Gluten-Free Egg-Free Latke recipe

Posted on December 9th, 2010 by Alison | Posted in Egg Allergy, Holidays/Special Events, Recipes & Cooking Tips | Read 5 Comments - Add Your Own »

gluten-free-egg-free-latkes2

It’s the last day of Hanukkah and this morning I found out that my daughter’s class would be making latkes. Ugh — eggs. So what does an allergy mom do but rush to the store, rush home and come up with a recipe for gluten-free egg-free latkes of course! I grew up eating latkes, so I was excited by the prospect of making them allergy-free. Searching the web, I came across a recipe called Maxine’s Latkes and at that moment I knew that I would be able to create the perfect latkes for my daughter Maxine! And I did. I hope you enjoy them too!

Maxine’s Allergy-Free Latkes

Makes about 20 latkes. CONTINUE READING »


Halloween Candy List – Gluten-Free Allergen-Free Status – 2010

Posted on October 3rd, 2010 by Alison | Posted in Celiac Disease, Dairy Allergy, Egg Allergy, Food Allergies, Gluten Intolerance, Holidays/Special Events, Peanuts/Nuts Allergy, Products, Wheat Allergy | Read 73 Comments - Add Your Own »

THE FOLLOWING INFORMATION IS FROM 2010. THE 2011 HALLOWEEN LIST IS HERE: Halloween Candy List Gluten-Free Allergen-Free 2011

Here’s the list you’ve been looking for… but first, you get to see the giant spider I made in my yard last year for Halloween! The Home Depot guys cutting the black pipe to my specifications thought I was crazy! The spider is coming out again this year with some modifications (furry perhaps?)

spider1

Now on to the candy…

Each candy shows if its ingredients contains wheat/gluten, milk (dairy), soy, egg, nuts, or peanuts (6 of the top 8 allergens — fish and shellfish are not included since I have not found this to be a concern with candy). I do not include coconut as a tree nut and have not listed coconut as an allergen. I called many of the manufacturers and/or checked their websites for gluten and allergen information,which I have noted at the end of each manufacturer’s section. To print this list, click on the Print icon above the title. If you don’t see the print icon, click on the title of the article first.

Note: Please, as always, double check ingredients and also check with the child’s parents before giving them any candy or allowing them to eat anything! I will not be held liable for any accident occurring due to the use of this list. It is meant as a guide only.

In a hurry? Check out these:
Gluten-Free Halloween Candy Quick List 2010
Allergen-Free Halloween Candy Quick List 2010

NOTE for bloggers: If you are going to post or share this list, would you be so kind as to give me credit and link to me? This took many hours of my life and I even got kicked out of Walgreen’s for taking notes in the candy aisle, so please be considerate of my hard work! :)

Mainstream candy listed by brand, in alphabetical order:

ADAMS & BROOKS

  • Scooby Doo! Fun Pops (lollipops with picture of Scooby Doo)
    • Ingredients free of: peanuts, nuts, egg, milk, wheat/gluten, soy
    • Ingredients contain: no top 8 allergens
    • Package statement: “Packaged in a plant that processes peanuts and tree nuts.”

AIRHEADS

  • Airheads Bars and Airheads Bars Sour
    • Ingredients free of: peanuts, nuts, egg, milk, wheat/gluten
    • Ingredients contain: soybean oil
    • Package statement: “Manufactured in a facility that processes wheat flour”
  • Airheads Xtremes Rolls
    • Ingredients free of: peanuts, nuts, egg, milk
    • Ingredients contain: wheat flour, soybean oil
  • Airheads Xtremes Belts
    • Ingredients free of: peanuts, nuts, egg, milk, soy
    • Ingredients contain: wheat flour, wheat starch
  • Airheads Pops and Whistle Pops
    • Ingredients free of: peanuts, nuts, egg, milk, soy, wheat/gluten
    • Ingredients contain: none of the top 8 allergens

AMERICAN LICORICE CO.

  • Sour Punch Twists
    • Ingredients free of: peanuts, nuts, egg, milk, soy
    • Ingredients contain: wheat/gluten

