WARNING: the foods we cook for Abby are safe for her, but not necessarily for everyone. Please confirm any ingredients are safe for you before using in your diet. Food Allergies can kill and the best policy is complete avoidance. Read this post for more info.

Wednesday, September 7, 2016

Sweet Potato Snack Cake- gluten free, dairy free, soy free, corn free

As the rest of the world kicks of "pumpkin everything!" season, we bring out the sweet potatoes!

Sweet potatoes do provide a slightly different texture then pumpkin. They tend to be more dense and not quite as magically moist so where with pumpkin you can often cut the fat with sweet potato we find better results with full fat recipes.

This is an easy one, especially if you are like me and boil up and puree a big pot of sweet potatoes and then portion and freeze for baking use all season long.

Sweet Potato Snack Cake:

4 eggs, beaten
2 cups pureed sweet potato(or pumpkin 1 15 ounce can)
1 1/3 cups C&H organic sugar
1 cup grapeseed oil
2 cups all-purpose gluten-free flour
1 teaspoon guar gum
2 teaspoons homemade baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons ginger(instead of ginger and cloves you can use cinnamon and nutmeg or any spice blend you tolerate)
1/2 teaspoon cloves
1/2 cup raisins or other favored add-in's.

(I frosted with coconut yogurt icing that reminds us of cream cheese- corn-free powdered sugar,tropical traditions palm shortening, homemade vanilla extract, coconut yogurt)

1) Preheat oven to 350 and grease a 9 by 13 pan.

2) In bowl mix eggs, pureed sweet potato,sugar, oil.

3) To above mixture add flour,guar gum, baking soda, salt, ginger and cloves- mix until everything is well combined.

4) (add raisins or other add in) and pour into 9 by 13 greased pan.

5) Bake for 35-40 minutes .

Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Toasted Coconut Butter Bars

When fall approaches we crave certain foods,with chocolate and peanut butter at the top of the list! Since Abby cannot eat either(lost peanut butter last year)we have searched for sub's. She cannot do seeds either so toasted coconut butter is really the safest(and tastiest!) substitution for her.

These are easy, and delicious! Chewy,sweet, and salty... Not quite peanut butter and not quite chocolate but enough that it brings back nice memories. If we don't compare directly with chocolate or peanut butter it makes an exceptional rich and sweet treat that is pure comfort food! These cut so nice and tidy and would be a great take along dessert.

3/4 cup Tropical Traditions coconut oil
3/4 cup homemade toasted coconut butter
3/4 cup C&H organic sugar
3/4 cup homemade brown sugar
1 1/2 cups all-purpose gluten free flour
1 1/2 cups toasted flattened rice(thin Poha)
1 1/2 teaspoons homemade vanilla extract
2 eggs
1 teaspoons salt(safe for you, we use pink himalayan)

Preheat oven to 325

Line 9 x 13 with parchment paper.

1) In bowl add coconut oil, toasted coconut butter, sugar, brown sugar, salt, vanilla and eggs. Mix until well combined.

2) To above mixture mix in flour and lastly toasted flattened rice(thin poha or you could use oatmeal if you have it safe)

3) Once combined pat batter into parchment lined 9 x13.(mine was pretty thick)

4) Bake for 20-25 minutes until center is set.

5)Optional: Top with carob frosting. (carob powder, corn free powdered sugar, tropical traditions palm shortening, vanilla extract,salt, coconut milk)

Thursday, August 25, 2016

No Bake Cookie: Chocolate free, peanut butter free,soy and sunflower free, oat free, dairy free, gluten free, corn free!

These were a childhood favorite of Abby's(and Sara and Derek and I!!) and they have been missed. I honestly did not think it would be possible to recreate these safely for her, but they worked!

Over the years I found that thin poha can take the place of oats in many cookie and baked goods recipes. I dry toast the poha(stirring the whole time to avoid burning) in a frying pan until the poha flakes are crisp and lightly golden. I actually like their texture better then oats in many recipes and wish I had known about them years ago!

Abby lost homemade peanut butter with a big bang over a year ago. But, if you toast the coconut flakes and then grind in the high speed blender or food processor and add a healthy dose of salt, it is remarkably similar in many ways to nut butters. It doesn't take much time at all and keeps for a long time(if it lasts that long! )

We are trying carob AGAIN! We think it will end up being what we call a "hit and run food". Meaning that she can eat it now and then but not often. Fingers crossed! We find that a medium roast carob that is complimented with a good dose of salt and vanilla extract mimic's chocolate best.

