Thursday, January 16, 2014

Traveling to France ....SCD Style

Hello everyone!!  I want to introdce you all to a very brave young lady, Andrea Maul!!  Andrea has gone where no SCDer has gone before!!!  And with great success took one giant step for her own health and a giant leap for all SCDers.  Andrea, with the help of Jodi from the SCD list and me, successfully traveled to France with dehydrated foods.  What is so amazing about her trip is that she was still in the beginning stages of the diet.  Eating only pureed foods!!  Yet she traveled in complete wellness and gained valuable information about traveling abroad.  Well I guess I will let her tell you the story!!!

This last spring, I had been adhering to the SCD diet for almost two years, after   being diagnosed with ulcerative colitis in May of 2011.  At this point, most of my symptoms had been gone but I was still eating mostly foods that were baby food consistency.  I’m a high school French teacher in my late 20s and I had been planning on traveling to France in the summer of 2013.  We started planning for this trip two years prior to departure; consequently, I thought that two years would be more than enough time for me to figure-out my UC symptoms.  Needless to say, I didn’t know back then what the process of healing looked like and what a lifestyle change it would entail.
So, in the spring, I had to start developing a game plan for my trip.  I was amazed, at that point, that I would be able to go on the trip without any symptoms and feeling so much better. Yet, I needed to figure-out a way to experience France while eating the same foods that were healing me and making me feel so good.  My first plan was to freeze my food for the ten days or ship food to my hotels in advance.  After doing research, I found out that France wouldn’t let me bring in foods that were not pre-packaged, nor any meats/dairy products.  Since SCD food isn’t pre-packaged, I knew I was going to have to do some more research on the matter.  After voicing my thoughts on the SCD listserv, Jodi on the listserv recommended that I talk with Melanie about her experience with dehydrating foods for camping trips.  Prior to this, I had come across Melanie’s blog but I wasn’t sure how I could dehydrate my food that was, essentially, baby food consistency.  Around the same time, I found some ideas on blogs of mom’s dehydrating their baby’s food.  At this point, I got pretty excited that this idea of dehydrating foods could work! 

In April and May, Melanie helped me in experimenting with dehydrating the veggies/fruits that I planned on eating in France.  It took some trial and error butwe eventually figured-out how much time was needed to dehydrate specific foods and how much boiling water was needed to reconstitute them.  For example, the first couple of times that I dehydrated puréed cauliflower, I had it on too high of a temperature and so it had a slight burnt taste when reconstituted.  Also, if I didn’t add the right amount of boiling water, I wouldn’t get the right consistency.  Another factor was that I needed to have it sit in an enclosed container that was small, so that way it trapped the heat better. So, after getting that all squared away, with Melanie’s advise, I knew I would be able to eat SCD safe foods on the trip!!  Melanie also advised me on buying dehydrated food bags from packitgourmet, and these worked really well for reconstituting my ‘baby food’.
Once school ended, I had a week to prepare my foods before our trip.  So, I came up with a master plan of packing enough fruits and veggies for the entire trip (dehydrated).  The tour company said that they would be able to provide me with food while I was there (which I was skeptical about), so I planned on eating SCD legal meats at the restaurants.  I also planned on buying ripe bananas and avocados while there.  Then, besides the dehydrated foods, I also brought SCD almond butter and cans of tuna.  I was able to make all of my dehydrated foods in about 3-4 days.  My dad made labels for the dehydrated packages so that way they looked ‘official’ and ‘pre-packaged’.  In the end I had about 40 packages that really didn’t take much space because they were all dehydrated and flat.
The biggest thing I was concerned about, at that point, was whether or not customs would search my bags and if they would say a) that they weren’t officially packaged or b) that I would have too much food (people are allowed to bring only a ‘minimal’ amount of foods into the country).  When I arrived at my first hotel, I had a note saying that my bag was searched by the French embassy but all contents were left as they were!!
After all of the preparation, my trip went very smoothly!  I took packages with me on my carry-on, both ways, and I would simply ask restaurants or the flight crews for hot water, add it to my bags, let it sit, and then eat my meals!  Once in France, I followed the same type of protocol.  I wasn’t always able to have meat, but I had plenty of protein from tuna, almond butter, avocados, and my packaged meals.  I thought that there would be more pure foods available but most of the restaurants that we went to were really into their French cuisine and could only prepare their meats a certain way.  Most of the time, I was able to have meat or fish for dinner. 
Every day, I would pack enough of my packages (which were very light to be carrying around) for the day.  I ate my breakfasts in my hotel, where I had brought a hot water kettle.  I would sometimes pre-make my lunches and put into thermoses that I bought that kept food cold or hot for 5 hours.  Then, I would bring packages for dinner and if the restaurant couldn’t provide me with foods, I would get hot water to reconstitute my foods.  Since I got into a routine and everything was so easy, I wasn’t dwelling on my food issue all day.  I was able to enjoy the excursions, the beautiful country, and my students….while feeling healthy!  It was an absolute miracle that I was able to enjoy the trip, after having such bad symptoms and such a limited food diet.
When I arrived back home, I felt so much more mobile and less constricted by my dietary needs!  I felt and still feel like I can do all of the traveling that I have wanted to do by using the same exact tactic.  In the future, I hope to be able to dehydrate more advanced meals like SCD lasagna or stews.  Still, it’s encouraging to know that this type of traveling is possible even with puréed foods!  The help and advise from Jodi and Melanie was amazing.  They both encouraged me through the whole process and kept me motivated in figuring-out a solution.  I thank God for bringing such people into my life, for allowing it to all work-out, and for giving me such healing that I was able to enjoy my trip.

