An ant infestation with a happy ending

A couple weeks ago, we woke up to the worst infestation of ants we’ve ever had. We’ve only had a few (and only once before in the RV) but wow, this was a doozy. We’d moved to a new park the night before, and I guess they thought we were a new food truck rolling into town. We discovered them when we opened the pantry to make breakfast the next morning. The ants were everywhere. They marched right up the rear jack beneath the pantry, and found an entry point. They were also entering through the front door, but that must’ve been very new because they hadn’t reached any food yet. They were just wandering aimlessly. The pantry in the RV is quite large, and it was full. We lost about $100 worth of food. We’d become a little lax about the types of open packages that stayed in the …

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Gluten-free, Vegan, No-Mato Instant Pot Lasagna!

I have a mild tomato allergy (I get itchy and rashy, but no anaphylaxis), so I just avoid them, even though it makes me sad. It’s better safe than sorry when dealing with so many allergies and sensitivities. This lasagna has been a long time coming. We’ve also used this sauce for pasta, manicotti, and pizza. It’s not a 1:1 marinara substitute, but for those of us who haven’t had marinara in years, it’s pretty tasty. The Sauce: Tomato-Free (No-Mato) Marinara Adapted from Unbound Wellness AIP Nomato Recipe. 2-3 tbsp olive oil 1 cup chopped carrots 1 cup chopped celery 1/3 cup beet powder (I buy Frontier Co-op brand) 1/2 cup chopped non-green bell peppers 1 cup water 1 tbsp salt 2 tsp basil 1 tsp ground thyme 1 tsp oregano 1 tbsp parsley 1/2 tsp garlic powder, or 1-2 fresh cloves 2 tbsp balsamic vinegar, white vinegar, or lemon …

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Adventures in Air Frying!

Update, June 2021: our air fryer stopped working! We used it very regularly (at least once a week, usually 2-3 times a week) for 8 months. Then one day we were making fries (or chips, if you’re one of our English friends). In the middle of the cycle, it started smelling of ozone and just cut off, never to turn on again. We loved having an air fryer so we’re going to try again with a different model. But we can no longer recommend this MooSoo model referenced in this post. Stay tuned for a future update. We never use our RV oven because it’s terrible, as RV ovens tend to be. Since we cook everything in our Instant Pot or on the stove, we haven’t missed the oven too much, but we do miss being able to cook extra crispy foods (without lots of oil or heating up the …

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Date Caramel: gluten-free, vegan, free of allergens (unless you’re allergic to dates, of course)

We left Arizona last month. We’d planned to stay until the end of tax season, which was extended until mid-May, but by the end of March, we had to call it: it was too hot and we needed to leave early. We’ll be working our way back up to Crescent City, California, because we loved it so much last year. But we’re going slow this time: short hops and staying a week in each place. This gives us time to rest, work, and check out the local area. We had a nice week in Indio, California! We’ve passed through here many times with and without the RV, but never stayed a week. What a treat! Did you know they farm dates here? We stopped at a local market that advertised fresh produce. It was a cramped little convenience store with a bunch of produce— including beautiful juicy-looking dates! We got …

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Avocado Chocolate Pudding (vegan, gluten-free, grain-free)

We recently bought a Ninja Nutri Blender to attempt to make our own nondairy milks. I have celiac reactions to oats, and the oat milk fad has contaminated all the nut milks we usually buy, so we’re going to try making our own. But first… chocolate pudding! I’ve been thinking about avocado chocolate pudding since we shared an amazing cup of it in Chico, California, at Live Love Juice. We’ve made this a few times. It’s best with nondairy whipped cream, but a few chocolate chips and Dandies marshmallows are also fantastic. Ingredients 1 avocado 1/4 cup coconut milk 4 tbsp maple syrup 3 tbsp cocoa powder 1/4 tsp vanilla (extract, paste, etc) Generous pinch sea salt Instructions Blend ingredients until smooth and serve immediately. To save for later, the avocados will oxidize and the pudding will look less delicious. Melt chocolate chips with coconut oil and poor a thin …

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Siete Foods cooking class: baking with Buñuelos!

We are huge Siete fans around here. I’ve got a corn allergy and David needs to watch his blood sugar, so our taco nights (and there are a lot of them) always feature Siete Almond Flour Tortillas. We buy Dip Chips and Fuego chips in bulk off their website. Thankfully more stores are carrying them now, so we don’t have to order online as often! For the second winter in a row, they’ve been selling Cinnamon Buñuelos, which are my favorite thing ever. Buñuelos are a treat in many cultures, but generally they are some kind of fritter. These are small and crispy, grain-free with cinnamon and coconut sugar. For the second time, Siete hosted a cooking class to benefit an organization doing food work. This time it was No Kid Hungry. For a $10 donation, we got 2 bags of Cinnamon Buñuelos, a chocolate bar, and the recipes. I …

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Instant Pot Shepherd’s Pie: Gluten-Free, Vegan, Tomato-Free

Have you seen how much we love our air fryer lid for our Instant Pot? We try to make meals that don’t call for a lot of pots and pans, but since we had both instant pots on the counter, we went ahead and used both for this. This can be done without the air fryer step, or assemble in a casserole dish and bake in the oven. Everything is cooked, it’s just nice to brown the top and let the flavors rest. But without an air fryer, I would’ve eaten it without browning, and it would’ve been delicious. Ingredients 2 large sweet potatoes, washed and cut into 1” cubes 1 clove garlic, minced 8 ounces mushrooms, sliced (or one 6-oz can) 1 tsp ground thyme 1 tsp oregano 1 tsp marjoram 1/4 tsp ground sage One 12-oz can lentils, or 2 cups cooked green, brown, or black lentils 1 …

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Gluten-Free Vegan Taco Meat: grain-free, soy-free, with nut-free option

This is one of those quickie recipes we’ve used for years but never think much about it. I thought I’d share it here to go with our new cassava tortillas. Ingredients 1 cup walnuts or sunflower seeds 1 8oz can mushrooms, drained 1 tbsp chili powder 1 tbsp nutritional yeast 1/2 tsp salt 1 tsp hot sauce (optional) Instructions Chop walnuts into very coarse pieces (a mini food processor makes this easy). Add remaining ingredients, and chop until combined and the mushrooms are in small pieces. Let flavors meld for a few minutes before serving. Store unused meat in the fridge, for up to 3 days. Notes Siete Foods Habanero Hot Sauce is our favorite. A walnut-sunflower seed combo is also delicious. Fresh mushrooms can be used instead of canned. Mushrooms can be omitted entirely, but a little moisture (such as water or a little coconut oil) will help bind …

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Cassava Flour Tortillas: gluten-free, grain-free, vegan

Here is a little-known fact about us: we LOVE tacos. I mean, we really love tacos. On our whirlwind month-long trip from Arizona to Florida to get to David’s RV tech program (with a short detour through Georgia to avoid Hurricane Dorian), we had tacos almost every day. Unfortunately, tacos with celiac and food allergies can get a little complicated for such a simple yet perfect little food. I am a super-sensitive celiac, which means that it’s a little more difficult than simply looking for gluten-free labels on foods. I have been glutened several times by corn tortillas, because it’s nearly impossible to find certified gluten-free corn tortillas, or non-certified tortillas from companies that test their batches for the presence of gluten. Legally in the U.S., naturally gluten-free foods processed on equipment shared with wheat may be labeled “gluten-free,” even if the final products are not tested for the presence …

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