My friend Kristen discovered that her twins were allergic to both eggs and milk products. I sympathized with her when she would tell me the stories about how hard it was. But I never truly understood until I threw my first party that they were invited to when the kids were older. I was going to try to make several things that didn’t have eggs or milk and then I realized….it seemed like everything has eggs and milk in it! I’ve asked Kristen to do a guest posting series for me once a month, sharing tidbits of her story and some recipes that she’s found that not only work well, but taste good. Take it away Kristen…..
Hi, my name is Kristen and I am the mother of 3 beautiful children–twins Jimmy & Serafina whom just turned 5, and Chloe is almost 3. They are the joys of my life and all 3 have multiple food allergies. Imagine my surprise when it came time to introduce solid foods to my babies and found out they had so many food allergies and restrictions! It turned out that the twins were severely allergic to Milk & Eggs, Fish and Soy were also positive, and the Allergist said not to give them Shellfish, Nuts or Tree nuts either until they turned 3 yrs old. (Chloe is following in her big brother and sister’s footsteps.) I was in complete shock, and panic… What in the world was I going to feed my children?? How was I going to keep them safe from having an anaphylactic reaction? The Allergist did not give me any other advice besides don’t let them eat or come in contact with any of those foods. Oh, and here’s an EpiPen Jr.
I love to bake but I was not prepared to tackle this challenge. And this news pretty much meant we couldn’t go out to eat at restaurants–at least not for a long while. Luckily I found an amazing Pediatric Nutritionist (through the Early Intervention program Child & Family Connections) who helped us so much. She came to the house and helped with new recipes to try while also making sure they were growing and gaining weight. I am forever grateful for her help. She gave me the strength and knowledge to take charge of my children’s special diet with confidence.
When it came time to celebrate birthdays, store bought cake was out of the question as it always has egg in the recipe. So the first time we went to a friend’s birthday party I felt badly because I knew my children really couldn’t eat most of the goodies. But what I decided to do was bake some cupcakes and special goodies to bring so they did not feel left out and the hostess did not have to worry about accommodating their allergies. I did find some acceptable recipes on the Food Allergy & Anaphylaxis Network site, and I experimented with my own recipes too. Turns out most of our friends really like the milk and egg free versions of our homemade creations!
A couple of years ago, my Mom found this Crazy Cake recipe in a newspaper article… Hallelujah!! Finally, a milk and egg free cake that is soooo chocolatey and delicious! This is the only cake my kids ask for now for their birthday. I hope you try it….. my children know you will like it!
1 ½ Cups all purpose flour
1 Cup sugar
1/3 unsweetened cocoa powder (I like using Penzey’s Dutch Process Cocoa)
1 tsp baking soda
½ tsp salt
1 Cup cold water
1/3 Cup vegetable oil
1 Tbs distilled white vinegar
1 tsp vanilla (Use a really good one like Penzey’s Mexican vanilla. It won’t taste very good if you use imitation vanilla. Can you tell I like Penzeys ?)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Place first 5 ingredients in square 8 x 8 x 2” non-stick metal pan.
Combine 1 cup cold water, oil, vinegar and vanilla in large glass measuring cup.
Pour liquid ingredients into the dry ingredients and use a fork to stir until smooth.
Bake until tester inserted into center comes out clean, about 30 minutes.
If you don’t want to serve the cake right out of the pan, be sure to grease and dust with cocoa powder your pan of choice and mix your ingredients in a separate bowl. I like to do it this way and
use a whisk instead.
After baking, let cool in the pan at least 20 min. before flipping it out onto a wire rack to finish cooling completely
If making cupcakes, line cupcake pan with cupcake papers and bake approximately 24 minutes. Makes 12 cupcakes. Cupcakes freeze well. Double the recipe to make a double layer cake. Can be made 1 day ahead. We like to sprinkle powdered sugar on top or use store bought milk free frosting. Enjoy!
A special thank-you to Kristen for sharing her stories and recipes with us. Look for another one from her next month!