ANNABELLE’S

  • Big Hunk
    • Ingredients free of: wheat/gluten, milk, tree nuts (see company Gluten-Free info below)
    • Ingredients contain: peanuts, eggs, soy lecithin
    • Package statement: “made in a facility that uses milk, egg, treenuts, wheat and peanuts”
  • Rocky Road
    • Ingredients free of: none of top 8!
    • Ingredients contain: milk, tree nuts (cashews), wheat/gluten (barley malt and wheat flour), soybean oil
    • Package statement: “may contain peanuts, eggs, and flour”
  • Abba Zabba
    • Ingredients free of: tree nuts, eggs, milk, wheat/gluten (see company Gluten-Free info below)
    • Ingredients contain: peanuts, soybean oil and soy lecithin
    • Package statement: “Made in a facility that uses milk, egg, treenuts, wheat and peanuts”
  • Look
    • Ingredients free of: tree nuts, wheat/gluten (see company Gluten-Free info below)
    • Ingredients contain: milk, peanuts, soy lecithin, eggs
    • Package statement: “Made in a facility that uses milk, egg, treenuts, wheat and peanuts”
  • U-No
    • Ingredients free of: peanuts, eggs, wheat/gluten (see company Gluten-Free info below)
    • Ingredients contain: milk, almonds, soy lecithin
    • Package statement: “Made in a facility that uses milk, egg, treenuts, wheat and peanuts”

Gluten-Free info (via phone Sept 2010): The only guaranteed gluten-free candy is the 2 oz. (regular size) Big Hunk. For all other candies, including the mini Big Hunks, there is the possibility of contamination from flour that is used on the belts. While there is no flour used specifically for the Big Hunk minis, there is flour used on the belts for the manufacture of the Look bars.

CONTINUE READING »


Allergen-Free Halloween Candy Quick List 2010

Posted on October 3rd, 2010 by Alison | Posted in Celiac Disease, Dairy Allergy, Egg Allergy, Food Allergies, Gluten Intolerance, Holidays/Special Events, Peanuts/Nuts Allergy, Soy Allergy, Wheat Allergy | Read 21 Comments - Add Your Own »

THE FOLLOWING INFORMATION IS FROM 2010. THE 2011 HALLOWEEN LIST IS HERE: Allergen-Free Halloween Candy Quick List 2011

halloweenpumpkin

This is a 2010 quick list of Halloween candy with ingredients that are gluten-free and free of the top 8 allergens. I have included a package statement if it mentions allergens. For a more complete listing, along with company allergy statements, please read the Halloween Candy List – Gluten-Free Allergen-Free – 2010. For a gluten-free listing only, please read the Gluten-Free Halloween Candy Quick List 2010. To print this list, click on the Print icon above the title. If you don’t see the print icon, click on the title of the article first.

NOTE for bloggers: If you are going to post or share this list, would you be so kind as to give me credit and link to me? This took many hours of my life and I even got kicked out of Walgreen’s for taking notes in the candy aisle, so please be considerate of my hard work! :)

Mainstream candies:

ADAMS & BROOKS

  • Scooby Doo! Fun Pops (lollipops with picture of Scooby Doo)
    • Package statement: “Packaged in a plant that processes peanuts and tree nuts.”

AIRHEADS

  • Airheads Pops and Whistle Pops

CADBURY ADAMS (now part of Kraft Foods)

  • Swedish Fish
  • Sour Patch Kids and Sour Patch Extreme
  • Sour Patch Xploderz
    • Package statement: “Manufactured in a facility that handles peanuts, tree nuts, milk, eggs, soy and wheat.”

CE DE CANDY

  • Smarties (only USA, not Canada), Smarties in a Pouch, Tropical Smarties, Bubble Gum Smarties, X-TREME Sour Smarties, Smarties Parties, Easter Smarties, Smarties Double Lollies, Smarties Mega Lollies, Smarties Pops
  • Candy Money
  • Love Hearts

FARLEY’S AND SATHERS

  • Super Bubble and Super Bubble Blast
    • Package statement: “Manufactured in a facility that manufactures products containing traces of eggs.”
  • Trolli Gummi Bears, Trolli Sour Brite (Frite) Crawlers
    • Package statement: “Made in allergen-free facility but packaged on equipment that packages products containing traces of milk, wheat, egg, peanuts, tree nuts and/or soy protein.”
  • Jujyfruits, Jujubes
    • Package statement: “Made in allergen-free facility but packaged on equipment that packages products containing traces of milk, wheat, egg, peanuts, tree nuts and/or soy protein.”
  • Brach’s Candy Corn and Gummi Candy Corn (not flavored candy corns — see below)
    • Package statement: “Packaged on equipment that also packages products containing traces of milk, egg, wheat, peanuts, tree nuts and/or soy protein.”
  • Brach’s Mellowcreme Pumpkins
    • Package statement: “Packaged on equipment that also packages products containing traces of milk, egg, wheat, peanuts, tree nuts, and/or soy protein”
  • Heide candies — Jujyfruits, Jujubes, Cool Grape, Red Raspberry Dollars, Wild Cherry

FERRARA PAN

  • Lemonhead, Red Hots, Chewy Lemonhead and Friends, Tropical Chewy Lemonhead and Friends, Applehead, Grapehead, Cherryhead
    • Package statement on some: “This product was manufactured in a facility where peanuts, almonds, milk, cashews, macadamias, pistachios, soy and egg are used in the production of other products.”