I really did not think these would work, and honestly, I think I need to tweak the recipe a bit.. I used heaping tablespoons of carob and I think I should have leveled them off, but they still turned out delicious. Next time may add a bit more milk or fewer poha flakes so I get a more fudgy end result. These did not go to waste!

Anything is possible if you are willing to tinker with substitutions.

½ cup Tropical Traditions Coconut oil
2 cups C&H organic granulated sugar
½ cup homemade coconut milk(or milk of your choice, but the fat is a bonus with these)
5 tablespoons medium roast carob powder(Trying frontier brand again-fingers crossed!)
1/2 - 3/4 teaspoon of salt(safe for you)
½ cup Homemade toasted coconut butter(toast dried tropical traditions coconut and grind until you have butter-I also add a bit of salt)
2 teaspoons homemade vanilla extract
3 cups lightly dry toasted thin poha(any international market that carries Indian products with have poha(flattened rice)

1. Add the first five ingredients (through the salt) to a 4-quart saucepan.

2. Bring to a rapid boil and let boil for 1 minute.

3. Remove from heat.

4. Stir in the toasted coconut butter and homemade vanilla extract until smooth, then stir in the toasted poha.

5. Drop by generous spoonful onto parchment-lined baking sheets.

6. Let cool until set, about 30 minutes.

Thursday, August 18, 2016

Fig "Bombs" Abby style (just tapioca flour!)

Just tapioca for a "flour" and we are impressed!

With Derek not tolerating rice flours(or corn or a lot of chemicals)I have been poking around to see how I could adapt some of Abby's favorites to work for Derek as well. He really isn't much of a sweet's guy, but every now and then he does get bitten by the sugar craving.

Tapioca in any form just seems to always agree with everyone in our house. So I have been searching tapioca based recipes and ran across something called a "Chocolate Bomb".. sounds like it was created more for the paleo crowd because besides the chocolate chips there wasn't any sugar called for in the recipe. Sugar is always welcome in cookies around here so gave it a try with adding brown sugar.

Very interesting cookie! Definitely a "different" texture then we are accustomed to, but one we did not mind. Kind of chewy and moist like the whole cookie turned into a giant fig bite! Not bad at all! Next time we may toss in some crushed roasted chickpeas or some shredded coconut or maybe both? For Derek since he tolerates chocolate I will try these with chocolate chips just for him eventually.

2 lightly beaten large eggs
1 1/4 cup tapioca flour(I used Anthony's organic tapioca Flour for these which may or may not be safe for the corn-free,caution!!)
1/3 cup packed homemade brown sugar
1 tsp homemade baking powder
1/2 tsp safe for you salt(we use pink himalayan)
1 cup chopped Made in Nature organic figs(I soaked mine in hot water for 15 minutes and drained first and chopped them small)
1/4 cup melted Tropical Traditions Coconut oil

** optional homemade powdered sugar to roll them in after they are baked.

1) Preheat oven to 450 and line cookie sheet with parchment paper

2) In bowl combine the eggs, tapioca flour, brown sugar, baking powder and salt.

3) mix in figs and then coconut oil.

4)roll into balls and place on cookie sheet(these don't spread much)

5) bake for 6-8 minutes.

6) Optional: while still warm roll in homemade powder sugar.

Monday, August 15, 2016

Blackstrap Molasses Brownies-(gluten free, corn free, dairy free, soy free, color and chemical free, )

No carob, no chocolate and tired of blondies? Molasses. These were surprisingly satisfying! Really as if Gingerbread crossed with a pan of fudgy brownies! Easy too!

1/4 c. Tropical Traditions Coconut Oil
1/3 c.Plantation brand organic Blackstrap molasses
1 c. organic C&H granulated sugar
1/4 c. homemade brown sugar, packed
2 large eggs
1 c. all-purpose gluten free flour
1/2 tsp. salt(safe for you, we use pink himalayan)
1/4 tsp. ground cloves
1 1/2 tsp. ground ginger

1)Preheat oven to 350 F. Line a 8x8 inch baking dish with parchment; set aside.
2)In bowl mix coconut oil, molasses and sugars.
3)Whisk in eggs until combined.
4)Add flour, salt, cloves, and ginger; whisk until just incorporated.
5)Pour/spread into prepared pan.
Bake for 30-35 minutes.

