Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Life on the Fringe + Recipes

I'm a pendulum swinging from one extreme to another.

It looks like Claire has some food sensitivities, so we're putting her on a GF/CF/SF diet. (That's gluten-free, casein[dairy]-free, soy-free, for those of you who aren't weird diet savvy.) It's rough. For breakfast and lunch, the rest of us eat the way we usually eat, and for dinner we're GF/CF/SF. I've had to add eggs and more meat to our lives so Claire and the rest of us don't starve. We haven't had a gluten-free day yet, because Claire is a scavenger and cleans up after Damon and Anne if I don't do it fast enough, but she's been dairy-free for about a month, and we've seen some definite improvements in her health.

We're also supposed to limit her refined sugars, so here are some dessert recipes that aren't exactly healthy for you, but healthier than real deal.

Strawberry Ice Cream

2 cans coconut milk (full fat: I like Thai Kitchen brand)
2 1/2 C frozen strawberries
1/2 C agave nectar or honey
1 T vanilla (most vanilla extracts have gluten in the alcohol, so be careful with this one)
1 tsp lemon juice

Blend all ingredients in a blender, and pour into you ice cream maker (check what your capacity is-mine can only hold half of this recipe). In 20 minutes or less, you'll have a pretty darn good treat. I'm something of an ice cream connoisseur, so you can trust me on this one.

Black Bean Brownies

Now this recipe is for kids/people with undiscerning taste buds. My kids devoured it, but the fact of the matter is it tastes like black beans. That's not a flavor I like in my brownies.

Pre-heat oven to 350.

1 15 oz can black beans, rinsed and drained
3 eggs
3 T oil
1/4+1 T cocoa
pinch of salt
1 1/2 tsp vanilla
1/2 C agave nectar or 3/4 C sugar
3/4 tsp baking soda

Blend everything until smooth in a blender and pour into a lightly greased smaller-type pan--maybe 8x11 or 8x8? I used a 2 1/2 qt souffle dish. Bake for 30 minutes or so. There should be cracks on top and a tooth pick should come out clean.

skip this one--you'll be bored, guaranteed

This is Damon's last week of school. He's excited. I was his soccer team's assistant coach in April and May, and I'm ashamed that I don't have a single picture to post. We do have video footage, but I haven't had any luck uploading videos. He had a good time, but he's more into socializing with his teammates than actually trying to win games, so watching was frustrating at first, until I learned to calm down and control myself. During his first game I was swearing under my breath, which is ridiculous! It was a first grader's soccer game, for crying out loud! What's wrong with me? One major thing that's wrong with me is that I don't know the rules of the game. So, when the kids weren't chasing the ball, I told the 15-year-old referee I needed a time-out, and she gave me one. I explained to the boys that they were supposed to try to score goals, and they couldn't do that if they were all stopping at the center-field line. They did better after that, but I found out later that there are no time-outs in soccer. I say that's dumb, and that you can do whatever the ref let's you get away with, like calling time-outs when there are no time-outs allowed. Overall, the kids were lucky they had me. The head coach was a good guy, and he actually knew how to play the game, but he wasn't any good at yelling at kids. I am. And I let those kids know where they were supposed to be and what they were supposed to be doing. I was hoarse after every game.

Claire took creative momement dance classes from January to April, and once again, I only have video footage. In April the entire dance ensemble performed in the opera house. It was great. I wish I could figure out how to upload video so you can see it. The best part wasn't captured with the video camera, so I'll tell you about it so I don't forget: there was one number that all the dancers performed in (ages 3-30 something). A girl was asleep dreaming, and the rest of the dancers were part of her dreams. The little kids were dressed up like monsters. It was darling. Near the end, the older dancers were lined up facing the audience and they were lifting the little kids up and putting them down one by one, passing them down the line. You should have heard Claire's delighted laugh as she was lifted up and down and passed from person to person--it was the best thing ever. She has a great laugh.

Claire and Anne are taking a little dance class together this summer--they've only had one class so far, and if it's any indicator of the future, Anne will be the class miscreant. She's really great at not following directions and being a pill.