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)

Monday, September 25, 2017

Recipe: Easy, #Allergenfriendly Apple Crumble

The perfect bite

Baked apple crumble lusciousness

This homemade warm apple crumble was served (with a side of commercial coffee ice cream) and swoons of delight were heard around my Rosh Hashanah 2017 table. My mother said, “This might be better than your blueberry crumble”. My bae said, “The crumb is better, tastier. How did you do that?” I’ll never tell them, but I will tell you all of my secrets.

This vegetarian, peanut, tree nut, gluten/wheat, fish/shellfish, soy and egg FREE apple crumble is beyond delish. It's super easy to throw together and really, can suit most diets. I will be serving this again for Thanksgiving and at my next dinner party.

Recipe Notes: 
I found and quickly fell in love with this three-ingredient crumble recipe by Epicurious.  As written using wheat flour, it’s already peanut-free, tree nut-free, egg-free, soy-free, fish-free and shellfish free – which is a lot of FREEEEEES.

I further adapted the Epicurious crumble recipe to be wheat and gluten-free. But you could totally make the Epicurious recipe as is, if you can do wheat.

If you are celiac, have a wheat allergy or a gluten or wheat intolerance, use the gluten-free all-purpose flour of your choice. I used Gluten-Free Bisquick because it’s versatile: you can make pancakes, scones, biscuits, cobbler and crumble with it and I like something multipurpose and easy to get. Gluten-Free Bisquick is in all of your big brand stores these days.

I used organic butter by Horizon Organic (I like my diary to be organic when possible) and I used dark brown sugar by Dominos.

I used a glass pie plate measuring 9.5 inches in diameter and this amount of fruit and crumble worked perfectly. If you don’t have that size pie plate or baking dish, use what you have and eyeball it. You really can’t go wrong here.

PRO TIP: Make and chill your crumble ahead, even a day ahead (I like to do as much prep as possible before a big dinner party and getting the crumble done ahead and one thing done!) A CHILLED gluten-free flour mix will hold the big yummy crumble chunks better. Don’t worry if you don’t have time to chill it though, it’ll still come out beautifully.

Getting ready for the oven - look at those YUMMY crumble chunks!


Recipe: Easy, Allergen-Friendly Apple Crumble 
(Recipe lightly adapted from Epicurious and my blueberry crumble recipe)

1/2 cup Dominos dark brown sugar

1 stick Horizon Organic cold organic sweet butter

1 cup Gluten-Free Bisquick 

4 medium-large apples (about 5 cups), washed, peeled and cut into small pieces
1/4 cup Dominos dark brown sugar
A dash of ground cinnamon

Preheat your oven to 375°F. Butter a glass pie dish measuring 9.5 inches in diameter. Mix the apples, sugar and cinnamon in a small bowl. Taste the filling and adjust if necessary. In a separate bowl, cut the chilled butter into the “flour” and sugar with your hands until it forms large clumps and everything is incorporated. Keep those clumps! Add the fruit to the pie plate and spread the crumble on top until the fruit is all covered (some fruit peeking through is fine).

Bake your crisp in a 375°F oven until the fruit juices are bubbling and the topping is golden brown, that was 45 minutes for me. (Epicurious states that cooking time can take anywhere from 30 minutes to an hour, depending on the size of your crisp and the type of your fruit. So keep that in mind, too.)

Serve warm with pouring cream, whipped cream, ice cream or just solo and try not to eat it all in one go.


Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Holidays: Rosh Hashanah Recipe Round-Up, 2017

Shana tova everyone! Here is my Rosh Hashanah Recipe Round-Up, 2017.

If you’re looking for the perfect brisket recipe try this one, first cut
Or this one, the deckle or second cut of brisket which is even MORE luscious if that was possible (more fat equals more flavor).
Or even this recipe for short ribs – they are all melt in your mouth good and worth the effort. And they are all top 8 allergen-free!

*MY* Rosh Hashanah menu this year is below. I’m hosting with my mom at her house and the invitation reads in part:

What to bring:
No need to bring anything. Really! But if you feel you must, pink flowers or something to drink is always appreciate but PLEASE: no outside food! 

Years of hosting people have taught me that they wonderful intentions but not always great with label reading; too many nut-filled honey cakes or chocolate babkas have shown up at the door just to be left there. So now, it’s very clear. No need to bring anything, just yourselves. If you feel you must walk in with something, flowers or drinks are great.

