It is hotter than two rabbits making babies in a sock in Georgia this month and spending time in a broiling kitchen is about the furthest thing from my mind. Being the cookbook addict that I am hesitantly opened my most recent cookbook delivery while wishing I were in the pool or lounging in front of a fan.
Imagine my surprise to find a collection of recipes that is more allergy friendly than most. (I’ll bookmark these goodies and make them in the fall!) This cookbook starts out with an introduction that helps you, as the reader; understand food allergies and how they affect families. I can’t imagine how hard it would be to cook for a family when one or two of them have special dietary needs. When I was growing up we got two choices for every meal- eat it or don’t. I usually went with the first one. There is a short section on how to spot allergies in your own children. 120 gluten-free, dairy-free, nut-free, egg-free and soyfree recipes are included in this rather large cookbook. I’m so lucky to have a son that can and will eat most anything. Many of these ingredients were foreign to me and I found myself wishing for a deeper understanding of how and where to shop for several of these ingredients. Well tickle me happy and scratch my belly, what did I find while skimming through? An entire section on how to build an allergy-free pantry in your own home. How I love it when a publisher anticipates my needs. Kudos on that addition.
The chapters are broken down into times you cook: breakfast, lunch, dinner, dessert, snacks and parties. I actually love this break down and found it very easy to navigate. There weren’t as many pictures as I would like but they did include family pictures, which I loved. I wasn’t a fan of the blank space; couldn’t more pictures go there? Seems like the printing cost would be about the same.
I learned an interesting fact in this cookbook. Scientists think that the reason more kids get allergies these days is because their immune systems. Our bodies are protected by our immune system; they fight disease and infection. Well guess what? According to the book there is less disease and infection in the world/environment these days so the immune system is starting to find other things to fight- aka, certain ingredients in our food. I find this hard to believe since I hear of new and astounding diseases almost daily. I do wish that topic had been explored in more depth.
One of my favorite sections in this cookbook included ideas on how to plan a party an allergy-free kid party I’d never thought about it, but what a great idea. With so many allergies floating around these days you’re certain to have a child attending who is allergic to something even if your own child isn’t. Plan ahead and you’ll have no worries the day of the special event.
Featured Recipe: Teriyaki turkey sliders
1 pound 93 percent lean ground turkey
¼ cup panko, fine dry bread crumbs, or gluten-free bread crumbs
2 tablespoons finely chopped scallions, white and green parts
1 tablespoon wheat-free tamari
1 clove of garlic, minced
1 teaspoon minced fresh ginger, or 1/8 teaspoon ground ginger
1 tablespoon canola oil or sesame oil
8 whole-grain slider-size buns or gluten-free slider-size buns
PREP TIME: 10 minutes / COOK TIME: 15 minutes
1. In a large bowl, combine the ground turkey, bread crumbs,
scallions, tamari, garlic, and ginger. Mix well. Shape into 8 small
2. Heat the canola oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat.
Add the patties (in 2 batches, if necessary) and cook, turning once,
for about 15 minutes total, until no longer pink. An instant read
thermometer should register 165 degrees when inserted into the
patties. These also can be grilled. If grilling, brush the patties with
sesame oil before placing on the grill.
3. Place on cocktail buns and serve wiith condiments of your
***Over all I enjoyed reading through this cookbook. I like the idea behind it but I’m still not convinced that everyone in America has access to these ingredients. There are some great ideas to take from here, but most don’t jive with southern cooking. Now there’s the cookbook I want to see. How to fry pork chops the fat-free, calorie-free, full of taste way! ***
Featured in the NOR Magazine - Issue 32
Allergy-Friendly Food for Families is the most trustworthy, comprehensive, practical, and kid-friendly collection of recipes that exists for the important and growing audience of allergy-aware families. Unlike other allergy cookbooks, this book covers not one or two allergens, but the five most common allergens in kids: wheat, dairy, eggs, nuts, and soy. Each of the 120 recipes is free of at least three of these allergens; most are free of all five.
When parents are desperate for ideas for what to make for dinner (or lunch, or snack time), they want recipes from someone they trust, for food that tastes good, that doesn't require a lot of fancy ingredients, and that the whole family can eat. Allergy-Friendly Food for Families is the ultimate resource. From the three crucial mealtimes (breakfast, lunch, dinner) to the "fun" foods families can't live without (desserts, snacks, parties), parents are completely covered. Perhaps most importantly, all of these recipes are simple for parents to make.
Recipes such as Carrot Cake Breakfast Cookies, Pear Yogurt Dunkers, Good-for-you Nachos, Polenta Mini Pizzas, Giant Cookie Cake, Veggie Bite Soup, and Cool Zucchini Noodles will make kids forget they have allergies. Parents will love the additional informational sections on spotting food allergies, stocking an allergy-free pantry, deciphering labels, and other frequently asked questions.
Food should be delicious; family time should be fun. This book reflects those values.