Thursday, November 29, 2007

picky eater

Well, it's been a while since I posted! My son is currently going through a picky phase that is driving me nuts. My daughter went through it, too, and is now on the other side. At least, I know there is an end in sight. Last night I made Quick Green Chile Soup/Stew which is a bean/vegetable recipe by Crescent Dragonwagon. I've made it many times before. I craved it while I was pregnant the last time, so my son has eaten it many times. Last night, however, he decided that it was too spicy! I was going to send that with him for lunch! We also had a green salad - romaine, tomatoes, and carrots. Tonight we're making vegetarian sushi, tofu with raw tahini satay sauce, and an Asian style salad.

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

bean dip

I've posted on a vegetarian board for bean dip recipes. I figure I can use these for the kids' lunches. They love to dip stuff. I made a version of one today. It was really yummy. My two youngest kids tried it and liked it. The baby begged for it! I made it with:
1 can of low fat, vegetarian refried beans
1 can of diced tomatoes, drained
1 can diced green chiles, 4 oz can, I think
1 tbsp garlic powder
1 tbsp dried cilantro
1 tsp coriander
1 tbsp nutritional yeast flakes
Mix in the food processor.
I spread that on corn tortillas and cooked them with a little olive oil. It was really good. I don't know how that would work for one of the kids lunches. I think it might not taste very good on the tortillas if they sat for long. I'll probably put some in their lunches with some tortilla chips and veggies to dip.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

school lunches

I've been inspired by the vegan lunchbox blog. We are starting to get the gluten free thing down at home. Where I am struggling is with my children's lunches. My challenge now is to come up with interesting and healthy dairy free, gluten free, artificial color and flavor free, vegetarian lunches which also has to be peanut free for my oldest son and youngest daughter due to other children's allergies at their school. My oldest daughter has access to a microwave for lunch, but she doesn't have refrigeration for her lunchbox. My other two children who are in school have their lunches refrigerated, but do not have access to a microwave - they're too young to use it on their own anyway. I have solved the refrigeration issue with my oldest daughter by freezing small water bottles and putting them in her lunchbox. Unfortunately, that makes it so there is not a lot of room.

I am making oatmeal/walnut patties today. My son LOVES them, and he practically begs for me to put them in his lunch when I've made them. He likes them cold, so that is helpful! My oldest daughter doesn't like them though. I bought her this handy salad contraption. It has a place for the salad and a place for the dressing, and all you have to do is push the button for the salad dressing to pour onto the salad. She loves salad. I'm spending today brain storming about lunches. My kids love baked, crispy tofu sticks with dipping sauce. I'm going to make some tonight and see how they are as cold leftovers. Everytime I've ever made them, there have been no leftovers! I have a recipe for satay sauce made with tahini which I am also going to try.

My kids have been getting a lot of the same thing in their lunches, and I know they are getting bored. They tend to get a lot of fruit cups, applesauce, and Whole Soy yogurt. I want to make their lunches interesting.

Monday, October 22, 2007

Organic Sunshine Burgers

I saw this yummy looking veggie burgers at Vitamin Cottage - Organic Sunshine Burgers, Southwest style. Unfortunately, they were not any good. It's too bad, too, because they are organic, vegan, soy free, and gluten free. Blech. I also have the BBQ style. I'm going to try them, but my hopes are not high. Why is it that Vitamin Cottage carries this crap, but not something yummy like Whole Soy or Tofutti ice cream! Oh well. I like homemade oat/pecan patties better anyway!

Sunday, October 21, 2007

Outside the Breadbox

There is a gluten free bakery in Colorado Springs called Outside the Breadbox. They make several kinds of crackers, pies, pizza crusts, breads, and graham crackers. They're graham crackers are fabulous! They are larger and denser than regular graham crackers, but they taste really good. I sent a package to my mom and dad in Arkansas, and they love them, too. We've also tried the pizza crusts. They're about the size of personal pizzas. They're okay - very chewy. We tried the garfava bread, and I could do without it. It wasn't bad. Toasted with a little margarine it was okay. It reminded me of crumbly, white bread. Basically, it was a waste. There really wasn't any nutritional value to it, and it wasn't that good. The graham crackers are great though!

