Baking! Cookies!

My feet hurt… But I don’t mind because it’s from standing in the kitchen making cookies. Not only did I feel well enough –  no migraines – no sick – no allergic reactions – to bake but I managed to be smart about it too. It’s amazing how much easier it is to bake cookies if you have a stand mixer AND measure out most ingredients before you start mixing.

Furthermore, everything I made is guaranteed free of anything I’m allergic to. Thank you Enjoy Life foods and Sunbutter.

It’s surprisingly hard to find a chocolate chip cookie recipe that doesn’t have something extra in it – like espresso powder – or nuts. Martha Stewart has a very good recipe though. I’ll use it again.

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Food and allergies

I don’t know why I just decided to make this list. Kinda depressing really. I’m planning on getting new allergy testing done… soon.

Things I cannot eat because they will cause pain/distress/problems – either intolerance or allergy.
1. shellfish (I miss crab)
2. salt water fish (and sushi)
3. fresh water fish (I can manage some kinds of fresh water fish – but I have to be up to trying fate)
4. walnuts
5. peanuts
6. MSG
7. lactose (intolerance)
8. fatty/greasy beef (intolerance?)

Migraine triggers – things I completely avoid or eat sparingly
1. wine
2. aged cheese (eat sparingly – aged cheese is low in lactose)
3. nuts
4. MSG
5. processed meats – like regular/cured deli meat (uncured bacon is scrumptious)

Other things that I haven’t proven give me problems or that I avoid to be safe
1. too much garlic
2. canned tuna
3. a lot of ranch dressing (good chance of MSG)
4. Asian buffets
5. strong chemicals – lysol to paint fumes to strong bath soap

Things I’m allergic to – varying levels of severity
1. cats
2. dogs
3. dust and dust mites
4. roaches
5. tobacco
6. grass and tree pollen

I’m not allergic to ragweed! or wasn’t when I was last tested years ago.

Recipe: Pasta sauce with [MEAT] and [PASTA]

1 lb meat of your choice (we have used ground bison, chicken tenders, ground italian sausage, and various forms of link sausage)
1/2 medium onion (red or yellow) chopped
2 stalks celery chopped
2 medium carrots chopped
1 bunch of asparagus with the tough ends trimmed off (about a pound)
2 jars pasta sauce (our favorite brand is Blumetti’s, but any brand that doesn’t have water in it, or at least doesn’t have water as first ingredient will work)
1 package pasta (we typically use whole wheat pasta, either spaghetti, linguine, or penne lately)
optional
1-6 cloves garlic (cook with the onion, carrot and celery)
dried oregano
dried basil
grated parmesan

* Cook the meat and set aside (I slice the chicken tenders into small bits before cooking, and typically will boil the link sausages and then slice them, otherwise just brown the ground meat, ground meat or chicken is usually seasoned with garlic salt and pepper)
* Place a small amount of oil in a saute pan (pan choice is really up to you) and heat it over medium heat, then add the onion, carrots, and celery, and cook until soft (few minutes at most)
* Add the asparagus to the onion, carrot, celery mixture, and cook for a minute or two (this is optional)
* Combine meat, veggies, and sauce in a large pan (I prefer to use a pan that will also accomodate the pasta once it is cooked)
* Bring mixture to a simmer, and let it simmer for however long you want, the longer the better (I try to at least give it 30 minutes)
* I add dried oregano, basil, and/or grated parmesan to the sauce depending on what I feel like and what kind I have (cheaper sauce I am more likely to doctor)
* Cook pasta according to directions
* Add drained pasta to sauce, mix well, serve, and enjoy

Note: This isn’t my recipe. This is my husband’s recipe. Honestly, he’s a better cook than I am because he likes to cook. I can cook and cook well enough, I’m out of practice at this point though. (He’s been cooking while I’m in school so I have more time for things like homework and other household chores.) Cooking I do is usually limited to baking and my own mother’s recipes. That being said, this is a very reliable recipe that will do better with better quality foods. We’ve had it bomb with less than good spaghetti sauce and asparagus is excellent in spaghetti sauce.