FRANKFORD CANDY & CHOCOLATE COMPANY

  • SpongeBob Gummy Krabby Patties
    • Package statement on some: “Manufactured in a facility that processes peanuts, almonds, and wheat.”
  • Gummy Body Parts
    • Package statement on some: “Manufactured in a facility that processes peanuts, almonds, hazelnuts, walnuts, milk and soy.”

HERSHEY

  • Jolly Rancher Hard Candy and Hard Candy Sticks

IMPACT CONFECTIONS

  • Warheads Sour Chewy Cubes

JELLY BELLY

  • Jelly Belly Jelly Beans

JUST BORN

  • Mike & Ike
  • Hot Tamales
  • Peeps Pumpkins and Ghosts

NECCO

  • Necco Wafers

RIVIERA

  • Spooky Candy Rings (eyeballs, Frankenstein heads and other shapes on rings)

SPANGLER (may contain traces of soy oil)

  • Dum Dums
  • Chewy Pops
  • Saf-T-Pops
  • Circus Peanuts
  • Candy Canes
  • Chewy Canes

TOOTSIE

  • Dots

WRIGLEY

  • Starburst
  • Skittles, Skittle Sour and Skittle Crazy Cores
  • Lifesavers Hard Candy and Lifesavers Pops
    • Ingredients free of: wheat/gluten, peanuts, nuts, egg, milk, soy (except some flavors, like Butter Rum)
    • Ingredients contain: soy lecithin (some flavors)
  • Lifesavers Gummies, Big Ring Gummies regular and Sweet and Sour

WONKA

  • Bottlecaps, Everlasting Gobstopper, Runts, Fun Dip and Fun Dip Sour, Pixy Stix, Sweetarts (regular), Tart N Tinys, Nerds, Spree
    • Package statement: “Made in a facility that also processes wheat and egg.” (Sweetarts)
  • Giant Chewy Nerds
    • Package statement: “Made on equipment that also processes peanuts, nuts, milk, wheat and soy.”

Natural/specialty candies:

AMANDA’S OWN CONFECTIONS (www.amandasown.com)

  • Chocolate shapes and chocolate lollipops

ANNIE’S

  • Organic Bunny Fruit Snacks (Flavors: Tropical Treat, Berry Patch, Sunny Citrus, Summer Strawberry)

ENJOY LIFE (www.enjoylifefoods.com)

  • Boom CHOCO Boom Dark Chocolate Bar, Crispy Rice Bar, Milk Bar

INDIE CANDY (www.indiecandy.com)

  • Halloween Chocolate Lollipops, Halloween Crystal Lollipops, Halloween Gummies

PURE FUN (www.organiccandy.com)

  • Halloween Pure Pops
    • Ingredient statement: “Manufactured in a segregated area of a facility that may product products containing nuts.”

SURF SWEETS (www.surfsweets.com)

  • Gummy Worms, Gummy Swirls, Gummy Bears, Fruity Bears, Jelly Beans, Sour Worms, Sour Berry Bears

YUMMY EARTH (www.yummyearth.com)

  • Lollipops, Candy Drop, Gummy Bears, Gummy Worms

Looking for non-candy ideas for Halloween? Read How to have an allergy-free Halloween.


Happy Birthday to my girls and Aloha! gluten-free cakes

Posted on August 31st, 2010 by Alison | Posted in Dairy Allergy, Egg Allergy, Food Ideas, Gluten Intolerance, Holidays/Special Events | Read 5 Comments - Add Your Own »

hawaiigirls

This year’s double birthday party featured a Hawaiian theme. We went to Hawaii on vacation this summer and my girls fell in love with a hula dancer we saw. (I also encouraged the Hawaii idea so I could re-use the fish decorations I have used the last two years! I am running out of themes featuring the ocean.)

Once again, my mom made the cakes with Pamela’s chocolate cake mixes, and they were gluten-free, dairy-free, and egg-free. I have already frozen the leftovers for any future cake needs that arise — I will keep the frosting as is or scrape it off and refrost as necessary!

birthdaygirls2010

4cake6cake

We had 12 little girls and invited the parents to stay for food and Mai Tais made with my husband’s grandfather’s secret Mai Tai recipe from Hawaii. You only needed one!
The gluten-free dinner menu included:

  • Quinoa tabouleh salad with cucumber, tomatoes, green onions, mint, parsley, lemon juice, feta cheese
  • Black bean salad with corn, jicama, red pepper, and cucumber, tossed in a vinaigrette
  • Oven roasted baby gold potatoes
  • Barbecued Aidell’s chicken apple and cajun style andouille sausages
  • Freshly cut pineapple

The party was a success, complete with tiki mask pinata, treasure hunt and a spontaneous dance party at the end. It is hilarious to hear 6 and 4 year olds singing, “All the single ladies!” They are growing up too fast!

