Eggs-actly what are you allergic to?


So we knew about the milk allergy because of the spilt milk episodes, but G. was a bit young yet to have allergy tests.  We were very careful about introducing new foods and we had begun the eye squinting job of label reading in the grocery store.  G. was not quite at the ‘feeding himself’ stage, but he sat in his high chair at the dinner table with us.  It was Sunday night and I had my parents over for dinner.  For this meal dessert is expected and I had made small meringues, the melt in your mouth variety.  I gave one to G. to play with while we finished our own.  I figured it would be safe because if he did put it in his mouth, it would just melt away.  Choking was the only thing I had to worry about with a baby learning to feed himself, right?  There was no dairy in my home-made meringues so no problem.  G. played with the meringue, rolling it around in his hands.  My heart did that shudder skip beat thing when I saw the red welts form on his fingers and G. start to itch.  Luckily it hadn’t yet made it to his mouth.  Egg!?  Allergic to egg?  Yup.  A thorough wash and a check mark in the box for egg allergy.  Heavy sigh.

Chocolate Strawberry Short Cake – dairy-free, egg-free

chocolate strawberry shortcake

After the stellar breakfast I was served on Mother’s Day (see Mother’s Day blog entry) I decided to make my own Mother’s Day dessert.  This is what I came up with.  It’s a modified scone recipe.  What makes it special is the whipped topping called Nutriwhip.  I discovered this through (Thanks Noha!).  This is the only truly dairy free topping I have found that acts like whipped cream.  Healthy??  Who cares, this is dessert!  If you know of another that works as well, please let me know!

2 cups flour
1/4 cup sugar
1tablespoon brown sugar
3 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
4 tablespoons cocoa
1/3 cup dairy free margarine
1 cup soy milk
Topping: Nutiwhip, Strawberries

Chocolate Shortcake
Oven to 425F.  Mix together dry ingredients so there are no lumps (sift cocoa if needed).  Cut in dairy free margarine.  Mix in soy milk to form a soft dough.  I do all this in a stand-up mixer.  If too wet, add a tiny bit of flour.  Turn out on a floured surface and form dough into a ball and cut in half to make it easier to work with.

chocolate scone dough

Pat out dough to 3/4 inch thick.  Cut out desired shapes (circles or triangles).

chocolate scone dough

Move to cookie sheet (I cover my cookie sheet in parchment) and bake at 425 F for 12 minutes.  Cool

chocolate scone

Remove stem of strawberries and cut to desired size.

strawberries cutFollow Nutiwhip package directions to get whipped cream like topping.

Cut open shortcake and layer strawberries and whipped topping.

chocolate strawberry shortcakeEnjoy!

A Face Only a Mother Could Love

Ever heard of “baby acne”?  Your beautiful newborn baby’s face erupts in a teenage like  acne break out just at the time you want to show him/her off to all your friends and relatives.  This wasn’t in the instruction manual…

For G. it was a bit different.  His skin condition was eczema.  It started off with a bit behind his ears, then his cheeks, then in the folds of his pudge – you know, the chub on baby’s legs and arms.  Then the crease of his neck. It was time to go to the doctor when the eczema on his neck began to weep and the  eczema on his cheeks got infected (eew).  You’re probably shaking your head thinking, silly woman should have taken him to the doctor sooner, but the time line for this was only over about a week or so.  So, just when we were proudly showing off our new boy to the world, he was staring up at people with a beautiful smile across his scabby face.  Baby acne would have been an improvement to his skin condition.  Actually, the smile on G.’s face is what people always remember.  He had a smile that was contagious and would brighten people’s day and he still does!

How we treated G.’s eczema:

The bad, acute out break on his face and neck were treated with antibiotic cream and cortisone ointment, but we needed a long term non medical solution for the rest of his body.

We were told to bathe him every night and while his skin was still damp, we were to apply a moisturizer.  The challenge was to find the right cream.  Our poor little guinea pig.  Some creams made him scream as they irritated his eczema cracked skin others made his itching worse.  So after going through numerous “for sensitive skin” potions, my mum told us about a cream that transformed bath/lotion time from stress and frustration (and for G., discomfort and irritation) to soothing, calm relaxation.  My mum’s friend’s daughter (don’t you love word of mouth!) has eczema and found relief in the Body Shop’s Hemp Cream.  Wow, what a difference.  So after soaking in a bath of warm water G was slagered (my Mum’s word – I think I prefer slathered) in hemp cream while his skin was still damp.  This ritual went on for a few years and the distinct smell of this cream will always make me smile and think of wee G.

Mother’s Day Treat (?)

messy pancakes

Did anyone else get breakfast made for them today?  I did, lucky me (see above).  Can you believe they tasted worse than they looked.  Sorry G.

My husband and A are in Our Nation’s Capital on a band trip so it was left to G to look after my breakfast treat.  The pancake recipe is pretty straight forward but somehow something was lost in translation and “3 teaspoons baking powder” became “3 heaping TABLESPOONS of baking SODA”.  My first bite smelled a bit funny as I brought it to my mouth, but being the good mother I kept going.  Once it was in my mouth I knew there was something terribly wrong.  I ran into the kitchen where G was still struggling to flip the next mess and I saw the dreaded baking soda container on the counter.  Through globby pancake still in my mouth (I just couldn’t swallow it) I choked “SODA!?  You used baking SODA?”   “Ya, 3 HEAPING Tablespoons” was the confident reply.  I guiltlessly spat out the mouthful into the garbage can and the two of us laughed til we cried.

You know, maybe G gave me the best treat I could hope for, a long hard laugh together and a story that still makes me giggle!

Happy Mother’s Day!

Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins

banana chocolate chip muffinsThis was my first dairy-free, egg-free baking recipe from many years ago.  It’s a basic recipe and can be modified easily and is very forgiving.  Early on I did not include chocolate chips and over the years I have included different types of protein.  I’ll post modified recipes in the future.


1 1/4 cups flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 mashed bananas
1/4 cup oil (canola or similar)
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 cup dairy-free chocolate chips


Mix dry ingredients in a bowl and set aside.  Mix together wet ingredients (I use a stand up mixer).  Add dry to wet and mix.  Don’t over mix.  Stir in chocolate chips.  Gloop batter into muffin pan.  I use large paper liners in my muffin tray.
Bake at 350F for 25 minutes
makes about 8 muffins

In The Beginning

G was an easy newborn.  The only thing that I didn’t expect was that he refused a bottle and boy do I mean REFUSE.  Oh well, breast is best as they say and cheaper! Talk about shocking when one morning I accidentally spilled milk on G and where the milk touched his skin big welts arose.   As I rushed him to the bath to rinse it off I was thinking, surely this must be a one off thing.  Milk can’t be harmful, didn’t Cleopatra bathe in it?!  Was it my lack of coordination or fate that caused me to once again spill milk on G a few weeks later.  Why was I eating milk laced cereal while balancing G on my lap after what had happened the first time?  Stupid, stupid, stupid!  Nothing like doing an unplanned allergy test right in your own home!  By the way, we don’t do this any more – we try to keep G away from falling milk and allergy tests are saved for the doctor’s office.  He was only a month old when I first spilled milk on him and by the time he was a year and a half, he had been properly tested and shown to be allergic to eggs and dairy. Since then he has developed a peanut allergy too.  No wonder he refused a bottle!  That hysterical screaming (from him not me) was his plea for me to stop.  What a learning curve – and the knuckle balls keep on coming!