All cooks face the question, "What should I make?"
Answering this question takes on added challenges when facing the constraint that is the reality of cooking for someone with food allergies (or other special diets).
You can see the challenge as a hurdle, or you can view it as a puzzle that requires creativity to solve.
I choose to embrace the challenge that multiple food allergies has provided our family.
What are some of the tools that I have utilized to meet the test of food allergies?
- I take full advantage of the ingredients that are still available to us. I relish the many flavors and textures of foods that are safe for our family. There is a wide world of fruits, vegetables, proteins, grains
that are absolutely safe for my son and our family.
- I seek out new ingredients (new to me) that make it easy to substitute for foods that are not safe for our family. That is what has led me to embrace chia seeds and flax seeds as egg substitutes or hemp seeds and pepitas (pumpkin seeds) as a nut alternative and sunflower seed butter
instead of peanut butter.
- I also adapt recipes from traditional sources to make them safe for my family and guests. For example, I substitute gluten-free oat flour for all-purpose flour; I use non-dairy milk (coconut, oat, hemp, etc.) for cows' milk; and I use safe ingredients like allergy-free chocolate chips instead of brands that aren't safe.
- I make from-scratch alternatives to processed foods that my kids covet and can't have. Added bonus -- when I make my own versions I have complete control over the ingredients!
My new book, Ancient Grains: A Guide to Cooking with Power-Packed Millet, Oats, Spelt, Farro, Sorghum & Teff (Superfoods for Life), is available for pre-order now. Super Seeds, is available now! You can also find tasty recipes in Welcoming Kitchen: 200 Delicious Allergen- & Gluten-Free Vegan Recipes.