Past birthday posts:
Happy Birthday to my girls and wow! gluten-free mermaid cakes! 2009
Happy Birthday to my girls 2008


Adventures in Food Allergy Testing (Part 2: the Results)

Posted on June 23rd, 2010 by Alison | Posted in Egg Allergy, Food Allergies, Symptoms | Read 20 Comments - Add Your Own »

oneeggWell, we did it today. We did the egg challenge. The way it turned out was not at all what I expected. I documented the whole thing as it was happening, not knowing what the outcome would be as I scribbled my notes.

I brought my daughter in to the doctor at 9:15, one scrambled egg in tote (to find out why I decided to have her do an egg challenge, please read Adventures in Food Allergy Testing Part 1). I was also armed with ketchup, salt, some bread (egg-free) and some turkey, just in case she didn’t like the egg and I had to doctor it up. The taste of the egg wasn’t a problem at all. Here’s how the rest of the egg challenge went down:

9:25 am: She eats a tiny amount of egg. “Yummy,” she says and the doctor says, “She likes it — that’s good.” I am surprised she likes it so much.

9:35 am: Doctor comes in and examines her throat, face, skin and breath. There is no reaction. He says to eat a larger amount, so she eats about a teaspoonful. After a few minutes she says her ears itch inside a little and her tummy hurts a teeny, tiny bit. But after another few minutes, she doesn’t seem to be having any problem and continues to watch the movie on the DVD player I brought. She is even singing with the movie. 15 minutes later she says her tummy hurts again, but then she gets a drink of water and says she is fine.

10:00 am: Doctor checks her again, sees no sign of reaction and says she can eat 3 bites of egg. She again says “It’s yummy.” The doctor says again that the fact she likes it is a good sign.

10:25 am: Doctor checks her again. So far, so good. Now I am starting to get a little excited, thinking we are in the clear. She is excited too, but I tell her that we are not done and that she gets to eat the rest of the egg now. She doesn’t really want to, but she is motivated by the possibility of getting to eat eggs in the future. She takes a few bites and then says that her tummy hurts. She finishes the egg at 10:35.

10:45 am: She scratches her chin and I see that there is a little hive there. She is using her upper teeth to scratch her lower lip, where I see another hive and she is simultaneously scratching her lower arm where there is another hive. I go get the doctor. He checks her throat and says it is okay. She is feeling more and more itchy and uncomfortable. He gives her allergy medication (Zirtec) and wants to give her an adrenaline shot. I look at him wide-eyed — really? A shot of epinephrine? Is that necessary? I don’t want to freak her out and he says okay, we can wait and see and gives her an asthma pill just in case. By now, her eyes are really red and itching like crazy. Her tummy is hurting, she’s feeling awful and starts crying, “I want to go home!” As she is deteriorating before our eyes, the doctor says she needs the shot to reverse the symptoms more quickly. The nurse gives her a small dose (.5mg) of epinephrine in her arm. The regular epinephrine shot, most commonly known as the Epi-Pen, is .15mg and is administered in the thigh muscle for the fastest absorption into the body. When given in the subcutaneous fat level of the arm, it is absorbed more slowly. The doctor felt that this was all she would need. Nope.

11:10 am: She is lying down, feeling a little better. Her eyes are still itching like crazy, but she refuses to try eye drops to relieve them. She is really congested and begins to cough. The doctor checks her and finds that she has swelling in the right side of her throat. The coughing is a sign that her airways are being affected. The doctor orders another adrenaline shot, this time .1mg. I ask if this is a considered an anaphylactic reaction. The answer is yes, and this is why you do food challenges in the doctor’s office. No eggs for her, in any way, shape or form. I am feeling shocked. I thought she might have a rash today at most.

11:35 am: She is a little hyper from the adrenaline and feeling better. The doctor warned me that she might get pale lips from the epinephrine. Yes, her lips are looking pale.

11:50 am: I am reading a book to my daughter who is sitting on my lap when the doctor comes in for another check. “Flushed,” he says. I turn her around and my eyes must have bugged out of my head. Her face, chest and back are flushed so red she looks like she has a really bad sunburn. She also has a few hives on her back. “I think her reaction would have been much worse without the medication,” says the doctor. He checks her heart rate and it is okay, but because she is so flushed, he orders a third shot of epinephrine, this time .5mg. The red is traveling slowly down her body, and eventually reaches her legs, which eventually also look sunburned. She is cold, so they bring her a blanket. She is feeling much better and is in good spirits, but we have to stay another hour.

