Sunday, September 13, 2015

A Sweet and Happy....


The Jewish New Year starts tonight, and I'm busy as a balabuste making and mending, washing and sloshing! I got a jump on my Rosh Hashanah recipes this year as Joy of Kosher asked me to put together a gluten free menu.  It also happens to be allergy free---dairy, egg and peanut free---in order to accommodate all the special dietary needs in my family.

It is customary to eat certain foods that are symbolic of all the things we want in the new year, health, prosperity, sweetness in our lives, etc. ( These are called simanim in Hebrew.  I put them together in an exciting new way with my Simanim Summer Roll (recipe below). For more of my holiday menu, check out Joy of Kosher online.

For super easy video instructions on how to roll a summer roll, check out Lillie's video on youtube:

To save time use bagged, shredded cabbage and carrots, and any prepared fish you have on hand (even jarred gluten free gefilte fish cut into strips works well---but this is usually not an egg free option).
Simanim Summer Rolls
6-ounces skinless salmon fillets
1 Tablespoon sesame seeds
6- rice paper wrappers (8-9-inch diameter)
1 ½ cups shredded cabbage (white or red)
¾ cup julienned carrots
1 Granny Smith apple, peeled and julienned
¼ cup pomegranate seeds, white pith removed

Pomegranate dipping sauce:
¼ cup pomegranate juice
3 Tablespoons gluten free soy sauce
3 Tablespoons honey
1 teaspoon sesame oil

In a small bowl, stir together sauce ingredients and set aside.
Pre-heat oven to 350F degrees. Spray a large baking pan with non-stick cooking spray. Place salmon in baking pan and brush with approximately 3 Tablespoons of sauce (reserve remaining sauce for serving). Sprinkle with sesame seeds. Bake salmon for 30 minutes. Cool completely. Slice cooled salmon into ½-inch wide strips.
To assemble summer rolls:
Fill a shallow pie plate, or baking pan, with an inch of warm water. Place each rice paper wrapper in the water for about a minute. It will begin to soften and be pliable like plastic wrap when ready. 
Shake off excess water and place wrapper on a flat surface. Starting at one end, and allowing a 1-inch margin on all sides, layer cabbage, carrots, apple, pomegranate seeds and salmon strips. Fold long edge of rice paper which is nearest the filling over the filling, then fold over sides. Roll up and place seam side down on serving platter. Repeat until all the wrappers and filling are used.
To serve: Slice summer rolls in half, if desired, and serve with dipping sauce in a small bowl.
Serves: 6




Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Back to School...back to snacks.


One of the best forms of independence is when a child with an illness or special need "owns it". By packing their own lunch, a child with a special diet learns not only what they can and cannot have by reading labels before they put it in their lunch box, but also the importance of balancing their meals and snacks with the gentle guidance of a parent. Like training wheels, at first they may need a stronger parental hand to guide them along the path, but with time they will be flying along on their own.

Easily packable choices makes the process move more smoothly.  Send Me Gluten Free is a subscription service that sends you a box chock full of gluten free packaged foods to sample each month.  Send Me Gluten Free allows you to choose a subscription that can range from month to month, or three months to a year. The boxes currently are $20 or less, and price varies depending on the length of your subscription. Check it out at, and use this great coupon code available to my readers: 20% off any subscription length with the code BLOG20.

Lillie was thrilled to receive the Send Me Gluten Free box because she knew everything in the orange box was safe for her in terms of not containing gluten. Most, but not all the items were kosher. After leaving behind the ones that were ok for our family, we were left with a lovely selection of snacks including Ips Chips protein chips, Free for All Kitchen  Brownie Thins and Biena flavored chick peas.

Rubbermaid Lunchblox Sandwich Kit. Has it's own ice pack that fits the form of the 4 containers to form a block, composed of 4 square "blox" containers.  One is sandwich sized and the remainder for snacks or sides. They are also the perfect size for a salad and dressing in smaller container. Or, as Lillie did one day, put cereal in one. I think it encourages kids to add fresh cut fruits and veggies or even dried ones to their lunch. Grab one of the varied choices from your Send Me Gluten Free box with a water bottle and you're good to go!

For a easy and nutritious gluten free and vegan cookie to put in your child's lunch, try this oat and dried fruit filled variation on an a classic Anzac.  You can substitute the dried apple with Craisins, dried blueberries, or any dried fruit you like.  It's fun to make...and take!

Apple n' Honey Oat Cookies

2 cups uncooked old fashioned gluten free oats
1 1/2 cups all-purpose gluten free flour blend with xantham gum
1 ¼ cups granulated sugar or coconut sugar
1 1/2 cups flaked sweetened coconut
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
pinch sea salt
1 cup non-hydrogenated margarine (such as Earth Balance Buttery Sticks)
1/4 cup honey
¼ cup boiling water
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup chopped, dried apples

Pre-heat the oven to 300F degrees. Line two large cookie sheets with parchment paper, set aside.

In the bowl of an electric mixer, stir together the first 7 ingredients.  Add the margarine and honey, and beat on medium speed until well combined. In a small bowl, mix together the water and baking soda.  Add to the dough and beat until combined. Stir in the dried apples.

Drop rounded tablespoonfuls of dough 2-inches apart on prepared cookie sheets. Bake for 15-20 minutes, or until light brown.  Cool on cookie sheets for 10 minutes. Transfer to wire rack to cool completely.

Store in an airtight container.

Yield: Approximately 4 dozen cookies