Hello All! I’m so excited to have written my first guest post! Please join me at Living Without Magazine’s blog, My Life with Food Allergies, for my post featuring this yummy recipe for Bacon Wrapped Honey Mustard Chicken.
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I’ve been on a mission to make a deliciously moist, grain free chocolate cake for some time, specifically for my older daughter’s birthday. I have this terrible tendency to just “wing it” sometimes, so I decided to throw together what I thought would be a delicious chocolate cake – on her actual birthday – like, T-H-E D-A-Y I-T-S-E-L-F. You would think I’d be concerned about serving a cake I hadn’t tested to a bunch of people coming to a party. You would think…
Long story short, it ended up looking (and tasting) like a big chocolate hockey puck – not exactly one of my trophy mom moments.
To redeem myself, I went to work on this cake to get it juuuuuust right. And, thankfully, I think I’ve succeeded. I was able to perfect it by the time our youngest daughter had her second birthday. I’ve served it several times now – to SCD dieters, Paleo eaters as well as gluten-loving “normal” people and it’s gotten raves so far.
Not being much of a frosting fan, I actually love this cake plain with no topping. I admit, I’m in the minority on that one, so I topped the cake with this delicious dairy free, refined sugar free “mousse” by Tasty Yummies. It’s actually her Creamy Chocolate (Avocado) Fudgesicle recipe wherein she indicates it can be served as a pudding or frozen into fudgesicles. (I’ve done both and have always gotten compliments from kids and adults alike.)
Have you ever had one of those friends? You know the kind. The Wonder Woman kind. (Yes, I had the Underoos as a kid.) Dripping with beauty, strong, talented, great fashion sense, hysterically funny, really great hair and able to do virtually anything she puts her mind to and do it well. Yeah. That kind of friend. Well, I have a few of those.
The particular friend I’m thinking of right now is an amazing person. Maybe you can relate. She’s one of those friends you are so thankful for because you love her dearly and enjoy her company, but she’s so talented and gorgeous that you kind of want to ditch her…but you can’t…because you’ve known her since your single days…and, quite frankly, she knows too much…
This particular friend is an artist, singer, interior designer, but these things don’t define her, at least not fully. She’s a devoted wife and mother. She’s a faithful Christian. She’s passionate as well as compassionate, caring, tender-hearted, encouraging, a servant, and makes me laugh out loud…a lot. And if that’s not enough, she’s one of the most amazing cooks I know. She texts me pictures of dinner and every time, I wish I was eating at her house.
One of the reasons this friend is so amazing (besides God just making her that way) is that she works her little tushie off cooking and caring for her son with Crohn’s disease. In fact, this is how an old friendship got rekindled. I ran into my friend whilst shopping (on Black Friday last year) and noticed she had a look of desperation about her. A look I knew all too well. Her son had been in the hospital and the diagnosis was Crohn’s. Heavy-hitting drugs were all they could do for him – even going so far as to admit the drug they wanted to switch him to “has been known to cause cancer in boys”.
“I can’t sign my son up for that. What’s the name of that nutritionist you recommend?” My friend knew we had been through the wringer with our daughter who has inflammatory bowel disease and that we had great results working with our certified nutritionist, Julia McRae.
Well, long story short, they started him on the Specific Carbohydrate Diet (SCD), then switched him to Autoimmune Protocol (AIP a/k/a Autoimmune Paleo). And my friend went to work. She totally threw herself into his new dietary changes, which can be quite difficult I might add, especially when you’re new to it all. My friend has utterly amazed me. Her creativity has taken AIP to a whole new level. In fact, I frequently tell her that she’s the one who deserves to have a blog.
So, all that to say, this recipe is really the result of my friend’s creativity and talent in the kitchen. I gave it a little tweak, but she deserves the credit, as the brainchild is hers. I hope you enjoy it as much as we have!
Every once in awhile, things just come together in my universe. By this, I mean a craving for some long lost food I’ve become allergic to actually gets satisfied by a recipe developed with substitutions and much modification. Honestly, there’s no formula for this and, quite frankly, it doesn’t always work. For instance, in my book, there’s no such thing as an AIP (Autoimmune Paleo a/k/a Autoimmune Protocol) chicken pot pie. How can you pull off a flaky crust with no gluten, grain, nuts, butter or eggs? I’ve given up on ever sinking my pearly whites into an AIP croissant filled with sliced apples and brie “cheese”. Nope. Not gonna happen. I’ll do without and eat another piece of bacon, thank you.