1:00 pm: After a few more checkups, the doctor determines that nothing is progressing any further and that we can go. She is still really red, but other than that, she is okay. She wouldn’t resume her normal color for another hour.

Before we left the doctor’s office, I confirmed with him that had this happened out in the world, I should have given her the Epi-Pen. Absolutely. “And even if you aren’t sure, just give it.”

So many thoughts have been swirling in my head since this experience. The first is, I can’t believe I didn’t cry. I was quite unemotional and I’m not sure why — maybe I was in shock? Or maybe because I felt like I was part of a science experiment. Or was it because I was playing it cool for my daughter’s sake so she wouldn’t freak out? It is sad news: my daughter had an anaphylactic reaction to an egg. So… we will continue to avoid egg, but be even more careful about it.

Another thought: Did I have false hope? With the 50% chance given by my doctor, I figured it was worth the gamble to try the egg. If we could have added it back into her diet, it would have been like winning a jackpot.

The most important realization of all: THIS IS REAL. FOOD ALLERGIES ARE REAL. Dare I say that part of me has at times wondered if she really was allergic to all these foods, that maybe the tests are overdiagnosing as several past news articles and editorial pieces have suggested, that maybe her tests weren’t accurate, that since we’ve never had to use the Epi-Pen, maybe we wouldn’t really need to. Even though this day did not bring me the happy results I wanted, it did bring me clarity. It brought me resolve to stay vigilant in protecting my daughter. It brought me confirmation that we need to continue to raise awareness about food allergies. After what I saw happen right in front of me today, I know for sure that they are real.

Related reading: Diary of a gluten poisoning


Adventures in Food Allergy Testing (Part 1)

Posted on June 12th, 2010 by Alison | Posted in Egg Allergy, Food Allergies | Read 11 Comments - Add Your Own »

I am writing this post to help others who might need to go through allergy testing with their children. I was anxious before knowing what to expect and searched the web hoping to read about others’ experiences. Here is one of mine…

eggsLast week I brought my 5 (almost 6) year old daughter in to the allergist to repeat some food allergy tests. My primary motive was to get her cleared for eggs.  When she was a toddler, she got a rash on her face and body when she ate eggs. When I brought her in for skin allergy testing at age 18 months, she tested positive for eggs. We have avoided eggs ever since, but an article in Allergic Living magazine called Allergy Breakthrough on Baked Milk and Egg inspired me to take her back in.

In addition, my allergist has assured me every time we visit that most of his egg-allergic patients eventually outgrow their egg allergy. To add eggs into her diet would be so helpful as cooking and baking gluten-free is challenging enough!

I was also hoping that I could add almonds into her diet. She had consistently tested negative for almonds, but we were advised to avoid all nuts because she tested high for peanuts, cashews and pistachios. There is a lot of cross-contamination with nuts, and possible confusion about which nuts are safe and which are not — better to just avoid them all. But, I thought, if I could ensure that certain almonds or almond products were not contaminated with other nuts, there would be another food I could add to her diet.

At the allergist’s office this time, they tested her for the following: eggs, almonds, 6 different types of shellfish (she had tested allergic to shellfish before), and many different environmental allergens including grass, various pollens, cat and dog. The environmental allergens were done because she has been having itchy eyes and a stuffy and irritated nose, and the allergist said that her nose was swollen inside.

The test consisted of 3 sets of “stamps” on her back, and then one on her arm. The stamps are 6 tiny little pricks with a different allergen going into the skin. If a “wheal” or a welt shows up, it means that the person is reacting to the allergen. When she was younger she completely freaked out about the prick tests, but this time she didn’t even flinch. I’m glad she couldn’t see the egg reaction developing on her back though.

Here are the results of the skin prick test:

  • Egg: positive :(
  • Almond: positive :(
  • Shellfish: negative :)
  • Environmental allergens: all or almost all positive :(

Here are the recommendations from the doctor:

  • Egg: do an egg challenge in the office. The doctor says that even among kids with a positive skin test for eggs, 50% can actually tolerate eggs. The egg challenge is scheduled for June 23rd. She will, over a few hours, consume one cooked egg as she is being monitored for a reaction. We’ll see what happens!
  • Almonds: forget it. All nuts are out. No challenge because nuts are considered risky.
  • Shellfish: looks like she is cleared for shellfish, although he wants to do a shellfish challenge in his office given the fact that I think I am allergic to shrimp and abalone and don’t eat it anymore (based on experience). But for the most part, it’s looking good!
  • Environmental: “Close the windows.” Yes, that was really the advice from the doctor. And Claritin as needed.