And we thank you Adrea for taking such a brave step and clearing the way for all SCDers to travel with dehydrated foods no matter what stage they are in.

Andrea also has information on how to label your foods for travel abroad, menus and lables that were lovingly made by her awesome dad.  This post is further proof that you don't have to be limited on the  SCD diet from primative hiking/camping in the Mountains of New Mexico to traveling abroad, you can be secure that you will remain digestively well by dehydrating and planning ahead!!  Happy Traveling... SCD style!!!!

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Grandma's Apple Pie ... SCD Style!!

My mother has a knack for developing wonderful recipes.  I would have to say that the ablility to revamp recipes to fit a special diet came from her.  Actually, when I was 13, I suffered from what the doctor called a "nervous stomach".  The symptoms were quite similar to the ones Jacob had at different times during a flare. Not as severe though.  The doctor told my mom to put me on a bland diet.  I remember her being so determined to make things I could eat and not be hungry or miserable until I could eat normally again.  After about 3 months, I returned to a regular diet.  Then when I was 21, we were both diagnosed as Hypoglycemic.  She began, again, revamping recipes to make them sugar free and she has become a pro at it.  One day we would like to put her recipes in a cookbook to at least give to friends and relatives.  But because I like you so much and you have been so good to me... I have decided not to make you wait for the book!  We have made her Apple Pie ( famous around these parts) SCD Legal.  It is so scrumptious and healthy. Would you think bad of me if I told you I let the boys eat it for breakfast some times!

Grandma's Apple Pie
3 Red Delicious Apples Peeled and thinly sliced
1 egg beaten
1 melted stick of butter
1 heaping Tbs cinnamon
1 tsp honey
1 tsp SCD Legal Vanilla

Place a pizza pan in oven and preheat to 350.  Peel and slice apples as thin as you can get them. Put in a large bowl.  Then add all ingredients and mix well.

Pie Crust
(you will need 2 recipes)
1 1/2 cup Almond flour
1/4 tsp salt
4 tbs cold butter
2 Tbs cold water

In a bowl, put almond flour and add salt.  Slice butter into small pieces and cut in with pastry cutter or two knives.  Make sure it is cut in well.  The mixture will have a sandy look to it when it is all cut in.  Add water one tablespoon at a time. You don't want the dough too wet. If the dough holds together with the first tablespoon of water you will not need the second.  Form a ball and press into buttered pie plate.  Press evenly across the bottom and up the sides. Place in preheated oven on the pizza pan.  Bake maybe 10 min just until crust is beginning to bake.  Remove and add apple mixture.  The second pie crust will be placed in pieces on top.  Press out small amounts and place on top till all the apple mixture is covered.  Place back in oven on pizza pan on 350 for 30 min.  Check if crust has not begun to brown place back in oven for a few more minutes.

