So, the story following is my first writing for the “Paper Palate” on the Well Fed Network. I began writing for the network just over a week ago, and seem to be writing non-stop. Believe it or not, the Pumpkin Muffin picture below is my very first digital camera upload-to- the-internet picture. (Click on read more to read the full story and see my first photo attempts) I know, a bit in the dark ages…but, this means more photos are to come. So please bear with me if they are a rookie-quality at first. Enjoy the article and the muffins!…
Why do I love recipes from food allergy moms? Simply put, they are easy and reliable. One would think that a cookbook for food allergies might contain expensive, hard to find ingredients and elaborate directions. But realistically, do you think that a mom (doesn’t this word alone imply insanely busy) who has to cook every single meal for her child would have the time to prepare complicated recipes or the grocery budget to shop everyday at Whole Foods? Hardly. Not to mention, three meals a day for close to 365 days a year, makes for an incredible amount of practice and a hefty set of safe, go-to recipes.
As a writer for Go Dairy Free, I have gained quite a following of food allergy moms seeking and sharing milk-free information. In fact, two “moms gone cookbook author” were kind enough to send me copies of their books for review. Before I knew it, these two cookbooks had turned into my essential resources for last minute ‘what should I make for dinner?’ nights.
My first successes came from Linda Coss’s “What’s To Eat? The Milk-Free, Egg-Free, Nut-Free Food Allergy Cookbook.” Almost immediately I fell in love with her cooking style. Most of the recipes have less than ten ingredients, which are all easy to find, if not already in my cupboard. My instant successes with her Simply Sensational Chicken Sauté and Pineapple Upside-Down Biscuits kept me motivated in the kitchen. I moved onto the Frosted Maple Drop Cookies (a maple bar in a cookie, I was in heaven!) and my now favorite “raw” recipe, Sunflower Pesto. I have heard that her Gimme S’more Cookie Bars are to die for…they are next.
After this positive experience, I was eager to dive into the recipes of “Sophie-Safe Cooking” by Emily Hendrix. Emily goes one step further. Her collection is free of milk, eggs, wheat (not oats), soy, peanuts, tree nuts, fish, and shellfish. I am guessing that Emily’s pantry is sparse, with large bags of a handful of ingredients, but what is in it gets some seriously creative mileage. I have have had the most fun with the baked goods and the salad dressings from this book. In fact, the Pumpkin Muffin recipe below is now on my weekly baking schedule.
Having already made this recipe numerous times, I recommend making just 12 muffins for preteens to adults (many of Emily’s recipes are serving-sized for little ones), and adding ½ cup or more of raisins to get the most of the pumpkin and spice flavor. In the batch pictured below, I also experimented (successfully!) with evaporated cane juice in place of the white sugar (1:1). In addition to food allergy-friendly, these muffins also suit a vegan diet.
Pumpkin Muffins (from Sophie-Safe Cooking)
- 2 2/3 cups oat flour
- 1 cup white sugar
- 1 Tbsp baking powder
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1/4 tsp baking soda
- 1/4 tsp nutmeg
- 1/4 tsp cloves
- 1 1/2 cups pumpkin, canned
- 1/2 cup rice milk
- 1 Tbsp apple cider vinegar
- 3 Tbsp vegetable oil
Mix all of the dry ingredients on low speed with a mixer. Add pumpkin, rice milk, vinegar, and oil. Mix well. Spoon into lined muffin cups. [a lightly greased muffin tin also works, I use a silicone one and they pop right out]
Bake at 350ºF for 20 minutes. Makes about 18 muffins. [see note above on sizing]