Thursday, November 18, 2010

Egg Substitutes

When it comes to baking, there is one thing that is very hard to leave out of a recipe. Eggs. Neither of my boys can have eggs, after hearing that I need to store powdered eggs to bake with I was a bit clueless on what I was going to store. Here are some tried and true egg substitutes made from things most allergy friendly families have on hand. I also included on of my favorite baking secrets when baking eggless.
  • 2 tbsp cornstarch = 1 egg
  • 2 tbsp arrowroot flour = 1 egg
  • 2 tbsp potato starch = 1 egg
  • 1 heaping tbsp soy powder + 2 tbsp water = 1 egg
  • 1 tbsp soy milk powder + 1 tbsp cornstarch + 2 tbsp water = 1 egg.
  • 1 banana = 1 egg in cakes and pancakes!
  • 1 tbsp milled flax seed and 3 tbsp water = 1 egg. Light, fluffy cakes!

Now for my favorite baking ingredient….Salvia Hispanica, or more commonly known from the name brand as Salba. (It's actually the Chia pet, lol!) They harvest the seed and it is sold as a supplement, similar to flax. But what I use it for, is to make a gel out of it. By taking the seeds, adding water to them and letting them sit over night or at least a couple of hours, it creates a gel around the seeds that is just like the egg whites! I use it for baking and it really holds up! I was able to make a moist bread that didn't just crumble when you touch it (which commonly happens when you have to cook without eggs, yeast and gluten as a binder). If the labels doesn't have the directions it’s:
1 part Salba + 8 parts water = 1 egg Combine in a glass jar and let sit overnight or at least an hour.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Milk Alternatives

Before I started food storage, I bought Almond milk or Coconut milk in the carton once a week. But as I realized (when reaching for an extra carton that was gone already) I needed to have some for storage, I ran into a serious problem. I could only find powdered Soy and Cow milk. With my youngest son having a soy intolerance, I was very worried that I would never be able to find a powdered milk to store. For about a year I searched high and low for a powdered milk alternative. I found some great alternative to dairy and hopefully you can enjoy some of these as well. If you don’t have an issue with milk or dairy, you are one lucky dog!
Here are some of the powdered milk alternatives that I have found:
  • Powdered and Evaporated goat milk. The powdered is something that you can usually find at any Wal-Mart or Meijer’s. They come in 12oz. cans that make about 3 quarts. Usually running about $12 a can or from the maker 12 cans (case) for $117.00. The evaporated (which is ideal when baking!) comes in 12 0z. cans and from the maker come in cases of 12 for about $30.

  • DariFree is our personal favorite. It comes in a 19.5 oz can and makes about 6 quarts of milk. Available in vanilla or chocolate (yum) &  believe it or not it’s potato based of all things! Gluten-Free Casein-Free Fat-Free Soy-Free Rice-Free MSG-Free Protein-Free Cholesterol-Free

  • Soy based powdered milks are not hard to find. Just type in “Powdered Soy Milk” in your search box and you’ll instantly have at least four to choose from. Beings that they are so easy to find, I won’t run through the different brands out there. *Know ,though, that most soy products are coming under fire for not being as nutritious as thought. Since most of our soy in the US is genetically modified and cooked at such a high heat,  they lose most benefits. Also, in recent studies among men who consume a large amount of soy, there are some undesired side effects in the “man region” and health. Just saying….

  • Coconut milk is another alternative that is great for baking and cooking. You can find it canned, which should be reserved for use in baking/cooking and not drinking. Also, you can buy it dry or powdered. With a  quick search I found a pound of it on Amazon for $9.00. We have only used the liquid before, but if it’s similar in taste, it should be very good! I would like to get my hands on some.

Cooking Essentials

I titled this section Cooking Essential, because lets face it, when you have sensitivities or allergies to foods, that will inevitably effect how you cook and bake. With our restrictions so many staple ingredients, I’ve had to really become creative when cooking and storing foods. It’s easy when you can have eggs, dairy, yeast and cheeses. They sell 10 pound cans of dehydrated or freeze dried cooking essentials. But when you can’t have those things, you have to either look for an alternative or figure out how to store the substitutions you use everyday. I’ve tried to think of all the staples from cooking and baking that I substitute with and comply them in sections. If you see anything missing, please let me know!
  • Milk Alternatives
  • Egg Alternatives
  • Cheese Alternatives
  • Baking Powder/Soda,  Vinegar and Yeast Sensitivity (*note: under advisement of our Dr. we were able to introduce sourdough spelt bread to our boys. Since they have only a yeast sensitivity, be it a high one, naturally occurring yeast is tolerable. If you have a yeast ALLERGY please don’t ever experiment with it unless advised by your Dr.)
  • Misc. For example broth, bouillon, chocolate chips…You know random cooking goodies ;)