David and I went to CT in early August to visit my family. Mom read the blog called me and did loads of research and was able to provide David with some FABULOUS food - allergen free. It was great. Even all the little details about "dextrose" and unspecified vinegars, spice mixes and so on. She was able to make substitutions like ground oats rather than bread crumbs and other such things. It was so nice to relax and let mom do the cooking and not worry about David being sick for hours after eating. We had offered to bring food for David because we know what an inconvenience (and expense) it can be to purchase and prepare food for him but mom did beautifully (thanks, Mom!). She had homemade bread waiting for David and cookies and meatballs and on and on and on. We ate our way through our visit. We had dinner with other family members that also went out of their way to ensure that David was able to eat without concerns about label reading and it was humbling and gracious and so very much appreciated! This is the first extended trip we have taken since finding out about David's food allergies and it was so nice to travel and eat without worrying.
We packed snacks and such for the road (it's a loooong day of traveling to fly from Houston to Bradley) but once we arrived David was totally covered.
Our home, grocery shopping and food preparing has become a bit less challenging which is so nice. David is shouldering about 1/2 the cooking since my having gone back to school limits the amount of time I have to prepare meals. He's planning on making some cashew butter in lieu of the almond butter he's been eating since we discovered his food allergy. While we can purchase almond butter that would be safe for him to eat, it's about $10 for 6 oz and we simply can not justify that expense when we have a food processor and it takes on a few minutes to prepare our own nut butters.
While visiting mom my sister and David had "Pie School" as they termed it. Now that David can make a pie I'm looking forward to him baking one here. ;) My sister made an apple pie, my mom made a peach pie and David made a chocolate-pecan pie concoction that didn't last long. (I'm getting quite skilled at mixing up a batch of semi-sweet chocolate for all sorts of goodies from 100% cocoa).
BASIC SEMI-SWEET CHOCOLATE
In sauce pan melt 100% cocoa. Add a touch of 1/2 & 1/2 or cream, vanilla and sugar. Whisk all ingredients until thoroughly mixed. I don't really have measurements but I do it to taste.
The pie crusts were made from butter, rather than Crisco or lard. It makes for slightly different measurements but it has to be done by feel.
David has gotten quite good at substituting for baking powder and recently whipped up a great batch of blueberry waffles.
When David sticks to his food changes, he does really well. He can always tell when he's run into something because he typically feels sick for several hours. His energy is back and he's started running in the early morning with Sunshine, our lab mix. All in all, I am happy to report, things are well on the food allergy horizon. = )