Food Allergy Counseling

Food Allergy Counseling
Sloane Miller, MFA, MSW, LMSW, Psychotherapist; Specialist in Food Allergy Management, Speaking At Mylan Specialty / EpiPen Event (© Noel Malcolm 2013)

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Recipe: My Mother's Tzimmes

The tzimmes is in the bowl between the kugel and the challah

Rosh Hashanah is the Jewish New Year celebration. The first two nights of the Days of Awe, the foods we eat are symbolic of having a sweet new year. Many of the dishes are honey based or laced with honey; honey is everywhere: in the meats, the sides and the desserts. Here’s a slightly fuller explanation of the Jewish New Year.

One of the many dishes I look forward to every year is my mother’s tzimmes. My dad used to make a carrot raisin maple curry tzimmes that was divine. It transitioned from the Rosh holidays to just a side dish for many years. Then a few years ago my mother started making this one: fresh carrots and dried fruits. She used to make the recipe below as printed and then she started playing around with additions and subtractions. (That’s how I cook too: do the recipe once and then make my own tweaks. My dad on the other hand doesn’t use recipes but is one of those throw-things-together-and-it-comes-out-great cooks.) Anyway, this tzimmes is the perfect sweet compliment for any Rosh plate. More about tzimmes here.


Recipe: My Mother's Tzimmes

Read through carefully FIRST before making. Enjoy!


"I usually at least 4 carrots and I don't use corn starch, it thickens without it, just sitting there. I also used more water once it was done and then simmered for a bit and then let it sit without the heat on. Most of the water gets absorbed. I used dried apricots, prunes, figs and dried pomegranate seeds that were sweetened with fruit juice, not sugar as most are. I didn't use the peel or pith of the orange and lemon, just the juice and the pulp cut up.  I also took out the bay leaf with the carrots and didn't put it back in."

My Mother’s Rosh Tzimmes

3 medium carrots peeled & sliced into 1/4" coins
2 bay leaves (I use one)
1/2 orange, juice & peel, chopped into 1/2" pieces
1/2 lemon, juice & peel, chopped into 1/2" pieces
1/4 cup honey
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 tsp. cinnamon
2 cups mixed dried fruit (prunes, pears, apricots & apples)...I use whatever I've got
1/2 cup raisins
1 tsp cornstarch

1. Place carrots in a large pot with bay leaves and just enough water to cover. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer for about 20 minutes until al dente
2. Remove carrots with slotted spoon and set aside, retaining cooking water in pot. Add orange and lemon juices and pieces and simmer for about 10 minutes
3. Add honey, sugar & cinnamon and stir until dissolved. Return carrots to pot & simmer for about 5 minutes.
4. Add dried fruit & raisins with 1/2 cup water. Simmer for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally so that everything cooks evenly.
5. If you're using cornstarch, mix it with a tsp. of cold water in a small bowl and stir until fully dissolved. Add mixture to the tzimmes, stir and simmer for 10 minutes or until liquid is almost completely dissolved.

Yield 1 quart or 8 servings

My Rosh plate!

Thursday, September 18, 2014

ACAAI, Children with Asthma & Enterovirus 68

The below is an alert from American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology (ACAAI). Read more in The Washington Post and in The New York Times.

ACAAI Expert Alert:

What parents of kids with asthma need to know about enterovirus 68
Parents of children who suffer from asthma and allergies have every reason to be concerned about enterovirus 68, the virus that has hospitalized hundreds of kids across the county. Although symptoms start out like a common cold, they can move to severe respiratory symptoms such as wheezing and difficulty breathing. Since kids who suffer from asthma are already vulnerable to respiratory symptoms, parents need to be especially vigilant.

The American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology (ACAAI) advises parents of children with asthma or allergies to keep a close eye on their child’s symptoms.

“If your child seems to be struggling to breathe and their normal asthma medications aren’t working, get him or her to the emergency department as quickly as possible,” says allergist Bradley Chipps, MD, spokesperson for ACAAI. “The most important thing is for every child with asthma to have a personalized asthma action plan, created with his or her allergist. An asthma plan helps quickly identify when a child is suffering more than usual and needs immediate, emergency attention.”