Here’s my menu. Everything, as always is tree-nut free and seafood free. I’ll be making an apple crisp/crumble with blueberry recipe and will post the results.


Apples and honey 

Romaine lettuce salad 
Roasted herb chicken  
Mashed potatoes 
Seared broccoli crowns
Roasted carrots

Apple crumble 
Salted caramel sauce 
Ice cream 

Tuesday, September 05, 2017

Recipe: Allergen-Friendly Roasted Corn Fritter

My new bae asked me to make him a corn jamboree to celebrate the last of the corn season. This is one of the recipes I came up with and we loved. It’s a got a little spicy background note, it’s all corn, front and center and it’s got a great crispy edge; who wouldn’t love! And it’s allergen-friendly for us: peanut-free, tree nut-free, fish and shellfish free, soy free and wheat free. These do have milk and eggs.

I lightly adapted it from The Kitchn’s recipe, which can be found here

Instead of putting herbs inside, I topped with chimichurri (see above and chimichurri recipe here) which is herbs, garlic and a little spicy. The perfect complement, really.

I also had two for breakfast with maple syrup, it so worked!


Recipe: Allergen-Friendly Roasted Corn Fritter
(Lightly adapted from The Kitchn)

Makes 15 (3-inch) fritters

1 1/2 cups Gluten-free Bisquick
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
3 cobs of corn, roasted and kernels cut off
1/2 cup milk
2 large eggs
1/2 cup vegetable oil for frying

Whisk the Bisquick and cayenne pepper together in a large bowl.

Add the corn. Toss with your hands or a spatula until the corn is coated.

Mix the milk and eggs together in a measuring cup until incorporated, then pour into the Bisquick and corn mixture.

Stir with a spatula until all of the Bisquick is moistened.

The batter will be quite thick, but do not overmix. Set aside while you heat the oil.

Heat the oil into a large skillet over medium heat until shimmering. Drop 4 (1/4-cup) portions of the batter evenly around the pan and flatten each slightly with the back of a spoon or a spatula.

Cook until golden-brown on the bottom, 2 to 3 minutes. Flip with a flat spatula and cook until brown and cooked through, 2 to 3 minutes more.

Continue making fritters with the remaining batter. Transfer finished fritters to a serving plate and serve warm or at room temperature.

I served for dinner with medium rare top sirloin steak, salad and chimichurri on top!

Friday, September 01, 2017

Recipe: Second Cut Brisket with Plums, Wine and Thyme, Allergen-Free [Sponsored]

Photo credit - Zach Nelson

About ten years ago, I decided it was time I started hosting holiday dinners (versus going to a cousin’s house, which was a schlep away, to a party peopled mainly with extended relatives of that cousin’s in laws i.e. “who are these people?”).  For about five of those Rosh Hashanahs, I've been using various friends' and family members' passed down recipes that used ketchup and dried onion soup (very traditional). I fiddled, made my own ketchup, subbed this and that and the briskets were…okay but not great. 

But five years ago, all of that changed when Melissa Clark posted this recipe in the New York Times: Braised Brisket With Plums, Star Anise and Port. It was about cooking a second cut (deckle) of brisket in a port wine, plum, star anise sauce.  I read through the recipe and decided to make adjustments, mostly the ones she suggested: instead of star anise, orange and cinnamon, instead of port red wine (no sugar though), and first cut brisket easily purchased at my local Fairway Market.

The result was brisket magic. My aunt dubbed me the new brisket queen, officially passing the mantel of brisket cooking during the holidays to me. And I have made it for the last five years. It has become THE BRISKET everyone waits all year for (same with the sweet noodle kugel, recipe here).

How could I possibly top that? 

I made the recipe with the second cut, the deckleFairway Market Harlem, where the butcher can hand-cut orders, has plenty of deckles. I called a day before, ordered five pounds, the butcher cut it just for me and set it aside.  The next day, I picked up this gorgeous five-pounder of a second cut brisket and prepared to make magic.

And magical it was. It was several moments of reverence while we all ate, and savored every bite.  My taste testers, all dudes and no one with a dietary restriction, could not get over how luscious, well-flavored and totally tender this brisket is. Two testers came to Rosh last year and said this one blew that brisket away. From everyone else, the actual quote was: "F**k yeah!"