Stay tuned for Adventures in Food Allergy Testing Part 2 after we do the egg challenge on June 23rd!


Fluffy gluten-free egg-free pancakes

Posted on June 6th, 2010 by Alison | Posted in Egg Allergy, Gluten Intolerance, Products | Read 7 Comments - Add Your Own »

cravingsplacepancakemixIf we had to be just gluten-free in my family, that would be easy with so many great gluten-free products on the market now. But my older daughter is allergic to eggs, and many gluten-free products contain eggs or call for eggs in their recipes. Making good, fluffy gluten-free and egg-free pancakes is one of the biggest challenges.

One mix that I have found to work really well is The Cravings Place All-Purpose Pancake and Waffle Mix. None of the mixes made by The Cravings Place contain nor require the use of eggs. This mix is easy to use — you just pour out as much mix as you want, then add water until it is the right consistency for pancakes. I usually make little pancakes and they always turn out light and fluffy.

Lately I have been adding teff flour to the dry mix before adding the water. I don’t measure — just dump some in. The teff ups the nutrition of the pancakes, and amazingly, the fluffiness isn’t compromised. It turns the pancakes from white to brown with the teff added in, but my 5 year old daughter didn’t mind, especially when I told her that teff makes people run really fast! I tried adding quinoa flour this morning, but the taste and smell of the quinoa was too strong. I’ll stick with teff.

From the company’s website:
“This mix was designed especially for children so the flavor is very mild. This is a great thing so depending on your dietary restictions add your favorite ingredients such as fruit, nuts, oats or flavorings to create your own yummy recipes.”

Ingredients:
BROWN RICE FLOUR, WHITE RICE FLOUR, VANILLA BEAN POWDER (vanilla beans, corn based dextrose), SEA SALT, XANTHAN GUM, NON-ALUMINUM BAKING POWDER (sodium acid pyrophosphate, bicarbonate of soda, corn starch (from non GMO corn), calcium acid phosphate), BAKING SODA.

The Cravings Place mixes are produced in a dedicated allergen free facility. I buy the mixes 6 at a time on Amazon.

If you know of any other good gluten-free egg-free pancakes, feel free to leave the info in a comment!


Easter candy gluten-free and allergen-free

Posted on March 30th, 2010 by Alison | Posted in Dairy Allergy, Egg Allergy, Holidays/Special Events, Peanuts/Nuts Allergy, Products, Recipes & Cooking Tips, Soy Allergy | Read 1 Comment - Add Your Own »

Easter is coming quickly! Are you ready?

Let’s cut to the chase! This list is by no means complete… but here are some ideas. You can also check out last year’s Easter article. Post more ideas in the comments if you have them!

JELLY BEANS:

  • jellybeans2Jelly Belly
    • Gluten-free
    • Free of top 8 allergens (wheat, milk, soy*, nuts, peanuts, egg, fish, shellfish)
    • SuperFruit flavors are made with all natural colors and flavors and was recently accepted by Feingold Association.
    • Allergen info (via web March 2010):
      *Soy lecithin is used on Chocolate Pudding flavor.
      Are your Jelly Belly jelly beans gluten-free?
      All flavors of Jelly Belly beans are free of gluten. We do not use any wheat, rye, barley, or oats in the basic recipe for Jelly Belly jelly beans. The modified food starch listed on the package is cornstarch.
      If I am allergic to peanuts, can I eat Jelly Belly jelly beans?
      Please continue to carefully check all ingredient statements on packages and bulk bins for peanut ingredients.  We discontinued Peanut Butter flavor of Jelly Belly beans (this flavor contained peanut butter and peanut flour) however, it is possible this flavor may still be included in packages sold in retail stores.
      None of the other flavors of Jelly Belly beans contain peanuts as an ingredient.  We no longer process peanuts in our manufacturing plants.
      Are Jelly Belly jelly beans dairy-free?
      Yes.  We work very closely with all of our ingredient suppliers to ensure that all ingredients are free of dairy.
  • Surf Sweets
    • Gluten-free
    • Free of top 8 allergens (wheat, milk, soy*, nuts, peanuts, egg, fish, shellfish)
    • Allergen Info (via web March 2010):
      Are your products gluten-free and casein-free? Yes, all of our products are both gluten-free and casein-free. Casein is the protein found in dairy.
      Are your products peanut-free? Yes, all of our products do not contain peanuts and are produced and packaged in a facility free of peanuts.
      Are your products produced and/or packaged in a facility with other common allergens? No, our products are produced in a facility free of: wheat, dairy, soy, eggs, tree nuts, nuts, fish, and shellfish.
      Surf Sweets products are made with natural colors and flavors, organic fruit juice and sweeteners, and provide you with your daily allowance of Vitamin C. We are also one of the only candies made without corn syrup.
  • Gimbal’s
    • Gluten-free
    • Free of top 8 allergens (wheat, milk, soy, nuts, peanuts, egg, fish, shellfish)
    • Allergen info (via web March 2010):
      Gimbal’s Fine Candies facilities are free of these eight most common food allergens.
  • Just Born
    • Gluten-free
    • Free of top 8 allergens (wheat, milk, soy, nuts, peanuts, egg, fish, shellfish)
    • Allergen info (via phone March 2010)
      Please always check packaging as ingredients can change from year to year, but at this time, the jelly beans are free of gluten and the top 8 allergens.
  • Update: Jolly Rancher, Starburst, Lifesaver and Mike & Ike Jelly Beans are all free of the top 8 allergens!

