Sunday, December 29, 2013

The Best of 2013!!

Hey Happy Tummies!

Well, as 2013 officially comes to a close, I thought it would be fun to take a look back at my personal favorite recipes from 2013.

What a year it was! I was back in New York City after a tumultuous 2012 being sick with my Ulcerative Colitis. ((You can read my story: here))

I published an e-cookbook!! Available here

And I even shot a Gluten Free Cooking Show Pilot for HealthiNation! ((You can watch it here))

And the best news of all is that my brother and his wife had a beautiful baby girl!!

So to end the year, I thought I'd share some of my favorite recipes from 2013.

They are ALL gluten and dairy free. The majority are Vegan. BED = Body Ecology Diet, SCD = Specific Carb Diet.

Bejeweled Brussels Sprouts! GF, V, SCD, Paleo! -- Cooking Demonstration Video

Alright friends! Looking forward to lots and lots more delicious recipes in 2014! I just have a feeling it's going to be a super terrific year!

What are your New Year's resolutions? 

Cheers to health, friendship and joy in 2014!!

Want more GFHT?  You can now get my e-cookbook, The Best of GlutenFreeHappyTummy for only $2.99 on Amazon!

Friday, December 27, 2013

Beet & Brussels Flatbread w/ Pomegranate & Avocado! GF, SCD, Paleo!

Hey Happy Tummies!!

Well I officially fell down on the blogging job over the holidays and I apologize for that. With one less week between Christmas and Thanksgiving, it was hard to get it all done! Did anyone else feel that way?

I didn't even put a tree up in NYC! By the time I was going to, I was already leaving for Cincinnati in 10 days, so I figured it wasn't worth it. Next year I'll go all out :)

So I'm at home in Cincinnati right now, and I'm just basking in how absolutely wonderful Christmas was!! My entire family and the baby (my niece) were all together on Christmas. In fact, everyone spent the night on Christmas Eve at my parents house! It was like a slumber party! So. Fun.

Christmas Eve dinner we had a wine tasting and "nibbling" dinner with lots of different small bites: fish, cheese, olives, was more of a "tasting menu." It was perfect because with the baby, it's hard to have a set time to sit down and eat, so it was a grazing supper.

For Christmas dinner, we made a beautiful meal. After we did presents in the morning, my mom, sister in laws, and I made a beautiful feast!! We were in the kitchen all day and it was so much fun.

I made a special dinner for myself (SCD friendly), and they had a nice beef tenderloin. My mom also made sweet potatoes, a spinach-and-artichoke rice casserole (that was also gluten free), and salad. For dessert we had berries with cream. I made a coconut cream, and they had a delicious looking custard (basically the inside of a crime brûlée!--I was jealous haha) I also made a few of my grain/sugar free and paleo cookies. Those will be another post but they're uh-mazing!

And my sister in law did an amazing thing: she researched SCD recipes and made this positively gorgeous ratatouille. That will be its own post because it's so stinkin' amazing, but here's a little teaser.

So for myself, I made a wonderful and festive flatbread.

A Beet and Brussels Sprouts Cauliflower Flatbread with Avocado and Pomegranate Seeds.

Incredible. And it was gluten and grain free, Specific Carb Diet friendly and pale!

I made enough for two for me and one for everyone to sample. It was a hit, lemme tell ya!

Here's what you need: (serves 2-3, makes 2 flatbreads)

1 head of cauliflower
3/4 cup + 1 Tbsp of almond flour
3 egg whites
1 tsp salt

1 large beet
12 Brussels sprouts
1/2 pomegranate
2 avocados

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Break your cauliflower into florets and place in your food processor. Process until it resembles rice. Then, place your cauliflower rice in a clean kitchen towel, paper towel, or cheesecloth and wring out all the excess liquid. This is a really important step!!