Tips from ACAAI on managing asthma in children include:
• Teach your child age-appropriate self-care.
• Be sure you and your child are using the asthma medications exactly the way the allergist prescribed and are using the inhaler properly.
• If the allergist has suggested using a peak flow meter and diary to assess your child’s level of asthma, be sure they are being used properly.
• Make sure your child is following his or her asthma action plan. Most plans are created using a stoplight system – green means your medications are working and your asthma is under control. Yellow means you’re experiencing symptoms and need to follow the steps outlined, including the use of your quick-relief medicine to keep your asthma from getting worse. If you are in the red zone, you are experiencing severe asthma symptoms or an asthma flare-up and need to get immediate medical attention.

Adults are also at risk however, according to Dr Chipps, “…children under 6 tend to have more significant exacerbations.”

Monday, September 15, 2014

Food Allergy Counseling: Online Group Session Launch

I'm launching a new and exciting food allergy coaching program: online group coaching sessions. 
  • We will meet once per week, at a pre-set time, via a call-in number. 
  • The sessions will be with others just like you.
  • I will guide us all in a supportive 60-minute hour of advice, guidance and coaching around lifestyle and food allergies.
Here are the details about this special group:

WHO: Anyone with food allergies, a caregiver to someone with food allergies or a loved one of someone with food allergies.

WHERE: We will meet online, you only need a phone to dial in.

WHEN: Mondays starting October 6, 2014 at 1:30pm – 2:30pm EST.

FEE: Contact me!

Want to know more, CONTACT ME to sign up today!

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Food Allergy Counseling: Sunbutter Manufacturer's Coupon

I was contact by SunButter, makers of sunflower seed butter to offer you all a $1 off manufacturer’s coupon. (See above and download). 

From SunButter's press release: “SunButter is both peanut and tree nut free and is used in many schools across America as a delicious and safe alternative to peanut butter.”

I have met the SunButter founders many times and love their allergen policies and protocols – did you know tree nuts and peanuts cannot grow in North Dakota where SunButter is produced? Additionally, SunButter has strict allergen protocols from the manufacturing processes all the way to their truckers (no PB sandwiches allowed in the truck cab!) 

Here is more information about SunButter. Here's their allergen information. And here's how to contact SunButter to ask your personal questions about your food allergy or food restriction needs.

Thanks SunButter!

Tuesday, September 09, 2014

Recipe: Blueberry and Corn Clafoutis, Nut-Free, Gluten-Free

Blueberry and corn clafoutis, fresh from the oven

The clafoutis is a very simple pancake type dessert make with an easy batter and whatever fruit you have around. So simple, so French. I haven’t made on in ages, not since culinary school. Oh, have I mentioned that I was classically trained in the French cooking style?  Yup yup.

When I ran across this on Chef Marcus Sameulsson’s siteI thought about the extra blueberries, corn and Gluten-Free Bisquick mix I had in my fridge. Could I pull all of that together into this recipe? Of course.

Why I love it? It’s the flavors of summer in a light, buttery, not-to-sweet package: the fresh sweet corn bursts in your mouth, as do the tart juicy blueberries.  A perfect dessert after a summer meal.

A yummy slice
Here’s my food allergy free for me version. It’s free from peanuts, tree nuts, wheat, soy, fish and shellfish and is lactose-free. It *does* use milk, butter and eggs.

Blueberry and Corn Clafoutis Recipe
Adapted from Chef Marcus and Sandra Lee 

1 cup blueberries, washed and dried
1 cup fresh corn kernels from 1 corn cob
1/3 cup raw brown sugar
1/4 tsp salt
4 tbsp unsalted organic butter, melted, plus room-temperature butter for the pie dish
Powdered sugar, for dusting

1. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Butter a 9-inch diameter glass pie dish. Mix the blueberries and corn kernels together and arrange in the buttered pie dish, set aside.

2. Combine the eggs, milk, sugar, GF pancake mix, and salt in a Tupperware container that has a top. You can hand mix by doing a quick shake shake shake! Blend until well combined, about 30 seconds. Add the melted butter, and blend again, until well combined, about 15 seconds. Pour the batter over the blueberries and corn.

3. Bake in the oven until the center is set and the edges are golden, 45 minutes to 1 hour.

Serve with fresh blueberries, a dusting of powdered sugar. It’s great for a tea time snack, after dinner treat or even breakfast.