BUNNIES & CHICKS & EGGS, oh my!

  • peepsPeeps
    • Gluten-free (including chocolate covered peeps)
    • Regular peeps are free of top 8 allergens (wheat, milk, soy, nuts, peanuts, egg, fish, shellfish). Chocolate covered peeps contain dairy and have an allergen warning for peanut, tree nut, egg and coconut.
    • Allergen info (via phone March 2010)
      Please always check packaging as ingredients can change from year to year,
      but at this time, Peeps are free of gluten and the top 8 allergens.
  • Hershey’s
    • Check label!
    • Stay away from Robin Eggs! These are Whoppers in an Easter disguise, and they contain gluten.
    • Hershey’s allergen info:
      The Hershey Company strives to provide its consumers with accurate, reliable ingredient statements upon which consumers can make their purchase decision. The Hershey Company has an Allergy Task Force that ensures that the ingredient statements are always accurate, and that any allergen statements placed on the label is understandable. Do your products share plants & equipment? We take food allergies very seriously at Hershey and have strict procedures in place to prevent crossover of allergens into other products that do not contain the allergen. In instances where we have a concern about possible crossover by an allergen we take the added precaution of including an allergy information statement on the label.
  • Make your own chocolate eggs and lollipops!
    If you’re worried about the ingredients in the available chocolates out there, trying making your own! Here’s how I did it:

    1. I got Easter egg and bunny lollipop molds at a baking supply store (Cake Art).
    2. I used Enjoy Life chocolate chips.
    3. I tempered the chocolate in the microwave (see end of post for instructions), poured it in, and let it set in refrigerator.
    4. I wrapped the little chocolates with colored foil and the lollipops with clear plastic and a pretty ribbon.
    5. I marveled at my work — it was so easy I couldn’t believe it! :)
  • Garnish baked goods with bunnies and other Easter decor
    If you can’t actually find a bunny to eat, then stick one on top of a treat! Last year I made these mini-cupcakes using Pamela’s Vanilla and Chocolate cake and frosting mixes, with Wilton sprinkles and some bunny decorations. They were a hit and I will be making something similar again this year.

eastercupcakes

How to temper chocolate in a microwave oven to make chocolate molds (from the Guittard website):

  1. Place chocolate in a microwave-proof bowl. Place the bowl of chocolate in the microwave oven. Set power level to 5 or 50%. Set time to 30 seconds. Heat for 30 seconds.
  2. Take the bowl out of microwave oven and use a rubber spatula in a gentle sweeping motion to stir the chocolate, even if none of it has become liquid yet.
  3. Return the bowl to the microwave oven. Heat for 30 seconds more. Remove. And stir.
  4. Repeat the intervals of heating and stirring until about two-thirds of the chunks become liquid and about one-third are in soft lumps. The temperature of the liquid chocolate at this point will be about 100°. Continually stir to cool the chocolate until the soft lumps disappear and the temperature lowers to 89°F.
  5. At this point the chocolate should be in temper and ready to use.

Gluten-free (and most dairy-free) animal cookies

Posted on February 14th, 2010 by Alison | Posted in Babies & Kids, Celiac Disease, Dairy Allergy, Egg Allergy, Gluten Intolerance, Products | Read 1 Comment - Add Your Own »

Remember animal cookies or animal crackers from our childhood? What fun to experience them again through your kid’s eyes! But if your child can’t have gluten or has other food allergies, most animal cookies are off-limits. Don’t worry… there are several brands now making them free of gluten and other allergens!

kinnikrittersKinnikinnick Foods

In addition to being gluten-free, Kinnikinnick’s animal cookeis are also dairy-free, nut-free and egg-free. (They contain soy lecithin and pea protein.) Three flavors of animal cookies are available:

orgrananimalschocolateOrgran

In addition to being gluten-free, Orgran’s animal cookies are also dairy-free, egg-free, and nut-free. Several flavors of animal cookies available:

envirokidzanimalcookiesNature’s Path Organic

In addition to being gluten-free, Nature’s Path’s animal cookies  are also egg-free, dairy-free and nut-free. (They do contain soy.) Flavor:

