Showing posts with label eczema. Show all posts
Showing posts with label eczema. Show all posts

Thursday, May 30, 2013

Domino's gluten free pizza

One of the toughest things about having a child who's allergic to wheat (among other things), is that hubby and I very rarely eat wheat too.  Sure, we sneak in the random cookies or pasta when we're out on date nights or late at night when Chuck's asleep (oh boy, do I feel naughty then).  I usually don't mind the sacrifice, but there is one wheat-filled goodie that I sorely miss:  pizza.  It's one of my favorite foods.  And as a longtime lover of that holy trinity of cheese, tomato sauce, and crust, it's been really really tough not eating  pizza and not passing on my love to my son.

By now you're probably thinking, "Boo hoo.  Cry me a wheat-filled river.  Leslie, haven't you heard of gluten-free pizzas?"  Well, sure, there are gluten-free options out there... and trust me... we've tried a whole bunch.  But the resulting pie is always the same.  The pizza looks like a re-heated frozen disk and the crust tastes like dirty cardboard.  Sacrilege!  Poor Chuck usually just pulls off the cheese and eats that.

So when we found out that Domino's made a gluten free pizza crust, hubby and I were.... well... skeptical.  

But, we really didn't need to be.  Chuck loved it.  He ate two whole slices- crust, cheese, sauce, mushrooms and all.  Hubby and I even snuck in a couple of bites (while Chuck wasn't looking) and we were quite surprised by how good it was.

Now, Domino's does note that the pizza shouldn't be eaten by people with Celiac's disease.  Although the crust is certified to be gluten free, they just can't guarantee that any cross-contamination didn't occur at the restaurant.  So maybe this wouldn't be a solution for everyone.  But, since Chuck didn't break out in any hives or develop a rash after eating the pizza, hubby and I are deeming it a win..

In case you're curious, here's what the gluten free pizza looked like in the box:  (minus the 2 slices that Chuck devoured)
 And here's what the pizza looked like up-close:
Oh yeah, and here's Chuck.  Now he's a bona fide pizza lover too, just like his mama.

Have a great weekend!  See you next week!

Monday, October 8, 2012

Pumpkin Mochi Cake

A couple months ago I visited my cousin Esther's place and had the most delicious green tea mochi cakes and red bean mochi cakes. I loved that they were slightly sweet, very chewy, and gluten free.  Score!  She referred me to this awesome recipe and I've been making green tea mochi cakes (substituting 4 teaspoons of green tea powder for red bean paste) almost every Saturday morning ever since.

Now that it's well and truly October, our nearest grocery store finally started stocking pumpkin puree. Filled with the Halloween/October spirit, I made some pumpkin mochi cakes.  I used the original recipe and made three minor tweaks.
  1. I substituted 1 C of pumpkin puree for the red bean paste.  
  2. I used 1 1/2 C of sugar.  Trust me, I needed it!  (I first made one batch using only 1 C of sugar and ended up with bland chewy bars.  Ick.)
  3. I greased my pan (I'm sure parchment paper would have worked too.)  You must do this.  If you don't, your mochi cake will stick to the pan and you will cry a whole lot. 

 Here's what my pumpkin mochi cake looked like once I sliced it up:
(I have no idea why I'm currently into wild west stuff.....)

The recipe makes a ton of mochi cake. Once your cake cools, just cut it up and store your tiny mochi bars in Tupperware. 

I love having my very own stash of little chewy bars to munch on throughout the day...erm... I mean throughout the week..... because I've got self-control like that.... yeah....

Sunday, October 7, 2012

Jam monster

A couple weeks ago we located a bread that was gluten and soy and nut free.  
It was seriously the best discovery ever.

Now he's able to enjoy bread and jam on a daily basis.  

"What is this stuff?"

"Oh my gosh, it's delicious!"

"I wonder if mum will let me have another piece?"

Monday, October 1, 2012

Chickpea Sunbutter Oatmeal Raisin Cookies

Some of the other mothers at the playground will often offer Baby Chuck cookies to eat.  I'm touched by their generosity and always feel bad saying no. Sadly, his numerous allergies prevent him from eating a lot of baked goods.

Last week I turned away some particularly delicious looking chocolate chip cookies. I could tell that Baby Chuck really wanted to try one.  So I found this recipe for Chickpea Chocolate chip cookies and was intrigued that the "dough" mostly consisted of chickpea and cashew butter.  With a couple of tweaks, I made these chickpea sunbutter oatmeal raisin cookies.

