Friday, 30 May 2014

Travelling with Allergies!

Travelling with children is tough enough, but travelling with children with any other health issue is definitely into the next league. We have a collection of complex issues and haven't travelled abroad once in ten years because it is just too anxiety provoking. The last time was when my twins were two, one drinking elemental formula and one 100% tube fed. This actually made it a million times easier than sourcing free from foods abroad, or having to take ingredients and find somewhere to cook when you get there.

Don't get me wrong, travelling with any medically complex child earns you the right to feel smug about what is no small feat when you return home, triumphant yet in need of a proper holiday to recover.... but travelling without knowing if you can actually FEED your child precipitates a nasty churning feeling in your stomach which has thus far put me off trying.

That's fine if you have summers like 2008 or 2010 with long weeks of summer sun and you can do THIS in the UK...

But sometimes our temperamental climate just doesn't cut it. We are desperate to travel next year so I ask some of my lovely Facebook Group friends to offer some advice.

Coconut Loaf

This delicious cake recipe was supplied by Michelle, from FABED, the only charity supporting families affected by Eosinophilic Disorders. You can read more about EGID here.

This recipe is MEWS free, gluten free, egg free and depending on your choice of flour, corn free, potato free too. I think it's also evidence for people like me who can bake with eggs that they are NOT required for a lovely, light texture and a large cake that rises!

  • 300 g free from flour
  • 2tsp free from baking powder
  • 1tsp ground cinnamon
  • 4tbsp flaxseed or linseed
  • 225g golden caster sugar
  • 150g desiccated coconut
  • 350ml coconut milk
  • 50 ml sunflower oil
  • 900g loaf tin
  • Pre heat oven to 180 and lightly grease the loaf tin
  • Sift the flour, baking powder and cinnamon in a large bowl, add ground flaxseed, caster sugar and coconut and mix together. 
  • Pour over the coconut milk and sunflower oil stir until you have a batter.
  • Tip into tin and bake in the oven for 45-50mins until it is slightly risen and golden.
  • Leave to cool and turn on to a rack.

Serve warm or cold!

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Free From "Mini Milk" Lollies

I was fortunate enough to "bump into" the lovely Nia from "Carrots and Maple Syrup" on Twitter via #AllergyHour. (Thursdays 8.30-9.30pm if you are interested!) Nia has worked with Julia from Alimentary Bites (Julia is a dietician) and Hailey from Allergy Adventures recently, so her profile is rising! Check out their substitutions sheet, it's really good.

Nia is amazing, a self taught cook she suffers from multiple allergies herself. That's a nightmare for anyone but for a young person just setting out into the world independently it's REALLY tough. Nia is the most INNOVATIVE baker/cook I have come across, she is 100% self taught and creates all her own recipes. 

Knowing that summer is coming, I asked her to create a recipe for The Recipe Resource. Knowing that it is a site mainly catering for children she came up with these delicious free from "Mini Milk" Lollies! 

Makes 10 - you can buy these little lolly makers everywhere, even in Poundland!


  • 150 ml cream (millet, coconut, soya, almond, dairy, oat)
  • 560 g yogurt (pea, soya, coconut, rice, greek)
  • 3 1/2 tbsp sugar (honey or agave would do)
  • 125 g pureed strawberries or cooled melted chocolate (such as Moo Free, Kinnerton, Plamil, Sweet William, Enjoy Life)


So easy!

  • Mix together in a bowl and pour into ice lolly moulds
  • Freeze for 4 hours

Linking in with:-

Mummy Alarm

Wednesday, 28 May 2014

When things go wrong!

Many people have asked me how I "do" it, how my recipes seem to work for me and how amazing my photos look....

SO, I thought it only fair to confess that this is really NOT always the case, I am as human as the next person (well almost :P ) and have bad days and good days.

Learning to bake differently, especially when you are substituting the basic ingredients for a recipe takes time and patience. It may work straight away, but you are certainly NOT unusual if it doesn't! In fact, I am now so used to baking "free from" that actually my "normal" baked goods don't always work...

