Saturday, January 25, 2014

An FPIES-Friendly First Birthday Party.

Myra's birthday party was today and it went great!  A few people had to miss out for various reasons, but such is life.  We still had quite a few people come and everyone had a good time.

I was kind of stressing about the FPIES (Food Protein Induced Enterocolitis Syndrome) menu.  We made a decision a while back to only serve Myra's safe foods at the party.  We wanted to be respectful of Myra since it's likely the one day every year that it will be practical to cater to her diet for an entire event.  We wanted there to be zero stress about spilling, crumbs, people wondering what they can and can't feed her, or people needing to be extra careful with hand washing.  And we wanted to use it as an awareness piece to show people what her diet is really like and how creative we have become with food for her.  It was a new concept at first, but once we explained it people seemed to really understand.  Trevor explained it well by saying, "You wouldn't serve a sugary cake and ice cream at a diabetic kid's party, would you? This is no different." I spent the last week or two researching and practicing options with her limited safe foods (peaches, coconut, and potatoes, plus a couple "freebies" - salt, sugar, baking soda).  I made some pretty good mashed potatoes a while back, so I attempted a huge batch of them, but totally screwed up my proportions so I ended up not serving them.  I imagine Myra will eat them no problem, but they tasted very coconutty and the texture was pretty gummy.  I made a couple versions of coconut flour cake pops, but didn't end up with too many that tasted very good, so Myra just got those as her smash cake.  I topped them with whipped cream (coconut milk whipped with homemade powdered sugar-did you know powdered sugar has cornstarch or tapioca starch in it?? I put sugar in a blender with potato starch and it worked great!) and diced peaches (we can only use the canned peaches that have peaches, sugar, and water listed as the ingredients).


 



Myra is still iffy on some textures, a possible by-product of eliminating solids for a while, then starting again so slowly.  She mostly played around with her cake, ate a little, spit some out, but the goal was to make a mess and she accomplished that!

For the FPIES families, or anyone interested, I will include the rest of our menu at the bottom of this post.

Myra had fun opening her presents, mostly playing with the tissue paper and tags.  She loves books, so she was actually pretty patient with reading cards.

Look at this giant, pink teddy bear that says "PRINCESS" on it.  Our nephews picked it out just for Myra. LOL.
Backstory: A few months ago I visited my best friend and Myra's godmother, Angie.  We were on a "What Does The Fox Say?" kick and listened to it all weekend with her son, Collin.  Myra got the hang of it and, on the way home, started mimicking it.  It was pretty funny.

So, naturally, Grandma Christy picked up this book for her birthday.
She looks so big!
Here are a couple photos from her actual birthday.  Grandpa Rich came to visit and Myra opened a present my mom sent.
It was a great birthday and party day!  Myra is exhausted and went to bed at 6 tonight.  

For those interested, here's what we served using Myra's safe foods (peaches, coconut, potatoes) and "freebies" (these foods are generally safe, but it's a parents' judgement call to actually trial them or not) salt, sugar, baking soda, cream of tartar.

I made peach ice cream that we didn't end up serving because we forgot about it.
2 cans coconut milk, 1/2 cup sugar, dash of salt, and diced peaches.  I mixed the coconut milk, sugar, and salt then let it chill in the fridge for about an hour.  I put it in the ice cream maker, added the peaches, and in about 20 minutes had peach ice cream!  If vanilla (or some similar flavor) is safe for you, it may be a good addition.  It probably would have been fine for us, but didn't want to risk it since we were almost finishing another food trial at the time. 

CheeChas (Original, Gluten Free variety) were the easiest item on the menu.  Order online, open bag.  Also easy but mostly for Myra were freeze dried peaches.

Baked Potato Chips just might be our new favorite snack.  I used my new mandolin slicer to cut thick slices of potatoes then put them in a gallon sized plastic bag.  I melted coconut oil (it's solid at room temperature) and poured it into the bag, zipped shut, and shook the bag to coat all the potatoes.  I laid parchment paper on a cookie sheet (my new favorite non-stick trick) then laid the potatoes on the sheet in a single layer.  I sprinkled a little salt on top then baked at 350 checking every 10-15 minutes.  I think it ended up being about 40-45 minutes, just when they started to brown.  They were so yummy!

Peaches & Cream for dessert.  Canned peaches topped with homemade whipped cream.  One can of coconut milk (the whole fat kind, not light) whipped with powdered sugar.  I made my own since store bought contains cornstarch or potato starch.  I blended regular sugar in the blender then added potato starch little by little until it was the consistency I wanted.  I chilled the mixing bowl and beaters in the garage (thank you, Minnesota winter).  I should have chilled the coconut milk since it was warm (I had to soak the can in warm water before opening it otherwise it comes out in clumps because it's so think).  It turned out more like pudding than whipped cream but no one complained.

Coconut Flour Cake Pops for Myra's smash cake. This is the recipe I was given, then I will explain how I modified it.
1 1/2 cups coconut flour 
1 tsp. baking soda 
1 tsp. baking powder 
1/2 tsp. salt 
3/4cups apple sauce (do not add water when pureeing) 
3/4 cup sugar 
1/4cup finely chopped apples 
5 tbsp. coconut oil, melted

Topping (optional): 

1/3 cup coconut sugar 
2 tbsp. coconut flour 
1 tbsp. coconut oil, still in solid form

In a large bowl, mix together flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. In another bowl, beat together apple sauce, sugar, diced apples, and oil. Stir wet ingredients into dry ingredients until just moistened. Spoon batter into muffin cups. In a small bowl, mix together coconut sugar, flour. Cut in solid oil until mixture is coarse crumbs. Generously sprinkle topping over muffins. Bake at 375 for 20 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean and allow to cool before eating. Yields 12 muffins.


I cut the recipe in half and did not make the topping.  I used extra coconut oil and a baking powder substitute since I didn't have time to get my hands on any made with potato starch instead of corn starch (substitution was 2 parts baking soda, 1 part potato starch, 1 part cream of tartar). Instead of apple sauce, I used pureed peaches and I skipped the finely chopped apples.  I think they would have stuck together better with applesauce than they did with peaches.  So, I added a little whole coconut milk (I had a case of Native Forest brand) which helped.  I'm still learning with coconut flour, but the batter will seem dry-it will be more like cookie dough than cupcake batter.  I just needed it moist enough so it would stay together in the pan.  (My first batch completely crumbled apart, but I let it dry out on a plate and Myra messed around with it for days, similar to puffs snacks.)  I put them into a donut hole/cake pop maker and just kept checking until they appeared done, about 8 minutes if I recall correctly.  Also, these didn't rise like I would expect of traditional cake mix, so I started putting them in there as an actual ball shape.  I will continue to mess around with these for sure!  Coconut flour will be much easier to use if we can get eggs as a pass!

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