Wednesday, November 28, 2012

The Swamp Creature

I'm going to share a dark and dirty secret with you. I never thought about cleaning my daughter's humidifier until now. I am putting this one on the "fail" side of my parenting checklist. I know that I have probably made some pretty spectacular parenting faux pas, but as of right now this one takes the cake.

Here's the deal, Jellybean has been sick for months. I'm not exaggerating. I know that sometimes it can FEEL like your kid has been sick for months and it's just multiple colds. This was 13 straight weeks of cranky, snotty, puky, coughing, multiple antibiotic taking, multiple doctor visits, and finally corticosteroid taking mess! That's 3 months, a little over 1/8 of this child's entire life. Ouch!

When all of this started I turned out the trusty humidifier and put on my cape. That's right, super mom had the humidifier set up in the room just for this sort of occasion. All we needed were the little pediatric Vicks vapor tabs and we were set for toddler cold season. Or so we thought. You see, the reality of the situation is this; we were spraying mold into Jellybean's room. Just look:

Ack! It's the creature from the deep!! This is what I have been spraying in the air for my kid to BREATHE. No wonder she wasn't getting better! She was breathing poison!

Needless to say I whipped out my best cleaning friend, white vinegar, and got to work. I took apart every piece that is supposed to come apart and soaked anything not connected to electricity in a 50/50 vinegar/water solution for about 10 minutes. I then went after every nook and cranny with a bristle brush, and yes, more vinegar. I scrubbed for over an hour, at some point I got and old toothbrush and some pipe cleaners to help with the trickier bits. While I was scrubbing I let the tank sit full of a much more diluted vinegar solution. Probably about 90/10, the majority of it being water that was as hot as my faucet could get.

After I got as much scrubbed as possible (there is a part I can't get to) I rinsed it all with cool water (as there was no hot water left) and started putting pieces back together. After that I emptied the tank and scrubbed it, inside and out. Then I refilled it half way with water and a generous squirt of hydrogen peroxide. I swished this around, emptied it, refilled it, and it is back on the shelf in Jellbean's room.

This has been a public service announcement. Please clean your humidifiers!

Happy breathing!

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Time for a Revamp

I have been food blogging for over a year now. It doesn't feel like it's been that long, but it has. This week I have been mulling over a big decision. Should I reinvent Millet Mommy? There are so many things that I want to share with you about living gluten free that have nothing to do with food. How do you help out with school art projects? If you, or your child, have DH how can you save on body care products? What are some of the best products out there? What are some fun crafts that can be gluten free and accessible?

I've posted about things other than cooking a few times. Those posts combined have gotten 12 hits. 12, that's not a big number, but what am I branding? I'm always talking about the food. Having a food blog is not a bad thing. I love cooking. It's like therapy with a delicious payoff instead of a trashcan full of soaked tissues. The issue with having a cooking blog is trying to come up with a new dish every week. I have discovered I can't do that. I can't afford it. I don't have the time for it.

Starting next Tuesday Millet Mommy is going to become a full time mommy blog. I'll share cloth diapering tips. How to make your own liquid soap. My favorite brands of convenience products. The best way to organize you kitchen in a gluten free household that has just a few gluten items for 1 person. How to come up with a family holiday menu. We will become so much more than just a recipe blog.

I'm very excited for this transition and I hope you are too.

As a result if you peek in over the course of this week you are going to see a muddled mess of a site. I'm also going to be revamping and renaming my cottage baked goods.

I can't wait to show you what I have planned!

Happy eating (and playing, organizing, decorating...)!

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Stuffed Like a Turkey

I love cooking. Have you noticed? In my world cooking equates to comfort, and love. This means that holidays like Thanksgiving are my cup of tea. I absolutely thrive on the preparation and want nothing more than to share what I have made. I may even be okay with missing out on the eating if everyone else gets some. I love cooking for people.

This year was my first year REALLY hosting Thanksgiving dinner. When I was pregnant with Jellybean we sort of hosted. I was on bed rest, my mom was on a cold liquid diet, and The Nerd has no cooking knowledge. Amazingly it all came together really well then. This year was better. 

