more random things i buy because of this blog. and b/c i miss sugar.

*that’s right people: no diary. no soy. just coconut sugary goodness. i can hardly wait till this weekend to try them both. i’m not letting myself open them today for fear that i will drink both in their entirety by the end of the day and end up with a killer stomach ache.

*i’m also still technically “off sugar” — i haven’t had any since thanksgiving.
*but i am cheating for holiday parties. (i had salted dairy free chocolate at a holiday party last weekend. chocolate tastes ridiculously amazing when you haven’t tasted it in a few months.)
*lucky me, i have two holiday parties this weekend. one i’m co-hosting and will be making these gluten/diary/soy free brownies.

*i tried the eggnog seltzer. it tastes shockingly like eggnog. i spiked it with rum and i had the perfect, light holiday drink.







it’s hard to tell people you can’t eat anything they make you, especially during the holidays. in years past, december would be filled with little boxes of cookies and candies and other holiday treats full of sugar and whey and gluten and soy and other lovely ingredients that are now on my enemy list for life. i’m going into my first holidays without any of my meaningful holiday treats i’ve loved baking and eating since i was a little girl in my mom’s kitchen, dipping homemade donuts into creamy glaze and anxiously waiting for them too cool so my 3 siblings and i could eat them all. i’ve written about my feelings around loosing foods that are meaningful to me and i’m expecting this holiday will be a mix of realizations, like: o right, i can’t that any more….

the good news is:
*it’s december 5th and i haven’t landed in the hospital in exactly 1 year. this is a serious cause for celebration.
*my family, especially my sister and brother, are bent on making me gluten, diary and soy free goodies for the holidays. my brother even made up his very own cookie recipe with pistachio flour. genius!
*i can now buy gluten free, dairy free donuts in the freezer section of my grocery store, if i ever miss them that much.
*i have truly sweet and amazing friends:

i came home last thursday to package full of spiced nuts, made by my childhood friend beth and shipped from kentucky. beth wanted to make me something but wasn’t sure what i could eat since i’m off sugar and most grains. she went with nuts and did her best to keep the sugars low. i’m not sure how to explain how giddy i was when i opened the box and there were 5 packages of the following: smoked paprika almonds, spiced pecans, candied macadamia nuts, vanilla roasted walnuts, and curried cashews. all made from scratch. she included all of the recipes so i could see what she used and make them for myself once i ate all of these.

sweetest, most thoughtful gift package ever for a gal with food drama and on detox. beth, you are awesome. xo!

recipes: curried cashews, vanilla roasted walnuts, candied macadamia nuts, smoked paprika almonds, paleo spiced pecans.
(butter was substituted for olive oil.)

random bits

*avocado breakfast with Brianna’s dijon honey mustard dressing:

*i’m searching for a killer gluten-free stuffing recipe. this will be my first thanksgiving without stovetop, and yes: i LOVE stovetop stuffing. childhood favorite. i’m certain it’s the high fructose corn syrup that makes it so addicting.

*speaking of addictions, i have a new one and it isn’t eating from jars/cans. i love yerba mate. i need to find the perfect one to make at home.

random bits

*for the first time in 3 years, i started drinking coffee again. even i’m shocked by this. i’m on day 10 of an almond milk latte binge right now and i really need to let it go. i think the restore diet is making me craaaaave things i can’t have and coffee seems to be what i’m gravitating to. thankfully, it’s not making me sick. it is, however, making me loopy. one shot of espresso and i’m pretty much wired for 6-8 hours. i’m getting work done at a ridiculous pace, even over the weekends.

*our farm share was so big last week i could hardly carry it. i’m a little worried i won’t have enough room in the fridge for this week’s share, which we get tomorrow. if you get a text from me inviting you to share in the bounty, please take me up on it.

*my doctor sent me a “stern” email monday telling me that 1. i wasn’t eating enough and 2. i wasn’t eating enough veggies. guilty on both accounts. i’m trying to up my intake of all things green. broccoli has been my veggie of choice lately. i’m currently roasting brussels sprouts with bacon and apples.

*if you’re looking for a way to get through the cabbage and apples in your farm share, make this recipe. it’s a-mazing.

*my sister found this blog and i can’t wait to explore it.

