Why we're here...

The quick version :) We are a family of 7 (plus 5 if you count pets, sadly now 3) living with severe food allergies (thus far dairy and beef, thinking the baby might add some to the list) and as vegetarians (mostly vegan, except pastured eggs occasionally), organically, and I generally attempt to do everything as quickly and easily as possible (think one bowl everything!).

The long version... This journey officially started one Saturday in April (2011) when my husband decided to let me (his very pregnant wife) "sleep in" and took our 18 month old son downstairs. The minute I fell asleep again they came back up, my husband said that Jake seemed tired again and wanted me. Byebye sleeping in. We settled back in bed, Jake on top of me, I dozed for a minute and opened my eyes admiring my boy. He sleepily opened his eyes and threw up all over my face, head, back (no idea how), pillows, you get the idea! To which I said "Change Jake, I'll be in the shower!" At which point my husband admitted "oh I gave him milk". At this point we knew only that he didn't like milk.

When I told his doctor this story in passing at his 18 month appointment she felt that was an unusual reaction and he should be seen by an allergist. Jake had never touched a milk product willingly, but we figured maybe an intolerance or preference. Clearly we were wrong when I brought him to be tested and the doctor said "he's allergic to milk". By the look on his face he did not think I was entertaining when I replied "Oh come on, that's ridiculous". Thus... I had to remove milk from his diet, as well as my own because he was still nursing. Which at first was tough due to my unnatural obsession with ice cream, but there are enough milk substitutes to deal with that. However, later this summer he was still having symptoms. Brought him to get tested once more and found he was allergic to eggs as well (again my "Are you kidding?!" was met with a quiet smile). (2014 Update: he's fine with eggs now, his milk allergy severity has sky rocketed, as well as a new beef allergy. and too many environmental allergies to list! But seriously, who cares if he cannot own a horse!)

Moral of this, I had a lot to change in the cooking department! I attempted to use vegan recipes. Thus, these recipes were born, and further, this website. Apparently allergies are occurring more and more but it is very difficult to find recipes to accommodate. My goal is to help that cause by providing ways to work around that and still eat well (and by well, I mean food that my chicken-wing-addicted-husband-who would-never-eat-anything-that-grows-in-the-ground-if-his- obnoxious-wife-does-not-nag-him-until-he-gives in- will actually eat. (2014 Update-This man has become a near vegan at home for his little man! He's a fabulous father! However, I learned quickly to cook for him!)

2016 update! we now have four children ages 6 to 6 months. Only one has confirmed allergies, but it's looking possible that this may increase by one or two (currently we are just watching and waiting :) Please don't take our peanut butter away!!

2018: We now have 5 children. The oldest is 8, and still seriously allergic to milk, and beef. Youngest is 3 months. and no other confirmed allergies. but the 2 year old can not eat bananas, though sadly she loves them. the baby throws up constantly... but who knows:)

Tuesday, April 26, 2016


Whether you forgot to buy eggs, used them all, or are allergic, there's always a moment when we want to make something that needs ("needs") eggs and we forget until we start mixing. There are so many different variations of replacements it's hard to know what to use where. Here's a start...

Things like pancakes and muffins don't really need a replacement. If you feel seriously inclined to replace, try GROUND flax. The general method is 1 Tablespoon of ground flax plus 3 Tablespoons of water, equals one egg. ORRRRRRRRRRRRR.... you dump in anywhere from 1/4 to 1 cup of ground flax in everything because it has health benefits anyway... I should start a one bowl cooking series. I do nearly everything in one bowl, as fast as possible. Generally holding  a child.

Other substitutes are 1/4 cup mashed banana, 1/4 applesauce. Chia gel. (but this adds a bit of a crunch, be aware). There are several products, Ener G, and some new vegan egg product. I tend to lean towards real food products. I cannot forget the new kid on the block, aquafaba (the slimy water from the can of chickpeas). I did attempt to make meringue cookies from these, I do not recommend using cream of tartar, leaves a sour taste and the cookies were a bit of a gummy disaster anyway.

Truth be told, I pretty much always go for flax. Or find a vegan recipe. My son loves banana muffins, but my daughter (when asked what kind of muffins she preferred) responded, "muffins like a cookie". that's my girl!

Monday, April 4, 2016

April Fools.... With a side of mess

I just figured out how to upload pictures, it's like a whole new world! Next step taking decent pictures!

 First, Happy Easter! Hope it was blessed! It was beautiful here and we had family in town. It was great having everyone together and the kids love having their cousins here!

Second, April Fools! My kids are obsesssssedddd with playing "tricks" on us. (thankfully particularly daddy). It takes a certain kind of ability to cope with special situations to find the humor in their "pranks" (i.e. completely taking apart the bed and putting stuffed animals under blankets all over the upstairs). Lets just say I have to prewarn daddy to come home with a good attitude and find the intended humor in a mess that looks like we either were robbed, or hit by a tornado. Thus, in an effort to sweeten that, this was our April Fools dessert creation to "trick daddy" after he waded through the hilarious upstairs mess. I made this gluten, dairy free and vegan. It is white cake (made in one bowl), "buttercream" frosting spaghetti, strawberry sauce sauce, and chocolate cake (the white better mixed with cocoa powder baked in cupcake tins and smooshed into balls) veggie balls. It was a huge hit and daddy played along so well! What tricks do you do? Back in my working days playing pranks was a regular part of office life. My best one ever was post-it noting my co workers entire office! I was so thrilled with myself. Thankfully the CEO (who by the way NEVER came to that building except of course that day and just as I finish my masterpiece, leaving nothing un post-ited) didn't fire me on the spot, and practically cracked a smile. I'm certain he just wished he thought of it first.... or... not.....

P.S. I'm considering a new project involving way more recipes, ideas, and meal planning! share this site with your friends and family! let me know if there's any meals, or anything you'd like to see!