Tag: Cooking

Sunday Cooking

Hey Everyone!

I finally did some cooking today, and have some chicken in the oven. I mixed up a package of chicken flavor booster with some Mayo, Smoked Paprika and Mrs. Dash Southwest chipotle seasoning. My mom had found a recipe that really didn’t look that good (essentially spicy coconut milk chicken). It didn’t appeal to me, so I did my own seasoning that appealed to me. Beings that it is summer, smoke flavor and a southwestern spice mix was what was appealing. I had a piece of my chicken for dinner and it was really good. I will write a post on how I made it.

I also spent some time clearing out a bit of my nook library. I just cleared out/archived what I knew I wouldn’t read.

This evening I also made a batch of dairy free tapioca pudding for myself since I wanted something a bit sweet, that would also not make me sick. I use an old recipe that has been around for years, and just replace the regular milk with Almond Coconut milk

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What is Home?

What does Home mean to you?

That is the question I asked in today’s The Daily Happenings post.

To me, home is where I can be myself 100% of the time, and where I can be accepted for who I am, and not have to act how people expect me to act. Home is where I can relax and not be on edge all the time. Home is where I can escape to when everything and everywhere else is bearing down on me to conform to something I am not. Home is where I feel that I belong and have a family and community that I support and supports me. Home is not always a physical place or physical structure, it can be among people that understand you, and get you without having to say anything. Home can be a way of life. Home can be a place, region, town, city where you feel you belong, and find the way of life you may or may not have been looking for, but it just clicks.

I had a real home once, while I was in college. I feel in love with the area my college was located in, and fell in love with the slower pace of life, and the sense of community, and that the whole two towns came out for the tree lighting on campus at Christmas, and came out for the 4th of July parade through the center of town, or how I could drive to a near by town, for their summer fest, and go to the parade where it felt like the whole county turned out. Up until I had gone away to college, I was sold on the city life, but quickly learned that my heart would always be in the country, and that the small town life was definitely the kind of life the suited me. I have been longing to have my home back since moving back to the city, and I hope one day I can find a job that will take me back to the smaller town, (yet close enough to a bigger city to be able to have access to larger grocery store and have a better selection of food for food intolerances) and pick up where I left my heart at.

Home is where the Heart is, and that for me, is living in a small town in the country. I was at home there, I did way more cooking and baking because I enjoyed it, and I was happy. I was living my life the way I believed was right. There is a lot to be said for that. I know if I could find a job and move out again that I would have a lot more recipes to share, as I would have the money to buy the ingredients I needed, and I would just be more inclined to cook and bake, while trying new things because I wanted to. I know I would probably have a bit more to blog about, just because I would have the freedom go wherever I wanted, and be able to afford more day trips and adventures.

Making Easter Dinner

Hey Everyone!

Yesterday was Easter, for which I spent it with my family. I helped my mom cook Easter Dinner. Beings that I can’t eat dairy, and stay away from eating gluten 95% of the time, Making dinner that not only tasted good but was also mainly GF/DF has been the challenge for the last two years. The only dish I couldn’t eat period (and had not made any substitute or alterations for) was the Scalloped Potatoes, which was fine with me. I will eat potatoes, but I am not bummed or put out if I can’t eat them. The jello salad had a sour cream/marshmallow topping which put on before serving, so the topping was left off of mine, and I just put some plain marshmallows on my own serving. We had asparagus, which we left off the spread because the one that my parents and brother use has dairy in it, and the one I use does not. We also had green beans (cooked with onion and bacon…Yum). As for Rolls I made our traditional recipe for the recipe for the rest of the family and made Gluten Free and Dairy Free rolls for myself. For the main meats, we had Leg of Lamb and Ham. Both were very good. We can’t forget about the Cherry Pie. Beings that we were making two, one for my brother and the other to keep here, I made regular wheat crusts. A small piece of Cherry Pie last night was my “treat” for the week. Beings that gluten doesn’t have as severe of an effect on me as dairy does, I can get away with a little bit once or twice a week, but I try to keep it to once a week.

I have been helping my mom make holiday dinners for a good 10+ years now. I have enjoyed working out in the kitchen for as long as I can remember, so as I have gotten older, and learned more, helping out with big dinners, or cooking week night meals (especially after having lived on my own in college) have become just something I do regularly. Now that I am in my mid-20’s, I know my way around the kitchen. Having been the daughter, and having grown up working around the kitchen, I don’t think much about helping my mom, other than that it is what daughter’s do (after having heard many a stories told by my great aunts, and knowing how both of my grandmother’s were raised and cooked themselves). I know in concept that there are young women out there that aren’t there helping their moms, but especially in my group of friends I am a little taken  aback just because they are shocked that I will stay home just to help my mom cook, so that she doesn’t have to do it all herself. That is in part because I am still around and without a family of my own. If I didn’t live close enough to come, or had my own family that would be a different story. The whole idea that daughters are brought up helping their mother’s around the house with the cooking and such goes way back, and it was how I learned a lot of what I know.

Chicken Bruschetta Recipe

Hey Everyone!

I am going to be sharing with you the recipe I used (I have altered it with the substitutions I used, and had it work out) for Chicken Bruschetta.

