Dairy and Soy free Peppermint Stick ice cream

Oh, the weather outside is frightful! Up here in the Northeast we got 2 decent sized snowstorms within a few days of each other and in between we had some bitter cold. Probably not the kind of weather that would normally make you crave ice cream, but there is something so perfect about peppermint stick ice cream in the winter. And I’m pregnant…so my normal, seasonally appropriate cravings are all off.

This recipe is originally from the Speed Bump Kitchen but because we are also soy free I needed to adapt it to our needs. The end result is a creamy, refreshing ice cream with just the right amount of peppermint flavor. Delicious!

Candy Cane Smashing Machine!

Candy Cane Smashing Machine!

Nope, Not having any fun here :)

Nope, Not having any fun here ūüôā


Ingredients

1 can of full-fat coconut milk (refrigerated until chilled, I kept mine in the fridge overnight)
3 cups of coconut milk (the kind in a box, I used So Delicious)
1/2 a bag of mini-marshmallows (10.5 oz size)
1/2 Cup of sugar
2 Tablespoons of mild oil (I used canola)
1/2 teaspoon peppermint extract
3 candy canes, put into plastic bags and crushed
Few drops red food coloring (optional)

025

Place the marshmallows in a large microwave safe bowl and heat for 1 minute, they will expand quite a bit. Whisk until smooth. Open your can of chilled coconut milk. There will be a thick, waxy layer on top, scoop this layer and any other solids out into a bowl and discard all of the water left behind. Add 3 cups of boxed coconut milk and whisk together. Slowly pour coconut milk and sugar into marshmallows. Microwave for another 3 minutes, stirring once every minute. Add the oil, the peppermint extract and the food coloring and stir. Cool down in the freezer or refrigerator before pouring into an ice cream maker. I let mine cool for about 4 hours in the fridge. Follow instructions for your ice cream maker (I love my Kitchen-Aid stand mixer attachment!) At the end of freezing, pour in the bags of crushed candy canes and mix well. The ice cream at this point will be a very soft frozen consistency. Not ideal, but definitely good enough for a taste ūüôā Transfer the ice cream to a freezer container and allow to freeze overnight. Enjoy!

Yum!

Yum!

Yum!

Yum!

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White bean and bacon soup

Wow, it’s been a long time since I’ve posted a recipe! I guess nothing new that I’ve tried was really inspiring. Until this soup that is. This is by far the most delicious soup I’ve ever made. It’s perfect for chilly¬†fall nights or football Sundays. I was worried because I forgot to pick up some good, crusty bread to serve with it and didn’t think it would be enough for my husband and I, but I was wrong, it was very hearty and filled us right up. If I’m being completely honest, the kids wouldn’t even try it ūüė¶ Their idea of soup includes clear chicken broth and this broth “looked like mud”. You win some, you lose some…more soup for me!

The original recipe is from¬†Table for Two.¬†As is, I’m sure the soup is absolutely delicious and is still allergy safe for my family. But, because of what I had on hand I had to make some very minor changes. First, I made this in the¬†slow cooker (on low for about 6 hours)¬†I used 2 cans of cannellini¬†beans rather than dried, I used dried thyme¬†rather than fresh rosemary and during the last 30 minutes or so of cooking (after blending¬†about half of the soup in the food¬†processor)¬†I added some ditalini pasta. It really was delicious and I can’t wait to make it again! Head over to Table for Two and make this soup!

 

White Bean and Bacon Soup!

White Bean and Bacon Soup!

April Vacation Muffins (Allergen Free)

I woke up on this first day of April vacation wanting to bake some muffins with the kids. It’s not something we get to do very often with school all week and the weekends busy with soccer and chores and family. So before even heading to the kitchen I was promising the kids banana muffins and they were just as excited to help with the baking as they were to eat the muffins. I knew I would have to do a little research for an allergen free recipe or a “normal” recipe that I could adapt. But I also knew I would need the bananas so I went to the fruit bowl…to find it empty. No bananas!! You can’t make banana muffins without bananas. Luckily, I’m good at improvising. (actually…I lie. Usually when I try to improvise while baking I end up with a huge flop, but not this time, so let’s just pretend)

So here is my recipe for “April Vacation Muffins” or “Strawberry, peach, a little applesauce and a tiny bit of banana muffins” They were delicious and moist and not too sweet. If I had thought I would have any success with these I would have taken some pictures of my adorable little bakers. Oh well, next time…I’ll definitely be making these again!

April Vacation Muffins

6 Tablespoons of Olivio coconut oil spread (you can use any dairy free “butter”)
1 1/4 cups of sugar
1 (stage 3) jar of baby food bananas
6 Tablespoons of applesauce
1 1/2 cups of flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
6 Tablespoons rice milk
About a cup of diced peaches and strawberries (I used pre-chopped frozen fruit, thawed)

Preheat oven to 350. Lightly grease muffin pan and set aside. In a large mixing bowl cream together “butter” and sugar. In a separate bowl whisk together all other ingredients except for the fruit. Once mixed add creamed “butter” and sugar to the mix and mix some more. Now gently fold in the fruit. Pour into muffin pan and bake about 25 minutes. Makes 12 muffins. Enjoy!!