(I dusted with homemade powdered sugar)

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Coconut and Red Bean Paste Bars

Once again it was time to clean out the freezer and I found a tub of the homemade red bean paste. I had been planning on making just a coconut bar cookie for Abby but figured why not add the bean paste? Sometimes odd combo's don't work out so well, but this time it worked! It had the nice crust with the hint of salt, the custard like red bean paste,an almost caramel layer and the chewy and sweet coconut top. layer.

Crust Ingredients:
1/2 cup Tropical Traditions coconut oil, softened
1/2 cup Organic C&H sugar
1/2 teaspoon safe for you salt
1 cup all-purpose gluten free flour (make your own! As far as I know, none of the store bought are safe for the sensitive)

Filling Ingredients:
2 eggs
1 teaspoon homemade vanilla extract(vanilla beans in potato vodka airtight in the jar for at least 6 months)
1/2 cup homemade brown sugar (To each cup of C&H cane sugar about 1 Tablespoon organic Plantation brand organic blackstrap molasses)
2 Tablespoons all-purpose gluten free flour
1 cup Tropical Traditions shredded(I used their chips!) coconut

1 cup homemade red bean paste(very few store bought brands are free of corn)

Preheat oven to 350

Line 8x8 pan with parchment paper.

1) Combine coconut oil, sugar, gluten free flour for the crust. It will be crumbly. Press into parchment lined pan and bake for 10 minutes.

2) In bowl to make filling combine eggs,brown sugar, vanilla extract, flour and coconut. Put aside.

3) When crust is baked spread 1 cup of the red bean paste on it. Now spread the coconut filling over the top of the bean paste.

4) Bake for 25-30 minutes.

Allow to cool and then cut.

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

Better ThAn you Would Think, Cherry Ketchup! (Thanks Cecelia for the grammar check! :-)

No tomatoes, no beets, and last year she lost red peppers.. it was a ketchup drought around here!

I stumbled across a recipe for cherry ketchup. I was skeptical but figured worse case I could mix it into something else and make bbq sauce or something out of it. But to our surprise, it is really really delicious! It has that nice trifecta of salty,sweet and tangy that makes for a perfect ketchup.

Unfortunately cherries are a "hit and run" food for Abby so this will be just a special treat now and then when she has an empty bucket and minimal flaring. I did see a recipe for blueberry ketchup, and I may give that a try next!


2 1⁄2 lb. organic cherries(frozen work great!)
2-3 peeled and diced organic peaches
1⁄2 cup Braggs apple cider vinegar
1⁄2 cup local honey
1⁄2 cup homemade brown sugar
1 Tablespoon. freshly grated ginger
2 teaspoons pink himalayan salt
2 cloves garlic
1⁄4 teaspoon ground cloves
1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
2 Tablespoons tamarind puree


1)Combine the cherries,peaches,garlic, vinegar, honey, and brown sugar in a saucepan and stir to combine. Bring to a boil then reduce the heat and simmer for 20-30 minutes until the fruit is soft.

2)Remove from the heat and cool some and then purée; return mixture to the saucepan and add the ginger, salt,smoked paprika, cloves, and tamarind. Cook, stirring regularly, for another hour or so, until thickened slightly, it will thicken more when chilled.

Sunday, July 17, 2016

Peach & Pear Bar's(gluten free, corn free, dairy free, chemical free, nut free)

I really like a bar cookie- and mostly because they are easy, they are "kind of cake" and "kind of cookie" and they tend be pretty forgiving to ingredient changes.

The filling on this one makes it a snap! You could mix any safe jam(remember pectin's and citric acids are derived or often tainted with corn) with sliced pears or apples if you can eat them. Since it also only calls for 1 egg it would easy to convert to egg-free with a favored egg substitute.

Abby said the use of the peach preserves plus pear actually made it "more peachy" then normal peach cobbler, I suspect the preserves being cooked down intensified the peach flavor. We were worried the pear might water things down, but it was the opposite!

We use "ginger and clove" exclusively because that is all Abby tolerates, but I could see these being delicious with cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice, or even mace. I was thinking cardamon and ginger too.