Then, place your dry cauliflower rice into a mixing bowl with the almond flour, egg whites and salt. Stir to combine. Divide the "dough" in half. Cut four pieces of parchment paper. Place half of the dough onto one sheet of parchment. Place another sheet on top and "smoosh" out the dough until it is rather thin. (it should be the size of a dinner plate.) Repeat with the other half of the dough. Place two "parchment sandwiches" onto two baking sheets and bake for about 20-25 minutes, until the edges turn golden brown.

Meanwhile, prep the rest of your veggies. Scrub and dry the beets, and cut 1/4 inch rounds. Place the rounds on a tin-foil-lined, olive oil-sprayed baking sheet. Spritz with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Bake for about 40 minutes in a 400 degree oven, flipping once halfway through. 

Also, cut your brussels sprouts in half lengthwise -- through the core. In a large frying pan, place them in a single layer, cut side down in 2 tsp EVOO. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Let them cook, untouched for about 7 minutes over medium heat. Then, flip and allow to cook on the other side for about 4 minutes. Remove from heat and set aside until you're ready to assemble.

Finally, remove the seeds from your pomegranate. You can either buy the seeds already out of the fruit, or carefully remove them with a fork (careful, it stains!)

When you're ready to assemble your flatbreads, mash your two avocados with salt, and cut your roasted beet rounds into matchsticks. Spread half of the avocado onto each of the flatbreads. Leave about 1 inch of a border. Then, place your brussels sprouts and beets on top. Garnish with about 2 Tbsp of pomegranate seeds. Serve room temperature.

E-Gads! This was a meal for the record books! It was seriously the hit of the supper. So delicious. It's hard to believe that the crust was made out of cauliflower. Here's a testament to how delicious it was: I made an extra for everyone to have a piece. Now my dad and brothers are all big meat eaters. (They're Atkins guys). And they loved it. Seriously. Not a "pity" like, but a straight-up, genuine, Facebook-endosed like of my meal! 

The flavors were so unique and wonderful. The avocado was buttery and rich, with the nutty and chewy crust. (You really could pick it up like a slice of pizza!) And then the beets had an earthy sweetness that paired beautifully with the savory brussels sprouts. Finally, the pomegranate seeds provided this interesting burst of juicy sweetness that rounded everything out.

And best of all, it was truly beautiful. I made one "artsy" - with an argyle-like design. And my personal favorite was a more "rustically fabulous" presentation. My family said they could see this being served at a restaurant. It looked like Christmas on a plate, with the lime green and crimson. It could have been the backdrop of a christmas card!

Well I truly hope that you all had a wonderful holiday. Christmas is such a special time to be with the people you care about. And I hope that you all know how much I care about each one of you. Cheesy, but true. Food allergies can be so frustrating and disheartening, and I hope that when you visit my blog, you can fall in love with food again, and find some hope in healing and returning to some sense of "food normalcy/enjoyment."

Merry Christmas, blogging family, and Happy New Year!

Coming up soon later this week -- Paleo Cookies, My Sister-in-Law's vegan "" ratatouille, and Acorn Squash boats (from Thanksgiving!!) (all gluten free, of course) :)

Want more GFHT?  You can now get my e-cookbook, The Best of GlutenFreeHappyTummy for only $2.99 on Amazon!

Sunday, December 8, 2013


Hey guys!!

I hope everyone had a fabulous fabulous Thanksgiving! I know we did! I was in Cincinnati for the weekend and gosh, it was just so wonderful to be with family! I have so much to be thankful for. I’m healthy, have an amazing family and wonderful friends. There’s not a day that goes by that I don’t count those blessings. But it’s nice to have a day to devote to just being thankfulJ

We traveled to Indianapolis to be with my brother, his wife, and their sweet little 4-month-old daughter 
for Thanksgiving!

Well, since we were traveling, and they have their hands full with a new baby, we did something crazy. We packed the gluten-free Thanksgiving in the car and had an INSTANT THANKSGIVING!!

Yep. Allllllll day on Wednesday, my mom and I cooked all the dishes (all gluten free, might I add) and packed them up into Tupperware containers (even the turkey!). We cooked from 11am to 11pm. Then bright and early on Thursday morning, we piled it carefully into the car and drove to my brother’s house! INSTANT THANKSGIVING!

