My family has been blessed by not having food allergies. Not peanut butter, shellfish, wheat, gluten… nothing. Until last week, I think I had been taking it for granted.
Not once have I ever had to think about my child’s throat possibly swelling up and causing asphyxiation because of something I tossed into my shopping cart. Sure my kids have their own quirks – the Boy has recently turned his nose up at white food and the Girl doesn’t like her food to touch (although she’ll eat soups and casseroles) – but preparing dinner has never been a life or death experience for us. I’ve cooked and served by the mantra “This is dinner – eat it or go hungry.”
On February 14, a family in our church welcomed their second child. Isn’t that a wonderful Valentine’s Day gift? One of the ministries our church is heavily committed to is preparing meals for the new family. This was the inspiration for the Tips for Taking Meals to a New Mom.
When the coordinator sent out the email last week for the women of the church to sign up for dinners, there was a note included that took away my usual go-to meal and threw me for a loop: their 18 month-old daughter has issues with gluten.
Oh no. Me and gluten-free have never met before. I literally had no clue what to cook them. I signed up for a week out, giving me sufficient time to come up with a dinner that would fit their eating (and health) needs, but wouldn’t be super labor intensive or expensive of my end.
I procrastinated SO LONG that it wasn’t until 2 hours before I was to deliver their dinner that I knew what I was going to cook. Mystie Winckler’s “Simplified Dinners: Gluten-Free and Dairy-Free” eBook literally saved my bum and possibly their daughter’s life.
I had the privilege of reviewing the original version of “Simplified Pantry” last month and just like that one, this gluten-free and dairy-free version does not disappoint! There are no recipes, but rather methods for creating dinner based on what you already have on hand. This was PERFECT for me considering I had NO CLUE what did or did not contain gluten. All I knew was that pasta was probably a no-no!
Based on her book, I was able to come up with both a dinner AND a dessert – both gluten and dairy free – for the new family to enjoy. It wasn’t any more labor intensive than preparing dinner for my own family, but if it weren’t for her book, I wouldn’t have had the slightest clue where to begin!
If you struggle with meal planning and are not eating gluten and/or dairy – for whatever reason – this book could be an incredible asset to your collection. Remember that every recipe can be made with ingredients found at your own local grocery store, but can easily be tailored based on where you are in your own real food journey.
Can I show you just how delicious your dinners could be? How about a serving of Sticky & Sweet Oven Roasted Chicken?
Sweet honey meets savory onion and garlic with a kick of rich molasses. YUM!
Be sure to save room for dessert – Maple Apple Pear Oat Crumble!
These particular recipes are not from “Simplified Dinners: Gluten-Free and Dairy-Free” because the book doesn’t have recipes, remember? But I took one of her methods, started with a variation idea and put my own spin on it. I did the same with dessert too! Would you believe that neither contain gluten nor dairy?! I’m pretty impressed with myself at the moment! :) It’s tempting to make that for my own family tonight!
The recipes for Sticky & Sweet Oven Roasted Chicken and Maple Apple Pear Oat Crumble are below, but don’t miss out on the opportunity to save $3 off your own copy of “Simplified Dinners: Gluten-Free and Dairy-Free” with the discount code REALFOOD for the next seven days. Psst – the code works for the original edition too if you missed out on the discount last month! If you’re interested, don’t put off buying the book! There are no more reviews and discount codes waiting in the Crumbs queue!
Sweet & Sticky Oven Roasted Chicken
2 carrots, peeled and sliced
2 medium potatoes, washed and cubed
4 pieces chicken
1/4 cup molasses
1/4 cup ketchup
1/4 cup honey
1/4 cup maple syrup
1 Tbsp Italian seasoning
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp onion powder
2 Tbsp butter, cut into small pieces
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. In an 8×8 oven-proof dish, layer the potatoes and carrots. Combine molasses, ketchup, honey, maple syrup and all seasoning in a medium bowl. Add chicken and stir to coat. Place chicken on top of vegetables and pour remaining sauce over. Place butter on top of chicken. Bake for 45 minutes, or until chicken is cooked through. Dish may need to be put back in the oven for 15-20 minutes for vegetables to finish cooking.
Maple Apple Pear Crumble
1 medium apple
1 medium pear
1/2 cup maple syrup
1/2 cup coconut oil
1/2 cup oats
1/2 cup oat flour
1 Tbsp cinnamon
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Slice apples and pears and place at the bottom of a pie dish. Pour maple syrup over fruit. Melt coconut oil in a small bowl. Add remaining ingredients to coconut oil and stir with a fork until oats are wet. Scoop over fruit. Bake for 30-45 minutes, until fruit is soft and juices are bubbly.
How do you prepare gluten-free or dairy-free meals? What’s your favorite?
Disclaimer: Some links in this post are affiliate links. Making a purchase through these will help keep the lights on in the Crumbs house. Thank you in advance for your support! I also received a copy of the book to review, which didn’t affect my review in the least.