Here Fishy Fishy…

I remember when I was younger I had a huge aversion to fish, like many children do.  The texture, flavor, and smell are unlike anything else.  I used to fight my parents to not have to eat it, used to get chicken or something of the sort at Red Lobster if we went there (and yumm, yes, the biscuits).  As I got older, I started to LOVE fish.  All kinds of fish.  And SUSHI.  Oh, what would I do if I didn’t have sushi?!

When my mini me got diagnosed with food allergies to Milk, Eggs, Peanuts, Fish, and Shellfish, my thoughts immediately went to  what she couldn’t have, and how we were going to be able to find foods for her to have.  I worked thru it.  I found substitutions for some of our favorite foods and got creative in the kitchen.  We ate less processed foods than ever!  We found that Oreos are actually Vegan, so she could have small indulgences like the rest of the kids she knew as she grew up.

Earlier this summer, we had our annual allergy appointment where the doctor did a skin test for some of her allergies.  We were ESTATIC to find that she could eat fish and shell fish.  She was so excited to be able to eat fish and shellfish, even though she had never tasted them before.  Just given the opportunity to eat something she has never been allowed to had her all reved up.  We bought some fish sticks the very next day (I figured that was a safe bet for a 3 year old to try fish for the first time) and cooked them up.  She sat down and tried them.

She LOVED fish.  I was so scared that she was going to not like it, and we would have gone thru all of the testing for no reason.  Since then, we’ve had shrimp, salmon burgers, and pollock burgers, all of which she loved.

Last night was the true test… I had plans to make fish tacos.  Not too extreme, but still something I would picture a 3 year old eating.  So I went ahead and started making them.  I didn’t write down a recipe, but it was simple enough that I’ll give details below.  I even had some slaw and avocado to put on top.  I tell you, this small child of mine will try anything once!  I put a taco together for her, and was expecting her to try it and hate it… But she didn’t!  She loved it!  Devoured the whole thing in a matter of minutes, and asked for more.  She makes my heart smile – her courage and adventurous nature makes me so proud to be her mom, and makes me want to continue to strive to be better in every way.

Oven Roasted "Blackened" Tilapia Slaw Slaw & Avocado Smart & Delicious Mini Multi-Bran Wraps Tilapia with Seasoning

Oven Roasted “Blackened” Tilapia Tacos with Slaw

  • Tilapia seasoned with chili powder, cayenne pepper, oregano, salt, garlic powder, and onion powder
  • Baked for about 15-20 at 400 if frozen (which mine was because I didn’t think far enough ahead to take out of the freezer), less if fresh or thawed
  • Cole Slaw Mix combined with Walden Farms Thousand Island dressing and put in the fridge while baking

I topped small multi bran tortillas with some crumbled tilapia, a bit of slaw, and some chopped avocado.

I hope you enjoy if you give it a try!

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Make-do Allergy-Free Banana Bread

Woke up this morning to a bright sunny day.  What a great day!  I’ll get some errands done and enjoy some sunshine.  Then I really woke up.  The temperature is dangerously cold here in Chicago, yet again.  High of 10 degrees, although we will be lucky if it hits that.  I decided that we are not going anywhere!  Last week I declared it to be a make-do week, only picking up essentials that we were out of.  That make-do week is going to continue thru this week.  I do need to spend a few dollars and pick up some essentials (sea salt, pan spray, flour, one kind of protein/meat, and of course spinach) to be able to make it thru the week.  We have been clearing out the fridge and freezer, though.  It has allowed me to be more creative!  For instance, this morning I mixed some leftover couscous into a few eggs and made a yummy omelette with chopped chicken and cheese.  Healthy carbs, and lots of protein!  Just wish I had more spinach to add in there, as well…

Because it is make-do week, and I have half a freezer full of bananas (they get brown, I toss them in the freezer for baking or smoothies) I decided to make Mini Me some banana bread.  I adapted this recipe from SimplyRecipes.com.  When I say adapted, I had to sub most of the ingredients because of allergies, nutrition, or I didn’t have what they called for.  I guess you could say, it is highly adapted.

Allergy-Free Banana Bread

Vegan Banana Bread

Ingredients

Ingredients

3 very ripe bananas, peeled
1/3 cup unsweetened applesauce
¼ cup truvia baking blend
1 gelatin egg (see directions here)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon baking soda
Pinch of salt
1/2 cup of all-purpose flour
½ cup wheat flour
½ cup cup oat flour

Directions

Preheat the oven to 350°, and either line a medium loaf pan with parchment or spray with baking spray.

In a mixing bowl, mash the ripe bananas with a fork until smooth. Stir the applesauce into the mashed bananas.

Mix in the baking soda and salt. Stir in the Truvia, gelatin egg, and vanilla extract. Mix in the oat and all purpose flours.

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Pour the batter into your prepared loaf pan. Bake for 1 hour to 1 hour 10 minutes (check at 50 minutes) at 350°, or until a tester inserted into the center comes out clean.

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Remove from oven and cool completely on a rack. Remove the banana bread from the pan. Slice and serve. (A bread knife helps to make slices that aren’t crumbly.)

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If you want to double the recipe like I did, you can bake in a fluted tube pan for an 1hr 10 min

Not only does this recipe come out very tasty, it is also reasonably healthy!!  Very low sugar, lots of fruits.  One loaf makes 10-11 servings, one fluted shaped cake makes 20-22 servings.

Nutritional information (22 servings):  89 cal/0g fat/19g carbs/3g protein