February 22, 2013

Tips for Travelling

Hi everyone
Sorry for being MIA for a while. I have been on ICU this month. Enough said
But I am now in San Antonio for a few days for a conference so I am taking advantage of some of my down time between sessions to get in some really important things like shopping, doing some tourist activities and of course blogging!

Now for those of you out there with food restrictions you know how daunting travelling can be! Airports are a nightmare for even trying to find something that may be safe to eat. And then when you do get to your destination trying to find safe restaurants can also be very difficult.

Here are some of the things I have learned over the years while travelling with food restrictions.

1. Stay in a Place with a Kitchen

I cannot emphasize this one enough! Whenever I travel now I either rent apartments through sites like VRBO.com or find hotels that have kitchenettes in them. You would actually be amazed to know that it is often cheaper to rent an apartment then it is to stay in a hotel anyways. By having my own kitchen I am able to make whatever I want, and then I know exactly what is going into the food I eat. Plus it is way cheaper to prepare your own meals than to eat at restaurants anyways. Win win if you ask me!

2. Plan Ahead

Whenever I travel I always scout out the city I will be staying in. Is there a grocery store close to where I am staying? Or a Farmers market? Trader Joes? Whole Foods? Hotels are usually great at recommending restaurants and tourist activities but when it comes to some of the basics like the places listed above I have often found them to be less than helpful. So I rely on good old google and google maps to figure out where I need to go. It really doesn't take a lot of work and I often end up exploring areas that less tourists frequent which can be a nice break.

3. Pack Food

Yep I am that girl whose carry on and sometimes suitcase is filled with food. I usually pack a couple meals to take on the plane (breakfast and lunch) and snacks. Lots of snacks! I have to say that this got much more difficult when the restrictions on liquids were implemented many years ago but I have leaned to adapt. And here is a little secret from me to you. Just don't tell anyone you have fruit in your bag and guess what... NOTHING happens to you! I have been bringing fruit with me on planes for years and have never had an issue. I am probably violating some sort of rule by sharing this with you but I figure border security has much better things to worry about than the banana or apple that I have in my carry on. Just saying.
As for snacks this really depends on what kind of food you tolerate. I usually pack some cheese slices, almond flour scones or muffins. If you tolerate nuts these are great plane snacks, as are dried fruit, plantain chips (wish I could still eat these!), jerkies, sliced vegis, thick skinned fruits... You get the idea...

4. Bring a Water Bottle

Just remember to leave it empty until you get through security! I always carry water with me and I feel much better if I use a washable one rather than relying on disposable water bottles that just end up filling up the landfills. Plus I like to put lemon in my water and lets face it, those disposable water bottle tops just aren't big enough to hold a lemon slice!

5. Bring Tupperware

This one sounds ridiculous I know but I have found that most places, while well stocked with kitchen utensils and cooking needs are often lacking in tupperware! I don't mean for you to go crazy here but I usually throw a couple containers in my bag to store things in once I get to my destination. The same goes for ziploc bags. Throw a handful in your suitcase and trust me you will end up putting them to good use!

Well those are my travelling tips! Do you have any of your own? What are your go to airplane snacks?

February 10, 2013

Apple Cinnamon "Oatmeal" (Paleo, SCD, Breakfast)

If you don't tolerate nuts I warn you to stop reading right now because this one will just make you jealous!
Back before I eliminated grains I used to eat oatmeal for breakfast everyday. I loved it. I would add all sorts of good things like fruit, nuts, nut butters, coconut... oh yum! Sometimes I would even eat it again for dinner... yep that's how much I loved the stuff.
Well clearly this isn't a true oatmeal recipe as it's completely grain free but it is pretty darn yummy if you ask me! And I really don't think the pictures do this one justice but trust me it does taste good!

Apple Cinnamon "Oatmeal" (Paleo, SCD, Breakfast) 


Ingredients

2 cups pecans
1 cup water
1-2 tsp ground cinnamon (depending on desired taste) 
1 TBSP organic vanilla
1 cup apple sauce 

Optional toppings (you choose your favourites): fruit, coconut flakes, coconut milk, raisins... 

Directions

1. Grind pecans in your food processor until you get a finely ground mixture (it will start to form clumps)
2. Add water to pot and turn onto medium heat
3. Add ground pecans to water and cook for 15-20 minutes or until the "oatmeal" is your desired consistency. Stir the mixture frequently to prevent it from sticking to the pot. 
4. After a few minutes add the cinnamon and vanilla
5. Once oatmeal is almost done add the apple sauce and cook for 2-3 more minutes
6. Remove from burner, add desired toppings and enjoy!




Let me know what you think! What would you add?

February 07, 2013

A Day in the Life

Whenever I tell people about how I eat one of the inevitable questions I always get asked is "what do you eat?!?!"
Most people just can't imagine a life without grains so they don' understand when I tell them that it's really not that bad!
So to prove my point I am posting a typical day's menu. Take a look and see what you think!