Allergen free slow cooker sweet potatoes

I host Easter dinner each year for between 12 and 20 people and I love it. I enjoy entertaining and preparing a big sit down dinner for my family. The most difficult part for me has always been timing all of the food to be ready at the same time and a lack of oven space. But over the years I’ve learned to work out the kinks and roll with the punches. When things get too hectic in the kitchen (which is where everyone gathers, no matter how many times I try to kick them out!) I send the men and kids out to hunt for Easter eggs and when my oven broke one year we fired up the grill! One big help has been preparing one dish in the crock pot to free up some oven space. A few years ago I found this sweet potato recipe and I’ve been able to adapt it to be JT friendly. It’s so yummy!!

Allergen free Slow Cooker Sweet Potatoes

6  medium (2 pounds) sweet potatoes or yams, peeled and cut into into 1/2-inch chunks      

1 1/2 cups applesauce                                            

2/3 cup packed brown sugar                                             

3 tablespoons dairy and soy free butter or margarine, melted  (we usually use smart balance with flax, this year I will try the new olivio coconut oil spread)                                           

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon                                             

1/2 cup dried cranberries

 

Place sweet potatoes in 2- to 3 1/2-quart slow cooker. Mix remaining ingredients and spoon over potatoes. Cover and cook on low heat setting 6 to 8 hours or until potatoes are very tender. I usually start them first thing in the morning and they are ready for our 2 pm dinner. This recipe can be doubled or tripled if you have a larger slow cooker.

soy and fish free stir-fry sauce

IMG_20130217_173245_284I finally figured out a way to make stir-fry! I’ve been on the lookout for a good soy free stir-fry sauce (Oh, how I miss teryaki!) and found that a lot of alternatives are either fish based (another JT allergy) or seem too complicated. I finally found an alternative that works for us. This recipe is sort of a mix between this one and this one. I thought it was a great alternative and I can’t wait to make more stir-fry!

Stir Fry Sauce
1 Cup red wine
3/4 Cup brown sugar (not packed)
about 3/4 Teaspoon ground ginger
1 Tablespoon minced garlic
1/2 Cup orange juice
Salt and Pepper to taste
(I didn’t have any, but I think some orange zest would have been really nice at the very end)

IMG_20130217_173338_956

So, I’m not going to write a really complicated recipe here…
I put it all in a sauce pan and cooked it down for about 20 minutes. Then I cooked up my stir fry as I normally would, using this as the sauce. My stir fry had chicken, carrots and broccoli served over white rice. I think pea-pods and onions would have been a great addition. I think you could use any veggies that do well paired with sweeter flavors. Enjoy!!

Dairy free ice cream

For Christmas this year my parents got me the ice cream attachment for my Kitchen Aid stand mixer.¬†I asked for this specifically so that I could make dairy free ice cream treats for JT. ¬†Although¬†he¬†is able to have some sorbet¬†and popsicles, there are not a whole lot of options for him in the frozen treat category. Now we can make our own “ice cream” at home…¬†Yay! I can’t wait to experiment with different¬†flavors. Maybe this year I will even be able to serve cake AND ice cream at his birthday party!

We tried our first batch last night and it was a success. The kids loved it. JT was thrilled to be able to have “real” ice cream! It’s always amazing when you can give a kid like him, who has so many allergies, the experience of eating things that other kids talk about and get to eat all of the time. Hooray! Oh and the kids had a blast helping me too, although making ice cream requires alot of patience!

My Favorite Helpers!

My Favorite Helpers!

My new ice cream attachment

My new ice cream attachment

I found the original recipe for dairy free marshmallow ice cream at picture perfect cooking. We did have to make a few changes due to JT’s soy and egg allergies. In the end I couldn’t decide exactly what the “flavor” of this ice cream was. Sort of vanilla, marshmallow, banana-y. It doesn’t matter anyway¬†because it’s good and it’s smooth and surprisingly creamy! This is how I adapted the recipe:

Marshmallow Ice Cream

2 cups dairy free rice milk

10 oz. mini marshmallows

1 can coconut milk

1/2 cup sugar

1 large jar of baby food bananas

2 tbsp. vanilla

In a large microwave¬†safe bowl heat marshmallows in microwave for¬†30 seconds at a time until melted¬† (leave room in bowl as they expand quite a bit). Add in rice milk and stir well. In a small saucepan heat coconut milk almost to boiling. In a seperate small bowl mix sugar and banana together. Mix¬†Banana and sugar mixture into heated coconut milk¬†and then whisk¬†into the marshmallow¬†mixture.¬†Add the vanilla and stir. Refrigerate overnight ( I tried to cut corners and skipped this step, it was a bad idea, it’s necessary). Process in your ice cream maker according to directions. Once processed it will be like soft serve, freeze overnight for a hard ice cream consistency.

