Welcome to ABC's and Allergies! I hope you will enjoy some of my thoughts and experiences with allergies and homeschooling, and try out some of my recipes. I have found a new passion for creating excellent meals that are free of Mandie's allergens, and are so yummy no one realizes they are "allergen free". I am also passionate about raising awareness of food allergies, and raising money for FAAN.

Monday, November 1, 2010


Due to the kids food allergies, especially the severity of Mandie's, trick or treat is not really safe for them.  I'm not even too crazy about letting them go collect candy and trade it for safe or a toy as many food allergy families do.  Last year we decided do a family Halloween party, which all three kids talked about all year and could hardly wait to do again.  The kids get to dress up and play in their costumes all day, and watch whatever kids cartoon Halloween movies we've found for them.  This year was a Pooh Movie and some other one about a square pumpkin.  We tried to get Legend of Sleepy Hollow for them but it was rented.  I guess that's what you get when you look for movies on the afternoon of Halloween!

Instead of buying costumes this year, or making them (which I just didn't have time to do), we told the kids to go through the dress up box and their clothes and be creative.  Here are the results: a ballerina, a pirate ninja, and batman.

For their treats this year I found cute bags at the local video store.  Mom and I went to Streator Kroger and found some fun treats to fill the kids bags.  I had a couple of Halloween themed coloring books (one with stickers, one with crayons), and we got them each a carton of orange juice, a cup of diced peaches, a cup of mandarin oranges with cute little spoons in the lids that folded up, an Enjoy Life Foods Boom Choco Boom bar, a couple of Clif Kids Twisted Fruit ropes, a few mini boxes of raisins, and a box of ginger candies.

The kids bags looked super cute when they were done!

At dusk the kids went out to the north yard to find their treat bags, which their daddy had hidden.  Bud also dressed in his camo and hid, waiting to spook the kids.  Unfortunately for him this year, Truman's dog Shelby figured out his hiding place and gave him away.  The kids still enjoyed seeing where Daddy had been hidden, and got a picture with him.

After they found their bags, they came inside and had a treat (they chose their juice and oranges) before watching another video while Mom and I got the table decorated and got dinner ready.  We made a "spooky" meal of Dragon Brains (spaghetti), goblin fingers (steamed asparagus), bones and bats (gf breadsticks), and eyeballs (knox blox made w/juice).  We drank goblin's blood (cranberry juice and gingerale), and had Harvest Day Cake for desert. 
Here are the recipes for dinner:

Dragon Brains (Spaghetti)
2 boxes gluten free spaghetti of choice (we used DeBoles Rice with Flax)
2 lbs ground italian style sausage, or ground meat of choice
1 onion, minced
3-4 cloves of garlic, minced
2 bell peppers, chopped (we used one yellow and one red)
1 can diced tomatoes
1 can black beans, rinsed and drained
1 quart of marinara sauce of choice (we use home canned)

Sautee ground meat, onion, garlic, and peppers.  When they're halfway cooked, add the tomatoes and beans.  Cook pasta according to package directions.  Drain pasta and combine with contents of skillet and marinara sauce.  Heat through and serve.
Bones and Bats
(Thin Crust Pizza dough recipe from Artisanal Gluten Free Cooking by Peter & Kelli Bronski)
3/4 cup warm water (about 115 degrees F)
1 Tbsp. agave or maple syrup
2 1/4 (1 pkg) active dry yeast
1 Tbsp. olive oil
1 tsp. xanthan gum
1 tsp. dried basil
1/2 tsp. dried oregano
1 tsp. freshly minced garlic
1 tsp. salt
1 1/3 cups Artisan GF Flour Mix***

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.  Combine the warm water, agave or maple syrup, and yeast in a large bowl and let stand until the mixture bubbles, about 5 minutes. Stir in the olive oil, xanthan gum, basil, oregano, salt, and garlic.  Mix in the flour to form a dough that is soft but not sticky to the touch.  Using aluminum foil, form desired shapes, place on a parchment lined baking sheet, and spray with oil.  Press dough into shapes.  Cover with a clean cloth and let rise 20 minutes.  Bake for 20 minutes, unitl done to the touch. 
  *** Artisian GF Flour Mix
1 1/4 cups brown rice or gf oat flour
3/4 cup sorghum flour
2/3 cup cornstarch
1/4 cup potato starch
1 Tbsp. + 1 tsp. potato flour
1 tsp. xanthan gum

Eyeballs (Fruit Juice Knox Blox)
4 envelopes KNOX brand unflavored gelatin
1 cup cold fruit juice (we used V8 Splash Strawberry Banana)
3 cups fruit juice, heated to boiling

Heat 3 cups of juice in a small saucepan.  Sprinkle gelatin over cold juice in a large bowl; let stand 1 minute.  Add hot juice and stir until gelatin completely dissolves, about 5 minutes.  Pour into 13x9x2-inch pan.  Refrigerate until firm, about 3 hours.  To serve, use a melon baller to cut scoop out balls and put in a bowl.
Dessert was my Harvest Day Cake.

So, this is how we enjoyed Halloween.  What did you do?

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