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Hodgepodge from The Geranium Farm

Debbie Sharp Loeb, teacher by training but full-time mom to a disabled son, craftsperson, bead artist, great cook, creative homemaker & terrific spotter of cool new products for everything under the sun, presents Hodgepodge: recipes, household hints, stories about children, friends & relatives, cool stuff, music, & much more.

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Wednesday, April 30, 2008

A David Moment - with Maggie

The other night I was sitting on the sofa with David and Maggie started barking and "talking", meaning she wanted to go out. There was no let up even with me saying , "OK, Maggie I'll take you out in a minute." David had had enough. He lifted one leg in the air towards her and yells, "Maggie, talk to the foot!"


Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Brownie Muffin Makeover

I had just happened to come across this recipe* over the weekend that is supposed to be a Weight Watcher's Favorite.
* from: Website - Tips and Tricks - for Hungry Chicks

Yum Yum Brownie Muffins

1 box devil's food cake mix
1 can solid packed pumpkin (15 oz.)
THAT'S IT! Nothing else is needed!

Mix the two ingredients together. Don't add anything else that may be mentioned on the box, such as eggs, oil, or water. The mixture will be very thick and you will be tempted to add in other things to make the batter smoother. DO NOT DO THIS AS IT WILL RUIN EVERYTHING! Place batter into muffin tins (or mini muffin tins) lined with paper, or sprayed with nonstick spray. Bake at 400 degrees for 20 minutes**. Makes 12 regular or 36 mini muffins.

Nutritional Info:
Serving Size 1 Muffin (or 3 minis)
Calories 180
Fat 2.5g
Carbs 37g
Protein 2.5g
Fiber 2.5g

I made these last night and they weren't half bad. I was amazed how they rose. I just used the non-stick spray which worked fine and I got a few more than 12.
**Note: Mine were done in about 12 minutes or so. My cupcake pan is more shallow that most but they did rise high and were perfectly done in well under the 20 minutes given. So keep and eye on them.

This email from HP reader Kathy I. says, "I make these with a box of spice cake mix and everyone loves one can believe how you make these, it sounds too strange! I will try the chocolate ones- thanks!"

So . . . I guess it would work with any number of flavors of cake mixes!

Labels: , , ,

Monday, April 28, 2008

Mayonnaise Cake

Here is an email Barbara received and wanted to share this recipe.
"Barbara, I look forward to reading your messages and sharing your wisdom and wit with my friends and relatives. Some of your words have put poems into my mind and I thank you for that. Today's, however, recalled a recipe I got over 40 years ago from the lady who was my mother-in-law. She called it "Mayonnaise Cake" but it actually was made with Miracle-Whip (the only mayo she bought!). When I read the ingredients in your Depression Cake the 1 cup of shortening brought me up short and it was an "aha moment". - Terry W."

Barbara was wondering if others of you might have "hard times" recipes like this or like the well known Ritz Mock Apple Pie.

Mayonnaise Cake

2 cups flour
1 cup sugar
1 cup water
1 cup mayonnaise or Miracle Whip
2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 1/2 tsp vanilla
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp allspice
1/2 tsp ground cloves
1/4 tsp nutmeg
1/2 cup raisins (soak in boiling water to cover for 5 minutes then drain)
1/2 cup chopped nuts
2 small to medium apples diced

Beat all ingredients except raisins, nuts and apples at high speed for 2 minutes. Add the raisins, nuts and apples. Mix well and pour into a greased and floured 9" square pan.
Bake at 350 degrees for 45 minutes, or until done.

You can also make a chocolate cake out of this by adding 3/4 cup cocoa and omitting the spices (cinnamon, allspice, cloves, nutmeg), raisins, nuts and apples.

(I remember my mother finding this recipe in a magazine back in the 60's to make a chocolate cake using mayonnaise and being a person who never like mayo I think I swore to her it tasted "different" and didn't want to eat it. I'm sure if I didn't know it was in there I never would have been able to tell any difference. Kids!)