Saturday, October 20, 2007

Mary's Gone Crackers

Well, I have to say, this gluten free thing can be a real pain in the butt! I bought some powdered probiotics, and when I got home and read the label closer, I found out one of the ingredients was barley grass. I searched the Internet, and apparently barley grass doesn't contain gluten like barley does, so that is good.

We tried Mary's Gone Crackers brand gluten free crackers, and they were so gross. We threw the box away we were eating, and I'm giving the other box I bought away.

We had a hit this morning though. We tried Lifestream, gluten free, buckwheat, wildberry, frozen waffles. They were really good. Dh even liked them, and he tends to get a little pissy with gluten free stuff. They kids loved them, too, even the baby. They are also vegan. We try not to rely on a lot of processed food, but it will be nice to have a box of these in the freezer for those morning when we're running late! Plus, I have not even begun to come close to mastering making gf waffles, and my family loves waffles. It's nice to have this option.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Well, it's been a while since I posted, but I am back to trying to eat healthy and gluten free! Summer is over and it's time to get back to it. We tried another product from gluten free pantry. We made their trufle brownies and they were good! Dh made them, and he didn't quite let them get done, so they were pretty gooey in the middle. BUT - they were definitely good! I made a gf stroganoff recipe from Vegetarian Times that were pretty yucky. Usually, VT recipes are pretty good. The last few I've tried were kind of gross though, so I bought a new recipe book - Vegan Planet. It's not gluten-free, but the majority of the recipes are gf or can be made gf very easily. Last night we had fruit with potato-vegetable soup. I chopped up vegetables and cooked them with Imagine's potato-leek soup. Their soup is vegan and gluten free. I'm trying my first recipe from VP tonight - Chipotle Mashed Potatoes. I'm going to make it with BBQ oat balls, grilled asparagus, and sauteed greens.

Tuesday, May 1, 2007

This weekend I had a Partylite candle party. I served wine, Italian sodas, chocolate truffles, chocolate covered strawberries, and Flourless Chocolate Cake. The cake went over well, and two people actually asked for the recipe. They were surprised when I said that it had black beans in it. On Sunday, I made beans, fried potatoes, and Bob's Red Mill cornbread for lunch. My family really liked the cornbread. I thought it was okay. It was really fluffy and not gritty. Last night I tried another mix. It is by Authentic Foods. I made their Vanilla Cake Mix. I mixed together orange juice and powdered sugar for a glaze and everyone loved it. I thought it was pretty darn good, too. Sunday night I made oat-walnut patties, super healthy spinach salad with tofu croutons (I think that was the name), capered roasted potatoes, and grilled pineapple. It was a great dinner. Last night my son and I made a lentil vegetable soup that we had for lunch today, and it was pretty good, too. It was very thick - almost like a stew. We're having it for dinner tonight, and I am going to make gf blueberry muffins with it. It's been very interesting to find all these gluten-free meals. I am also trying to get our grocery shopping bills under control, by shopping sales, shopping the pantry, frugal meal planning, etc. So, it's been a challenge, but a fun challenge.

Friday, April 27, 2007

We tried two new products that I wanted to mention. The first were Gluten Free vanilla cookies with chocolate cream by Glutino. My kiddos really liked them, my husband thought they were pretty good. I liked them. I'd really like to get away from processed stuff, so we probably won't buy them often, but they were pretty good. Yesterday I made Ancient Harvest quinoa-corn blend pasta. My family really liked it. I thought it had a good taste. The noodles fell apart though, so it wouldn't be good for a pasta salad. It would be good for a goulash though. I'll probably use that product again.

