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making people healthy one person at a time

Monday, July 26, 2010

The Magic Painting

Every once in awhile I will post some crazy story or something wonderful about one of my kids. This morning my seven year old son with autism was sitting straight up in his bed reciting this story from either a dream or early morning ramblings. I heard him say it a few times, so I gave him some paper and asked him to write it down. It goes like this:

"The painting was magic. That was supposed to be the birth of 11. That is why the sun shines down on it. The camp counselor said inspirational messages. So if you lean over he did. First touch the sun with your mind and touch the painting with your hand and draw the difference."

A look inside of his mind makes things even more confusing! My son has very above average intelligence. Most of the time I have no idea what to do with him. I just try to keep him busy so he doesn't get bored. He talks nonstop!! He was diagnosed with autism almost 4 years ago, right before his 4th birthday. So the rantings of a 7 year old with autism can be very boring when you hear the same things over and over. But this story he made up is something new, and I hope something to look forward to and not just a one-time thing. Keep your fingers crossed.

Thursday, July 22, 2010


I love the fresh eggplant I get from my friends at the Farmer's Market. After you eat a just picked eggplant you will never go back to the seedy bitter imported eggplant. I make many things with the eggplant I get over the summer. I make tons of these breaded eggplants and freeze them and they are my fast food over the winter. I used a Rosa Bianca eggplant in this recipe. You get huge thick slices.

1 eggplant cut into slices
1/2 cup Italian dressing
1 cup gluten-free breadcrumbs
1 tablespoon Italian seasonings

After slicing eggplant, sprinkle sea salt on it and lay on some paper towels. After 20 minutes or more press eggplant to get excess juices out. This will help the eggplant absorb the Italian dressing. Mix breadcrumbs with Italian seasonings and get a plate to press the eggplant into the crumbs to coat. Brush eggplant on both sides with dressing and press both sides into breadcrumbs. I spoon crumbs on top on my first press so my hands are pressing the crumbs in and not getting the dressing on my hands. Lay flat on a baking sheet covered with parchment. I use a Misto and spray olive oil on the parchment and then spray the eggplant after they are all breaded. Not too heavy.
Preheat your over to 450. Bake for 15 minutes. Sprinkle with some Daiya cheese and put back in the oven for 7- 10 minutes. If you are skipping the cheese, cook for 20 minutes. I used some gluten-free penne and a roasted red pepper sauce. This is my comfort food! Yummy! You don't have to make your own dressing or Italian seasonings, but I do because of food allergies. My bread crumbs are from my french bread recipe. You can use whatever gluten-free bread you like.

Italian seasoning recipe
1/2 tablespoon dried oregano
1/2 tablespoon dried basil
1/2 tablespoon dried parsley
1/2 tablespoon dried marjoram
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder or fresh garlic

Italian dressing recipe
1/2 cup olive oil
1/4 cup red wine vinegar or apple cider vinegar
1 tablespoon Italian seasonings
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard, gluten-free of course
puree all ingredients

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

White Tomato Artichoke Bruschetta

Yes, another Bruschetta! This one you can add some pasta or just eat it on some French Bread. I love artichokes! I use frozen artichoke hearts and steam them and split them in half so you get one in every bite.

2 white tomatoes chopped
1 12 oz  package frozen artichoke hearts steamed and cut in half
10 big basil leaves chiffonaded 
1/4 cup kalamata olives sliced in rings
1 clove garlic finely chopped
1 tablespoon capers
4 tablespoons olive oil
dash of sea salt
 Mix and let marinate for a bit in the fridge. I don't use vinegar and I don't use much salt because of the olives and capers. I used purple basil, but you can use either.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Roman Candle Purple Basil Bruschetta with French Bread Crisps

It is so hard to choose which one of the farmer's market tomatoes I love the most right now. But the Roman Candle is one of my favorites. This beauty has a sweet, less acidic taste than the red Roma, it is going to be hard going back to regular old Romas after the summer is over!

4 ripe Roman Candle tomatoes chopped
8 leaves of purple basil, roll it up and chiffonade it
1 clove garlic in a fine dice
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
sprinkle of sea salt

Mix it up and marinate for at least 30 minutes. Serve with gluten-free vegan French Bread Crisps or fresh  gluten-free vegan French bread.

Saturday, July 17, 2010


I can't keep this bread in the house! Both of my boys love this bread, and my oldest yells at me when I make him wait for dinner to eat it. He's been known to steal it. Since he was the first in the house to give up gluten, this is the best thing since, well, sliced bread!

I use parchment paper, line a pan and lightly oil with olive oil.
1 cup brown rice flour
3/4 cup white rice flour
3/4 cup tapioca flour
1/2 cup garbanzo bean flour
1 tablespoon yeast
1 tablespoon agave nectar or sugar of choice
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 teaspoon xanthan gum
1 teaspoon sea salt
1 1/3 warm water (110-115 degrees)

Mix all flours, yeast, xanthan gum, and sea salt in mixer until well combined. Add warm water, olive oil, and agave, and mix well for 2 minutes. Fill your measuring cup with water to wet your hands so the dough doesn't stick to your hands. Rub oil on your hands first.  Shape your loaf and shellac it smooth with the water. I dome foil over my loaf so it doesn't touch it and it rises perfectly. Let rise for 40 minutes or more. I've gone 2 hours. The longer you let it rise the better. You can make one long loaf or 2 shorter. I double this recipe and make 2 long loaves and save one to make french bread crisps, croutons and breadcrumbs for breading.