(1) 1 can chickpeas
(2) 1/2 cup sunbutter
(3) 1/8 teaspoon baking powder
(4) 1/2 cup sugar
(5) 2 teaspoons vanilla
(6) sprinkle of salt
(7)1 cup raisins
(8)1 cup oats

(1) Preheat oven to 350 degrees and grease baking sheets
(2) Blend chickpeas till smooth
(3) Add ingredients 2 through 6 and blend together
(4) Stir in ingredients 7 and 8
(5) Spoon the dough onto the baking sheets and pat down flat (cookies look the same going in and out of the oven because the dough doesn't rise)
(6) Bake 15 minutes

They weren't particularly sweet and they tasted like tiny nutrition bars.  I liked them and appreciated their high fiber content.  Hubby was used to eating normal cookies, so he wasn't a fan.  Baby Chuck on the other hand, really enjoyed them.  He quickly gobbled up one and then asked for another. 

I think we have a tiny cookie monster on our hands!

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Nut-free and wheat-free sunbutter cookies

Today I'm going to have dinner and watch the season finale of Project Runway All Stars with two good gal pals.  They're providing dinner and I'm bringing the dessert.  I've been hankering for peanut butter cookies lately, but since we're now a nut-free and wheat-free household I had to get a bit creative.  I tweaked an old peanut butter cookie recipe and made these sunbutter cookies instead.

They look like peanut butter cookies and they taste almost as good.  I'm definitely going to try making these guys again, but I'll probably tweak the recipe just a bit because they were a bit crumbly.  (Anybody know how I should solve that problem? Or is that just the way my cookies will crumble?  Har har har...)

If you're interested in making some faux peanut butter cookies for yourself, check out the recipe below.

Ingredients (for 20 cookies)
1 C Sunbutter (Sunflower seed butter)
1 C sugar
1 egg
1 t baking soda
1 t vanilla extract
1 pinch of salt

(1)  Preheat oven to 350 degrees
(2) Mix ingredients together
(3)  Roll 1 inch cookie balls, place them on a baking pan, and squash them with a fork to get that faux peanut butter cookie look
(4) Bake for about 10 minutes 
(5) Let the cookies cool so they harden
(5) Enjoy!

Hmm... I wonder how this cookie would taste with chocolate chips?

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

So...what can you eat?

After learning that there might be a relationship between Baby Chuck's eczema and allergies to wheat, soy, nuts, and fish, hubby and I decided to stop eating those foods.  It was a difficult transition to make because bread, pasta, nuts, and Asian food were staples in our diet.

Here are 3 things that I've learned while navigating our new dietary restrictions:

(1)  Me encanta la comida mexicana. 
I love me some Mexican food.  Tostadas?  Hard shell tacos?  Corn tortillas?  It's great that we can make a ton of flavorful dishes using these corn products.     

(2)  You say potato, I say yum-ato.
I previously avoided these vegetables because I hated peeling them.  Now I'm rekindling my love for these tubers.  French fries?  Roasted potatoes?  Yes, please!   

(3)  I won't say no to faux.
Every so often I get a craving for one of our blacklisted items.   To satisfy my urges, we've ventured into the gluten-free section of the grocery store and tried out some products.  Although they tend to run on the pricier side, they are a nice treat.  It's nice to know that I can still have a doughnut and a faux peanut butter jelly sandwich every once in awhile.      

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Strawberry faced mummy boy

Last week I took Baby Chuck to the allergist to get retested.  Because he's still so small, they were only able to do a portion of the testing.  After they stuck a bunch of needles into his back, we found out that he's allergic to even more food items.  Now we're eliminating wheat, soy, nuts, and fish from our diet.  We're also sticking with nursing because our previous attempt at formula resulted in swollen eyelids and lips.

Despite our radical diet change, Chuck's skin is a lot worse.  He's still red and itchy.  We've even had to bandage his legs to prevent him from tearing at his own skin.  I'm hoping that he's just reacting to the allergy shots and that things will calm down with time. 

Hubby keeps reminding me that even though it doesn't feel like it, we're getting closer to understanding (and hopefully fixing) the problem.  We just have to stay strong and be persistent.

If only hugs and kisses could solve all of life's problems...  

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Eat this... not this...

Goodbye, pizza!

