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.

Friday, August 2, 2013

Bishop's Seed, (Carom, Ajwain)Sweet and Salty Crackers

Gluten free, corn-free, soy free, dairy free,

Here is a list of the names it is known by; Other Names:
Ajava Seeds, Ajowan, Ajowan Caraway, Ajowan Seed, Ajowanj, Ajwain, Ajwan, Ameo Bastardo, Ammi Commun, Ammi √Člev√©, Ammi glaucifolium, Ammi Inodore, Ammi majus, Ammi Officinal, Bishop's Flower, Bisnague, Bullwort, Carum, Espuma del Mar, Flowering Ammi, Grand Ammi, Omum, Yavani.

What exactly is Bishop's Seed? A spice that is most popular in Indian Cooking. It is also a popular home remedy.

A little bit of information from WebMD-

Bishop's weed is a plant. The seeds are used to make medicine.

The prescription drug methoxsalen (Oxsoralen, Methoxypsoralen) was originally prepared from bishop's weed, but it is now made in the laboratory. Methoxsalen is used to treat psoriasis, a skin condition.

Bishop's weed is used for digestive disorders, asthma, chest pain (angina), kidney stones, and fluid retention.

Some people apply bishop's weed directly to the skin for skin conditions including psoriasis and vitiligo.

Be careful not to confuse bishop’s weed (Ammi majus) with its more commonly used relative, khella (Ammi visnaga). The two species do contain some of the same chemicals and have some similar effects in the body. But Bishop's weed is more commonly used for skin conditions, and khella is usually used for heart and lung conditions.

How does it work?
Bishop's weed contains several chemicals, including methoxsalen, a chemical used to make a prescription medication for the skin condition psoriasis.

There isn't enough information to know if bishop's weed is safe. When taken by mouth, bishop's weed might cause nausea, vomiting, and headache. Some people are allergic to bishop's weed. They can get a runny nose, rash, or hives. There is also some concern that bishop's weed might harm the liver or the retina of the eye.

Bishop's weed can cause skin to become extra sensitive to the sun. This might put you at greater risk for skin cancer. Wear sunblock outside, especially if you are light-skinned.
Special Precautions & Warnings:
Pregnancy and breast-feeding: It’s UNSAFE to use bishop’s weed if you are pregnant. It contains a chemical called khellin that can cause the uterus to contract, and this might threaten the pregnancy.

It’s also best to avoid using bishop’s weed if you are breast-feeding. There isn’t enough information to know whether it is safe for a nursing infant.

Liver disease: There is some evidence that bishop’s weed might make liver disease worse.

Surgery: Bishop's weed might slow blood clotting. There is a concern that it might increase the risk of bleeding during and after surgery. Stop using bishop’s weed at least 2 weeks before a scheduled surgery.

So, a few in crackers isn't going to hurt her unless she ends up allergic,if not, it as a terrific seasoning. It is a strong flavor.. like if marjoram and fennel were combined. I enjoyed the flavor but it was a little shocking at first- if you haven't tried it before I recommend reducing the amount called for in the cracker recipe.

This "cracker" recipe I created based on a zillion versions of similar recipes online. Almost all were used in Indian recipes. There were quite a few that recommended this sweet and salty version, and my ears always perk up when I see "sugar"!!! I am hoping that digestive benefits plus sugar in this recipe will be a nice snack for Abby, something for a little kick, a little salt, a little stomach settling quality- either way, despite being very different from what we are used to, we really like these! I found we liked them best when we rolled them as thin as possible. I am finding the flavor to be addictive.

Sweet and salty Bishop seed Crackers

1 & 1/2 cups all purpose gluten free flour
1/4 cup grapeseed oil
1 heaping teaspoon of bishop seeds/Ajwain/Omam/Carom seeds
3/4 tsp salt(plus some to sprinkle on top)
3 & 1/2 tblsp sugar
6 tblsp coconut milk or rice milk

Mix it all together. Add more milk if when you work the dough it won't hold together.

Roll out on a floured board and cut in desired shapes, sprinkle with salt(pink himalayan for us) and pierce a few times with a fork.

Bake at 350 for 15-18(or longer for a crispier cracker) minutes or until golden brown.


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