In my late teens, I started with not being able to tolerate dairy and my stomach started to hurt and show signs of reflux or gurd (I always get them confused). I was told I was lactose intolerant by a doctor and to take the enzyme pills that aid in digesting dairy. They never seemed to work. So, many years ago, I gave up all dairy like cheese, yogurts, milk. I would eat them occasionally and just deal with the issues like stomach pain (and another issue that I don’t want to want to mention because it is just embarrassing and gross).
So, I am totally eliminating dairy from my diet! But, it’s in many processed foods like salad dressings, butter, desserts! Now what do I eat!!!! Instead of getting frustrated, I turned to one of the tools that my mother taught me and I really enjoy doing (and it’s not sewing this time). COOKING!
I had to change many of the recipes that I have been cooking and find alternatives to the wheat and dairy in my recipes. It was harder many years ago when I first started feeling sick because eliminating these foods from my diet was unheard of and not readily accepted.
So, here’s some of the substitutes for dairy that I am using:
- Almond milk Unsweetened – can use in cooking or drink straight or in a smoothie
- Coconut milk in a can – can also be used in cooking
- Dairy free Cheese – American, cheddar, Ricotta, Cream Cheese, Parmesan Cheese…..so many choices!
- Coconut Cream – (be careful that there’s no added sugar) I’m seeing that this can be used like whipped cream (yummy!).
- Dairy Free yogurts – Kite Hill is a brand I like even though I cannot eat them any more due to the sugar (which I will talk about next time).
Back to cooking…….I love to cook and altering recipes to see what I can make. Today, I made Chia Pudding. I learned that Chia Seeds are really good for gut health, and the “pudding” made with it is easy to make and yummy! I have made it before and it reminds me of a tapioca pudding.
The recipe I followed had honey or maple syrup in it (which I cannot tolerate), so I altered it and here’s the recipe:
CHIA SEED PUDDING 2 servings
- 1 cup unsweetened almond milk
- 1/4 cup chia seeds
- 1 banana mashed
- 1 tsp. orange zest
- 1 tsp. cinnamon
Mix all together in a pint size canning jar or other container. Place in refrigerator and let the chia seeds absorb the flavors overnight (or 6-8 hours). Enjoy!
As I’m typing this, there are so many other variations that I can think of and I’m going to try! Like Pumpkin spice chia pudding, lemon pudding, chocolate pudding! This is going to be fun! You’ll see the variations soon!