Friday, July 18, 2008

Chocolate Oat No-Bake Cookies

This simple yet incredible recipe was first intoduced to me by my oldest daughter Amanda. Amanda is only allergic to peanuts, so when she made this in cooking class she simply omitted the peanut butter originally called for and the result was beautiful. For Emily, of course, we have had to tweak it a bit more than that. Emily LOVES oats...raw and straight out of the box! If this recipe is too "oaty" for your taste you may want to try replacing half of the oats with shredded coconut. Also, I have never tried this with other alternative milks, but the recipe seems to be sturdy enough that rice milk would probably work. If anyone does try it with rice, hemp, oat, almond, or any other milk alternative please let me know how it works for you. As is, this recipe is peanut/tree nut free, gluten free, dairy free, and egg free. Again, I would love to hear about any alterations made and how they turned out, I think this recipe could be a lot of fun to play with!

¼ c Margarine (dairy free)
¾ c Sugar
¼ c Brown sugar
¼ c Soy milk
¼ c Cocoa
1 t Guar gum (xanthan gum would probably work, I haven’t tried it)
Pinch of salt
¼ c Sunbutter
1 t Vanilla extract
1 ½ c Gluten free rolled oats
¼ c Gluten free oat flour (if all you have on hand are oats, grind your own flour in a blender, coffee grinder, or food processor)

Cover a cookie sheet with waxed paper and set aside.

Mix margarine, sugars, soy milk, cocoa, salt, and guar gum in a saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium low heat and boil for 1 minute. Remove from heat and add sunbutter, vanilla, oats, and oat flour. Stir well. Drop by spoonfuls (I use my trusty 1 ½" spring action scooper) onto prepared cookie sheet. Cool in refrigerator.

Now I'd better go get a picture quick before Emily eats them all!

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Tag! I'm It!

Yes, I've been tagged. Thank you to the amazingly talented mom/chef/author of for thinking of me. I've always been fascinated by other blogger's tag entries. I love learning about their oh so interesting lives...then there's me. This is probably a much needed push to look inside myself. My mother has been telling me for a while now that I need to "find myself". I am one of those stay-at-home-mom types who completely defines herself by her children and her home, although quite frankly at this point in my life I feel that's the way it should be. It will be a challenge to come up with 6 facts about me that I feel are even remotely interesting, but I am here to give it a try.

Here are the rules:

Link to the person who tagged you.
Post the rules on the blog.
Write six random things about yourself.
Tag six people at the end of your post.
Let each person know they have been tagged by leaving a comment on their blog.
Let the tagger know when your entry is up.

1. Anyone who reads my blog is probably already aware of this but it's a place to start...I am surrounded by people with numerous and severe food allergies (my husband, my mother, and all 3 of my daughters) but I actually have no food allergies myself.

2. I was born and raised in California, but we moved to Oregon 7 years ago and I will never go back (well, except to visit). I love it here!

3. I made my own senior prom dress and I made my own wedding dress. The wedding dress won 3rd place in the California State Fair, an achievement I sill take pride in 20 yrs later! (of course I don't ever have time to sew now) Hmmm...I was going to post a picture of my self with this entry, maybe I'll make it a wedding picture.

4. I have a phobia of driving. I am 38 yrs old and have never had a drivers license. I walk a lot and take the bus when I have to. (geesh, you'd think I'd be in better shape! Don't let the picture fool you, that was 20 yrs and 40 lbs ago.)

5. My favorite city to visit is San Francisco!!! I love the diversity, the art, the food, and the general vibe of the city! I also love that it is one of the few places where a person is better off NOT driving.

6. My mother is my hero! Prepare yourself for a long story, more about my mom than myself, but her life choices have helped shape who I am, so please bear with me...

When I was a teenager my parents split up and I stayed with my mom who was a severe alcoholic at the time. The second I turned 18 I was outta there! After a few more years of misery my mom realized she needed to make some changes. She quit drinking and smoking all at once, cold turkey! She then did some soul searching and decided to leave a well paying job with benefits and move to the country. She moved to an old mining town/tourist attraction and played the autoharp and sang songs on the street for tips. She is currently living in a renovated chicken coop (I am not kidding) and is the happiest she's ever been. Once she stopped drinking she became more aware of how she felt physically and it wasn't so good. She eliminated corn and dairy from her diet and became a vegetarian. She felt better for a few years but then started having stomach trouble. That's when she self diagnosed celiac disease. Today my mom is eating an organic,vegan, gluten free diet, living in nature, and doing odd jobs to pay the bills, and she is incredibly self fulfilled. My biggest lesson learned from her, and one I think most people could benefit from, is to strive for simplicity! I know she will never read this (she doesn't own a computer...or a TV), but I'm going to shout this out anyway...I LOVE YOU MOM!!!

Well, there you have it...That's me :)

Now for the chosen 6....

I tag:

Janeen of "Mom's Food Allergy Diner" at

Bella of "The Hampton Roads Food Allergy Connection" at

Melanie of "A Foodie's Fall From Grace" at
(we'll give Melanie a little extra time, I didn't realize she just injured herself)

Allergy Mom of "The Allergic Kid" at

Queen Telling Of "The Allergy Cafe" at

Tracy of "Winning Against Eosinophilic Esophagitis" at

I tried to choose people who have not been tagged before, if I have mistakenly re tagged anyone please let me know. I am looking forward to learning more about all of you! :)

Speedbump Kitchen (do I know your real name?) thank you again. This was fun.

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Fruity Rainbow Butterfly Treats

How's that for a name? OK, so I said A while back I would post this as soon as I had all of my ingredients and my photograper handy at the same time...that never happened. I finally ended up making 1/3 of a batch (which only made 3 butterflies) and taking this sorry little picture my self, but here it is. The recipe for these is exactly the same as the crispy rice treats except for of course that you use Post Fruity Pebbles which are "gluten free" instead of Rice Crispies cereal.

I would like to make a note at this point that I did call Kraft (who owns Post cereals) to ask about cross contamination. They say that if there is any chance of cross contamination at their plant it will be listed in the allergy warning, HOWEVER this is only for wheat, not barley. oats etc.! Also, the gentleman told me that the labeling is only for what happens in their plant, if any ingredients were cross contaminated before they entered the plant Kraft foods would have no way of knowing it. So, there's the disclaimer. All in all I don't know that these are really any safer than the orginals if you have celiac. Emily does not have celiac, she only gets a little itchy with gluten, so here we go living on the edge again!

And now the recipe:

3 T Dairy free margarine
6 C Mini marshmallows (make sure they are safe for your allergies)
6 C Post Fruity Pebbles cereal

In a large pot melt the margarine over medium-low heat. Add the marshmallows and stir until completely melted and no lumps are left. Pour in the cereal and stir hard until thoroughly mixed. Pour into a greased 9"x11" pan. Coat your hands with margarine and flatten mixture into pan. Cool treats in pan and then turn them out onto a cutting board. Using a butterfly cookie cutter (plastic is best, metal tends to bend out of shape) cut out as many shapes as you can. My daughter Nikki pointed out to me this time that you don't HAVE to eat the scraps, they can be squished back together to get more cuttings just like rerolling cookie dough (of course we only erntertained that idea momentarily...then we ate the scraps!).