Now that my son is OK to have peanuts, it’s opened up some opportunities on the snack and dessert front. One of my personal favorite combinations of all time is peanut butter and chocolate. But with my son’s other allergies, he can’t have Reese’s peanut butter cups. And I find this to border on tragic. Sooo … I made my own chocolate peanut butter cups.
The earthiness of mushrooms is something I love. I'm biased because I don't have anything against the fungi. I like them big and small, stuffed and grilled, sautéed or raw. But if you have family members who aren't as fond of mushrooms, I think starting with a simple sautéed baby bellas is a good move.
One of the reasons I hate buying grocery store cakes is the frosting. It's typically shortening-based and not nearly as good as homemade. Like, not even close. I'd rather have good-tasting than good-looking frosting. Even though we couldn’t have dairy — so no butter and no milk, both of which I'd normally put in my frosting — my son could now have nuts, so here’s my alternative to traditional buttercream frosting.
I love homemade ice cream, and I love my Cuisinart ice cream maker. (I love it so much that last year for Christmas I asked for a second freezer bowl so that I can make two batches in a day.) Last summer, I did allergy-friendly, dairy-free, egg-free, soy-free, nut-free sorbets. But I was really looking forward to a creamier treat. Now that we can do cashew milk, this has become my son’s fave ice cream.
I make a lot of chicken around here. Like, a lot. And I used to buy packets of dry spice mixes for marinades, and while I loved them, they were just too expensive. So, I started playing around with making my own. For a while, I didn't measure, and I'm pretty confident that we can all make our own meat marinades without measuring, but if you're looking for something to try tonight, here's one iteration that's a toddler/husband/mama favorite.
My son is all about chicken thighs with some light spice. Getting him to TRY (much less LIKE) any other cut of meat is not easy. But last night, I scored something of a victory. He's never had chicken nuggets, but if your kiddo prefers the smaller shape, there's no reason you can't cut the chicken into smaller bites before breading and cooking.
Since we don't do eggs, nuts or dairy, baking can be a challenge, but I've found that it's easy to modify Libby's pumpkin cookie recipe (a favorite from my own childhood) to make it vegan and allergy-friendly.
In our house, chicken is the meat of choice. My son prefers thighs; I prefer breast meat. This dinner seemed to be a good compromise because the meat stayed pretty moist. Plus, it's free of dairy, eggs, soy, nuts and gluten too.
Very few ingredients, a simple sauce that most people will like. But I do have to be honest: My kiddo did not love the pasta with this sauce. But he did love helping. And that's something. (I also have to believe that most kids would enjoy a side dish of pasta.)