Sunday, October 25, 2020

Closing things down

Wow, it's been nearly a year exactly since I last wrote here, phew! 

What with the current Apocalypse and all, things have been a bit crazier than usual, even. 

I may start blogging with this blog again, but part of the reason I started this was to keep track of what was working, and to help motivate me to actually try out some new foods and ways of doing things. And that's not quite where I am at any longer. 

So odds are that this baby is going to be left up as an archive and we'll be moving on to greener pastures, rather than picking this up again. But for anyone who actually does use some of these recipes, I'll be leaving it up for a few years, at least.  

Everybody, take care, be safe, and I hope that you and yours are able to get and give support so we can all make it through this as best we can.

Tuesday, October 22, 2019

Chia Pudding

My son, big world traveller that he is, requested chia pudding the other day.  This recipe from Minimalist Baker looks like it will hopefully work for him, but I think it could be tweaked to maybe work for folks like myself too, so.

I'm trying something new right now, which is to put in the original recipe, and then show how it can be altered.  This is honestly some really basic stuff that most cooks are going to know like the back of their hand. However, this is for those of us who are NOT cooks, or at least, cooks who are used to having recipes to use rather than having to come up with our own from scratch and trying to figure it all out.  So this may be too basic for some, but just remember, it's probably aimed at someone who is not as good at cooking as you are (yet, anyway). ^_^

Chia Pudding

Monday, July 1, 2019

DIY Hummus

I absolutely love hummus, even though I can only have a little bit before I react. However, I know that many folks may not be able to enjoy store-bought hummus due to issues with sesame or garlic, and so I wanted to put here a couple quick recipe 'bases' that you can use to enjoy some hummus for yourself!

Hummus (most basic recipe)


Dried chickpeas
olive oil
lemon juice (or another sour liquid or semi-liquid)
(optional) any spices or seasonings of choice (chili powders and cumin are popular)
(optional) any aromatics (roasted peppers, roasted chiles, and/or garlic are popular and tasty)
(optional) tahini or other seed/nut based 'butter'


1. Soak the chickpeas in water, overnight at minimum.  If you want a kind of different flavor, you can soak the chickpeas for a day or two and change out the water a couple times; they will start to ferment and develop a kind of pseudo-cheesy scent that can be pleasant with certain seasonings.
2. Decide if you want 'cooked' hummus or 'raw' hummus.  Either one will be fine, but the taste and texture of cooked is a bit less strong in taste and smoother in texture.  If you choose 'raw' hummus, a 12 hour soaking time total, at minimum, is helpful. 
3. For cooked hummus - drain and rinse the chickpeas, and cook in boiling water (not salt) for a few hours, until very soft.
4. For raw hummus - drain and rinse the chickpeas.
5. Put the chickpeas, salt, and any potential spices or aromatics (or tahini/seed butters) into a food processor (or large mortar and pestle, if you only have that) and blend/mash until chunky-smooth.  Then add in lemon juice and blend a little more. Then, while blending/mashing, slowly add in olive oil in a steady stream until the hummus is the desired texture.  Done!


1. Why does this have no ingredient quantities?  Mostly because it's quite varied, how much you need, depending on what is added, if chickpeas are cooked, etc...  And how much or little is added in terms of spices and aromatics is highly dependent on taste.

2. Isn't it weird without tahini?  Nope.  Making hummus without tahini was actually a technique I got from an acquaintance from the Middle East. He mentioned that where he lived, tahini was really cheap, but olive oil less so, so using ONLY olive oil and no tahini became a bit of a status symbol.  I don't know how common this practice is, but it works quite well, even if tahini does make the hummus a bit smoother.

3. Is it safe to eat raw chickpeas?  Yeah, no problem for most folks. If you have any digestive issues, though, especially with any kind of raw foods or beans, however, you probably want to go for the cooked chickpeas rather than raw.

4. I can't use lemon juice; what can I use for a sour taste? This one is a bit tricky.  I have tried vinegar when I couldn't tolerate lemon and while it is 'okay,' it does have a distinct taste that is not necessarily a good match for chickpeas.  I have considered taking plain yogurt and draining it for a few hours, and using the liquid as a good souring agent. Haven't tried this yet, but I've used that as a lemon replacement before and it sometimes works.

Friday, February 1, 2019

Faux, dairy-free, beef stroganoff-ish sauce

It has been quite some time since I've posted anything. I have a loooong list of pinterest recipes I've explored, but it's been a tough year all around and I've not had the energy to put a lot up.

However, I've so enjoyed this little sauce that I wanted to share. It's pretty tasty, a pale white to gray-white color, and I have used it like I'd use stroganoff sauce.