Jo-Sefs Gluten Free

josefanimalcookiesIn addition to being gluten-free, Jo-Sefs animal cookies are dairy/casein-free, lactose-free, egg-free, and nut-free. (They contain soy.) Products are processed in a dedicated nut free and gluten-free kosher facility. Flavors available:

Mi-Del

midelarrowrootcookiesNot all cookie flavors made by this company are gluten-free, but the Arrowroot Animal Cookies are. They do contain egg, soy and milk. Regarding nuts, the website says: “Only Pecans are run on the MI-DEL line of bagged cookies. Peanut Butter Cremes are sometimes produced on the same line that makes the MI-DEL Sandwich Cookies but strict sanitation/allergen procedures are in place to avoid any potential contamination.” Flavor available:

Now go make that little person in your life happy!


Thanksgiving gluten-free and food allergy tips

Posted on November 14th, 2009 by Alison | Posted in Dairy Allergy, Egg Allergy, Gluten Intolerance, Holidays/Special Events, Peanuts/Nuts Allergy, Recipes & Cooking Tips | Read 5 Comments - Add Your Own »

Are you ready to navigate Thanksgiving with celiac disease, gluten intolerance or food allergies? Need some help? Here are some tips about those traditional Thanksgiving dishes to help you get through this food-centered holiday!

glutenfreethanksgivingturkeTHE TURKEY

Turkey by itself is naturally gluten-free, of course, but turkeys that are prepared for roasting may have added gluten. Be sure to check labels for “wheat” (which must by law be declared on a label) or for “natural flavorings” (which could have hidden sources of gluten). And definitely steer clear of those gravy packets that come with some turkeys — they are sure to contain wheat flour.

THE GRAVY

Gravy is almost always thickened with wheat flour. To make a gluten-free gravy, use sweet rice flour (also known as mochiko), cornstarch, arrowroot powder/starch or tapioca flour. Be sure to mix any of these with a little water or broth before whisking into the gravy.

Gravy can also contain dairy, as many people like to add butter, milk or cream.

THE STUFFING

Stuffing is made with bread (and therefore, gluten) — no wonder everyone feels stuffed afterword! Gluten-free stuffing is just as easy to make and you won’t have to unbutton the top of your pants after you’re done!

Try this recipe for gluten-free dairy-free stuffing that I have made many times.

Or, try this easy gluten-free bread stuffing recipe from Whole Foods using their gluten-free bread.

Or, if you like cornbread stuffing, make gluten-free cornbread with Pamela’s Cornbread and Muffin Mix and then use it in any old cornbread stuffing recipe and voila! Everybody will LOVE it! There’s even a recipe for Southern Cornbread Dressing on the bag of cornbread mix, and Karina’s got a new yummy-looking gluten-free cornbread stuffing recipe too.

For those with egg allergies, watch out for the bread in the stuffing since it could contain eggs. Some stuffing recipes call for eggs to be added to the entire stuffing mixture.

For those with nut allergies, watch out for chestnuts, and other tree nuts, which are very commonly used in stuffing.

THE MASHED POTATOES

No worries about gluten in mashed potatoes (usually), but they often contain dairy — people add butter and sour cream to make them creamy. Want to make your own creamy mashed potatoes? Try this creamy dairy free mashed potatoes recipe or this allergy free mashed potatoes recipe.

Mashed sweet potatoes or sweet potato gratin dishes also usually contain dairy due to the added butter. And if your family has served that weird sweet potato dish with marshmallows on top (mine has), watch out for pecans you have a nut allergy.

THE PIE (I’m talking pumpkin of course!)

I have never been a fan of pumpkin pie, but it is good to know that I wouldn’t have to give it up if I did like it! The “regular” ones contain wheat of course, but there are a lot of great gluten-free and dairy-free pumpkin pie recipes out there:

Dairy-free, soy-free, gluten-free pumpkin pie recipe from Go Dairy Free

Crustless gluten-free pumpkin pie from gfe — gluten-free easily

Gluten-free dairy-free egg-free pumpkin pie from Karina’s Kitchen

Not a baker?
Get your hands on a gluten-free dairy-free pumpkin tart from Crave Bakery or a Whole Foods Bakehouse pumpkin pie.

Well, I hope this helps a little, and remember:
The day is not just about the food, so give thanks for what you HAVE in your life, rather than dwelling on what you don’t! Happy Thanksgiving, and feel free to add more recipe ideas and tips in the comments!