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

I haven't really had very accessible Internet access for about a week, so I haven't been able to update my blog. Monday night I went to a gluten free baking class. I would highly recommend it for anyone who lives in Aurora or anywhere in the Denver metro area. It was one of the Aurora Parks and Rec cooking classes at the kitchens at Expo. Everything we made was really good. The first recipe was Lemon-Glazed Blueberry Muffins. They were more like cupcakes because they were very sweet. I brought one home to my husband and he and my two older kids tried it and really liked it. I really liked them, too. The next recipe was Date Nut Bread. It was probably my least favorite, but it was still pretty good. I brought some home, and my family really liked it, so I'll probably be making it. The next recipe was Flourless Chocolate Cake. The was really tasty. The amazing part of that recipe is that it is made with BEANS! You absolutely could not tell though. It was actually pretty healthy except for the sugar in it. It had beans, orange juice, eggs, bittersweet chocolate, brown sugar, cocoa powder, baking powder and baking soda. I also brought a slice of this home and everyone liked it. The next recipe was Corn-Chipotle Biscuits. They were fabulous. I told the instructor she made my little Southern heart so happy! They quite a kick to them because of the chipotle chile powder, but you could use a different chile powder - or less - or none. The recipe called for one cup of amaranth or sorghum flour. We used amaranth, but the instructor said that sorghum flour is good for biscuits because it is "fluffy." We ate all of those in class, so there weren't any to bring home. I'm going to make them with a potato-chipotle casserole tomorrow night though, so I'll test them out on my family then! The last recipe was a Gluten-Free Pizza. The crust was the best gf crust I've tasted (out of threee). It was quite good, and I think my family will really like it. I'll probably try to make it this weekend.

I've made a few new recipes lately. Last night I made Two-Step Southwestern Stew with brown rice and Earth Apple Torte. They were both great. The torte was amazing and my family went back for seconds. The stew was quite good, too - plus healthy and easy. It had onions, canned tomatoes with chiles, kidney beans, hominy, zucchini, cumin, and cilantro. Tonight, I made Garlicky Grits Cakes with roasted red pepper tapenade and Tempeh-Potato Breakfast Patties. My kids liked both recipes. My husband wasn't crazy about the grits cakes but liked the patties. I liked them both, and they will probably make a regular appearance at weekend brunch. Tonight I made Bob's Red Mill gf brownies. I put chocolate chips and pecans in them and made a chocolate topping for them. I really, really liked them! My husband didn't think they were "cakey" enough, but I don't like "cakey" brownies. I like gooey brownies, and they were gooey - especially with all the chocolate I put in them! So far, Bob's Red Mill products have proven themselves to be quality products.

My mom is doing really well on a gf diet. Her doctors are taking her completely off one medication, and cutting two more in half. We are all waiting anxiously to see the results. She is moving a lot better with a lot less pain and that is exciting and encouraging. We talk everyday about the new products and recipes that we are trying.

Monday, April 23, 2007

We've tried a few more gluten free products. Last night we tried a product from 1-2-3 Gluten Free for biscuits. They were nasty. Yuck. Tonight I went to a gluten free baking class that rocked! I'll have to write about it tomorrow though because my son is very clingy tonight and won't let me type! My parents tried Namaste's cookies and said they tasted pretty good, so we're going to put those on our list to try.

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Bob's Red Mill chocolate chip cookies

We tried another Bob's Red Mill mix. We tried the chocolate chip cookies this time, and they were good. They weren't fantastic. They were a little dry, but they were good. I think they'd be good dunked in a little soymilk. I also made Quick Green Chile Soup Stew which is quick and easy and vegan and gluten free. I stepped on the scale this morning and I've lost five pounds! Woo hoo. I don't think I'll make 35 by 35, but I'll take what I can get at this point!

