GFCF Recipes

GFCF Recipes

3.29.2008

Dangers of Teflon cooking

I've heard about health issues concerning teflon pans in the past but with so much going on in my life regarding food -- GFCF -- I didn't really look into it. Until now. So, I thought I'd share what I found.

The problem with teflon is that it emits toxins when heated too high. Studies have shown this. What's not shown -- independently -- is whether toxins are emitted at lower temps.

A great source to start with is the Environmental Working Group , which did a study on teflon. You can find it at: http://www.ewg.org/reports/toxicteflon.

The EWG simply recommends turning to cast iron pans. BTW -- while you're there, look up the EWG study called Skin Deep -- you should find a link on the front page. I use this study often to analyze the safety of cosmetics. Very good stuff.

I've read elsewhere that we don't use aluminum pots and pans anymore because of links and fears to Alzheimers disease. I'm not sure that's been proven. But, why risk it?

There's a titanium pan on the market called Scanpan, but I've read that it uses similar chemicals as teflon.

The Green Guide also has a very helpful article detailing safe alternatives to teflon at http://www.thegreenguide.com/doc/ask/nonstick.

Here's what The Green Guide lists as good options:

-- KitchenAid Stainless Steel 10-piece cookware set, including 8" and 10" French skillets ($149; www.jcpenney.com)
-- Lodge unseasoned Original Finish 10.25" skillet, ($13.95) and Cast Iron Cooking for Dummies set ($89.95; www.lodgemfg.com; 423-837-7181)
-- Cuisinart 10" stainless steel skillet ($60) and 7-piece Chef's Classic stainless steel set ($260; www.cuisinart.com)
-- DeBuyer Lyonnaise Carbon Steel Frying Pans 11" ($44.95; www.broadwaypanhandler.com, 866-COOKWARE)
-- All-Clad 10" stainless-steel frypan with aluminum core ($84.95) or 5-piece set ($394; www.broadwaypanhandler.com; 866-COOKWARE)
-- Le Creuset enameled 9" skillet ($49.95; www.broadwaypanhandler.com; 866-COOKWARE)


3.24.2008

Ham dinner -- gfcf style

So, this won't work for everyone, especially our younger children who are dead-set on hot dogs and tators. But, every so often, I like to throw something new at my kids to see what they do. And, when I do, I usually employ trickery in my presentation. So, I'll post this very easy and quick recipe for a ham dinner, but first explain the trickery.

My wife and I made this dish Saturday. Here's what I do. Make the ham dinner for the adults and sit down to eat while the kids' meals are "still cooking." This is often what happens. My oldest will wander over to my side of the table to see what I'm eating. Then she'll ask what I'm eating. I never offer it to her. About 75% of the time, she'll then ask to try it. So, I give her a bite. Then she wants another. I give it to her. Then she'll ask for some on a plate. So, I push my plate to her and say, "Here, eat some of mine while I get you a plate, but don't eat it all." Then, I exit to the kitchen. When I come back, it's gone. She wants more.

Of course, this doesn't always work. It's not like magic. But, she's so stubborn that if I dump it in front of her or force her to try it, she'll never eat it again.

Anyway, here's the recipe.

- Ham slices: any kind you're comfortable with that you're sure is free of gluten, dairy and MSG. OR, if you avoid ham due to sodium/preservatives, try pork slices seasoned lightly with salt and pepper. I sliced this very thin.
- Brown rice (white's OK too)
- Kidney beans (any bean is OK)
- spinach, frozen (any veggie would work)
- Sea salt, black pepper, paprika
- olive oil (any oil)

I cooked the ham in a stove-top pan with a little water. I cut an X in each piece to help prevent curling. The ham is pre-cooked. With pork, you'd have to cook per normal instructions first. Make the rice - I use a rice cooker. I heated the beans for 5-10 mins in a small pot with a little water. I did the same with the spinach.

I cut the ham into small pieces -- just by quartering each slice.

Then, I mixed a 1/2 cup of rice with 1/4 cup of beans and a couple tablespoons of the chopped spinach. I seasoned lightly with the sea salt, pepper and paprika. I sprinkled 1 tsp oil on top, then stirred with a fork.

I put two slices of ham on a plate with the above rice/bean mixture. That's it. Do the same for each plate.

It's very tasty and if the kids don't like it, the meal is still great for the adults. And, it's a GFCF meal you can eat and not worry if your kids nibble at your plate.

Now, if you're dealing with food allergies/intolerances, much of this is interchangeable.
- Sub half of a butterflied chicken breast for the ham/pork.
- Sub potatoes for the rice.
- Sub corn or carrots or peas for the beans.
- Sub any veggie for the spinach.
- Sub canola or sunflower oil for the olive oil.