The Menu:
Turducken Breast Roulade - That is indeed a turkey breast, duck breast, and chicken breast all layered with gluten free sage stuffing
Sage stuffing/dressing - gluten free bread, an onion, some celery, sage, marjoram, more sage, a little ginger, more sage, some white pepper, salt, chicken stock, and more sage
Green Beans - steamed and then lightly sauteed in bacon grease
Honey Ginger Cranberry Sauce - Recipe Below, oh so tasty
Sweet Potato Pudding Brulee- As good as it sounds, but better
Pumpkin Pie - Forgot to take a picture of this one, classic pumpkin pie with no added sugar. 

Add to that the mashed potatoes and candied carrots my mom brought and we had one tasty meal.

Now, the recipe:

Honey Ginger Cranberry Sauce

You'll Need:
12oz fresh cranberries (one bag is generally 12oz)
Zest and Juice of one Large Orange
120ml water
201g White Sugar
240ml Honey (Good honey, you can really taste it)
1 Tbsp Fresh Grated Ginger (Or oops I may have put way too much, oh well we love Ginger)
1 packet gelatin

Combine your cranberries, water, orange juice, sugar, honey, orange zest, and ginger in a sauce pan. Bring to a boil then reduce heat to medium until cranberries pop open. 

Add in your packet of gelatin and stir well to dissolve fully. Cook over low heat for an additional 5 min.

Pour into a serving dish and chill for at least 4 hours, or overnight. The sauce will not be firm enough to mold, but it is mighty tasty!

Happy eating!

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Lofthouse Style Sugar Cookies

Since the time we decided to have a gluten free household, not separate gluten free meals, my husband has been pining for a few special items. Sometimes I will go out of my way to buy these things for him to take to work. More often than not, we just don't think about it when it is grocery day. Several times a year a certain cookie mysteriously ends up on my grocery list app. You know the ones. The soft sugar cookies with the seasonal icing. The ones that just melt away in your mouth like clouds. We really miss those around here.

I'm not going to lie, this recipe made me think. How do you take normally dense and very "un-cloudlike" gluten free goods and make them fluffy? Believe it or not the idea came from my daughter's sensory bin. We like to play with "cloud sand". It's pretty much 1 part sand, 2 parts cornstarch, and 1 part baby oil. It's fun, fluffy, and makes her skin oh so soft. In my brain the cloud sand translated to cookies. I know... it's weird... But it worked!!

Gluten Free Cloud Cookies

You'll Need:
113g Butter
226g White Sugar
2 eggs Plus One Yolk
180ml Sour Cream
2.5ml (1/2tsp) Vanilla Extract
4g Baking Soda
4g Baking Powder
230g Cornstarch
100g Brown Rice Flour
60g  Super Fine Milled Flax Seed

With a mixer cream together your butter and sugar until it is light and airy.

In a separate bowl beat your eggs until the color lightens slightly, then add in your sour cream and vanilla. Whisk together until fully incorporated.

In yet another bowl (sorry dishwasher) combine your remaining dry ingredients and mix until they become one.

With your mixer on low slowly add your egg mixture to your creamed butter and sugar. You will probably need to stop and scrape the sides a few times to make sure that it all mixes. When that is fully mixed slowly start adding in your dry ingredients.

Once everything is mixed it will be more of a batter than a dough. That is okay. Now you need to cover it and refrigerate your mix for at least 3 hours.

Preheat oven to 375.

Measure out servings a little bigger than a Tablespoon and roll your cold dough into balls. Place the balls on a parchment lined cookie sheet at least 2 in apart. bake at 375 for 15min. Every time you run out of room put your dough back in the fridge, it behaves best cold.

After baking immediately set the cookies out to cool on a wire cooling rack.

Top with your favorite icing and enjoy... I suggest my eggnog icing.

Eggnog Icing

You'll need:
57g unsalted butter
57g cream cheese
256g powdered sugar
1/4tsp nutmeg
5ml vanilla extract
5ml bourbon

Put the butter and cream cheese in the bowl of a mixer. Set mixer to high and whip until light.

SLOWLY add your powdered sugar with your mixer on medium high. At this point it may be a good idea to have the splash guard on. After the sugar is incorporated add your nutmeg, vanilla, and bourbon. Spread on thick and garnish with more nutmeg.

Happy Eating!