Friday, April 25, 2008

Autism Awareness Month

April is Autism Awareness month and April 2nd was the first U.N. sanctioned World Autism Awareness Day. To learn more about autism go to:

Here, directly from the website, is what they have to say about the possible early warning signs.

"Autism Speaks' multi-year Ad Council public service advertising campaign stresses the importance of recognizing the early signs of autism and seeking early intervention services. Research now suggests that children as young as 1 year old can show signs of autism. The most important thing you can do as a parent or caregiver is to learn the early signs of autism and understand the typical developmental milestones your child should be reaching at different ages. Please look over the following list. If you have any concerns about your child's development, don't wait. Speak to your doctor about screening your child for autism. While validated screening for autism starts only as young as 16 months, the best bet for younger children is to have their development screened at every well visit with a highly validated developmental screening tool. If your child does have autism, early intervention may be his or her best hope."

Watch for the Red Flags of Autism

(The following red flags may indicate a child is at risk for atypical development, and is in need of an immediate evaluation.)

In clinical terms, there are a few “absolute indicators,” often referred to as “red flags,” that indicate that a child should be evaluated. For a parent, these are the “red flags” that your child should be screened to ensure that he/she is on the right developmental path. If your baby shows any of these signs, please ask your pediatrician or family practitioner for an immediate evaluation:

No big smiles or other warm, joyful expressions by six months or thereafter
No back-and-forth sharing of sounds, smiles, or other facial expressions by nine months or thereafter
No babbling by 12 months
No back-and-forth gestures, such as pointing, showing, reaching, or waving by 12 months
No words by 16 months
No two-word meaningful phrases (without imitating or repeating) by 24 months
Any loss of speech or babbling or social skills at any age
*This information has been provided by First Signs, Inc. ©2001-2005. Reprinted with permission. For more information about recognizing the early signs of developmental and behavioral disorders, please visit or the Centers for Disease Control at

Back in early 2007 Bachman Pretzels formed a partnership with Autism Speaks and placed stickers on their pretzel bags as part of an awareness campaign. Now with their puzzle shaped pretzels 5% of the proceeds will be donated to Autism Speaks.
To find a store near you that carries them go to:

Thursday, April 24, 2008

How Green Are You?

At, the consumer's guide to the green revolution, you can take a little quiz to find out just how "green" you are.
Go to:

Here's a list of the first 5 steps they suggest that you can take to get started.

1. Bag it! - When you go shopping bring your own reusable bag.

2. Save on electricity - wash in cold instead of hot and line dry, use the toaster oven when possible instead of the bigger electric stove, open windows and let the light in, turn off unneeded lights & appliances, and unplug unused electronics.

3. Save on gas - Combine trips and avoid rapid, unnecessary acceleration while obeying the speed limits. Make sure to keep your tires properly inflated and get regular tune-ups. Every gallon of gas you burn produces 19 pounds of carbon dioxide, so conserving helps in more ways than one.

4. Shop a farmer - What does that mean? By shopping to help support your local farmers they won't be forced to sell off their land to developers. It also decreases the amount of "food miles" meaning the amount of fuel used to bring it to market, and you'll have fresher food!

5. Water smarts - Drink water from the tap. Bottled single-use water requires more energy to produce, store, and transport. Barely 20% of the bottles end up getting recycled and they are made from petroleum. Buy a stainless steel reusable bottle so you don't have to worry about chemicals leaching out of the plastic over time*.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Energy-Saving Tips - U.S. Department of Energy

Carol Stone of Ways of the World, here on the Geranium Farm, sends along this website from the U.S. Department of Energy on energy-saving tips for your:

Appliances & Electronics
Heating & Cooling
Insulation & Air Sealing
Lighting & Daylighting
Water Heating

Check them all out at:

Also see Carol's, Ways of the World, article: Gasoline Prices -- Yikes!

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Million Hearts and Earth Day

After the video there is an e-booklet you can download about "Applied Appreciation". The intention of this HeartMath's material is to "share practical information and useful techniques with people who are looking for a more satisfying and fulfilling life experience."