This is the most delicious apple pie.  And one of those recipes that makes you feel you are not missing out on anything!  It is also so easy to prepare.  It's as easy as pie!!!!  

Sunday, June 17, 2012

SCD Chicken Spaghetti

Well I was once again faced with that delimma. It is 5pm and I am wodering what to cook for supper.  I had some left over baked chicken and some home grown tomatoes that a friend had given me.  What to do???  Well that was when a dish popped into my head that I had had years ago at my sister-in-laws house.  That was the answer but with no recipe I just decided to try to make it according to my taste buds.  Sort of like playing a piano by ear....or maybe not..... ;D

Any way, it was a huge hit with the family.  I made a pan of non SCD Chicken spaghetti for my hubby and my younger son and the SCD version for me and Jacob.  Jacob said it was his new favorite meal!!  So I am thinkin it worked.

So here is what I did:

Olive oil
3 cups chopped baked chicken ( mine was seasoned with salt, pepper, SCD garlic powder and chili powder)
1/2  Chopped onion
3 chopped juicy tomatos
1/2 - 3/4 cup Campbells Tomato Juice
Italian seasoning Mix (basil, oregeno, marjoram, sage)
SCD legal garlic powder
1/4 tsp honey
2 Zucchinni shredded in salad shooter and sauted in pan
Fresh Grated Ramano Cheese

First, I chopped up the chicken in pretty small pieces.  Then I put it in a sauce pan with the chopped onion and drizzeled with olive oil.  Maybe 2 TBS.   I just sauted this till the onion was cooked.
Once the onion was tender,  I added the chopped tomato and covered on a low heat till cooked pretty soft.
Then came the tomato juice. I poured that on then added my seasonings.  I didn't really measure them just add to taste.  Maybe a Tbs of SCD Italian seasonings Mix. If you only have basil and oregeno that would work just fine also.  Add salt, pepper and garlic powder to taste. Drizzle honey and stir in.  Now let simmer till sauce gets a little thick.  Maybe 5-10 minutes.  In the mean time, peel your zucchinni and put in the salad shooter with the grater attachment and grate right in to a pan.  Add 1 Tbs butter and lightly season with salt and pepper.  Then saute' till cooked.  Do not brown.
Now its ready! Place zucchinni on a plate and top with chicken sauce and grated Ramano Cheese

                          Voila!!! A delicious chicken dish in minutes!!!

Sorry the recipe is kind of sketchey but I just sort of threw it together and then it was good and I thought "Ooohhh I should share this!"  Don't be afraid to contact me if you have a question I will understand completely!  I am looking forward to feed back on this one!

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Update on Second Philmont Trip..... SCD Style

Jacob, Leo and Evan at the top of  Tooth of Time Mountain
Ok it has been a little while (ok a long while) since I mentioned that Jacob was going on a second trip to Philmont Scout Ranch carrying 2 weeks worth of dehydrated SCD goodies in a backpack.  I can imagine that some of you might be wondering how things went.  Sorry it has taken me so long to answer that question.  The delay has alot to do with writer's block, beginning school and an incident that I will write more about later.  Ha hows that for a hook!!

Any way, once again the trip went off perfectly.  I am so excited.   You know you do something once and you think that well maybe that was a fluke and if I did it again it wouldn't work as well.  Well, it is now confirmed with a second very successful trip. The only problem was that I sent too much food this time!  ;D  Not too bad of a problem to have.

This is a picture of all his food the night we packed it.  As you can see it is quite an undertaking to get it all cooked, dehydrated, vacuum sealed, and seperated out.  Oh but it is so worth it to see your child, who has had to deal with all the disappointments of this disease, get to live something he has dreamed about and thought he had lost.  A little disclaimer about the picture.  You will see Cliff Twist boxes in there and they are not considered legal.  They were in our shopping bag and so they accidentally made it into the picture but do not include them in your menu planning.