So I thought I would share this with you - even with a familiar, fail safe recipe I can make mistakes. This was supposed to be a free from chocolate cake.... except I forgot the raising agent.

*Ahem* Make that a chocolate biscuit.

That's when a teenager comes in handy.

It's finished before they realise it's slightly different!!!!

Thursday, 22 May 2014

About Me

Firstly, this post has NOTHING to do with me!


As our regular readers know, the main testers/tasters for the Recipe Resource have quite a few health issues as well as allergies and it can be a bit confusing for those caring for them - e.g. teachers in school.

Obviously like anyone else we have completed the medical sheets for school, and written a long page detailing diagnoses, medication etc but what staff *really* need is a quick, "go-to" sheet, preferably with a photo of the child concerned with a sentence to introduce them, then approximately ten points in the child's words to describe how their condition affects them.
This is especially valuable if there are new or supply teachers and avoids bombarding them with unnecessary medical information.

Wednesday, 21 May 2014

Fabed from the Beginning - Guest Post

Unless you are new to the Recipe Resource, you will know that this week is EOSINOPHIL AWARENESS WEEK which is being co-hosted between 
APFED in the USA and FABED here in the UK. 

FABED is a wonderful charity which support those of us living with the confusing nightmare that is all too often EGID/ Simply put, EGID (Eosinophilic Gastrointestinal Disease) is an inflammatory condition thought possibly to be autoimmune. It involves the immune system, in a local response to food and environmental proteins. These ARE allergies, but like Coeliac Disease, Crohns or something like eczema it's a local reaction, not a systemic (whole body) response so you cannot test for these types of allergies. EGID can only be diagnosed by Biopsy.  

Here is the story of the wonderful Lucas family, dealing with multiple cases of EGID and how FABED was started.

FABED from the Beginning

Back in the olden days when Emma-Kate asked us to write a guest post for the excellent Recipe Resource (well it seems that long ago!), we said “No problem, will have it to you in a flash”.  Well it’s finally here, so as every one knows it’s now time to sit on the carpet in a circle, legs crossed and listen to the story... (or pour a large glass of something, you may need it by the end!)

FABED was conceived in 2005 and became into being in 2006.  It was the brainchild of 2 families (Lucas and Cordell), after visiting the APFED annual conference and leaving a little shell shocked.  As to the why we felt the need, it is important to understand the family story.  The Cordell family story that started the whole chain reaction is here, we have never really told ours, what follows is a VERY abridged version (honestly, this really is the short one) of the Lucas family WHY?

Friday, 9 May 2014

Eosinophilic Awareness Week 18th-24th May 2014

18th-24th May 2014 is Eosinophilic Awareness WeekRead about EGID here.

Gastro research is drastically UNDER FUNDED. It is not "glamorous" and rarely on the radar for celebrities and focus groups, and rarely attracts public interest unlike cardiac care and cancer research. Gastro conditions are badly neglected in the UK when it comes to research funding allocation but without research treatment and outcomes are not likely to improve much.

Approximately 1% of the total amount of medical research funding available in the UK can be accessed for Gastro research. There are currently no listed projects specifically for Eosinophilic Disorders on the National Research database. GOSH are running a Gastro Research Project that will include related conditions/problems.

Alarmingly, children with allergic gut conditions are reaching epidemic proportions according to GOSH as our Consultant there explains in this video (celebrating 100 years of Great Ormond Street Hospital, screened on Daybreak in Spring 2012) At 6min 17sec in he speaks about the significant problem this is becoming.

No one knows why the UK has the highest incidence for Allergy. I went to Westminster to attend the All Party Group for Allergy in October 2013 and heard how in the 19th Century, a study into Hay Fever took two decades as it was so rare and there were insufficient people to include in the study. Today it is incredibly common. The UK tops the league table in the incidence of allergy in its population, with Australia second - which is interesting as their population obviously share a similar root. Allergic gut conditions are becoming common and hugely problematic for NHS paediatric services and Eosinophilic Disease is a specific subset of this group.

FABED is the main UK charity supporting families with members (adult and children) who suffer from eosinophilic disease.