It was so fun. And crazy. Actually, rather insane. But we did it and it was awesome to be together.

SO for the meal, it was all gluten free. We had turkey, stuffing, green bean casserole, mashed potatoes, sweet potatoes, salad, and pies! 

Unfortunately, just because things are gluten free doesn’t mean they’re Specific Carb Diet Friendly- or vegan, for that matter.  All SCD is gluten free, but not all gluten free is SCD --- (get it? I know, It’s confusing.)So—I made myself a meal, and made enough for everyone to have someJ

For the Specific Carb Diet/Gluten Free/Vegan/Paleo meal, I made Roasted Beet and Brussels Stuffed Acorn Squash with Pistachios and Roasted Apples. Oh. My. Gosh. WOW! That post is coming soon.

But for dessert…….I’ve got a show stopper here folks. Paleo Pumpkin Pie!!

It’s Gluten Free. It’s Dairy Free. It’s Specific Carb Diet Friendly. It’s Paleo. It’s fan-frickin-tastic.

Filling: (Makes 2 pies)

1/3 cup raw cashews
2 cups pumpkin or butternut squash puree
2 tsp cinnamon
¼ tsp ground clove
1/8 tsp ground ginger
4 droppers full of pure liquid stevia, alcohol free (SCD omit, and use an extra Tbsp honey instead)
2 healthy pinches of salt
2 Tbsp honey
3 egg whites
12 oz coconut milk – I used light

CRUST: (Makes 2 crusts)
16 dates
1 cup cashews
1 cup almonds
4 healthy pinches of salt

Preheat oven to 400. Cut your squash or pumpkin in half length-wise, scoop out all the seeds and place cut-side-down on a tin foil-lined, olive oil-sprayed baking sheet. Bake for about 45 minutes, until tender. Take it out and let cool for about 7-10 minutes, until you are able to touch it. When you take it out, increase the oven temp to 425.

Meanwhile, make your crust. Pit and chop your dates into small pieces to help out the food processor. Then, add all nuts and salt to the food processor and process until they have broken down into small bits. Then, add your dates and process until it forms the consistency of chunky, wet, sand. You’ll need to scrape the sides once or twice. Spray two, 9-inch pie pans with cooking spray and divide the crust evenly between the two. Then, with your fingers, press the crust together along the bottom and up the sides. The dates will hold it together. Set aside.

Reassemble your food processor. You will now make the rest of the pie.

Place your cashews in the food processor and process until it forms a fine dust. Then, scoop out the flesh of the cooled squash and add it to the food processor. Process until smooth, scraping the sides several times. Then, add your stevia, spices, honey, and egg whites. Process to combine. Then, in 2 batches, add your coconut milk and slowly pulse to combine, so as not to splatter. The batter should be a thick, creamy liquid.

Divide the batter evenly between the two pie shells. Place in the 425 degree oven for 15 minutes. Then, reduce the heat to 350 and bake for 40-50 minutes. When you reduce the oven to 350, plaee a tin foil “hat” around the edge of your pie, so the delicate crust doesn’t burn. It is finished when a knife or toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Allow to cool for 2 hours before cutting into it.

Oh. My. Gosh. You guys, I don’t mean to brag, but my dessert stole the show for Thanksgiving. ;) We had this and a store bought gluten free apple pie. Let me just tell you – we polished off my entire pie….and there was only one piece of the apple pie gone!

Everyone RAVED about it. They couldn’t believe that there was no butter or cream in it. They said it was so decadent and delicious.

The flavor was warm and spicy, and the texture was so rich, luxurious and creamy. And the crust – wow: nutty, sweet, chewy, sticky! The perfect compliment to the luscious center.