3.22.2008

GFCF Pizza Wedgie

Here's a neat variation on a GFCF pizza, or cheeseless pizza.

It's sorta like a wedgie, if they sell those where you live -- or really just a folded over pizza. It has the same pizza taste but resolves one of the big issues with pizza without the cheese -- the visual of not having cheese.

So, make your pizza or follow directions for my version.

But, after done baking, use spatulas to fold the pizza over, just like you do when folding a blanket -- end to end. Then, brush the top with olive oil, or your choice of oil, sprinkle with anything you wish (garlic salt, paprika, red pepper crushed, black pepper, oregano, etc.) or nothing at all. Bake another 5 mins.

Now, I'll tell you now that I'm trying to find a way to create a goo-like texture within the pizza -- but I can't use dairy or soy. Any great ideas, let me know. Right now, I'm tinkering with corn and potato mashes. Stay tuned.

3.19.2008

Chocolate pudding -- minus the chocolate and the dairy

So, how in the world do you make chocolate pudding without chocolate or dairy. It's actually very easy. This is great the day it's made, but does not store well for two or more days.

Ingredients:
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1/4 cup cornstarch (or potato)
- 1/8 tsp salt
- 2 cups liquid DariFree
- 1 Tbs margarine or shortening (like Spectrum)
- 1 tsp vanilla (optional)
- 1-2 tbsp cocoa powder or carob powder


Combine the dry ingredients. Stir in the Darifree until smooth. I imagine you could use any dairy sub here.
Microwave uncovered on high for 3 minutes.
Stir.
Microwave 4 - 6 minutes more, stirring every minute until thick.
Stir in margarine/shortening and vanilla.
Cover with plastic wrap to avoid "skin".
Refrigerate.

I found this on the gcfree.com website in Australia -- a specialty site and seller of Darifree.

Oh, for vanilla pudding, omit the cocoa/carob.

3.11.2008

Making autism case public

Hey -- sorry I've neglected the blog for a few days. I've been busy establishing a presence on Facebook and MySpace. It's like playing with new toys. Anyway, I promise some new recipes this week. I've recently had success with a "chocolate" pudding recipe (no dairy, no chocolate) and also a cutout cookie recipe. For now, I'll reprint a recent opinion piece from the New York Times regarding the autism court case. Worth reading.
---

New York Times
March 11, 2008
Editorial
A Puzzling Autism Case
The federal government’s concession that vaccines may have triggered brain deterioration with symptoms like autism in a young girl is sure to exacerbate concerns among parents worried about immunizations. It is imperative that the court for vaccine compensation unseal documents involved in this unusual case so that experts, families and their doctors can better understand exactly how Hannah Poling, now 9 years old, came to be harmed after receiving a battery of shots when she was a toddler.

For years medical authorities have been assuring us that sound epidemiological studies showed that vaccines and a mercury preservative once widely used in them were not implicated in causing autism, a condition characterized by lack of social skills, problems with communication and repetitive behaviors. That almost certainly remains true for the vast majority of youngsters.
Hannah’s case was complicated by a rare disorder that can deprive the brain of needed energy and cause neurological deterioration. When Hannah’s case was submitted to a federal vaccine compensation program, the government settled before the evidence was argued in a hearing. Government medical personnel apparently found that the vaccinations aggravated the underlying disorder. An alternative theory — that the vaccines may have caused the disorder — is viewed skeptically by government experts.

Top health officials are still urging parents to get their children vaccinated, and with good reason. All children deserve protection against infectious diseases, and even youngsters with these rare disorders may be at risk of neurological deterioration if they contract one of the diseases that vaccines protect them against.

It will be important to develop the best possible medical guidance for youngsters with rare defects. That effort would be enhanced if the government makes public all relevant documents in this puzzling case.

3.06.2008

And on Facebook, too

Hey guys -- I also started a GFCF Diet group site on Facebook to work in conjunction with this site. So, all of you on Facebook, stop by. You'll find the group by clicking here or simply by searching in Groups for "GFCF."

3.03.2008

Blog now on MySpace too

Hey guys -- this is just underway. But, I'm starting a mini-blog on MySpace. The page is up and running at http://www.myspace.com/gfcfdad, so any MySpace users, feel free to drop by, comment and all that stuff. There's a new post there today and I will be adding similar recipe and news posts there each week. Just another portal to get helpful info out.

GFCF Restaurant update - Damon's Grill

Damon's Grill was just added to the restaurant guide but with disappointeing results. Take a look. For kiddies -- no fries, no burgers. But, some adult offerings.