Ok so the entre' meals were as follows:

Red Beans and Cauliflour rice
Taco Soup from I Want To Thrive Magazine
Beef Stew

Baked items included

Blueberry Cake
Cinnamon Danish
Golden Marsh from Grainfree Gourmet
Lemon Cake
Garlic Roll
Onion Roll

Granola or nuts

Salty Granola
Coconutty Granola
Fruit and Nut Granola
Candied Pecans from Eating SCD


Beef Jerky from Eating SCD
SCD legal Pickles
Peanut butter and honey rolls

Legal Store Bought snacks and food items

Honeyville Canned 100% Organic Chicken*
Starkist Tuna only in water**
Legal Lara Bars
Legal Stretch Island Fruit Leather
Fruit Crisps
Legal rasins
Honey Straws

And of course the Electrolyte Tablets made by my compounding Pharmacist.

Yes, this looks like a lot of food.  And it is alot to eat but really it isn't that much to prepare.  Would you believe that I only had to prepare one batch of each thing.  It's true.  That makes it seem so much more do able.

Jacob and Evan at the Top of Mount Baldy
I must remind you all though.  As you can tell the food you bring and need in order to have enough energy to make it through the entire hike are very advanced foods.  You need to make sure you are completely healed and symptom free for a while before trying this kind of trip.  You or your child will be eating quite a lot of nuts or nut products.  So make sure that the gut is healed enough to take it.  If you get into trouble and get sick on the hike they can get you off and send you home.  But our goal is to make the entire trip with out having problems and making it home fine.  So make sure you are ready, physically, to handle it.  Jacob was well a year before we tackeled this trip and he was normally consuming a high amount of nut products.  So I knew he could do it.  So that is just my warning to you because I care about you.  Don't take the trip lightly.  It can be done but you need to make sure you are ready.  Just like the physical training you must do to make sure you are strong enough to handle the hike make sure you are healthy enough to handle it. Also it is not a time to try something you're not completely certain of.  Only get Tuna or chicken that are legal.  Read the lables.  I have had to drive 2 hours to get Tuna that was legal because I couldn't find it at home.  Also, you need to make sure your camper won't take chances.  He can not have the nuts or snacks from someone else's bag.  He must know how important it is to stay 100% while out there.  If he is not committed to that you should think about waiting until he is sure he can make that commitment and understands the seriousness of the matter.  This scout ranch is very primitive and they do have a doctor if something goes wrong.  For something this serious your child would have to be sent home.

At another time, I will discuss, the breakfast you eat the first morning of the hike and meals on the way to and from the scout ranch.

Sorry to get so heavy but I am just as worried about your guy as I am mine and I know how important it is.  We were blessed in having my Husband able to be with him on both hikes; so I was not quite as crazy as I could have been.  Still crazy but not AS crazy.

I am just so grateful to the Lord for the concept of dehydrating foods. It took alot of blood, sweat and tears to develop and we were amazed at the results.  It was an answer to a desperate prayer.  And how wonderful to be able to share that answer with all of you.  Happy Hiking!!

* Don't be decieved about the Valley Fresh Canned chicken.  The 100% Natural has starch added in to it.  It says in water on the can but it has additives.  So be very careful read and reread the label before you purchase.
**Make sure to read all labels really well before purchasing your tuna.  You can find tuna in water only don't settle for anything else!!

Sunday, December 11, 2011

SCD and Antibiotics

Well I just finished reading an email from a friend whose son is also on SCD. As it turns out, he was just getting a recent flare undercontrol.  A flare she felt was caused by a recent antibiotic he had been perscribed.

I have worried about that myself as we have had a few little illness that we were able to escape having to take an antibiotic for but worried that he might have to.  Once we went in with some allergies and they wanted to give him a shot and I quickly checked the antibiotic out and found it wasn't a safe one so we passed all together.