(Thanks to HP reader Sheila H. for sending this along.)

Monday, April 21, 2008


I offer you today two interesting articles about the use of "Praise".
For the first, The Importance of Praise, go to:

. . . and just when you think you knew what you were doing, a second article, How Not to Talk to Your Kids - The inverse power of praise.
By Po Bronson Published Feb 12, 2007
Go to:

(As always if this interests you don't wait too long to read it as links often disappear. I'll keep hard copies of both articles.)

Friday, April 18, 2008

TV Theme Songs Quiz

See how many of these you know:

(Thanks Joan for send that one along.)

Here's another game I found:
and to browse a huge archive of 5,158 theme songs - Go to:

Wow, sure brings back some memories!

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Keep in Touch

Hodgepodge reader, Karen, came across this poem and sent it to me. I think it's a good reminder for everyone that for some people the computer and email are a lifeline for them. So remember that and think of who you need to keep in touch with, who'd enjoy hearing a little quip, joke, story, or the latest news from home. Don't forget those who don't have computer access. It only takes a minute or two to jot a few lines on a card and drop it in the mail. Who can you make smile today?

Dear Lord,

Every single evening
As I'm lying here in bed,
This tiny little Prayer
Keeps running through my head:
God bless all my family
Wherever they may be,
Keep them warm and safe from harm
For they're so close to me.
And God, there is one more thing
I wish that you could do;
Hope you don't mind me asking,
Please bless my computer too.
Now I know that it's unusual
To Bless a motherboard,
But listen just a second
While I explain it to you, Lord.
You see, that little metal box
Holds more than odds and ends;
Inside those small compartments
Rest so many of my friends.
I know so much about them
By the kindness that they give,
And this little scrap of metal
Takes me in to where they live.

By faith is how I know them
Much the same as you.
We share in what life brings us
And from that our friendships grew.
Please take an extra minute
From your duties up above,
To bless those in my address book
That's filled with so much love.
Wherever else this prayer may reach
To each and every friend,
Bless each e-mail inbox
And each person who hits "send".
When you update your Heavenly list
On your own Great CD-ROM,
Bless everyone who says this prayer
Sent up to GOD .com


Wednesday, April 16, 2008

A Recipe for a Flourless Chocolate Cake

Use this for Passover or as a gluten-free recipe.

From 2007 The King Arthur Flour Company, Inc. All Rights Reserved

1 cup (6 ounces) chopped semisweet chocolate or chocolate chips
1/2 cup (1 stick, 4 ounces) unsalted butter
3/4 cup (5 1/4 ounces) granulated sugar
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 to 2 teaspoons espresso powder, optional
3 large eggs
1/2 cup (1 1/2 ounces) unsweetened cocoa powder, Dutch-process preferred

1 cup (6 ounces) chopped semisweet chocolate or chocolate chips
1/2 cup (4 ounces) heavy cream

1/4 cup sliced almonds, toasted in a 350' oven till golden brwon, about 10 minutes

Preheat the oven to 375'. Lightly grease 8" round cake pan; cut a piece of parchment or waxed paper to fit, grease it, and lay it in the bottom of the pan.

To make the cake: Put the chocolate and butter in a microwave-safe bowl, and heat till the butter is melted and the chips are soft. Stir until the chips melt, reheat briefly if necessary. You can also do this over a burner set at a very low heat. Transfer the melted chocolate/butter to a mixing bowl.

Add the sugar, salt, and espresso powder. Expreso enhances chocolate's flavor much as vanilladoes; using one teaspoon will enhance the flavor, while 2 teaspoons will lend a hint of mocha to the cake. Add the eggs, beating briefly until smooth. Add the cocoa powder, and mix to combine.

Spoon the batter into the prepared pan. Bake the cake for 25 minutes; the top will have formed a thin crust. Remove it from the oven, and cool it in the pan for 5 minutes. Loosen the edges of the pan with a table knife or nylon spreader, and turn it out onto a serving plate. The top will now be on the bottom; that's fine. Also, the edges will crumble a bit, which is also fine. Allow the cake to cool completely before glazing.