*my sister and i are cookin’ up a fall gluten, dairy, soy-free party plan for october. details comin’ soon.


i can not tell a lie

i made one of my favorite cookies last night: toasted almond chocolate chip from  the spunky coconut cookbook (i have the first edition.). i can not tell a lie: i taste-tested them. some one had to. i made them for my gluten-free friend and i couldn’t just hand over cookies not knowing if they were really really good. (they are.)

i’ve made this recipe so much since last december when i went gluten-free that the cookbook actually opens to the page the recipe is on now (p. 150). i love them the most because they taste more like little scones than cookies to me. i’m sure it has to do with how i always change the recipe a little, but i like them less sweet.

here’s how i make them different:
*instead of using vanilla stevia, i just use vanilla (flavoring)
*some times i use agave instead of honey
*i don’t make my own almond milk, so i just use store-bought
*i always add more chocolate chips than required
*i always toast almonds and add them to give it a nutty crunch

kelly, of the spunky coconut, has a similar chocolate chip recipe on her blog i want to try out–adds in applesauce and coconut. mmmm.

*another fun fact: my sister told me that the pumpkin mousse recipe i’m using is very similar to the one kelly has in her second cookbook. (which i also own.) going to need to give that one a go and see how it’s different.

adding in

*i get to add in almond milk this week. you have no idea how exciting this is after almost 8 weeks without it. (exceptions included a little bit on vacation, of course.) i’ve been waiting for this day to come and i’m thrilled it’s here. my giddy about going to the co-op this afternoon and leaving with my favorite almond milk and pouring it over blueberries and into my morning cup of tea.

*i just ate the most amazing italian sausage i have ever had. it’s from a NY organic farm and i bought it at the syracuse regional market last week. pretty sure i need to put in a request for 10 more pounds of it.

*i’m going to run 4 miles today to train for my 15k. i should be up to 5 but the 3 days of contamination sickness knocked me down.

*it felt like fall this morning. i think i’m ready for it to ease out of summer, but not too quickly. i’ll miss our soaking pool once it’s too cold. it’s already starting to collect fall leaves.

i’ll take an elvis sandwich

every august, my paternal extended family meets at our family camp on bear pond (which is actually a small lake) in north turner, maine for a week of eating, swimming, playing, reading, relaxing, and more eating. the main building at the camp is a former inn that has a massive kitchen with industrial ovens, stove tops, sinks, refrigerators, etc., and at any one meal, roughly 15 people are making meals for their individual families and friends they bring with them (this year there were 68 of us–60 family/8 friends of family).

most of my cousins are dudes: we have a plethora of guys in my family. there are only 3 girls (my sister, me, and my cousin debbie). my aunts had a lot of boys and my uncle had 5 boys. two of them had 5 more boys. seriously. anywho, my cousin debbie’s son JD had read about the elvis sandwich and decided that it was written in the stars that during family week, they make one. and eat it. all of it.

according to legend, every night, elvis ate a peanut butter and jelly sandwich with bacon on a loaf of bread. times 2. that’s two full loafs of bread, a jar of peanut butter, a jar of jelly, and a pound of bacon. (the internets suggests instead of jelly he used bananas, but whatever.) i give you the chaffee family version:

step 1: grill up a pound of bacon

step 2: break out a loaf of bread, a jar of jam and a jar of peanut butter

step 3: cover one side of the bread with the full jar of peanut butter

step 4: cover the opposite side with a jar of jelly

step 5: lay on the full pound of bacon

step 6: smoosh the two sides together

step 7: cut into pieces to share among all the dudes

step 8: if you’re me, realize that 11 dudes are about to eat this masterpiece but no girls can/will (because they are either vegetarian, gluten-free, or too disgusted to try it). recruit your cousin once-removed’s friend Bella to take one for the girls and eat a piece.

step 9: watch reactions of disgust or absolute pleasure at the bread, peanut butter jammy bacon hits their mouths/stomachs.

(all pictures by my bro-in-law joe and my brother joel: thanks guys!)





*i have gone exactly 11 days without refined sugar.

*it would have been 13 days, but my research group surprised me with birthday treats (round 2) and it felt rude not to eat a piece. or 3.

*when you go this long without refine sugar, things you least expect to taste (that) sweet start tasting like dessert.

*examples: all natural peanut butter, berries, watermelon, raw red peppers.

*i read this article the other day. just read this if you want the jist.

*it made me realize that taking my fish oil supplements might not mean jack-sh*^ if i continue to eat sugar. they cancel each other out.

*in the last 7 days, i remembered (forced myself) to take all of my supplements 5 times. that’s 5 out of 7.

*these days were not in a row.

*5 is better than not at all, but not as good as 7.

vitamins: 0
deficiencies: 1

*i just forced down all of them with a frozen banana peanut butter almond milk smoothie.

*yes, i’m still addicted to those. one a day.  sometimes i don’t like to ruin them by taking supplements at the same time.

*i start crossfit training tomorrow at 6 a.m.

*i have not figured out what to eat at 5:30 a.m. to have energy to make it through the workout.

*it will not be a smoothie. it might be an egg. or nothing at all.

*wish me luck.