Monday, January 23, 2012

Change It Up!!

Hello Readers!  I have to admit that I have gotten into a cooking rut; you know how it is when you feel like you're making the same thing over and over.  It is destined to happen to those with allergy/intolerance diets.  I found myself doing what was easiest with pastas and sandwiches.  Easy? yes, Healthy? no.  I knew I could do better, so I cleaned out the fridge and took to the stores.  Two and a half hours later I returned with a much healthier take on our meals.  Although I appreciate Gluten free Rice Krispies, it is not what I want my kiddos eating on a daily basis.  I also put to use a Christmas gift I received.  A family member gave me a clay pot roaster that she bought at an auction.  I had never used one before so I got online to to check out my new gift and learn how to take care of it.  After cleaning it up, we decided to put it to use.  I decided to make braised rabbit for our introduction to it.  The rabbits (2) had already been cut up into sections; I drizzled light olive oil, chopped 4 cloves of garlic, and added salt and pepper.  Placed in pre-heated 250 degree oven on roasting convection setting and left alone for 2 1/2 hours.  I have to say that I was very impressed.  I'm hoping to play around with a chicken enchilada-type dish for dinner tonight.  I'll let you know how it plays out.  Changing it up helps so much with a food allergy diet.  It's easy to fall into a routine using the same things over and over.  That's also an easy way to gain weight.  Don't believe the stereotypical gluten-free fad.  Most gluten free items are made with rice flour that turn into sugar in your body.  It's easy to fall in love with all of the gluten free bakery items out there, but make sure you're balancing it out.  As you know, our entire family made the change to an allergy-friendly diet when my daughter was diagnosed.  I try to make it a point to serve at least one vegetarian dish a week.  It's usually a super simple dish such as roasted veggies over wild rice; veggies depend on the season.  In the summer it's much easier for us to eat healthy as we have veggie and herb gardens and a fruit orchard.  The difficulty is not eating those warm, comfort foods like macaroni and cheese every night.  In order to maintain enough fat and protein for an active family; don't forget the beans!  I cook a pot of beans every week and use them as much as possible.  Boil them simply with water or vegetable stock until done.  When cooled; place in freezer container or baggie and take out as much as you need on any given night.  You can add spices and/or veggies to make a great side or main dish.  You can mash them just enough to mix with eggs, flour, and spices to make bean patties to cook on your griddle; my family likes these with a dipping sauce.  You can even place in food processor to make your favorite hummus.  A lot of these recipes are already on my blog; so check them out.  Just remember that doing something as simple as changing your cooking method can open your eyes to entirely new recipes.  Get cooking!