To prepare the glaze: Combine the chocolate and cream in a microwave-safe bowl, and heat till the cream is very hot, but not simmering. Remove from the microwave, and stir till the chocolate melts and the mixture is completly smooth.

Spoon the glaze over the cake, spreading it to drip over the sides a bit. Allow the glaze to set for several hours before serving the cake.
Yield: one 8" cake, 12 rich servings.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Family Caregiver Alliance - National Center on Caregiving

This database includes a separate profile for each State and the District of Columbia. Profiles contain the State's background characteristics related to caregiving and aging, as well as information on publicly-funded caregiver support programs. You'll find the updated data in the "Selected State Background Characteristics" sections of the State Profiles. New State-by-State data includes:

- Average Daily Cost for Adult Day Services

- Average Hourly Costs for Home Health Care

- Average Hourly Costs for Personal/ Home Care

In addition, key updates for each State include:

- Number of Family Caregivers and Total Caregiving Hours

- Economic Value of Caregiving

- Average Daily Cost in a Nursing Home

- Average Monthly Cost for Assisted Living

- Number of Home Health Aides in the Workforce

- Median Hourly Wages for Nursing Assistants, Home Health Aides and

- Personal/Home Care Aides

This interactive database, accessible in map format on the FCA website, is a valuable resource to inform State administrators and policymakers about support programs for family caregivers of adults with chronic illnesses or disabilities. It also allows caregivers and service providers to access information they need to seek assistance and benefits for themselves or their clients.

To learn more about the family caregiving landscape in your State, visit FCA's Caregiving Across the States webpage at:

Monday, April 14, 2008

The Dog, the Cat, and, the Rat

Hodgepodge reader Ann sent me a link to a video along with this explaination:

This is a video of one of the homeless in Santa Barbara with his pets. They work State Street every week for donations. The animals are pretty well fed and are mellow. They are a family. The man who owns them rigged a harness up for his cat so she wouldn't have to walk so much (like the dog and himself). At some juncture the rat came along, and so no one wanted to eat anyone else, the rat started riding with the cat and often, on the cat. The dog will stand all day and let you talk to him and admire him for a few chin scratches. The mayor of Santa Barbara filmed this clip and sent it out as a Christmas card.

After watching the clip I went to the link mentioned at the end and watched the 3 minute trailer - Humanity Ascending.

Saturday, April 12, 2008

"The First 25 Years -- A Photo Collage from Barbara Crafton's Ordination Anniversary"

Friday, April 11, 2008

Kumbaya Movie

At the end of this playing you can click on the "Menu" button and see other inspirational clips.

Thursday, April 10, 2008

infoplease -

This is a website that says it has "All the knowledge you need"
Here you can find Almanacs, Atlas, Encyclopedia, Dictionary, Thesaurus, Features, Quizzes, Timelines, Countries, and more.

Also listed are: World & News, United States, History & Government, Biography, Sports, Arts & Entertainment, Business, Society and Culture, Health & Science, Daily Almanac, a Homework Center, and even a Fact Monster with Kid's reference, games & quizzes!

One thing that you might want to do is look up the history for a given year, Decade by Decade, or see a Year in Review:
(Find out what happened on the year you were born, or print out a year's facts and include it in a birthday card.)
There's also a Perpetual Calendar here too, going back as far as 1583 and it can go clear into the future!

Wednesday, April 09, 2008

When You Thought I Wasn't Looking

(In case you hadn't seen this one already, Hodepodge reader Nancy D. sent this along and I thought it was a nice one to share with everyone.)

A message every adult should read because children are watching you and doing as you do, not as you say.

When you thought I wasn't looking I saw you hang my first painting on the refrigerator, and I immediately wanted to paint another one.

When you thought I wasn't looking I saw you feed a stray cat, and I learned that it was good to be kind to animals.

When you thought I wasn't looking I saw you make my favorite cake for me, and I learned that the little things can be the special things in life.