But really, it’s ok. I get to whining about it here and there, but TODAY I REJOICE – because this recipe fills my current need for a yummy holiday treat (and a taste for cheesecake – lemon and ginger, no less – two of my favorite things)…”When the dog bites, when the bee stings, when I’m fee-ling saaaaaad…” I feel a musical moment coming on.
Here’s a little background on this recipe: This week we had some friends over to make Paleo Mom‘s Paleo Gingerbread Cut-Outs (a fantastic recipe, BTW, but not considered AIP as it contains egg whites and almond flour). I got to thinking that a lemon icing would be phenomenal on these gingerbread peeps so I threw something together and it just happened.
My friend (a tremendous allergy-conscious self-trained home chef who should be the one with the food blog) and I put our heads together on how to make an AIP lemon ginger “cheesecake”. In other words, dairy free, nut free, egg free, refined sugar free, etc., etc.
So, without further ado – Merry Christmas everyone! I hope this recipe satisfies your “hankerins” and brings you joy this holiday season.
I have one. Simple. Answer.
“Get away kid – ya bothuh me.”
He ate his words, don’t worry – along with lots and lots of baked pears with bacon.
Shared on Allergy Free Wednesdays…
Keeping my game face on for AIP (autoimmune protocol) has been a difficult task. The game face comes off and the cry-baby face goes on. Once cry-baby has had her say, then game face gets dusted off and put back in it’s rightful place. Food restriction and Italian heritage don’t exactly get along, CAPISCE?
I’ve not cheated on AIP – not because I’m such a disciplined person, but because the benefits of sticking with it are too important. And I don’t want to go back to the place that brought me to AIP. So, that said, here’s a recipe that this AIP-er and her non-AIP fam really enjoyed. And it’s nice to enjoy food again…
Shared on Allergy Free Wednesdays...
Not really. Well, sometimes.
A couple of posts ago, I shared a delicious recipe for Carolina Style BBQ Pork, which has become a family favorite. In said post, I believe I made promises to share the recipe for the AIP coleslaw that accompanied the dish – which, by the way, has become another favorite around these here parts.
Today, I make good on my promises and share with you this Autoimmune Protocol (AIP) friendly side dish. I PROMISE you will NOT miss the mayo in this coleslaw. It’s sweet and tangy but light and crunchy too. I hope you all enjoy it as much as we have.
Believe me or not, I’ve had several people waiting for this recipe to get posted. Crazy, I know. But I think liver has gotten a bad rap over the years. My kids make all sorts of faces when I tell them to taste it, yet while this recipe is cooking, my son usually says, “Something smells really good! What are you making?”
LIVAH! Our baby-kins loves liver pate. She chants “wih-wah! wih-wah!” when I get ready to feed it to her, somehow able to eat the pate while leaving the cucumber slice or carrot stick behind. She’s not been ruined by the prejudices of her elder siblings…yet…and I hope she never does. While I did not grow up eating beef liver and onions, my mom tells me that she did bread and fry chicken livers – though I have no personal recollection of this. I DO remember eating liver pate and liverwurst on bread and crackers and must admit I loved it as a kid.
Becoming more squeamish over the years, I’ve steered clear of organ meat, offal as it is also called. (I’m sure the pun on that one has been worn out.) Pate seemed somehow more palatable to me, and though my days of eating it on crackers has long gone, the thought of it spread on crunchy carrot sticks or cucumber slices sounded quite good.
I started making liver pate regularly in large batches to keep on hand in the freezer after reading more and more the importance healing the gut through nutrient dense foods – such as bone broth and organ meat. Paleo superstars like The Paleo Mom and Chris Kresser, L.Ac have written compelling articles encouraging their readers to regularly consume organ meats – while providing several links to great-looking recipes.
This recipe is one of my favorites because it comes together quickly and makes a lot to keep on hand in the freezer. I’m no chef or Paleo superstar, but here’s my contribution to the organ meat frenzy sweeping America! AND, here’s some organ grinding background music to listen to while you…uh…grind up some organs…
Before you read this post…please oblige me by clicking on the cute little MP3 player above. You know me enough by now to know I like atmosphere, presentation, M-O-O-D. And I need to set the stage for you. So, go ahead. Click that play button. Turn up the sound. Then read on…
I got “the talk” from SupaDoc this past week. Without going into great detail, it went something like this. “Tests have confirmed you have autoimmune reactivity.” Then a lot of yada, yada, yada medical talk to fill in the gaps. He talked about leaky gut being healed and certain foods being okay to start re-introducing. Yada, yada, more medical talk. Then, he said these words…
“It looks like the AIP (autoimmune protocol) is a diet that would benefit you to stay on F – O – R (gasp) L – I – F – E.”