Breakfast

Squash (usually buttercup or butternut)
1 Sausage
1/2 cooked ground beef
2-3 slices of lactose free cheese (usually cheddar or swiss) 

I usually combine all the above ingredients in a bowl and heat it to let the cheese melt. So good!
This usually keeps me full until lunch time. No carb cravings here! 

Tea with honey (Chi or Earl Grey lately)

Lunch

Pork burger with cooked mixed vegis topped with Dijon mustard 

Snack (if I have time at work)

Homemade SCD yogurt with cooked berries or a Honey Vanilla Scone 

Dinner

Curried mango chicken (I'll post this recipe soon I promise) with steamed cauliflower and coconut oil 

Dessert

Carrot cake muffin with creamy coconut icing
Peppermint tea

Well what do you think? Could you see yourself eating this? If you have any go to meals that you use time and again I would love to hear what they are! 

February 03, 2013

Mango Chicken Curry (SCD, Paleo, GAPS, Poultry)

So you know what I noticed? Well no I don't expect you to guess... but if you were to look at my blog you would think the only things I eat are desserts! This isn't the case I promise. Although I do think having something sweet everyday is important for your quality of life (anyone else with me on that one?)
So I am going to try to start posting more meal recipes. Because let's face it, in order to get to dessert you have to have a meal first. Right? Maybe? Sometimes?

You know what's sad? The weekend is almost over. Tomorrow it's back to work. I always feel like I need another weekend to catch up from the weekend! Does anyone else have this problem??

Well if you are looking for something to make that will last for a few lunches this chicken recipe will do the trick! I have always loved curries and this one is allergy friendly so enjoy friends!

Mango Chicken Curry (SCD, Paleo, GAPS, Chicken) 

Ingredients

4 TBSP coconut oil or grassfed butter or ghee 
4 boneless chicken breasts
1 tsp cumin seed
1 medium onion
1 medium head brocolli
1 red or orange bell pepper 
1 cup pureed mango or mango juice (to make pureed mango simply place chopped fresh or frozen mango in food processor and grind to desired consistency) 
1 can coconut milk or equivalent amount of homemade coconut milk 
1/2 tsp curry powder
1/2 tsp turmeric 
1/2 cup frozen/ fresh peas
** Optional: 3 TBSP peanut or almond butter 

Directions

1. Turn burner onto medium and place large frying pan or skillet on for a few minutes to warm 
2. Add oil to pan and then add  chicken breasts and heat until cooked on outside
3. Remove chicken breasts and cut into cubes
4. Return chicken cubes to pan to cook fully
5. While chicken is cooking chop onion
5. When chicken is fully cooked add onion and cumin seeds to pan and cook until onion is clear/ tender
6. While onion is cooking chop both the broccoli and pepper
7. Add broccoli and pepper to skillet and allow to cook for a few minutes
8. Add coconut milk, mango puree, curry powder and turmeric to pan and allow to simmer for 20-25 minutes or until broccoli is cooked and most of liquid is absorbed. Stir occasionally to prevent ingredients from sticking to bottom of pan 
** If adding peanut butter add it here (I know not everyone can tolerate nut butters but this dish is so much more delicious with this addition) 
9. When there is 5 minutes left to cook add the peas to the pan and finish simmering
10. Let cool for a few minutes and enjoy! 




If anyone makes this let me know! Trust me it is good. Like really good! 

February 02, 2013

Honey Vanilla Scones (SCD, Paleo, Egg free, Dairy free)




The name of these sounds way fancier than they really are. But they are still delicious if you ask me.
These are probably one of the easiest things that I bake, and trust me they are still good (even the boyfriend agrees... I wouldn't lie to you I promise).
I pretty much make a batch of these each week. I carry these around as snacks when I am on call...  at 3AM when you start to fill ill from lack of sleep these babies hit the spot!

This recipe highlights one of my baking rules: everything is better with vanilla. Not only does it smell delicious but it brings out the flavour in baked goods like nothing else! Go ahead and disagree with me but I stand by my rule!

Honey Vanilla Scones (SCD, Paleo, Egg Free, Dairy free)

Ingredients


3 1/2 cups almond flour
¼ cup butter or coconut oil 
¼ tsp sea salt
½ tsp baking soda
1 TBSP organic vanilla
1/3 cup honey
1 egg or 3 TBSP water 





Directions

1. Place flour and butter in a microwave proof bowl and microwave for 80 seconds on high to melt butter
2. Add remaining ingredients to bowl
3. Mix well with a pastry blender
4. Place dough on a sheet of wax paper and press into a large ball surrounded by the wax paper
5. Place dough with wax paper surrounding it in the freezer for 15-20 minutes (this isn't necessary but helps the dough stay together and makes it easier to work with)
6. Preheat oven to 350 F
7. Form 3 inch round discs with dough and place on a baking sheet (this should make about 6 scones)
8. Bake for 15 minutes or until the tops of the scones are golden brown in colour. 
9. Let cool for a few minutes and enjoy! These freeze really well too if you want to store them for later 






Let me know what you think of these! Aren't they super easy??