Hubby and I were rather surprised when we got Baby Chuck's allergy test results back.  We initially guessed that he was allergic to milk and possibly eggs. However, we were both wrong.  It turns out that Chuck is not allergic to those two foods. He is, however, allergic to (at least) four things:  peanuts, wheat, soy, and *gasp* dog dander.  Of the four items, he's highly allergic to peanuts and moderately allergic to the rest of the list.  I'd like to continue breastfeeding him and after asking the initial question, "Well, what can we eat?" I realized... oh wait.... we can still eat quite a bit.  (Oh cheese, how I've missed you.) 

Armed with this new information, we've formed a new plan of attack.  We're going to (1) modify our diet, (2) set up some new rules and boundaries for Charlie, and (3) meet up with an allergist for more information.  I'm excited to try out the new changes and am really hoping that Chuck's eczema will improve.  

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Test results

Baby Chuck's eczema is flaring up again.  Today we visited the dermatologist's office and then took Chuck to a nearby lab to get his blood drawn.

Note:  This was the first attempt.  His veins were soo tiny that we had to visit another lab to get the blood drawn.

He was a trooper and the lab techs were great.  We're hoping the test will reveal the cause of his eczema.  Is he allergic to milk?  Eggs?  Soy?  Wheat?  Dust?  Pollen?  Dog dander?  (Any guesses?  Hubby guesses eggs and chickpeas.  I'm guessing eggs and milk.  Charlie hopes it's not dog dander.)  Until we find out the results, we'll keep using the meds, giving him bleach baths (strange... but it's doctor's orders!) and moisturizing.  (Now, if only I could just rest him in a large tub of moisturizer.  But alas, even Sam's Club doesn't sell containers that large.)

Friday, January 20, 2012

Sadly, they're baaa-aack

After a couple of days of clear skin, I woke up yesterday and saw tiny red spots all over Baby Chuck's head and around his nose and mouth.  There's also some funny yellow crusting around his nose.  Rats!  The doctor told us to keep putting the cream on his face and to schedule another appointment if things don't clear up within a week.  Luckily, our little man still seems to be in a good mood...  

I'm mum's little trooper

which is somewhat surprising given that he also vomited several times yesterday and once this morning.  (Thank goodness for waterproof mattress protectors.)  So, we've been doing a LOT of laundry around here.

Don't worry mum, I'll take care of these.

Hubby and I are trying our best to keep our spirits up.  Hopefully the doctors can help us figure out what's wrong...

Have a great weekend.  Be sure to stay healthy and warm.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

These good moments

(Left):  Two weeks ago                     (Right):  Three days ago

I can't stop kissing and hugging Baby Chuck.
I can't stop stroking his cheek and tiny hands.
And I can't stop delighting in his smiles and coos.

I'm so thankful that he's feeling better.

And even though we're not out of the woods yet, I'm going to try my best to enjoy these good moments.

Monday, January 9, 2012

Sick baby

Lately Baby Chuck hasn't been feeling well.  He's been crying a lot and not sleeping at night.  Today we took him to the doctor's office.  Tomorrow we're visiting the dermatologist for his eczema.  Hopefully he'll start feeling better soon...

I'm thankful that my sister is coming tomorrow to help out.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Lotions and potions

Things are finally slowly settling down here.  Baby Chuck is getting less fussy during the daytime and he's sloooooowly adjusting to nighttime sleeping.   (Hooray!)  We hit a low point last week when he woke up every half an hour, but this week we're bouncing back to two- or three- hour stints.  Thank goodness, because the bags under my eyes were developing bags of their own.   

We think that Baby Chuck's eczema is one of the reasons behind his moodiness and sleeplessness.  He's constantly scratching the red, weepy, angry-looking patches that appear all over.  Poor boy.  Right now we're working on uncovering the irritants that cause the spots and we're also trying to ease the itchiness by dousing his body with lotion.

Thanks to Nanna, our lotion collection has exploded.  I think Baby Chuck now has enough products to open an online store.

Chuck-  "Eczema, you're no match for my army of lotions!"

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Oh zzzzzs, where art thou?

Lately Baby Chuck's been pretty fussy and not sleeping well.  The poor dear is suffering from some serious skin problems and allergic reactions.  So when he finally does sleep, I do a silent dance in my head.

Sleep, glorious sleep!

Can you spot sneaky Charlie in the background?