Everything stopped. Did he just say that in slow motion or was it just me? Suddenly, delightful food memories flashed before my eyes: crusty Italian bread dripping in my mom’s homemade meat sauce; Pecorino Romano cheese on everything from meatballs to veggies; Caprese salad with ripe tomatoes, fresh mozzarella and basil; fresh roasted red peppers dressed in olive oil and garlic atop Italian bread.
After wallowing for a bit (every gal needs a good waller once in awhile), I started Fran talking. (Fran is my mom.) I give myself Fran talks every once in awhile. My Fran talks always involve a Long Island/Brooklyn accent: “Jennifah Marie! Fuggedaboutit!”
Then, I got to thinking. (Watch out! She’s thinking people!) AIP hasn’t been all that bad. I mean – really, I’ve made some yummy things from my own concoctions to delicious recipes from other bloggers and AIP cookbooks. I’m in the kitchen a whole lot LESS than I was when I did hard core SCD. AND – if staying on the straight and narrow to reduce triggers for autoimmunity means further reducing flare ups, having more energy, staying healthy for my family – then I’m in.
Now, that doesn’t mean I’m not going to sing the blues here and there. I don’t like feeling…well…weird, for lack of a better word. Some of you have known me long enough to think I’d be used to that feeling. But, frankly, I’m not. It feels weird to bring my own food to church gatherings and our family’s homes for dinner. It feels weird to give the waiter a long list of food allergies and ask a bunch of questions about how something is prepared and whether or not they use “pure” olive oil or an “olive oil blend”.
But a little weirdness is worth it to me. Maybe I’ll start a revolution and weird will become COOL. Weird eaters UNITE!
All right-y then. This mamma is pressing on and going to share with you a FABOO dinner of Carolina-ish BBQ Pork that I would serve to any guest. We’ve been eating it with an AIP coleslaw and either roasted sweet potatoes or butternut squash. (sound familiar?) I’ll post the coleslaw recipe soon.
The contents of this pot contain nothing but L-O-V-E. See that rich, dark sauce in the bottom? WUV, TWUE WUV…Wuv is what bwings us togevah…today… (name that movie)
Shared on Allergy Free Wednesday…
Hey, don’t I look awesome????? Oh, alright. Thou shalt not lie. That’s not me. It’s my wonderful nutritionist, Julia McRae. I wanted to tell all of my readers about her because I just know it’s going to make her famous to have ALL of the readers from my BIG FAT grain free life check her out! Don’t all bombard her at once, now – all 12 of you.
Seriously, Julia’s input and guidance regarding my health as well as my daughter’s has been invaluable. If you’d like some insight as to my journey with our daughter who has Inflammatory Bowel Disease and suffered from failure to thrive, please check out this post. It was a long journey and a painful one, but my daughter is growing, thriving, doing so well in school and living a vibrant, healthy life. I’m convinced it would not be so if it wasn’t for the Lord giving us Julia.
Julia takes nutrition seriously and stays current on research and studies. She travels as a guest speaker giving talks on all sorts of health concerns and would be amazing to have speak to your corporation, group or church. Not only is she current with her research and thorough in her care, she’s C-A-R-I-N-G. I’m sad to say that’s a quality hard to come by in many health circles – both conventional and non. Julia takes her clients’ concerns to heart. There’s no such “cookie cutter” mindset when it comes to Julia’s approach to health. Everyone is different. One approach to health doesn’t fit for every person, even if they suffer from similar maladies.
Julia’s nutritional experience spans over two decades and includes studying under the much-revered Dr. Bernard Jensen. Her website, juliamcrae-cn.com, has a plethora of articles from diaper rash to men and cardiovascular disease. She consults with people nationwide regarding bowel disease, autoimmunity, diabetes, weight management, cardiovascular disease, surgical recovery, nutritional cancer support, and a variety of pediatric conditions.
I have the utmost confidence in Julia’s knowledge and expertise and wanted to pass that along to you. The road to health can be an arduous journey – I know from personal experience. Trying to sort it out on our own can not only be exhausting but also somewhat risky. It’s great to know I have Julia to call when I need help with my family’s health and well-being.
If she could only make me a size two and grow two inches…