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Allergen free sugar cookies

I’m finally getting around to sharing our sugar cookie recipe…better late than never right? And besides, sugar cookies are great at Christmas, but I think you can enjoy them all year round. Hearts¬†on Valentines day, shamrocks for St. Patty’s day and eggs to decorate for Easter (especially good for those with egg allergies who can’t decorate the real thing!). The original¬†recipe came from¬†an old¬†Parent’s Magazine’s Christmas Holiday Book and was adapted to be allergy free by my Mother-in-law, Jan, just like the gingerbread cookie recipe.

Sugar Cookies
1 1/2 Cups sugar
1  Cup dairy and soy free Butter (we use smartbalance with flax)
One big jar baby food bananas
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla
3 1/2 Cups sifted all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
Cream sugar and¬†butter until light and fluffy; beat in¬†banana’s and vanilla.¬† Sift in flour, baking powder and salt, blend well.¬† Pat into a ball, wrap in foil or plastic wrap and chill until firm.¬† Divide dough and roll out on floured surface, cut with desired shapes.¬† Bake on greased cookie sheet or parchment paper in preheated oven at 375 until edges are golden, about 5 to 7 minutes. Enjoy!

allergen free gingerbread cookies

I wanted to share the recipe that I use for Gingerbread cookies each year.¬†This recipe originally came from an old Parents Magazine Christmas Holiday book and¬†was adapted to be allergen free by¬†my Mother-In-Law…Thanks Jan! Although allergen free, these cookies are good enough to be enjoyed by all. I love them because they stay a little soft and I always prefer a soft cookie to a hard and crunchy one.

Gingerbread Cookies

1/3 Cup brown sugar, firmly packed

1/3 Cup dairy and soy free butter substitute (we use smart balance with flax)

2/3 Cup molasses

3/4 of a jar of stage 2 baby food bananas

3 Cups flour

1 Tablespoon baking powder

1 1/2 Teaspoon ground ginger

1/2 Teaspoon salt

Cream sugar and butter substitute until light and fluffy. Beat in molasses and baby bananas. Sift in flour, baking powder, ginger and salt and blend well. Chill 2 hours. Working in sections roll out desired thickness and cut our your shapes. Place on greased cookie sheet and bake until firm,  about 5-7 minutes. Let cool. Decorate and enjoy!!

Merry Christmas! Wouldn’t these be delicious with some cocoa and Gingerbread Marshmallows?!?

gingcookie

Allergen Free homemade marshmallows!

I had no idea that this was possible. I found this amazing recipe¬†for gingerbread marshmallows by Fat Girl Trapped In A Skinny Body¬†on pinterest a few months back. I pinned it because I thought they looked pretty but never thought I would actually make them. Then last week I was watching the Food Network and Ina Garten¬†was making¬†her version of homemade marshmallows. Her method was very close to the gingerbread marshmallows and watching Ina make hers I thought “I can do this!”. So I did. And it was¬†amazing! They were much easier than I thought they would be, much less messy than I had expected, and soooo delicious. I followed the gingerbread recipe exactly. The only thing I would change next time I make them is to use more cinnamon and fewer ground gloves. The cloves are a little “spicy” for my kids.

Two other things I learned while making these marshmallows –

1. If you don’t have a candy thermometer (I don’t) you can use this method to determine the temperature of your sugar syrup.

2. If you don’t have confectioners sugar (I didn’t) you can put regular granulated sugar in the blender or food processor for a few minutes!

Gingerbread Marshmallows!

 

 

 

In Hot Chocolate!

 

Simple and easy chicken and rice

This recipe is so simple. Not a lot¬†of ingredients, and not a lot¬†of work. It’s healthy and wholesome. And…my daughter (who won’t eat anything but¬†pasta)¬†actually asked for seconds!!!¬†It is also¬†a really great basic recipe that can be modified to suit your tastes. You could easily make this using bone-in chicken pieces, I just prefer tenders (just keep in mind you may need to brown them first to ensure that they will cook through). You can also add any herbs you like, sometimes I add parsley. I also sometimes substitute 1/2¬† Cup of the stock for 1/2 Cup of white wine.

Chicken and Rice

2 tablespoons Olive Oil

1/2 onion, chopped

1 clove garlic, minced

1 Cup white rice

2 Cups chicken stock (a flavorful stock will keep this recipe from being bland)

1 lb. chicken tenders, seasoned with salt and pepper

salt and pepper

Heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add onions and garlic and cook until softened, about 5 minutes. Add uncooked rice and cook until coated with oil, about 2-3 minutes. Add 2 Cups of chicken stock and bring to boil. Turn heat down to low, add chicken pieces to pan and cover. Cook about 20 minutes, or until liquid is absorbed and rice and chicken are cooked. If the liquid absorbs before the rice is cooked add about another 1/4-1/2 Cup of stock. Season with salt and pepper and fluff rice with a fork before serving.