FABED are UK partners supporting the United States Eosinophilic Awareness Week. This is coordinated by APFED. Two years they made this video to promote awareness.

During Eosinophilic Awareness Week, do something to raise awareness. Tell someone about EGID and the appalling lack of funding for gastrointestinal disorders in the UK.

Monday, 5 May 2014

Mushroom and Butter Bean Risotto

This was a last minute, "Help we've got home late, what AM I going to cook!!" recipe. It had to suit everyone here so it's Dairy free, Wheat free, Gluten free, Vegan, Nut free, Soya free and was really quick and easy to make.

We make risottos all the time, great for using up odds and ends. I had the forethought to grab a bowl and photograph it so I could share!

  • 1-2 tbsp Olive oil
  • 1 onion if you have it
  • garlic - either pre-chopped (Waitrose do this in a jar!) or a clove, crushed.
  • 350g Arborio Rice if you have it (I didn't, it is long grain in this but Arborio or Carnaroli would be much "creamier".
  • 1 litre stock 
  • 3 large field mushrooms, chopped
  • 2 leeks, chopped and par boiled
  • 1 tin of butter beans
  • 1/2 carton of rice cream or Oatly cream (if tolerated but not suitable for coeliacs)
  • small amount of fennel (don't know why, it took my fancy!)
  • salt and pepper 
Serves 4,  I was cooking for 5 but two were smaller eaters so you could adjust this accordingly.

  • Heat the oil in a large pan. Add the onion and garlic, and cook for 5 mins. 
  • Add the chopped mushrooms and rice fry for a further 2-3 minutes.
  • Pour in the stock and cook, stirring regularly, for 15 mins or so.
  • Meanwhile cook the leeks, when starting to soften add these in too.
  • Add in the beans and the rice cream, keep stirring!
  • Add the salt and pepper, parsley or fennel, and more water if necessary.
  • After another 5 mins with all combined should be cooked through with little excess fluid.
Serve with salad, a garnish or other veg, or just as it is! This is so easy and quick to make, you could easily add or subtract different veg you would like, we often do peas and bacon.

This post is entered for the Betta Living Vegetarian Recipe competition

As a variation, and if you wanted a meaty option you could try this - with veg and bacon instead.

Friday, 2 May 2014

Coconut Almond "Protein Power" Bites

Actually the title should say "Coconut, Almond and Cranberry "Protein Power" Bites" but they are optional and interchangeable with other fried fruit you might prefer. (Cranberries are really good with coconut though!)

These are NOT egg free, but I have challenged myself to try new protein powders as my daughter's dietician is concerned that her restrictive diet and difficulty swallowing meat in combination have produced some mildly concerning blood test results.

So we are "on a mission" to boost her protein intake. There are a couple of options which suit those with food allergies and sensitive stomachs. Pea Protein or Rice Protein powder. (It is important to try as pure a protein powder as possible, our dietician is an expert and recommended that brown rice protein powder to us.)

My daughter can tolerate egg, which again adds to the protein content so I revisited my Tiana coconut flour recipes and decided to alter this one. I swapped a few things around and this is what I came up with:-

Tip - I really recommend getting hold of some cup measures as it makes life a lot easier! All Tiana recipes are in cups.


  • 1/2 cup sifted Tiana flour
  • 1/2 cup of chopped almonds (I used flaked today as I was out of chopped)
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 4 eggs
  • 3/4 teaspoon almond extract
  • 1/2 cup pea protein powder
  • 2 tablespoons almond milk
  • 1/2 cup cranberries

  • Nothing very scientific here, I have a Kenwood mixer and I just chucked it all....... and blitzed it!
  • BUT - and it's a big BUT, Tiana flour takes a little while to soak up the liquid and start working. Leave it for 10 minutes before the next step. Really.

You might need to add a little more almond milk, if you want "bites" it needs 
to still be relatively stiff, like these 

You could make them more moist and then let them bake as cookies - they will be less soft.

  • Bake at 180C for 15-20 minutes.

My suspicious little monkey agreed to tentatively try one.....

Let me know how your little ones get on with this recipe - and big apologies to those who cannot eat eggs....

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