came to conjuring up alternate ‘treats’ for your food allergic child. I have to admit…at that time, baking without gluten was not easy. Imagine a teething baby, chewing on a Molasses Rice Cookie…what was I thinking!

I was quite happy when Michael was able to tolerate wheat in his diet once again. Dairy, egg and peanut/tree nuts must still be avoided.

Why am I baking a gluten-free Easter Cookie?

I have a friend, whose 2-year-old son, reminds me of the troubles I faced when Michael was a baby. He has severe eczema and multiple food sensitivities/intolerances/allergies.

His mother and father are overwhelmed with all the information out there, confused as to how to feed their son and yearn to have him enjoy the ‘trappings of celebrating’ like every young child around him!

This Easter post, as well as the my Easter posts to follow, are dedicated to her son and to all those parents with children who are struggling to ‘put the pieces together’ as they navigate their way through a world of eczema and food allergies.

I personally wanted her son to experience that feeling of ‘excitement’ by enjoying a tasty allergen friendly treat at Easter. Too many times, my boys have felt ‘left out’ when it comes to ‘special treats’ at the holidays.

Every child deserves to feel ‘special’!

Gluten, Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Shortbread Easter Cookies

This recipe was adapted from the recipe on the back of Club House’s All Natural Gluten Free Rice Flour.

I thought a basic Shortbread Cookie in a fun Easter shape would appeal to a 2- year- old. I felt the ingredients were simple enough to find at your local grocery store. I was also curious to see how they would turn out using just rice flour.

1 cup Gluten Free Rice Flour
1 tsp xanthan gum
1/2 cup Earth Balance Vegan Sticks (for a soy free version use Earth Balance Soy Free Spread)
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1/2 tsp pure vanilla

In a small bowl, whisk together the rice flour and xanthan gum.
In a large bowl, cream together the Earth Balance and sugar.
Stir in the vanilla.
Gradually, stir in the rice flour mixture until all combined.
Using your hands, form the dough into a ball.
Roll out the ball of dough on a lightly rice floured surface until 1/4 inch thick.
Cut out using desired cookie cutters and place cookies on a silicone or parchment lined cookie sheet.

Rolled out dough with cookie cutters

Refrigerate for 20 minutes.
Bake at 350 F for 14-16 minutes. Mine took 13 minutes.
Cool on cookie sheet for 10 minutes before removing to cooling rack to finish cooling.

Gluten, Dairy, Egg, Soy, Corn and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Shortbread Easter Cookies cooling on rack

Enjoy!

Tip 1: Icing sugar contains cornstarch, as my friend’s son needs to avoid corn, I sprinkled a little bit of sugar and/or cinnamon sugar on some of the cookies before baking as a simple decoration.

Gluten, Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Shortbread Easter Cookie with Cinnamon Sugar

Tip 2: Cookies can also be dipped in melted Enjoy Life chocolate chips. Yummy!

Gluten, Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Shortbread Easter Cookies dipped in melted Enjoy Life chocolate chips

Tip 3: I tried baking one batch with Coconut Oil. Very tasty…but extremely delicate! The egg-shaped cookies seemed to resist ‘cracking’ the best…go figure! Perhaps next time I will try rolling them a little thicker. Any tips?

P.S. My boys were not so sure of the texture of the rice flour and found the cookies a bit bland. Then again, they have had exposure to all-purpose flour treats and are a little biased! We all like the cookies that had the cinnamon sugar topping and the chocolate!

I hope he likes them!

Question: Will you be baking allergen friendly ‘treats’ this Easter? Do share!

Dairy, Egg, and Peanut/Tree Nut Free ‘Sour Cream’ Chocolate Chip Bundt Cake

My all-time favourite childhood cake has to be Sour Cream Chocolate Chip Bundt Cake!

Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Chocolate Chip Cake

I have always been a fan of a really moist, dense, simple, white cake such as Pound Cake or as my English Grandmother would make…Madeira Cake.

My mother’s Sour Cream Chocolate Chip Bundt Cake took it to the next level for me…the addition of chocolate!

Of all the desserts my mother could make…this one ‘took the cake!’ Both my brother and I would request this cake when we visited during our University days.

It quickly became Matthew’s favourite cake! I would make it for parties and let him sample a piece…unfortunately, Michael was unable to try it due to his dairy and egg allergies. This limited my desire to make the cake…I haven’t made it in years.

Matthew is always begging me to adapt this recipe so that we all might enjoy this classic childhood favourite of his and mine, yet again. Now that allergen free products are on the market, I am able to resurrect this ‘diva’ of a cake!

I present to you my adapted recipe….Dairy, Egg, and Peanut/Tree Nut Free ‘Sour Cream’ Chocolate Chip Bundt Cake in all it’s glory!

Dairy, Egg, and Peanut/Tree Nut Free ‘Sour Cream’ Chocolate Chip Bundt Cake

Dairy, Egg, Soy and Peanut/Tree Nut Free Chocolate Chip Cake

1/2 cup Earth Balance at room temperature
1 cup granulated sugar
2 tbsp water
1/2 tsp pure vanilla
1 container of a 340g tub of Tofutti Sour Supreme.
1 /12 cups flour
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
1 cup Enjoy Life chocolate chips

Grease a 8 1/2 inch Bundt pan with Earth Balance and dust with flour.
In a large bowl, cream Earth Balance.
Add sugar and cream until very smooth. Very important to cream the Earth Balance and sugar together well, until lightened.
Add vanilla and water and stir until well combined.
In another bowl, combine the flour and baking soda.
Stir the dry into the creamed mixture until combined.
Add in the Enjoy Life chocolate chips and stir.

adding enjoy life chocolate chips to the batter

The mixture is quite thick so dollop the batter, carefully, into the greased and floured bundt pan. Smooth the top.

batter in bundt pan with the top smoothenedBake at 350F for one hour.
Cool in pan on cooling rack for 10 minutes.

cake cooling in bundt pan on cooling rackRelease from pan and let cool.

cake released from pan and cooling on cooling rackWhen cool enough, simply dust with icing sugar, slice and serve. (Michael went a little crazy with the icing sugar on his piece!)

dairy, egg, soy and peanut/tree nut free chocolate chip cake dusted with icing sugar, sliced and served on a plate

Enjoy!

enjoying a slice of dairy,egg,soy and peanut/tree nut free chocolate chip cake

P.S. Michael had a friend over and we all enjoyed a piece or two while still warm…though, not warm enough to melt the icing sugar on top.

Oh my…moist, dense, chocolatey… yummy! Just how I remember it!

Tip: Michael has discovered warming his piece up in the microwave to give it that just baked taste!

Question: Have you adapted a childhood favourite to suit food allergies?

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?