Ingredients

Tomato Topping

4 medium tomatoes, chopped (1 1/2 cups)
3 tablespoons chopped fresh basil leaves
1 tablespoon Lime Juice
1/4 teaspoon salt (I used sea salt, table salt works well also)
1/4 teaspoon black pepper

Chicken

4 boneless skinless chicken breasts (4 to 5 oz each)
1/2 teaspoon garlic salt (or a 1/4 teaspoon each of dried ground garlic and 1/4 teaspoon salt)
1/8 teaspoon pepper
1 egg
2 tablespoons milk alternative (I used the Almond Breeze Almond/Coconut blend)
1/4 cup GF all-purpose flour (or another GF flour blend you have on hand)
3/4 cup GF Italian style bread crumbs (plain GF bread crumbs work as well)
2 tablespoons olive or vegetable oil

Directions

  • In medium bowl, mix tomato topping ingredients. Cover; refrigerate until serving time.
  • Between pieces of plastic wrap or waxed paper, place each chicken breast smooth side down; gently pound with flat side of meat mallet or rolling pin until 1/4 inch thick. Sprinkle chicken with garlic salt and 1/8 teaspoon pepper.
  • In shallow bowl, beat egg and milk with fork until blended. Spread flour on shallow plate. Spread bread crumbs on another shallow plate. Coat chicken with flour, then dip into egg mixture and coat with bread crumbs.
  • In 12-inch nonstick skillet, heat 2 tablespoons oil over medium-high heat. Reduce heat to medium. Add chicken; cook 10 to 15 minutes, turning once, until crumbs are golden brown and chicken is no longer pink in center. Serve tomato topping over chicken.

Substituting with GF/DF alternatives

HI Everyone!

I had recently watched a Vlog on youtube, and the young woman who does the vlogs had made Chicken Bruschetta for dinner, and it looked really good, so I have been wanting it for the last few days. I finally got around to going to the grocery store and picking up what I needed. I used a recipe I found on the Betty Crocker website via Google Search, and did some substituting to make it Gluten and Dairy free. It turned out really good, but I have to say that I like the basil tomato topping the best. The recipe called for Tomatoes, Fresh chopped basil, salt and pepper, but I added a little bit of lime juice and it was so good. I had also made gluten free rustic flat bread and a salad to go with my chicken. 

I enjoy trying new recipes or trying recipes that need gluten and dairy substitutions to see if I can get the recipe to turn out with gluten free and/or dairy free substitutions. 

A little about Me

Hi Everyone!

The first post is a great place to start with my own experience of being Dairy Free and Gluten Free. I began the process of going diary free just over two years ago. The process began a couple months after having been really sick with a stomach bug, and after I had gotten over it, I still wasn’t “over it” so to speak. I knew something was wrong with the symptoms I was having. I knew that my body didn’t like what I was eating. I starting weaning myself off milk and milk products. I started feeling a bit better, I still was having symptoms for the next year, just less severe. Just over a year ago (and about a year into the process), I cut out all dairy, its by products, and its derivatives (Whey and Sodium Caseinates). For the year after I had done that I was as close to 100% as I had been since before I had been sick. Just after the start of this year began I decided to try going gluten free as well just to see how I felt. It took me about a month to get used to being gluten free, and I have to say that with the combination of being Gluten Free and Dairy Free I finally feel as good or better than I had before I had been so sick.

The first year of learning about being dairy free was not easy, and it still isn’t “easy”, but I have definitely learned a lot and I am much better at dealing with it. The hardest part has been not having a good support network, and going it alone and figuring it out myself most of the time. While going gluten free has been easier for me because I was already used to having a food intolerance, and the fact that Gluten doesn’t have as severe effect on my body that dairy does. I have found that eating out, especially in my circles (beings that I am the only one with a severe food intolerance) is insanely difficult most of the time, mostly because people who don’t have a food intolerance (or have to thinking about cooking for one who has one on a regular basis) don’t get what it is like. I enjoyed cooking and baking prior to this, but it has forced me to actually do this more for myself.

Being Gluten Free and Dairy Free now is not that hard, and actually tastes good (which wasn’t the case, especially with GF a few years ago). As long as I can read the labels of food, and know what is in the food I eat, I eat like a normal person. I am not one to be on a raw/vegan/smells and looks weird diet. I want my food to taste as much as it can like what I was used to eating before I couldn’t eat dairy or gluten. I am also NOT vegan, I still eat (and enjoy) meat, eggs and honey.

Part of what I have been learning how to do is how to substitute dairy free and gluten free options for the dairy and gluten options in recipes, and have it come out right. Dairy has gotten easier, but I am still getting used to gluten, and have had some successful attempts so far.

Stay tuned for more.

Food Intolerances and Homemaking

Hey Everyone!

Over the course of the last two years I have spent learning a lot about living with being dairy free, and doing a lot more cooking at home. Now that I have gone Gluten Free, I am doing way more cooking and baking from scratch at home. For a while, I wanted to do more cooking and baking from scratch, but didn’t get around to do, between finances and not making the time to do it. Now being both Dairy Free and Gluten Free, I have had to make the time to do way more cooking and baking from scratch. Beings that I had already been dairy free for a couple years before going gluten free, I have been finding that going gluten free (I am not Celiac, so I don’t have to be as strict as I am with dairy, since the effects aren’t as drastic), has been so much easier, and I feel like I was more prepared going Gluten Free than I was going Dairy Free.

I had to learn everything about being dairy free on my own, and I didn’t know about the resources out there for dairy free (and I still feel like there isn’t a whole lot out there for people who are going completely without dairy and the dairy derivatives Whey and Sodium Caseinates, but are not Vegan) where as there is a lot more out there for people who are Gluten Free. Going Dairy Free was the hard part for me. Being Gluten Free, for me just means more baking cooking from scratch. If you are Celiac, you would be more likely to be as much of a stickler about reading labels for gluten (wheat, rye, barley and other gluten containing grains) as I am for dairy.

While I had learned to cook and bake years ago, being gluten free and wanting to still eat normal food on a budget has in a way forced me to bake every week. I had been looking for a good reason for years other than that I wanted to. I felt like I needed a justifiable reason for it, even though I really don’t.