When you thought I wasn't looking I heard you say a prayer, and I knew that there is a God I could always talk to, and I learned to trust in Him.

When you thought I wasn't looking I saw you make a meal and take it to a friend who was sick, and I learned that we all have to help take care of each other.

When you thought I wasn't looking, I saw you give of your time and money to help people who had nothing, and I learned that those who have something should give to those who don't.

When you thought I wasn't looking I saw you take care of our house and everyone in it, and I learned we have to take care of what we are given.

When you thought I wasn't looking I saw how you handled your responsibilities, even when you didn' t feel good, and I learned that I would have to be responsible when I grow up.

When you thought I wasn't looking I saw tears come from your eyes, and I learned that sometimes things hurt, but it's all right to cry.

When you thought I wasn't looking I saw that you cared, and I wanted to be everything that I could be.

When you thought I wasn't looking I learned most of life's lessons that I need to know to be a good and productive person when I grow up.

When you thought I wasn't looking I looked at you and wanted to say,'Thanks for all the things I saw when you thought I wasn't looking.'

I am sending this to all of the people I know who do so much for others, but think that no one ever sees. Little eyes see a lot.
Each of us (parent, grandparent, aunt, uncle, teacher, friend)influences the life of a child.

How will you touch the life of someone today? Just by sending this to someone else, you will probably make them at least think about their influence on others.
Live simply. Love generously. Care deeply. Speak kindly.
Leave the rest to God.

Tuesday, April 08, 2008

How Stuff Works

Want explanations on a variety of subjects on how stuff works? is a helpful place to answer all kinds of questions.
If you home school or need help with homework or a report you may find information here.

(Poke around on this website and you'll be surprised at what you can find. I found free quilting, sewing and knitting patterns in the Home & Garden section.)

It covers these areas on a variety of subjects within each one.
• Auto
• Business & Money
• Communication
• Computer
• Electronics
• Entertainment
• Food & Recipes
• Geography
• Health
• History
• Home & Garden
• People
• Science
• Travel

Monday, April 07, 2008

Success Breeds Success - Email from a HP Reader

Thank you for the many bits of valuable information you share with everyone. Since you e-mail from the and are celebrating the third anniversary of your column I wanted to share this with you:

Success Breeds Success (Author Unknown)

There was a farmer who grew superior quality, award-winning corn. Each year, he entered his corn in the State Fair where it won honors and prizes.

One year a newspaper reporter interviewed him and learned something interesting about how he grew his corn. The reporter discovered that the farmer shared his seed corn with his neighbors.

"How can you afford to share your best seed corn with your neighbors when they are entering corn in competition with yours each year?" the reporter asked.

"Why sir," said the farmer, "Didn't you know? The wind picks up pollen from the ripening corn and swirls it from field to field. If my neighbors grow inferior, sub-standard and poor quality corn, cross-pollination will steadily degrade the quality of my corn. If I grow good corn, I must help my neighbors grow good corn."

The farmer gave a superb insight into the connectedness of life. His corn cannot improve unless his neighbors' corn also improves. So it is in other dimensions and areas of life!

Those who choose to be in harmony must help their neighbors and colleagues to be at peace. Those who choose to live well must help others live well. The value of a life is measured by the lives it touches.

Success does not happen in isolation; it is most often a participatory and collective process. So share the good practices, ideas and new knowledge with your family, friends, team members and neighbors.

As they say: "Success breeds Success."

Here's looking forward to another year of sharing award-winning seeds from Debbie@GeraniumFarm!


Thanks Melody for your email and story!

Friday, April 04, 2008

Donating Children's Books

I was contacted by David's old H.S. teacher regarding yesterday's posting and she asked if I knew of a place that wanted children's books as they were in the process of holding their annual "Debbie's Legacy" book drive in memory of Debbie Krautwurst. She was David's speech teacher when he was there. Chris said they try to collect mainly children's books. She got me to thinking, so . . . I "Googled" - where can I donate children's books
Rather than me listing all the places, try it, and you'll see that there are tons of places.