Sunday, April 15, 2007

We tried a couple of new gluten free mixes. We made the pizza crust from Deby's bakery, and it was pretty good. I think I would let it bake a couple of extra minutes next time, but everyone liked it. You do have to plan ahead a little for it though because you have to mix it, then let it rise, then spread it, then let it rise, then bake it, THEN put all the toppings on and bake it again. It was pretty good though. I also made a chocolate cake from Bob's Red Mill that was really good and quite easy to make. You really couldn't tell that it was gluten free. I made a simple sugar frosting for it, and we really enjoyed it. Last night, I was really tired from cleaning carpets, so we had a simple dinner. We had a garden salad with romaine, dried cherries, tomatoes, green peppers, carrots, Baco's, and dressing; fried tofu with some wheat free soy sauce, canned pineapple, corn tortillas with salsa, and potato chips. Sort of a weird dinner, I suppose, but it was tasty and everyone ate! We also made a commitment to start walking/running as a family. My husband and I have noticed that our older two kids are fast runners (especially our son), so we thought we'd start having our daily exercise together as a family. We just walked last night. Dh carried our youngest son in his Mai Tei, and I carried our youngest daughter on my back in my Bei Bei. We had a good walk. Also, I am going to start reading my other gluten free book that I bought. I can't remember the name of it right now. I am going to send my mom my other book called Going Against the Grain. It's an okay book. She has a lot of good information about different medical tests in it that would be good for someone who was going the medical route. Her information about gluten grains is very good, but the rest of her nutritional information isn't very good at all. There tend to be two schools of thought when it comes to how our ancestors ate. One school is that they ate tons of meat and supplemented it with the fruits and veggies that they gathered. The other is just the opposite. I very much believe the latter mostly due to all the nutritional research that I've done. When you read her book, you get the feeling that she believes humans existed on incredible amounts of meat and should eat almost that much now. The amount of meat would make even the most die hard Atkins followers sick to their stomaches. Anyway, I wouldn't recommend the book, but if someone wanted to read it - I would definitely say to read it very skeptically. The info on grains is good, the rest is crap.

Thursday, April 12, 2007

My youngest daughter was feeling pretty yucky yesterday, so the pizza is on for tonight. Instead we had soup last night. I used Imagine's Potato Leek Soup (dairy-free) for the base, then chopped up onions, carrots, and potatoes, and added a can of corn. It's very thick, so I had to thin it and add pepper and salt. We had corn tortillas with salsa as well.

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

We tried Bob's Red Mill gf bread machine mix and it wasn't too bad. The kids and even my husband liked it. The mixture was way too wet and turned out kind of heavy, so I'll have to watch that next time since I couldn't add flour to it! I made an Indian dish last night with rice. I had a jarred dopiaza sauce and I cooked potatoes and carrots, added garbanzos and the sauce. Apparently it was pretty good. I went to a knitting class and my husband left it out on the stove all night, so I had cereal for lunch. Grrrrrrr. That was supposed to be our lunch today, too. Oh well. Tonight we are trying another gluten free pizza crust. We tried Namaste's before, but it was pretty gross. This one is from a local gluten free bakery called Deby's. Hopefully it'll be better.

Monday, April 9, 2007

Okay, the gluten free diet is going pretty well - now that I can cook again! We tried Bob's Red Mill gluten-free pancake mix, and it was pretty good. Some gluten free stuff is gritty and not that great. I really liked this though and so did my family. We had pancakes with peanut butter, apple sauce, and maple syrup and tangelos. For dinner I made refried beans. We had tostados with beans, soy chorizo, lettuce, tomatoes, salsa, and hot sauce and a salad. I planning on making dahl, rice, and spinach salad (with red onion, walnuts, and mandarin oranges) tonight for dinner. My parents are doing well on a gluten-free diet. I'm so glad. They said they don't have as much pain which I am thrilled about.

Friday, April 6, 2007

Well after crushing my finger in the van door and having to rely on my husbands cooking for a couple of weeks (his specialties are frozen pizza, sloppy joes and nachos) we are back to eating healthy again. My parents are doing a gluten free diet now, so they are helping me stay on track. I went shopping yesterday and got a cart full of healthy foods. I also found a type of soy chorizo that is wheat free! Hooray. I'm trying to mostly stay away from processed stuff and "replacement" food, but was nice to find that. We had some last night in scrambled eggs. We also had some yummy honeydew melon, homemade guacamole and tortilla chips. Not the healthiest meal but not too bad either. I was exhausted after running all day yesterday, so it's lucky I did open the fridge and tell the kids to fend for themselves! LOL. Just kidding, of course. Tonight I am making a vegetarian chili that is really yummy. It's cold and snowing here today, so it is a perfect day for chili. Tomorrow I am planning on making BBQ tofu, steamed broccoli, mashed potatoes, and a salad.

