Tuesday, March 30, 2010


I thought that tonight I would change up my blogging style a little and just give an example of my day today, including some fast and easy allergy-free (for us) meals that we had today.  I know that some of you who are new to eating gluten-free, dairy-free, or soy-free are struggling with meal ideas that will fit into your busy schedules, so I thought I would just start sharing some of what we eat on a regular basis that might help you or give you some ideas that will maybe make your lives a little easier (and it might help some of you who are friends or family of ours who might not need to adjust your own diets but are interested in learning how to better accommodate our food issues when we have gatherings or dinners).

Today was a busy day for me, as usual.  For breakfast I threw together some Mesa Sunrise flakes with some shredded coconut, raisins, craisins, sunflower seeds, and vanilla rice milk.  Then I had some errands to run.  (I always try to make sure I eat before I head out to do my shopping, otherwise I buy a lot of junk on impulse.)  The kids had their choice of the same cereal mix I ate or Wegman's store brand version of Rice Chex and a piece of fruit (tangerine or banana).

My plan was to go to the gym since the weather here hasn't been too great for walking outside, but I decided to stop at Kmart first to pick up a new pair of exercise pants (mine are all too big on me since I have lost  50 pounds), and I picked up a bunch of hats on clearance for Cassie's charity project that she has been working on since she started (and finished) her Girl Scout Silver Award.  (She is collecting hand-made or store-bought hats to donate to the Lourdes Hospital Oncology Department, something she has continued doing even after she completed all her required hours to receive her award.)

While at Kmart, I happened to see my mom and decided to go to lunch with her, instead of to the gym (nice trade-off, huh?).  So, we headed over to Uno's.  They have a decent gluten-free menu that has worked out well for me, and Mom can't have gluten, either, making it a safe choice.  We had a very nice time chatting and eating together.  (The kids had peanut butter and banana quesadillas for lunch, along with some more fruit.)

After lunch, I didn't have any time left to go to the gym because I still had shopping to do before going home to make dinner for my family.  Besides, Uno's is located in the same plaza as our Super Wal Mart, so it just worked out better for me to stop there since I was already at that plaza.  I spent a good couple of hours in the store.  I was all over the place, getting stuff for my garden (time to start getting ready), getting ingredients for making my own non-toxic and cheaper cleaning products (a venture I am starting this week), window shopping, searching for a white leotard for Moriah's dance performance Easter Sunday (anybody know where to find a WHITE one?), and searching the grocery aisles for new gluten-free and/or organic and natural offerings.  I am also working on making my own recipe storage system (recipe cards and file box aren't working for me), so I had to buy some office supplies.  Today's awesome Wal Mart find was the Soy-Free Earth Balance for just over $3!  That is way cheaper than I have found it elsewhere, and it is the only margarine that we can have since it is soy free, dairy free, and gluten free.  I was very excited to find it there.  Another recent great Wal Mart find was the Peanut Butter & Co. White Chocolate Wonderful peanut butter for way cheaper than I have found it anywhere else.  I'll tell you, Wal Mart is really paying attention to what people want because they are offering more and more all-natural or organic food products as well as allergy-friendly food products.  I know that it is good to support local businesses, and I try to do that when I can.  However, when finances are really tight, as ours usually are, sometimes we just have to get things where they are cheapest and just get the stuff at the local health food store that we can't find anywhere else.

By the time I was done at WM, I didn't have time to go to any of the other stores I had planned on going to.
I still didn't find the leotard I was looking for.  I am disappointed that all the department stores seem to have pink and/or black but no white.  I guess I will have to get one at a dance studio, where it will cost a lot more.

Dinner tonight was a big salad made with a mixture of iceberg and romaine lettuces with spinach, carrots, broccoli, cauliflower, black olives, black beans, radishes, sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds, raisins, craisins, and Elijah's own salad dressing (a recipe that he is in the process of developing himself and won't tell his secrets to anyone, yet!).  I also made some of Averie's Vegan Slaw Dressing, which I had to tweak a little since I don't use Vegenaise (has soy protein).  (If you go to Averie's blog post, you'll see she has a lot of other stuff in her post besides the recipe.  Just scroll down the page until you come to it if you're not interested in everything else.  Her recipe is good.)  For dessert, I made a dairy-free chocolate pudding, the recipe to which I am still in the process of developing, though I am really close to being able to share it.

Before bed, the kids wanted a snack, so I made air-popped organic popcorn with Soy-Free Earth Balance, sea salt, and Red Star Nutritional Yeast to give it a cheesy flavor.

We all loved it.  The yeast really does taste like cheese, and it is very good for you.  You can't really see all the cheesy goodness in this photo, but it's there!

Overall, it was a pleasant day, even though I did not accomplish all I had set out to.

I didn't really make anything spectacularly special today, so no big new recipes to share from today's meals.  However, I will share my recipe for a great Citrus-Ade. 

We had some friends over for dinner the other night.  They all loved the Crock Pot Barbecued Beef, mashed potatoes, veggies, tossed salad, and Elana's Chocolate Chip Cookies that I made, but even with the great food, one of the most popular items of the evening was the Citrus-Ade that I made from scratch.  This is fast becoming my family's favorite refreshing drinks, besides water!  I do use a little sugar in this recipe, but if you can't have sugar you can certainly use more stevia or whatever sweetener you prefer.  Keep in mind that I have a large family, so this makes a whole gallon.  If you want to, you can cut it in half.  I don't know how long it will keep for because it never lasts more than a day or so around here, though there was some that I made a week ago that somehow got lost in the fridge and then found by Moriah, who drank it a week after being made.  She said it tasted great, and it's her favorite drink I make.

Lori's Citrus-Ade
juice from 4 juicing oranges
juice from 3 limes
juice from 2 lemons
1/2 c. evaporated cane juice*
3 dropperfuls lemon-flavored stevia (I used Now brand)
enough ice and water to make 1 gallon

Mix everything well in a large pitcher.  If you don't have ice and only use tap water to make this, make sure you chill it in the fridge for awhile.  It is good either way, but it is best cold (as most drinks are).  My kids tell me they like this drink even better the second day.  It could be because it is colder from being in the fridge, or maybe it has had time for all the flavors to really mix and mesh together.  I can tell we will be going through a lot of this in the summertime.  (I will include a picture of this next time I make it.  I just figured out how to upload pictures to my blog tonight, so I don't have any pictures of anything I've made prior to this point.)

*To make this recipe raw, you can add raw agave or extra stevia instead of the cane juice.  Many times I just use the stevia.

No comments: