Wizard Rye Bread Wands

Allergy Big is heavily into Harry Potter at the moment.  This has given us an excuse to bring back one of his old packed lunch favourites : Rye Bread Sticks.  Here is a link to our original recipe; I hope you can see that our bread stick making technique has improved a bit!  It was fun making twisted bread sticks so they looked like wands.

Fossil Biscuits

Updated recipe for improved clarity!

The dinosaurs went stomping all over our biscuits (and we learnt about how fossil tracks are formed). Idea stolen from Okido magazine.

Ingredients

  • 180g margarine
  • 120g sugar
  • 150g corn flour
  • 150g gram flour
  • 1 tsp vanilla essence

Also required – toy dinosaurs, toy insects, or similar

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 190°C/375°F/Gas Mark 5.
  2. Cream the margarine and sugar together.
  3. Stir in flours and vanilla essence, and work together to form a soft dough.
  4. Roll out on a floured surface and cut into shapes.
  5. Now make your fossils!  Either have your dinosaurs stomp all over the biscuits leaving footprints, or press your insects into the top of the biscuits to leave their mark.  Remember to remove the plastic toys before baking.
  6. Bake for 15-20 minutes.  You could read about how dinosaur footprint fossils are formed here or you could watch these videos (Footprints reveal dinosaur chase or More detailed video for older children and adults about how fossil tracks are used in research) while you wait.
  7. Leave to cool before removing from baking sheet.

Lucy’s Ginger Snaps

Gluten free, vegan, no peanuts, no tree nuts, no milk, no eggs, no GMO, Kosher.

Ingredients – Lucy’s blend ™ (Gluten-free oat flour, chickpea flour, potato starch flour, tapioca flour, sorghum flour, broad bean flour), cane sugar, soya drink (soya beans, filtered water), sustainable palm fruit oil, expeller pressed rapeseed oil, olive oil, vanilla extract, non-dairy lactic acid, raising agents (sodium bicarbonate, potassium bitartrite, monocalcium phosphate, sodium acid pyrophosphate), ginger (3%), oil of lemon, red pepper, gluten-free vinegar, black treacle, stabilisers (Xanthan gum, corn starch, carrageenan), salt, calcium carbonate, colour (Annatto extract), emulsifiers (Sunflower lecithin, sodium carboxymethylcellulose, methycellulose).

Sadly, these biscuits are not Allergy Brother friendly as they are allergic to three of the ingredients so I selflessly tried them with a cup of tea.  They were very good.  Everything you would want in a ginger snap biscuit.  They made a satisfying snap when I cracked them in half (little known fact – if you break a biscuit and then tap it on the plate then the calories fall out; this also applies to broken biscuits at the bottom of the tin.  This is definitely true.).  The biscuits had a good crunch when I bit them, and, most importantly, they tasted good.  The snaps had a good, strong, but not overpowering ginger flavour, and were just the right amount of sweet.  I hope the Lucy’s brand considers branching out into the UK, because I would definitely recommend them.

Super Seeds Raspberry Cocoa Kick 9 Bar

Ingredients

Mixed Seeds (Sunflower, Pumpkin, Hemp, Sesame), Sugar, Golden Syrup, Vegetable Oils (Palm, Rapeseed), Cocoa Powder, Freeze Dried Raspberries, Natural Flavouring, Sunflower Lecithin, Salt.

May contain nuts, peanuts, milk and soya.

One of the lovely things about being an Allergy Mum is that people send me links to possible products and sometimes buy us new things they see.  Thank you, Helen, for thinking of us and buying a 9 Bar for us to try.

This is a really helpful little product.  Unlike most cereal bars, it doesn’t contain peanuts or oats.  It’s also made with sunflower lecithin.  The Allergy Brothers can actually tolerate soya lecithin, although straight soya does cause a reaction, but I know several families that have to avoid soya lecithin. It’s a real pain, especially when there is an easy replacement, sunflower lecithin, that makes the product more accessible.

More importantly, what does it taste like?  I really enjoyed it.  It didn’t taste healthy at all!  It was chocolatey and rich.  The texture was a bit challenging, but not enough to be unpleasant.

Unfortunately, my co-taster, Allergy Little, wasn’t quite so happy.  He is just becoming more aware that there are foods that make him ill and he needs to avoid them.  He knows that he needs to avoid strawberry and I could not persuade him that this bar contained only raspberries.  I guess strawberries and raspberries smell quite similar when mixed with chocolate.  This meant that I had to eat the whole bar or, to put it another way, 217 calories, which is quite a lot for a 40g bar.

I struggle to find appropriate foods to keep the Allergy Brothers fuelled through the day so I think I will try finding the cashew and almond varieties, and see what they think of those.  I’ll just have to make sure I don’t eat them too regularly myself.

Peppa Pig Muddy Puddles

Ingredients: Water, Dry fructose syrup, Sugar, Cocoa mass (4%), Cocoa extract (2.5%), Vegetable fibre, Stabiliser (Xanthan gum), Chocolate flavour, Acidity regulator (Sodium bisulphate).

It is rare to find chocolate products without dairy in.  It is even rarer to find chocolate products without dairy in that are branded with a favourite character.  Plus, the description sounded delicious: Chocolate flavoured smoothie tubes.  Check, check, check. Guaranteed yum!  Except…

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This photo sums up what happened to every tube.  We tried them chilled and we tried them frozen.  Nothing could disguise that they tasted of sweetened chemistry set.  Certifiably yuck!

The only good thing is that the name is quite honest as you will find muddy puddles of melting, discarded ice pole around the place as the children abandon the smoothie tubes after their first lick.

Allos Maize and Amaranth Waffles with Dark Chocolate

Ingredients: (translated by me from Dutch so I don’t guarantee the translation!) Dark chocolate 60% (Cocoa mass, cane sugar, cocoa butter), roasted maize 36%, roasted amaranth 4%, sunflower oil.  (Possibly contains traces of gluten, milk, nuts, sesame, soya, eggs, lupin).

I thought these would be lunchbox Nirvana for the Allergy Brothers.  They are not allergic to the ingredients and the cakes are covered in chocolate so, from a taste point of view, this should be good.  They are wrapped in packets of three cakes so should be perfect for chucking in a lunchbox on the days we are running late for school.  Finally, I really liked that the word for roasted or popped in Dutch is “gepofte”; I don’t know why, but that word made me happy.

Then something horrible happened.  We tasted them and they tasted…healthy.  This is hard-core, savoury dark chocolate, which I like, but the Allergy Bros don’t.  There may be cane sugar in the recipe, but it’s barely there in the taste.  However, Allergy Little, who is ever the optimist, pointed out that he liked the “little poufy bits.”  We realised that he meant the popped Amaranth so we decided to make our own recipe using that.  The recipe for “Gepofte Chocolates” will appear in the next blog post and you can win one of the ingredients in our giveaway.

Inspiral Kale-Os (Tomato & Pizza Flavour) & Thanks To All Our Readers

Hello/Bonjour to our readers in the USA, Australia, Canada, France, and here in Blighty!  I just want to say a big thank you to everyone who has been reading the blog.  We relaunched the blog just two weeks ago, and since then it has been so exciting logging on every day and seeing how many hundred views we have had.  So thank you; we really doing appreciate you popping by our little corner of the internet.  I had a massive backlog of product reviews I wanted to do and the packaging pile is now at a manageable level of clutter so we might not be blogging quite as regularly!  However, we are hoping to be able to do some more in-depth posts now the Allergy Brothers are back at school and nursery.  Also I will have time to test some new recipes.  Finally, I really want to work on the accessibility and look of the website.  Plus, I need to finalise our big birthday surprise to celebrate the blog’s first birthday.  Busy times, but happy busy!

And now to the product review…

Photograph of Kale-Os packet

Ingredients: Curly kale (73%), Extra virgin olive oil (10%), Sundried tomatoes (6%), Deactivated nutritional yeast, Palmyra blossom nectar, Himalayan crystal salt, Lime juice, Basil, Tomato juice powder, Garlic, Black pepper, Oregano.

I wish the packaging hadn’t said kale crisps because that made me think of crisps!  In comparison with a slice of delicious, greasy, fried potato, these are disappointing.  The kale isn’t even that crisp.  However, if I wasn’t making that comparison then I would have been really happy.  They are flavoursome and tasty, while still being green and leafy.  In fact, I didn’t even use them as crisps.  I used them as a convenience food and mixed them with some rice and vegan cheese to make a quick meal.  A thing the packaging did get right though is that the crisps are packaged in special ecobags that can be composted at home.  So yay to Kale-Os as a superfood ready meal!

Home Free “Mini Double Chocolate Chip Cookies”.

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A sneaky snack when working from home!

Ingredients – Gluten free whole oat flour, Natural cane sugar, High oleic safflower oil, Chocolate chips (evaporated cane juice, chocolate liquor, non-dairy cocoa butter), Demerara sugar, Non-alkalized cocoa powder, Organic tapioca starch, Apple juice concentrate, Baking soda (sodium bicarbonate), Organic vanilla extract, Salt, Baking powder, Xanthan gum, Sunflower or Canola lecithin, Rosemary extract.

This is one of those products that makes me sad.  This is a fantastic product.  When you consider how many allergens are avoided (no dairy, no soya, no wheat, no gluten, no egg, no tree nuts, no peanuts, etc, etc), it’s really amazing that they have made a product that works.  So why does it make me sad?  Because, the Allergy Brothers still can’t eat it!  Sometimes, it just makes me sad when I realise how far we are from “normal” eating.

Anyway, less moaning and more reviewing!  This is a really good product.  As I have already mentioned, many common allergens have been avoided.  In addition, the product is convenient.  It comes in an individual serving, which would be perfect for a packed lunch.  Also, it has a long shelf life so you could stock up.  Finally, the taste.  Well, as always with free from products, the texture is different to what you expect.  In this case, the cookies are more chewy than crumbly.  The taste is also pretty chocolatey, but lacks the richness of a regular cookie.  Basically, if you have never tried a regular cookie then you will be very happy with this product.  If you have tried regular cookies, then you might have to eat a few packets to learn to love these cookies.  It really depends if you have as much dedication as me!

Semper Cookie-O’s

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Cocoa-flavoured sandwich biscuit, gluten-free.

Ingredients – Cream filling 40% (sugar, palm oil, lactose, emulsifier (soy lecithin), flavouring), maize flour, sugar, palm fat, maize starch, fat-reduced cocoa (4%), glucose syrup, rapeseed oil, egg powder, thickeners (guar gum, xanthan gum), raising agents (ammonium bicarbonate, sodium bicarbonate), vanilla, salt.

Semper may call these Cookie-O’s, but we all know that they are gluten free, fake Oreos.  And, you know they are pretty good.  I think they would definitely pass the “picky small child packed lunch” challenge.  Conveniently, they are packaged into five mini packets of two biscuits.

Ombar Buttons

OmbarButtonsIngredients – coconut sugar, raw cacao mass, raw coconut cream, cocoa butter, vanilla, bacillus coagulans GBI- 30 6086.

We are a quite glutinous here at Allergy Towers. In fact, this entire blog is just a justification for me to be eating yummy things constantly. So you know there is a problem when something is left uneaten here. I hated these coconut chocolate buttons so much that I left them in the fridge after eating one (I am starting to think that me and raw coconut are just not that in to each other). Allergy Dad rescued them. He ate one – “it’s like a Bounty button. These are nice. Oh hang on, that is one awful aftertaste. ” He tried a second one and then they got abandoned in the fridge again. The next step is to chuck them in the bin. This has never happened before…