Sunday, February 25, 2007

Still doing okay. Even my husband is on board for giving it a try - well gluten free anyway. I am going to an Oscar party tonight and he is making enchiladas for the kids. We had summer rolls for lunch. The kids really enjoy making them, and I am getting better at making them, so it's getting quicker! Last night we had baked potatoes and guacamole. My friend is making vegan soup for the Oscar party and I am making sticky rice with mangoes! Yum. This isn't too hard. Now, I just have to find a way to fit in exercise. Blech. I love to exercise, but getting back into the habit is hard.

Thursday, February 22, 2007

Day 2 - gluten free

Okay - two posts in a row. Woo hoo. Well, I made it another day of gluten free/dairy free. I had Whole Soy yogurt and a Raw Revolution bar; leftover summer rolls and peanut sauce and a tangelo for lunch; mashed potatoes, chard, stewed tomatoes and a huge salad for supper. I also had a bunch of cashews for a snack. I got rid of the rest of my gluten products today. I gave them to a friend. Blech - I really don't want to step on a scale. When my husband gets back from California I am going back to the pool to swim laps. The snow has FINALLY melted off our street so I can get the bike out, too. We got the tandem hooked up so one of the kiddos can ride with me. Time to get some darn exercise!

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Okay, so apparently I suck at blogging! LOL. Oh well. I am going to be better. We have been working on going gluten free. My pledge is to do dairy free/gluten free for six months and see how I feel. I've been getting my oldest daughter involved. Sunday night we made sushi! It was so much fun. We made sushi rice (with vinegar, sugar, and salt) and added wasabi, avocados, carrots, and cucumbers and wrapped it all with nori rolls! We took pictures of our first adventure in sushi! We served it with miso soup. My son and younger daughter now want to make sushi with me. Tonight we are going to make summer rolls and a buckwheat soba noodle dish. I would really like to get more raw foods in our diet. It's so healthy, but it is so easy to fall into the junk food rut. Hopefully I can use this blog to help me! I discovered the magazine "Living Without." It had some great information in it. I'm reading the book Going Against The Grain by Melissa Diane Smith. It has some good information in it. She subscribes to the humans used to eat tons of meat theory which I think is wrong, and she tends to jump to some conclusions, but overall the book is a good read with lots of great information. I am going to send it on to my mother when I get finished reading it.

Monday, January 29, 2007

So, I haven't been blogging because I haven't been doing very well. There was some nastiness with a woman I know and it totally caught me off guard. I went into a spiral of emotional eating and depression. Yuck. I'm better now though. Starting today - our family is eating healthy. My daughter's acupuncturist wants her off wheat for a while to see if it helps her, and my son doesn't do well with dairy - so we're now on a wheat-free, dairy-free vegetarian diet. I went shopping yesterday at Whole Foods and bought a ton of good stuff. We had soy yogurt with blueberries, grapes and almonds for breakfast. My daughter sat down and helped me come up with things that she wants for her lunches. Today she had salad and dressing, peanut butter and apple slices, V8, and tortilla chips and salsa - it doesn't seem like a whole lot, but it's what she wanted. I was supposed to put a little pickle in there, too, but I forgot! We'll have to see if it was enough for her when she gets home. I need to buy her a bigger lunch box, because I have to put a frozen water bottle in there to keep everything cold. Tonight for dinner I'm making these eggplant patty things from Fuhrman's Eat to Live with marinara sauce, a salad, and steamed green beans. I need to exercise today, too. I haven't been exercising regularly - although my arms have built up some from all the snow shoveling.

Friday, January 5, 2007

Well, it's snowing again. I am having a Party Lite party in 8 days. So, what these two things mean is that I have exercise opportunities right in front of my house for the next eight days. Shoveling snow is darn good exercise. What I'm trying to clear off is the piles of snow from the blizzards that has been snowed on a couple of times and is a huge pile of ice! That's okay though. Using the pick ax to break up the piles and then shoveling the ice onto the lawn is working my butt out - let me tell you! Whoosh. I'm beat. Oh well, that IS why we moved to Colorado - for snow. Be careful what you wish for. LOL.