A great big welcome to Lexie's Kitchen & Living. I hope you enjoy the recipes and ramblings. For the story behind this site read here

Follow a gluten-free, dairy-free, egg-free, soy-free diet? Check out my recently released cookbook

 


 

 

 

Saturday
Dec212013

The Next Chapter

Of the 345 blog posts I have written this is one of the easiest—and the most difficult—to write.

Earlier this month I became inexplicably bothered in heart and mind. I grew edgy and unhappy and I couldn't figure out why.

So I took long walks.

I conferred with the dearest of the dearest people in my life.

I conversed with myself. 

I consulted God.

And, finally, an answer came.

The Sick Little Boy

When I started blogging, I had a sick little boy (read here). Uncertainty and fear had set up camp on the doorstep of my psyche. Blogging became an outlet—a quiet escape from the storm. I needed to learn so much so quickly, and I gratefully received so much help, knowledge, and support from so many of you in this forum. Blogging has been a source of great blessing for through it I have made friendships that will last a lifetime. My work has been picked up, published and read by millions. It inspired me to write a cookbook that I am immensely proud of. I even got to speak with First Lady Michelle Obama.

So what was the deal?

Why, all of a sudden, did my laptop become a ball and chain. Why did the thought of sitting down to create another recipe, take another photo, and write another post leave me dejected? Was it a temporary case of blogger burnout?

The End of a Chapter

I came to the realization that the very thing that once centered me was now unsettling me and that as all chapters do, this one was coming to an end.

Each chapter in life comes with a new set of challenges, adventures and demands, and in each chapter there is a balance that must be found. I am afraid that if I continue at this pace, my spirit will break. Miss Type A here would love to be that mythical Super Mom who effortlessly can do it all—take care of others, take care of herself, keep a house, prepare three meals a day, run a business, volunteer at school and blog. But I can't. I just can't. And oh my, how liberating it is to push pride aside and admit that.

In many ways I feel like I have given myself the greatest of gifts. The OK to let go of things that need letting go of and to open the door to new experiences that will shape the next chapter of my life. And the beautiful part? By giving myself this gift, I will be happier and more capable of turning around and giving to others in new ways.

So what it all boils down to is that I will be taking a hiatus from blogging and stepping away from the computer.

I am going to learn to breathe again. I am going to be present for my husband, kids, and friends.  I am going to go hiking. I am going to cook others' recipes. I am going to garden to my heart's content. I am just going to "be" for a while.

For how long? I do not know.

For four years we have met in this place and I am grateful. When I return to blogging and social media it will be because I feel it is time, and when I do you’ll likely see a little less "gluten-free, dairy-free and egg-free" and a little more "composting, travel and yoga!"

Let's Keep In Touch

Not to worry, I am not dropping off the planet and you can bet I will miss you. So for those who would like to stay in touch, here's how we can do that.

_________________________________________________

Sign Up for Email Updates [click here]
When I do post here, be the first to know.

Pinterest [click here]
Check out my other interests.

Google+ [click here] 
Where I meet with folks with similar interests.
These posts automatically feed to Facebook and Twitter.

Simply Gluten Free Magazine [click here] 
I will continue contributing to this publication as an Associate Editor.
I hope you will keep up with me there. 

My Cookbook [click here] 
If you really get to missing me and haven’t bought my book, Everyday Classics,
pick up a copy and I'll be right there with you in your kitchen! 

_________________________________________________

The content here at Lexie's Kitchen will remain and I hope you will continue to use it and my cookbook as resources in your kitchen. I will check in every once in a while and will reply to questions and comments as I can.

Geeesh, this is hard. If I could hug each one of you and thank you in person I would. For now, I will sign off with a big XO.

I love you and treasure you.

—Lexie

Monday
Dec162013

Cherry & Orange Cranberry Sauce

With the holidays upon us, it's time for feasting again. I don't know about you, but I'm still recovering from Thanksgiving—lots of family, hiking, biking, laughing and of course food!