I didn’t think I could improve upon THE BRISKET recipe, but the deckle? It's a stunner. Consider brisket perfection unlocked and achieved!

*I bought all of my ingredients at Fairway Market in Manhattan. And Fairway Market graciously sponsored the making of this gorgeous brisket. Here are my policies regarding my sponsored posts.*

Recipe Notes:
First cut brisket is what is usually sold in stores. However, many stores like Fairway Market also carry second cuts. Call ahead to make sure they have the cut and size you want; 4-5 pounds is what you need.

This recipe is a three day process, mostly hands off. Plan accordingly. It’s worth every minute.

Cut your plums and onions and gather your aromatics into a cheesecloth pouch during the time your meat marinates i.e. the day before cooking. This will save you oodles of stress during cooking day and since that stuff will be done, really it’s only about 30 minutes of browning meat then onions before the whole thing goes into oven for hands-off 5 hours of cook time.

You’ll need a large Dutch oven with oven-safe handles. 

I’ve used Italian plums, red plums, black plums, plumcots, pluots: all work. Go for what’s in season at your local market or at your local Fairway Market.

I can be OAS to ripe, raw stone fruits but after 6 hours of cooking, this dish is totally OAS-free!

I use a red wine called Remole Toscana. It’s less than $10 a bottle, it's delicious to drink and to cook with. I’ll buy a half case when I find it, as it’s my standard cooking wine for braised meats (*It was not purchased at Fairway.) 

Onions – I’ve used yellow and red, didn’t taste a difference.

EVOO – My brand is Lucini.  

Thyme – I buy the bunch sold in the herb section of Fairway that it’s a sealed plastic clamshell and split that into half.

Salt – I have low-salt eaters in my family, so I just use generous pinches of Kosher salt during marinating. No more salt is added during cooking. You can always add salt when you are dining, but if you over-salt, you can’t take away

If you have leftovers, steam them. I steam mine in a double boiler

Photo credit - Zach Nelson


Recipe: Second Cut Brisket with Plums, Wine and Thyme, Allergen-Free
Lightly adapted from Melissa Clark's New York Times Braised Brisket With Plums, Star Anise and Port

1 brisket - 5 pounds, second cut
2 tablespoons kosher salt
3 garlic cloves, sliced
1 bunch thyme
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
3 onions, thinly sliced
1 1/2  bottle red wine
1 stick cinnamon
Zest from 1 large orange
2 whole bay leaves
2 pounds ripe but firm plums, pitted and quartered
Thyme leaves, for garnish (optional).


Pat the meat dry. Season all over with salt. Lay half the garlic and thyme sprigs in the bottom of a large container and then lay the brisket inside. Cover with remaining garlic and the other half the thyme sprigs. Cover and refrigerate overnight.

Next day, wipe off all of the garlic and thyme and let the meat come up to room temp before cooking, around 30 minutes.

Heat oven to 325 degrees. Place a very large Dutch Oven or Le Creuset over high heat. Add olive oil. Place brisket in pot and cook, without moving it, until browned. It'll take about seven minutes per side. Transfer to a plate once browned.

Add onions to the pot and reduce heat to medium-high. Cook onions, stirring occasionally, until golden brown around the edges and very tender about 15. Pour in wine and scrape up any browned bits from the bottom of the pot. Add in the cheesecloth pouch with bay leaves, cinnamon, orange zest and remaining thyme. Scatter half the plums over the bottom of the pot and nestle brisket on top. Scatter remaining plums over meat. Cover pot and transfer to oven. Cook, turning every 30 minutes, until meat is completely fork tender, about 5 hours.

Let brisket cool completely in the pot, then refrigerate, covered, overnight. 

When you’re an hour away from serving, take out the meat and slice it while still cold (so much easier!). Skim the fat off the top of the sauce, there will a lot of fat, and trim the fat off the meat itself. Transfer the sliced meat back into the pot. Reheat in a 300-degree oven for about 45 minutes before serving.

Serve with steamed or sauteed greens (I served mine with sauteed string beans and shallots, see below), a side salad, evoo mashed potatoes or steamed rice/grain and garnish with fresh thyme leaves.

Photo credit - Zach Nelson


Thank you Fairway Market for sponsoring* this delicious allergen-friendly recipe!

Join me on Instagram @allergicgirlnyc and on my Allergic Girl Facebook feed to see what I'm cooking right now and to cook allergen-friendly yumminess with me!