Crust and Crumble Topping:
3 cups all-purpose homemade gluten free flour
3/4 teaspoon guar gum(or psyllium husk powder)
1 cup organic C&H granulated sugar
1 teaspoon homemade baking powder(2 parts cream of tartar,1 part baking soda, 1 part tapioca starch)
¼ teaspoon pink himalayan salt(or safe for you)
1 cup Tropical Traditions Coconut Oil
1 egg

3 peeled and sliced organic pears(I still rinse and rub with a bit of baking soda and water before peeling)
1 cup peach preserves(I cook down organic peeled peaches with equal amounts of sugar,a bit of tamarind paste,once soft strain extra syrup(save it!)and put the cooked sweetened fruit into freezer safe containers- we use it for jam and the syrup for pancakes and other recipes)
1/2 teaspoon ginger(or more to taste or skip)
1/4 teaspoon cloves(or more to taste or skip)

1) Preheat oven to 350

2) In bowl combine gf flour, sugar, baking powder, salt. Cut in the coconut oil. Add egg and mix well.

3) line an 8 x 8 pan with parchment paper. Press half of the crust/topping mixture into the bottom of pan firmly. Bake for 15 minutes.

4) In bowl combine pear slices and peach preserves. Add and mix in ginger and clove.

5) When crust comes out of the oven spread pear/mixture over crust. Crumble the remaining crust/topping across the top.

6) Bake in over 40-45 minutes until crumble is golden.

7) serve warm with a scoop of coconut milk ice cream, or chill and cut for bars.

Sunday, June 26, 2016

Ginger Cookie Peachy Tamarind Sorbet Sandwiches

Ice cream sandwiches are wonderful, and sorbet filled sandwiches are even better!

IT is HOT HOT HOT in Houston right now so we are craving frozen everything! Sorbet though without the fat feels more cooling.

When you make a sorbet it often calls for lemon juice but since that is not safe for Abby we use a lot of tamarind, and in this case it made something spectacular! The tamarind intensified the peach and it reminded us of a cross between an apricot and some sort of sour gummy candy..

The cookie is just a basic shortbread and I threw in some ginger, because ginger is a nice addition to both peach and tamarind.

Definitely a make again(and again and again and again!)

For the Cookies:

1 1/2 cups gluten-free all purpose flour

1/2 teaspoon guar gum

1/2 cup homemade powdered sugar

1/4 teaspoon pink himalayan salt

1 teaspoon powdered ginger

7 tablespoons Tropical Traditions coconut oil(gold), at room temperature

1 extra-large egg

1/2 teaspoon homemade vanilla extract.

Preheat oven 325

1) Combine the egg and coconut oil until it is nice and fluffy.

2) Add, sugar, salt, ginger, flour, vanilla to the egg and oil combo and mix until dough forms into ball. (I used my hands!)

3)Between two sheets of parchment with a liberal amount of gf flour sprinkled on the bottom sheet and on top of the dough, roll out. Use biscuit cutter(or cookie cutter of choice). Mine were about 1/2 inch thick.

4) Line cookie sheet with parchment paper. Place all cut out raw cookies on the parchment(I sprinkled with sugar ). Place cookie sheet into fridge until well chilled(30 minutes or 15 in the freezer).

5) Bake for 10-15 minutes depending on thickness.

6) Allow to cool completely.

7) Spoon or pipe sorbet on bottom cookie. Carefully set top cookie on top(cookies are pretty frail until frozen) Place in freezer for at least 2 hours. Wrap individually.

Peach and Tamarind Sorbet:

1/2 cup water
3/4 cup organic C&H sugar
3-4 tablespoons tamarind puree(I buy the block, hydrate and strain)
5 medium ripe peaches, peeled and sliced

1) In saucepan heat water,sugar, tamarind until sugar is melted. Remove from heat.

2) Place peaches into blender and add the sugar combo, blend until very smooth. (You can strain, I did and there wasn't much to strain out so would be fine without straining.)

3) Chill and follow your ice cream machine's directions.

Friday, June 10, 2016

Very Coconut Impossible Pie

We have been on a bit of a pie kick around here. I am however growing weary of rolling crusts so this "crust free" pie caught my attention.

I saw a lot of different variations when I was googling. Most either called for biscuit mix or self rising flour. You can make your own self rising gluten free flour: 1 cup all purpose gf flour plus 1 1/2 teaspoon homemade baking powder plus 1/2 teaspoon salt.

Most also called for butter so coconut oil was a perfect replacement.

I also noticed most just call for "milk", I assume dairy but coconut milk was perfect to take that coconut flavor to the next level.(I am sure you could use any milk in this recipe)

Another one I was able to tweak was the "sweetened coconut flakes". Obviously store bought coconut flakes are corn tainted(and other!) so making your own is very easy. Simply lightly moisten Tropical Traditions coconut flakes and toss with a bit of homemade powder sugar. I make the flakes first to make sure they are soft and sweet enough. I don't recommend just using the "dry" flakes as it would likely absorb more of the moisture in the pie while baking.