Preheat oven to 400. Bake bread on middle rack for 40 minutes, depending on your oven, it could be 5 minutes more or less. The outside of the bread will be hard crusty.

I hide my second loaf and the next day when it is stale it will slice thin. I bake the slices on 400 for 10 to 12 minutes to use for bruschetta or baba ganoush. I puree the ends for breadcrumbs to use later. I freeze those, and sometimes freeze the slices before I bake them for a later date. I hope you enjoy this easy recipe! Gluten-free bread doesn't have to be hard!

Friday, July 16, 2010


I have one booth I go to at our local farmer's market. They grow the most beautiful tomatoes, peppers, basil and eggplant I've ever seen. It's organic, too! Most of the time I have recipes in mind, but sometimes I see something so tasty looking, I buy it and have to come up with something. So today it was green zebra tomatoes, pimento peppers, and fresh sweet banana peppers. You can mix up with whatever you find!

3 ripe green zebra tomatoes diced
2 fresh sweet banana peppers cut in rings
1 fresh pimento pepper diced, I would have used more, but I just had one
6 big basil leaves cut in strips
1 cucumber diced
1 shallot diced
1 garlic clove minced
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
dash of sea salt
1/4 cup of olive oil
2 cups of gluten-free pasta cooked and rinsed with cold water 

Mix all ingreients before pasta, after well mixed add pasta and enjoy! This is an awesome salad when it
is 100 degrees outside!

Tuesday, July 13, 2010


This recipe is very easy and the kids love it. I don't use nutritional yeast because it makes my son sick. So here is a simple recipe that is fast and easy.
2 cups gluten-free macaroni
1/2 cup plain hemp millk
1 tablespoon tomato paste
1 teaspoon mustard flour
1/2 teaspoon tumeric

Boil water and cook macaroni for 10 minutes or desired softness. Mix hemp milk, tomato paste, mustard flour and tumeric in a sauce pan and set on 4. Reduce to half until thick like a cheese sauce. Mix and serve!
If you don't use hemp milk or can't get it, use your milk of choice.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010


Being a Celiac Vegan is hard enough, but avoiding corn and soy makes it a real challenge, at first. When I first went gluten and dairy-free, my whole diet had corn or soy in everything. Corn really made me sick and I thought it was just taking time to get my gut back in order from the gluten. When I dropped corn from my diet I really felt better and stopped breaking out and having stomach pains. After my thyroid malfunctions I gave up soy. If you don't eat meat, remember...beans are your friends.

I have two boys and one man to feed, so I cook in bulk. I double this recipe to make two meals to feed four.

1 cup black beans
1 cup mixed rice, I like the Lundberg's wild blend
1 cup diced peppers, I use what I have, I prefer pablonos, but red, green, or hot will do.
1 tablespoon tomato paste, Bionaturae is organic and corn-free
2 teaspoons cumin
1 teaspoon onion powder
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 pinch of saffron if you have it on hand

8 Food for Life Rice Tortillas

First you want to get your beans ready, I never soak overnight because, if I do, something happens and I don't have time to cook my beans, so when I do cook them I rinse them, put them in a big pot with lots of water, bring to a boil, then let them sit for one hour. After an hour, I drain and rinse beans, rinse pot, then fill the pot back up, add beans, bring to a boil and then turn back down to simmer and cook for an hour and a half. You can always just use a can of already cooked beans. Eden Organics are  organic and BPA-free.
After your beans have cooked, in a separate pot add 2 cups of water, rice, tomato paste, cumin, onion powder, garlic powder, peppers, beans and saffron if you like. Bring to a boil and turn down to low and stir so your spices don't stick to the bottom. After 30 mintutes, stir and see how much liquid is left, usually cooks between 30 to 40 minutes.
If you buy your tortillas frozen, get them out and thaw about thirty minutes before you use them. If you buy them fresh and don't freeze them, you will need to steam them for 10 minutes so they will bend. Sometimes the frozen tortillas need to be steamed, and you can always just steam the frozen ones right out of the freezer. These will crack fast if they aren't pliable.
Preheat oven to 425 if you are baking these. I do.

Add the desired amount of your rice and bean mixture and you can add Daiya cheddar, guacamole, or hot sauce. Fold up and place on a baking sheet. If your rice tortillas are cracking, you can roll them up and they are just as good! Bake for 20 minutes on 425 for a crispy burrito or eat after you wrap it. I bake the kids burritos and I always bake if the beans and rice aren't fresh cooked. I roll up and freeze burritos day 3 because they are going bad after that. I bake a frozen burrito for 30 minutes on 425.



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