Dietary Restrictions

So, a few posts ago I talked about vegetarianism and a few more posts ago I talked about food likes/dislikes.  The truth is, there are a lot of food restrictions out there, some based on taste, others on health.  I feel like these restrictions have become more mainstream over the years- when I was growing up there were no peanut-free tables in our school cafeteria and parents brought in cupcakes to our class when there was a birthday.  I’m not sure if allergies are actually increasing or if we’re just getting better at identifying them.  I’m also not totally convinced that we’re not creating allergies that weren’t there before.  But that’s a different story.  For the record, there’s some evidence that growing up with pets is linked with lower rates of nasal and other allergies later in life.  That’s why we have a dog and a cat and I rarely vacuum.  Or that’s what I tell myself.  Plus, I feel like this is a child who is allergy free:

Ok, no need for a photo really, but she's so cute, I had to share.

In reality, some people really are allergic to certain kinds of foods.  One of my good friends is unable to eat gluten.  Gluten is in just about everything.  Well, not everything, obviously, or she wouldn’t be able to eat, ever.  It’s in all the things I love though, bread, pasta, cereal, cookies, cake, stuffing and did I mention bread?  But, I take this as a challenge.  My husband’s sister is also allergic to gluten so I have spent a good amount of time finding gluten-free recipes for the above foods.  Most of the time the results are, shall we say, not stellar.  However, these cookies are fantastic.  In fact, I make them as my go-to peanut butter cookie in daily life.  (Can you imagine if you were allergic to gluten and peanuts?  Shudder.)

I like to experiment with them- sometimes I drizzle them with chocolate, other times I dip them in chocolate.  This time around, I added a little piece of chocolate in the middle.  Any way you make them, they’re delicious.  Plus, it’s a pretty easy recipe to memorize.  They’re from a great resource for gluten-free foods, the blog Gluten-Free Girl and the Chef. *

Excellent Peanut butter Cookies

(from Gluten-Free Girl)


1 cup creamy peanut butter

1 cup white sugar (plus a little extra for coating)

1 teaspoon baking powder

1 egg


Preheat oven to 350.  Place parchment or silpat on a cookie sheet.  Mix all ingredients in a bowl until well combined.  Put a few spoonfuls of sugar on a plate, shaking it to distribute evenly.  Using your hands (wash them first!), make small balls of dough about walnut size.  Roll these in the white sugar on the plate until coated.  Place on the cookie sheet and use a fork to make the criss-cross marks- push down with the back of the fork to flatten slightly and then push in the opposite direction.  If using chocolate set into the cookie, place it in the center now and push slightly.  Bake 8-10 minutes and then let them cool on the cookie sheet for several minutes before you move them to a cooling rack.  They will be crumbly if you move them too soon.  Try not to eat them all at once.  Good luck with that.

*Oh, God, I just read the current post on the Gluten-Free Girl blog and it links to another blog, In Jennie’s Kitchen.  She’s just lost her husband and I read back a few posts and cried, cried, cried.  Then I went downstairs and hugged my husband and stopped in the baby’s room to watch her sleep.

Life is like that.  To combat it, I leave you with another photo of the cutest girl in the world (biased?  Me?)- reading can be very tiring:

3 thoughts on “Dietary Restrictions

  1. Thanks Paula- I’m sure Zoe and G. could battle it out for cutest girl ever! and yes, my tears are free-flowing these days, stupid hormones!

    Hi Nicole! Nice to see you here!

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