If you like coconut this is coconut all the way, as it should be. Sometimes having to avoid a lot different foods ends up being an advantage! I do think this will be even better with a crust.. I can imagine a shortbread like crust in cookie bar form.. next time we will try that!

4 Tablespoons Tropical Traditions Coconut oil
3/4 cup C&H organic cane sugar
2 eggs
1 cup homemade coconut milk
2 teaspoons homemade vanilla extract(potato vodka plus vanilla beans)
1/4 cup all purpose gluten free flour
1/2 teaspoon homemade baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 1/4 cup sweetened Tropical Traditions coconut flakes(moisten flakes and sprinkle with sugar allow to sit 30 minutes)

Preheat oven 350

1)Soften coconut oil

2) combine coconut oil,sugar, eggs, vanilla extract and milk.

3) Add flour,baking powder,salt and coconut flakes. Mix well.

4) Pour into greased pie pan.

5) Bake 40-50 minutes. After 20-30 minutes I recommend covering before finishing baking, remember, coconut will brown quickly.

Friday, June 3, 2016

Pear Sauce Custard Pie

When you have organic pear's that need to be used I tend to make pear sauce. I then end up with a lot of pear sauce canned or in the freezer.

I stumbled across a recipe for applesauce pie and thought, "Why not?" Made a few tweaks to make it "Abby safe" and we all agree this is a keeper!

2 cups homemade pear sauce(I tend to drain mine and make it thicker and I sweeten)
1 cup C&H organic sugar
1/2 cup Tropical Traditions coconut oil
2 eggs
1 teaspoon homemade vanilla extract
1 teaspoon ground ginger(we have been buying Simply Organic or Frontier for some of her spices and herbs)
1/2 teaspoon ground clove(feel free to add whatever spice you like, ginger and clove are Abby's safe spices so we stick to them)

1 unbaked gluten free pie crust(Tropical Traditions shortening, gf all purpose flour blend, salt, a bit of sugar, 1 egg,some water and roll between 2 sheets of parchment)

Preheat oven 425

1) soften coconut oil

2) Make pie crust and chill

3) In bowl combine coconut oil, eggs and sugar. Then add pear sauce,vanilla and spices. Blend well.

4) pour into chilled crust.

5) bake at 425 for 15 minutes. Reduce heat to 350 and bake for another 30-40 minutes. Very much like baking pumpkin pie, you want to make sure it has set through to the center. You may want to cover your crust halfway through if browning too quickly.

Friday, May 20, 2016

Teff Molasses Cookies

While I like baking with rice flours we think the hubby's gut isn't so fond of rice. Figured the best way to experiment with baked goods that were rice free would be best starting with cookies.

It was a good call. The teff has a slight nuttiness that went very well with the spices and molasses.

These were definitely a make again cookie. Honestly, we could not tell that we had skipped the rice flour. Now to see if the Hubby's gut liked them as much as Abby's did!

Molasses,Teff, coconut oil, are all great ingredients. The spices, especially the ginger are helpful in aiding digestion.

You could probably reduce the sugar but we thought they were great with the current measurements.

If I get lucky and there are some left tomorrow, I think loading them up with coconut milk ice cream for ice cream sandwiches will be amazing!

1 Cup Teff flour(I used Ivory but brown would be equally as good)
1/2 cup potato starch
1/2 cup tapioca starch
1/2 teaspoon guar gum(or psyllium husk powder)
2 teaspoons baking soda
1/2 teaspoon pink himalayan salt(or whatever is safe for you)
1/2 cup Tropical Traditions Coconut oil(softened)
1 egg
1/3 cup C&H organic cane sugar(plus a little extra for rolling the cookies)
1/3 cup packed homemade brown sugar(cane sugar plus blackstrap molasses)
1/3 cup Plantation organic blackstrap molasses
1 1/2 teaspoons ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
3/4 teaspoon cardamon

Preheat oven to 375

1) In bowl cream together coconut oil, sugars, egg, blackstrap molasses and spices.

2) Add flours/starches, baking soda, salt combine well. Should be a very firm dough.(if not firm you can add a bit more potato starch)

3) roll into small balls(they spread)and roll the balls in cane sugar.

4) place at least a couple inches apart on parchment lined cookie sheet. CHILL(if you use coconut oil I always chill before baking)

5) Bake for 8-10 minutes.

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