31 August 2009

Sea Salt Chocolate Balls

Yesterday I returned from Traverse City where I was helping with childcare for an Air National Guard marriage retreat. The weekend before I stayed with my friends, the Augustine family. They live near Detroit, so I do not see them often, but always enjoy visiting. The Augustines took me to the air show at the Selfridge Air National Guard Base. It was an excellent airshow including the USAF Thunderbirds and my favorite the A-10 Thunderbolts.

Today was a little cool, so I made beef stew. After dinner I was hunting for dessert- chocolate in one form or another. My mom and I made these chocolate balls. They are good warm, but really good cold.

Sea Salt Chocolate Balls

1/2 pound dates, pitted, soaked in water for 15 minutes

1 cup ground macadamia nuts (grind in food processor or coffee grinder)

3TB macadamia nut butter

1/8 ts sea salt

1 cup melted chocolate chips

Puree dates in food processor then add macadamia nuts, nut butter and sea salt and process. Form into balls. Dip into chocolate and place on waxed paper. Top with sea salt to taste. Store in refrigerator or freezer.

The original recipe is Date-Hazelnut Balls dipped in Chocolate from the following blog: http://www.glutenfreeinthegreens.blogspot.com/

19 August 2009

Gluten and Casein Free Brownies

"All I really need is love, but a little chocolate now and then doesn't hurt."

~Lucy in Peanuts by Charles Schulz

Gluten and Casein Free Brownies

The original recipe can be found at: http://www.elanaspantry.com/

This is my egg and almond free, half batch version.

8oz peanut butter

1 teaspoon chia seeds

1/2 cup plus 2 TB agave nectar

1 1/2 ts vanilla

1/4 cup cocoa

1/4 ts sea salt

1/2 ts baking soda

1/2 cup chocolate chips

Add the chia seeds to 1/4 cup water and set aside. In a large bowl mix peanut butter, agave nectar, vanilla and cocoa. Mix in sea salt and baking soda. Add chia mixture, stir and let batter sit while oven pre-heats to 325. Then fold in chocolate chips and place in greased 8x8 baking dish. Bake for 20-30 minutes.

11 August 2009


A reminder that I am loved...
my family eats gluten and casein free with me!

Jacob, Jessie and Andrew along with Matt and Ellie came for lunch after church. We had gluten and casein free pancakes and scones, bacon and eggs. I didn't eat the eggs, but having everything gluten and casein free is splendid.

For the pancake recipe go to http://www.keyingredient.com/recipes/92768 The pancakes were good. I didn't eat many because I made them with eggs, but another time I will try making them with chia seeds.
The raspberry scones are one of the foods that convince me I do not miss gluten. Mom and I made them Saturday evening and I wanted to eat all of them. The recipe is from http://glutenfreewholefoods.blogspot.com/ Select breakfast under categories.

10 August 2009

Camping Post Two ~ GF, CF Puppy Chow Recipe

My mom helped me make this recipe. It is really good and a fun treat to take camping.

Gluten and Casein Free Puppy Chow

Recipe from Special Diets for Special Kids Two by Lisa Lewis, Ph.D.

1/2 cup peanut or other nut butter

1/2 cup CF margarine (we used Earthbalance)

6 ounces GF/CF chocolate chips (we used a bag of Enjoy Life Chocolate Chips)

10 cups Rice or Corn Crunch Ems cereal (an entire box of gluten free Rice Chex is what we used)

2 cups powdered sugar (ours were a little sticky, but still very sweet with 1 cup)

Melt peanut butter, butter and chocolate chips in a saucepan over medium heat. Pour over cereal, being sure that all cereal is coated.

Put 2 cups powdered sugar in a large paper bag. Put cereal in bag and shake gently until all cereal is coated. Pour out on wax paper to cool. (or mix all in a large bowl rather than in bag)


While camping I cooked most of my meals in aluminum foil in the fire. Place desired veggies, meat and seasoning in a couple layers of foil, wrap up and place on hot coals. I pull mine out and check it once in a while until it is done. Tin foil meals are simple and delicious.

One morning I warmed apricots and blueberries in my little cast iron skillet and added them to my cereal. The blue speckled tea kettle is my favorite camping accessory and I made tea almost everyday.

"If you are cold, tea will warm you; if you are too heated, it will cool you; if you are depressed, it will cheer you; if you are exhausted, it will calm you." ~William Gladstone

08 August 2009

Camping Post One

Sunday, August 2, I headed north to a campground on Lake Leelanau and stayed two nights with my cousin Jennifer and her family. On the way there I stopped in Traverse City to visit a store that I found last year. My friend Anna and I were attending the Michigan National Guard Family Program Conference. While walking downtown we came upon this store called Diversions. Their slogan is "You're not fully dressed without a hat." I was excited to stop there again and of course found a hat to take home.

On Monday Dave, Jennifer, Zac, Rian and I walked a hiking trail to Lake Michigan in search of Petoskey stones.

From Lake Leelanau I traveled to Leelanau State Park on the tip of the Leelanau Peninsula and stayed for three nights. From my campsite I was able to watch the sun set and rise on Lake Michigan. The view was worth no showers or flush toilets. Wednesday I went sightseeing and stopped at The Bells of Christmas Farmers Market, an herb store, Peterson Park and Christmas Cove. Reading the Virginian by Owen Wister, watching sail boats and listening to the waves hit the shore kept me occupied on Thursday. At least once a day I walked the trail along the shore that passes by the Grand Traverse Lighthouse which is located next to the campground.

Yesterday morning I packed up early and started home. As L.M. Montgomery writes in Anne of Green Gables, "I've had a splendid time, she concluded happily...But the best of it all was the coming home."