When I began the diet, I was advised by some very wise SCDers on the SCDlist to check out a list on the Breaking the Vicious Cycle site of safe and unsafe Antibiotics before I took Jacob to the Doctor.  I was so happy then to have that information and so unaware, at the time, of the problems the wrong antibiotic would cause.  Just in case you have not stumbled across this information, I would like to pass it on to you for your consideration. You can find it here.

Just keep it handy when going to the doctor so you will have it to reference when they want to perscribe something for you or your child.

However, I am praying that you all stay in the best of health so this isn't even a problem!!

Thursday, December 1, 2011

SCD Jalapeno Sausage Cheese Bread

About a year and a half ago, I was standing in our field minding my own business, when a mare walked in front of me and for no good reason threw out her hind leg and kicked me in the left shoulder.  This sent me flying, not so gracefully, into the air and landing face first on the ground several feet from where I was first standing.  The initial lift off  resulted in a complete fracture of my heel bone and a surgery to screw it back together.  As you all are either on the diet yourself or cooking for someone on the diet, I am sure you can share in the utter dispair I felt when I realized I would be in a chair for 6 weeks non weight bearing.  This actually became 10 weeks.  Many people wanted to cook for us and learned some SCD tips to help us feed our family while I was down.

One of my biggest blessings during this time, however, was my precious sister in law who came to spend the weekend to take care of me and to cook some SCD recipes.  She stayed up till 3 in the morning making soups, stews, muffins and more.  But while she was here she decided to try to make one of her famous recipes SCD friendly for Jacob.  And boy did she hit the nail on the head with this one. The result is so much like the origional.  I hope you enjoy this recipe as much a we do.  There is a little bit to the preparation but I promise it will be worth it.

SCD Jalapeno Sausage Cheese Bread

2 1/2 cups almond flour
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
2 eggs
2 1/2 Tbs melted butter
1/2 cup fresh grated Parmesan Cheese
1 cup fresh grated Colby Jack Cheese
4 oz Farmer's Cheese or 1 cup dripped homemade Yogurt
1/8 - 1/4 cup chopped jalapenos
1/2 cup quartered SCD legal smoked sausage or breakfast sausage(cooked)

Fry sausage in a pan and let cool.  Blot off all grease.  Mix dry ingredients well in a large bowl.  Next, add in wet ingredients and mix well. Mix in sausage and grated cheeses.  Pour into a buttered loaf pan and bake in an oven preheated to 350.  Bake for 30 minutes.  Insert a knife in the center to ensure the loaf is baked completely.  If not place back in oven for 5  min and check again.  Remove and cool.

For the sausage, we have had some smoked made for us at a local meat market.  We provided the meat and they just added green onions and fresh garlic.  If this is not an option there are many SCD recipes for breakfast sausage on line like this one from Eating SCD or this one from No More Crohns.  Also if the sausage is unavailable you could just add some spicy cooked ground meat.

If you do try this recipe out I would love to know what you think of it.  This is also a great addition to the Holiday Table.  Maybe it will become a part of your Christmas tradition!!

Monday, August 1, 2011

SCD Fried Bananas

Ok, so you have an attack of the sweet tooth.  You just really need a little something to satisfy it.  You don't have anything baked and all you see on the counter is two lovely ripe bananas.  You could make muffins or bread but you really don't feel like going to all that trouble.  So what do you do??  Fry them of course!!

We first tried this wonderful and easy recipe at a restaurant in Houston, TX.  We were so excited to find it was just bananas fried in olive oil.  So of course we decieded to make them at home.  They are so simple to make but are just a perfect little treat.

Fried Bananas

2 ripe bananas
1/2 cup or more of olive oil

Cover the bottom of a skillet in olive oil.  Heat on medium low heat.  On my gas burner, I cook it on a three.  Heat the oil till it begins to sizzle a little. Then add the bananas.  Fry them about 3-4 minutes on each side.  It is easier to flip them if you use tongs.  Once the bananas are looking a little golden remove them from the pan and place them on a plate.  Lightly sprinkle with cinanmon.

I suppose if you really had a serious case of sweet tooth, you could drizzle with honey.  Jacob prefers his  with a light sprinkle of cinnamon only.

Go ahead try it. I guarantee you will go bananas for these fried bananas!!