For Christmas and New Year's Eve we'll slow things down a bit. I'll pull a bone-in turkey breast out of the freezer and brine it and serve it with this Cherry & Orange Cranberry Sauce—a recipe my sister-in-law and I crafted on Thanksgiving day.

But before we get to the recipe, I have some winners to announce! 

Thank you to all who entered the Lexie's Kitchen Holiday Book Launch Giveaway. It was a great success and really helped with book sales! I really appreciate your spreading the word about Everyday Classics.

Thank You Sponors!

Bob's Red Mill
Cuisinart
NuNaturals
Molly's Suds
Simply Gluten Free Magazine
Coconut Secret
Nuts.com
Food Allergy Kitchenware Co.
Enjoy Life
Ancient Harvest

And the Winners Are ...

Karen M. you are the Grand Prize Winner!!
Liss L. and Megan L. you have won signed copies of Everyday Classics

Now on to the cranberry sauce.

This homerun of a recipe calls for two secret ingredients, NuNaturals Cherry Stevia and a dash of Grand Marnier!

I know my kids get sick of it, but I am always trying to reduce the sugar in the things I make and bake. Since discovering NuNaturals liquid stevia concentrates (the best on the market in my opinion), I have taken to cutting sweeteners like honey, coconut sugar, and maple syrup in half and sweetening to taste with zero-calorie stevia. And so I did with this cranberry sauce.

Last week I received samples of NuNaturals' newest liquid stevia flavors. NuNaturals liquid stevia flavors now include Lemon, Orange, Peppermint, Vanilla, Plain, Cherry Vanilla, and Cherry. Oh yeah!

I used the Cherry Stevia in this cranberry sauce and it was perfect! If you don't use stevia, by all means, just use more maple syrup. Dip in and taste it and sweeten it to your liking.

Cherry & Orange Cranberry Sauce

Ingredients:

12 ounces fresh CRANBERRIES
2 cups frozen, pitted CHERRIES
Zest and juice of one ORANGE
1/3 cup pure MAPLE SYRUP
15 drops NuNaturals liquid CHERRY STEVIA
1 ounce Grand Marnier ORANGE LIQUER

Directions:

  1. Combine all ingredients in a medium saucepan.
  2. Bring to boil and reduce to a low simmer and cook until cranberries begin to burst, 20-30 minutes.
  3. Mash with a fork or for a smoother sauce blend using an immersion blender.
  4. Makes 2 cups.

 

Tuesday
Dec102013

A Gift That Gives All Year Long

Where does the time go? Only two more weeks to get those holiday gifts bought and wrapped. Time to kick it into high gear!

On second thought I could keep it simple and give the gift of magazine subscriptions—much easier!

My husband has had his eye on Backpacker magazine. The boys love Highlights. And for my health-conscious friends, it will be Simply Gluten Free Magazine

The current November/December issue marks the first anniversary of a publication that has zoomed to the top of best-seller lists, and just this month received a 2013 Hottest Launch award by Min. Way to go Carol!

Earlier this year I signed on as an Associate Editor with the magazine and have been loving the assignments I have been given—like travelling to Sedona (in the current issue, see the FlipBook below) and writing about Vision Boards (in the next issue). And they call this work?!

I'd like to thank Simply Gluten Free Magazine for their sponsorship of the Lexie's Kitchen Holiday Book Launch Giveaway. That giveaway is now closed and I will be announcing the winners in my next post.

Monday
Dec092013

Gluten-Free Dairy-Free Egg-Free Pancakes

 

In the beginning, the modifications we made to our son’s diet threw my husband for a loop. Weekends were his time to cook breakfast. It was a tradition he enjoyed, but remove gluten, eggs, and dairy and it became a serious challenge. So when I saw my husband flipping picture-perfect pancakes one Saturday morning, I nearly broke into tears. “Those have got to have egg in them,” I exclaimed. Nope. They were gluten-, dairy- and egg-free and delicious! That’s when I knew I had married a genius (I don't mean to brag :) and Saturday Pancakes were born.