Stroganoff-ish sauce

yellow onion
white button mushrooms
salt, rosemary, or other seasonings

1. Blend up onion and mushrooms, with enough water to help it blend, in a blender until smooth-ish. I usually do 1 onion and maybe 1/2-1 small package of mushrooms, but this is honestly to taste.
2. Add seasonings - I do fresh herbs like rosemary, mostly.
3. Add this sauce to any beef dish you are cooking in a frying pan, to cook on a low simmer for at least 10-15 minutes. I have used this with both ground beef and beef cubes.  It will stay relatively thick, and is relatively nice if the beef-sauce mixture is poured over rice, mashed root veggies, cauliflower rice, etc...

This is, obviously, not as nice as a real stroganoff sauce. But if you're in need and have very few ingredients, this works well in a pinch for something nice. ^_^

Thursday, August 16, 2018

The must-have for all elimination diets: herbs

At this point in my life, I've had to do a LOT of elimination diets. In the beginning, it was to figure out what the heck I could eat. These days, it's to figure out what I have started reacting to, or what previously safe food has become unsafe. Or, when I'm really feeling gutsy, it's to see if I can have something new.

So through out this, one thing has save my sanity and my tastebuds:


Every, single elimination diet I have been on allows at least SOME herbs. And even if you have to eat only three foods for weeks straight, you can usually add a few herbs in to at least make them taste a little different!

I highly, HIGHLY recommend starting your own herb garden. They can be grown outdoors in crap soil (slightly stressed herbs mean better TASTING herbs), or even in crappy pots inside. And you can grow as much as you want, for just a few bucks, as opposed to spending quite a lot of money buying fresh herbs from the store.

Dried herbs - they aren't allowed on a few elimination diets, usually due to cross-contamination worries, or due to what preservatives or other substances have been used on them.

So here is a link to a list of herbs and other additions that you can check out and potentially grow, if you are looking for something to add to your diet!

List of herbs and spices

I should note that this list includes things you might not otherwise think of. Like beetroot powder - if you can have beets, it might be worth a little work to make the powder and add it in to various foods for flavor or color. Dry celery leaves and use those.

You can grow cilantro and let it go to seed to get coriander (or do the same for cumin, fennel, and others).

And so on. Seriously, though, it has made a huge difference in my eating life to be able to add herbs to it!

Monday, April 3, 2017

Throwing Things Together 2

I am literally SO happy right now with how this dish is turning out! 

Spicy Potato-Chicken stew (photo coming...when my camera stops acting like a jerk)

Yeah, a lot of my thrown together stuff is soups or stews, because it's easy. I don't even care. 

First in, cubed, unpeeled, potatoes in a skillet. Because I was going to make fried potatoes and realized the one oil I can use, I'm out of. So I put in a little water with the cubed potatoes. Which looked lonely and sad, so I added two tiny chopped radishes from my garden.

Then one small chicken thigh, chopped.

And then two slices of chopped leftover onion, because it was there. And then I remembered I had about 1/4 cup of left over 'green soup'* and added that, too. 

Then the color was kind of 'meh' - an odd grayish green sort of thing - so I grabbed a couple tomatoes and grated them into the pan, too. They looked really pale until they started cooking and then reddened right up.  

I added some fresh grated ginger and turmeric as well, at that point, and a small handful of chopped cilantro stems, and a couple slices of chopped jalapeƱo, too. 

Then put in some dried oregano and tiny bit of dried thyme from the garden, as well.

This stuff is finishing cooking as we speak, just the potatoes need to finish, and I can hardly wait. So far, the sampling I've done tastes amazing.  Much more flavor than I thought I'd get, honestly.  I will have to try this again with the green soup added to it and see if that is what makes the difference, because I don't often get this level of flavor to similar recipes. 

The color is not quite that lovely red-orange you see so often in various Indian dishes, but still a nice color. The smell is great, the texture looks like it's going to be awesome.

In the future, I'd likely start things off with the onions and some herbs first, maybe the tomatoes, so the flavor is a little heightened, even, but so far...this one is a winner!

I could totally see this being served over rice (if you can have that) or even cooked down to lower the liquid content and maybe used in a sandwich or on a bun, Sloppy Joe style.

Not how I'm gonna eat it, but it could work that way!

*Green soup is a recipe from one of the Low Histamine Chef's cookbooks. My own version this time around had included water, salt, one white onion, the chopped stems and a few leaves from a bunch of parsley, 1 1/2 zucchini, 1 fennel bulb, one head broccoli, 1-2 jalapeƱos, a good amount of fresh thyme and savory, and salt - all blended up after cooking until soft.

Thursday, February 2, 2017

I reacted to what?

I'm posting this one as a sort of 'pay it forward' post, because a post like this started me down the path to figuring out some of my own issues. So this is for all the people who are still struggling and searching, and who would swear that they are reacting to water, or to salt. Or that it feels like they are allergic to water or salt, sometimes.

I'm here to tell you that you are not losing your mind. It is entirely possible to react to water or salt. Or rather, it's possible to react to water, or to contaminants present in water and salt due to our current processing.