These pies were like my little babiesJ Oh- just thinking about them warms my heartJ #proudmama

Be sure to check back next week for my mouth-watering stuffed acorn squash. Let’s just say, there were no leftovers! J Here’s a teaser:

Want more GFHT?  You can now get my e-cookbook, The Best of GlutenFreeHappyTummy for only $2.99 on Amazon!

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Butternut Squash Dessert Pudding! GF, V, SCD, BED, Paleo!

Hey Happy Tummies!

Four more sleeps until Thanksgiving!!! Wooo!

I am so excited. I've been dreaming up the Vegan/Paleo/SCD dishes I'll be making.

For the first time ever, I think it's going to be a completely gluten free thanksgiving, as the majority of my family that will be there are GF! So there will be lots to share:)

Alsooo, it's my niece's first Thanksgiving!! Lots to be thankful for:)

So today, I'm sharing a recipe that I literally cannot live without. I eat this probably 3 times a week and I'm not even joking. It is THAT good!

I've shared this recipe a long time ago, but the photo was...well...less than beautiful. Sooo, I've updated the pic and decided to share it because it would be a PERFECT side dish for thanksgiving!

What is it?


Gluten free, vegan, SCD, BED, Paleo and 100% delicious.

I like to put it in the freezer for an hour before I eat it and it is literally like ice cream. My mouth is watering just thinking about it.

This recipe has actually been a life saver for me. Lots of people ask me, after learning about my diet, "how do you stay sane? How do you do it?!" Well friends, this pudding is the answer. Being on the SCD, it's true: you can get into the mindset of feeling deprived if you dwell on all the things you CANNOT eat. But, I've found if you can find even just one thing that you REALLY enjoy, and can look forward to, you're fine. So maybe I look forward to butternut squash instead of chocolate or Reeces peanut butter cups...big whoop. It's my favorite food and helps me remain faithful to the SCD. :)

The way this recipe came to be is actually a funny story. So if you've been following my blog, you may know that I used to LOVE a recipe that was very similar to this, but made with carrots. (see below)

It was my saving grace during the Body Ecology Diet. And I pretty much ate it every other day-I'm telling you, it was that good. Well friends, I literally turned orange from eating so many carrots! It's not an urban legend, you really do turn orange!! Look how orange I was at Christmas last year!!

So my brother, being a doctor, was like, Care, you're getting a toxic dose of Vitamin A and it could be doing damage to your eyes.

Sooo, I did some research, and found that butternut squash has a lot less beta carotene (what turns into Vit A) than carrots. So, the substitution was officially made. And to be honest, I don't eat carrots anymore. Because even if I have a few baby carrots, that orange color comes back to my hands and face. The human body is crazy, huh?

So without further ado, here's my favorite food!
Here’s what you need:
1 small butternut squash: halved and roasted (or diced and steamed)
1/4 cup raw cashews
2 dropper-fulls of alcohol free, pure liquid stevia (SCD use 2 tsp honey, or more to taste)
2 tsp cinnamon
pinch of nutmeg
pinch of ground cloves
tiny pinch of sea salt
You have 2 options to prepare your squash.
Either A) Peel your squash and dice it into small cubes. In a steamer basket, steam for about 20 minutes until tender. Then, let it cool, and wring out all the excess liquid with a clean kitchen towel or paper towels. This is how I make it.
OR B) Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Carefully cut your butternut squash in half lengthwise and scoop out the seeds. Line a baking sheet with tin-foil and spray with olive oil. Spray or rub the cut-side of the halves with olive oil, and roast cut-side-down for 40 minutes.Let them cool for several minutes, and then scoop out the flesh.
Combine the flesh in the food processor with the rest of the ingredients. Process for 2 minutes, until creamy and smooth, scraping the sides twice. Enjoy warm, or chilled in the freezer for an hour.
Oh. My. Gosh. This is sheer decadence. It is buttery smooth and down-right amazing! It seriously tastes like pumpkin pie! My parents tasted it and couldn’t believe that there wasn’t cream or butter in it!