The recipe I am sharing today for Saturday Pancakes is featured in my cookbook Everyday Classics: 68 Tasty & Essential Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free, Egg-Free and Soy Free Recipes. The simplicity of it is a good example of my effort to deliver a collection of recipes that make the transition to a gluten-, dairy-, and egg-free diet relatively easy, hassle-free, and tasty.

On the occasion that I use a ready-made gluten-free flour blend, I opt for Bob's Red Mill All Purpose Gluten Free Flour 1) because it is one of the few that is gum-free and 2) because it has proven to be one of the best performers when baking without eggs. 

Saturday Pancakes 
A recipe from Everyday Classics: 68 Tasty & Essential Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free Egg-Free and Soy-Free Recipes

Ingredients:

1-1/3 cups warm WATER
2 tablespoons white CHIA SEED MEAL
1/4 cup melted HONEY
3 tablespoons melted organic PALM SHORTENING or COCONUT OIL
2 teaspoons gluten-free VANILLA EXTRACT
2 cups BOB'S RED MILL ALL PURPOSE GLUTEN FREE FLOUR (see Notes)
1/2 heaping teaspoon SALT
3/4 teaspoon BAKING POWDER
1/2 teaspoon BAKING SODA

Directions:

  1. Preheat oiled griddle to 350-375˚F.
  2. In a large mixing bowl whisk together water and chia seed meal. Set aside 2-3 minutes to thicken.
  3. Whisk in honey, shortening, and vanilla extract. 
  4. Add flour and salt and whisk until smooth.
  5. Add baking powder and baking soda. Whisk just until incorporated.
  6. Using a 1/4-cup measure gently scoop batter onto griddle to form 4-inch pancakes. Cook until bubbles appear and begin popping on surface. 
  7. Flip and cook 1-2 minutes more. Best enjoyed hot off the griddle.
  8. Batter may be prepared in a blender. Simply add all ingredients to blender container except for baking soda and baking powder. Blend until smooth. Add baking soda and baking powder and blend just until combined. Pour batter from blender container for perfectly round pancakes.

Notes:

 

  1. If cross-contamination with tree nuts and soy are a concern for you and your family, I provide a recipe for a nearly identical homemade blend to Bob's on page 39 of Everyday Classics. It may be used 1:1.
  2. One reader asked what palm shortening was. It is non-hydrogenated palm oil—an allergy-friendly fat. I use it here on my blog because not everyone tolerates coconut oil and butter is off limits for the dairy-free among us and I no longer use olive oil in baking. Another reason we use it because of its short- and medium-chain fatty acid profile which Little Man's body can more easily convert to energy at a cellular level (versus long-chain fatty acids—those found in animal fats. Other oils I use include Safflower and Avocado. I think a post on Fats is due :)

 

 

Friday
Dec062013

Our Favorite Laundry Detergent

Oh what fun! To celebrate the launch of Everyday ClassicsLexie's Kitchen is giving away over $350 in goodies to one lucky winner. In addition, two other readers will win signed copies of Everyday Classics.

Without the help of some dynamite sponsors, this giveaway wouldn't have been possible.

Today I want to thank and tell you about Molly's Suds. Founder Monica and I have become friends over the last year. This woman is smart and passionate about what she does—and her passion comes from a very deep place

This is a woman who has made it her mission to rid homes across America of synthetic fragrances, parabens, SLS/ SLES, disodium EDTA and other nasty chemicals. She encourages you to take a good, hard look at what you are breathing in and applying to your skin.

One way to do that is to visit EWG.org. Another way is to begin replacing toxic cleaners in your home with products like Molly's Suds. The latest addition to Monica's ever-growing line is a Cloth Diaper Powder. Can I hear the mommies in the house say "oh yeah!"

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