Saturday, 13 October 2012

Dinner's Ready- Accommodating Multiple Dietary Restrictions and Saving Money

I talked a few weeks ago about how overwhelmed I get with all of the different appointments, supplements, therapies, etc.  Another area that can get very overwhelming is the whole dietary aspect.  Jack is gluten and dairy (for the most part) free.  We allow him to have some real cheese, as when I saw his IgG levels that qualified him as "sensitive", they were extremely low.  Also, if you have ever seen the gluten and dairy free cheese "substitutes" you will understand why I feel like a cruel mama feeding them to my kid.  We continue with dairy free yogurt, ice cream, and avoid any other dairy when at all possible.  Nate was on the specific carbohydrate diet from December until, well, now.  I have not taken him off of it officially, and we still comply with it most of the time, but I have been allowing some cheats.  This was kind of inspired by the fact that he really hadn't made much progress while on the diet.  There are maybe 3 foods that don't follow the diet that I am allowing him to have in small amounts- his Envirokidz cereal, gluten free fries, veggie booty, and gluten/dairy free fish sticks.  Call me crazy, but I was having a really really hard time denying him one of the few things that I can tell he truly enjoys- food.  Also, because these foods are new and exciting to him, they are extremely motivating speech-wise.  He says "pop" for the cereal, and today he said "fry".  F is a totally new sound for him.  He is also trying to say cookie.  Today he also said "open" at OT and "back" to daddy.  He also said "thank you" to daddy the other day.  His OT said that his session today was probably the best one he had ever had.   So I would say he's doing ok with the new foods :-)

So anyway, when I was thinking of what would make life feel a little less overwhelming- groceries and meals immediately came to mind.  When we first implemented these diets for the boys, cost was really no object.  We were more focused on getting the right foods, preparing them appropriately and monitoring any changes.  But as we all know, these foods are extremely expensive and the grocery bills have gotten out of hand.  I have now been monitoring this much more closely and trying to find relevant coupons...which is kind of like trying to find a needle in a haystack.  I have limited my Whole Foods trips to every other week, and I buy only the speciality items the boys need during these trips.  Everything else comes from our local grocery store.  It means running to more than one store some weeks, but it's worth it.  The other thing I have done is dust off the slow-cooker and make the commitment to find recipes that we can all eat.  Sounds like a pretty tall order right?  It really hasn't been that tough.  Several of you have asked for recipes I talked about on facebook, so I thought I would post them here and tell how I modified them, if I had to, to make them suitable for the boys.  It's been way easier than I thought it would be!
Balsamic Pear, Chicken and Asparagus:
absolutely no modification needed- just make sure you have rice available, it needs to go over rice

Beef Tips and Merlot Gravy:
just used gluten free flour blend in place of all purpose, also didn't make this rice, just used regular for the boys, and John requested egg noodles. would probably go well with mashed potatoes too

Easy Slow-Cooker Pot Roast:
no modifications necessary

Slow-Cooker Meatloaf (this won some contest on Good Morning America):
This is a meatloaf, have been making this forever.  It requires the most modification- substitute milk with unsweetened coconut milk, use gluten free bread crumbs.  turns out really well- just use a little extra of the bread crumbs as the first time I made this it didn't hold it's shape very well.

I also roasted a chicken in the slow cooker and then made chicken noodle soup the next day.  The boys won't eat soup so we used real noodles.  yum!

I have the following planned this week:
Applesauce Chicken:
Brown Sugar Chicken
Sweet Mustard Roast Beef:

This website, a year of slow cooking, contains recipes that are all gluten free.  None of the above recipes require any modification at all.  Some of the others on the site do have dairy, but that's easy to substitute.  None of these recipes are expensive, none are anything crazy that the boys wouldn't try (although Nate doesn't really like beef yet), and they are all EASY.  And yield leftovers.  Added bonus?  The house smells great all day while I'm working.  I am hoping to keep this habit I collect more and more recipes hopefully it will get easier to plan.  Just knowing that dinner is taken care of eases my mind quite a bit. 

No comments:

Post a Comment