The flavor is straight out of a Thanksgiving Yankee Candle – ok, that maybe doesn’t sound too appetizing, but the flavor brought me back to the Thanksgiving table, eating pumpkin pie with my family. The cinnamon, nutmeg and clove give it such a warm spiciness, that just travels through your senses and warms your soul. Ok, maybe a little dramatic, but it is just SO remarkable.

Finally, the texture is just rich and luxuriously creamy. I particularly enjoy it semi-frozen. It's seriously like ice cream:)
And to make it extra special for Thanksgiving, I'm going to toast a few pecans with cinnamon and honey, and sprinkle those on top:)
How's your Thanksgiving prep going?

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Twas the Week Before Thanksgiving...

Twas the week before Thanksgiving and all ‘round the blogs,
The masses were hunting for pie and eggnog
The posts were all hung on the pages with care
In hopes that their readers would enjoy them with flair!
The foodies were ready with pencils and pad
To jot down some recipes they were craving “real bad”
When what to their wondering eyes did they find?
But a green bean casserole, of the Gluten Free kind!
With an ingredient list so wholesome and free,
They knew in a moment, “this dish is for me!”

Yep, I Veganized and SCD-ified the classic standby – Green Bean Casserole!  -- Canned green beans with cream of mushroom soup and french fried onions. Sounds like a dish out of the fifties doesn’t it?! Not my version, friends. I used fresh, organic green beans, a homemade mushroom soup, and homemade baked onion rings! It was remarkable. 

And, it’s Gluten Free, Vegan, Body Ecology Diet friendly and Specific Carb Diet friendly!
Here’s what you need:
3 cups of fresh green beans, blanched
5 1/2 cups of sliced mushrooms – I used 1 carton of shiitake and 1 carton of button (BED use shiitake only)
1/2 onion, diced
3 garlic cloves, minced
1/4 tsp minced fresh rosemary
2/3 cup coconut milk
1/2 tsp salt
Onion Rings:
1/2 onion, sliced and separated into rings
1 cup almond flour
1/4 tsp salt
5 cracks of black pepper
1 egg white (Vegan option: almond milk)
Preheat oven to 375. Set up your “breading station.” You’ll need one bowl filled with your egg white (or almond milk). You’ll need another bowl filled with your almond flour, salt and pepper. Then, you’ll need a baking sheet that’s been covered with tin foil and  sprayed with olive oil.
Coat your onion rings with the egg, then with the almond flour, and then place on the baking sheet. Fair warning: this is a bit of a messy job. I find it’s helpful to have a “wet hand” and a “dry hand.” Once all your rings are coated and on your baking sheet, spritz them with olive oil, and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Bake for 20 minutes, until golden brown, flipping half way through. Cut into 1 inch pieces, and set aside.
Meanwhile, blanch your green beans by boiling them for 2 minutes, and then shocking them in a bowl of ice water.
Next, the soup: Saute your onion and garlic in 1-2 tsp of EVOO, salt and pepper for about 4 minutes. Once they’ve softened, add your mushrooms and let them cook down. Transfer the veggies into your food processor along with the rosemary, coconut milk, and salt. Blend until smooth. It will be thick.
Finally, spray a small casserole dish with olive oil. Toss your green beans with the soup, and put in the casserole dish. Bake at 350 for 25-30 minutes. After you take it out of the oven, sprinkle your onion rings over the top. Then, dig in!

This was fantastic!! The flavor was so incredibly savory and homey. The slight hint of rosemary really elevated the flavor and gave it a gourmet touch! The onion rings on top were crunchy and had a toasty, nutty flavor from the almond flour.

And the casserole was just delicious with the fresh green beans! It was creamy and velvety and just…decadent:)

It was the only dish on the Thanksgiving table that we polished off!! Everyone loved it…no matter what diet they followed!

So give this classic update a try! You won't be disappointed!

Stay tuned for more Thanksgiving recipes over the next few days!

Want more GFHT?  You can now get my e-cookbook, The Best of GlutenFreeHappyTummy for only $2.99 on Amazon!