What a great service project for any school or organization to do!

I received this email after posting this.

I am the Principal of Raritan Valley Academy located in Piscataway, NJ. We are a public receiving school for students with behavioral disabilities. Our website is:
We don't have a formal library. However, the teachers are trying to collect books for the children to borrow and read, and we have dedicated an empty classroom for that purpose. If people in the area have books to donate for the students, we would LOVE them!! Thank you.

Tia LaPiana, Principal of Raritan Valley Academy

5/2/08 - I received an email from Principal La Piana and she'd like to acknowledge the donation of books to her school from Christine.
Thanks Christine for following through and helping out this school. - Debbie

Thursday, April 03, 2008

Donations of Specific Books Wanted

Family Resource Associates and TECHConnection, also know as FRA is in the process of updating the family library and are currently seeking books in good condition (written within the last 10 years) on the following topics:

Down Syndrome
Specific Disabilities
Learning Disorders
Education and Advocacy
Sibling Relationships
Parenting Children With Disabilities

Any donations would be greatly appreciated and sure to help another parent.
Any questions? Contact Sue Levine.
Thank You.

So take those dusty books down off the shelf and send them off to the:
Family Resource Associates and TECHConnection
35 Haddon Avenue
Shrewsbury, NJ 07702

David went to this center quite a few years ago to work on games on the computer there.

Wednesday, April 02, 2008

More Gluten-Free Information

(The following is pretty much as it was sent to me with just a little editing.)

A lot of people have asked me when I go to a restaurant with Alexis that has a gluten free menu- how exactly do I handle the situation plus what tricks do I have if they mess up her order. Here are a few tidbits...
1. Ask for a gluten free menu - do not order from a regular menu if you don't have to- a lot of times that is how the order gets messed up
2. Tell the hostess you would like to speak to a manager or even a chef if you can
3. Tell the manager that you are ordering a gluten free meal- what it is... and let he/she know that you hope they will oversee that it is done correctly. Also let them know if that if for some reason they mess up- have them re-do it and you don't care if it takes longer.
4. When you order w/ the server...Tell the server you are ordering a GF meal and to write down GLUTEN FREE ....tell them the importance of making sure its done right....and again if they see the cook messed up- to please just redo it - you don't care if you have to wait.
5. If your meal comes out wrong sabotage it! Pour Ketchup on it.... if its a salad and croutons are put in -put a sugar packet in the middle of the salad- this way if they pick off the croutons instead of making you a new salad- you will know when you check to see if the sugar packet is still there.

Hope this helps!

Here's the latest gluten free info...
Elissa Carlin
R.O.C.K. Leader

Morganos in Middletown, NJ
I just wanted everyone to know a friend found a restaurant in Middletown that
serves gluten free meals. We stopped by there tonight for dinner...we ate
pizza, gnocchi, and risotto. The owner also said that he could make most meals
on the menu GF. The prices were very reasonable for GF. The food was
delicious, he also agreed to put GF bread on the menu. They deliver in the area
and cater!!!! It is a must try!!!!!!

1207 Highway 35 N & New Monmouth Road
Middletown, nj

The following was in part from a long article:
"However it is not clear that his physicians obtained a definitive diagnosis. Review of this medical history raises the possibility that JFK had celiac disease."
Wow. That gives one pause, doesn't it? Imagine that this president -- who had access to the finest physicians of the day -- might have suffered from a disease that could have been relieved by a simple change in diet if only the diagnosis had been made, let alone considered. Don't you feel lucky that your physicians have access to modern medical knowledge which has only understood as recently as 2003 that over 3 million Americans suffer from celiac disease?

GF Camp for girls in Kansas City
This camp in Kansas City was mentioned on a gf site and I thought it might be of interest to those of you with 10-15 year old gf girls.
The WOW Program is a 5 day residential program for girls only. Give your daughter an opportunity to experience the outdoors with other girls and have a weeks worth of fun, learning and adventure.
NEW THIS YEAR: Gluten/Dairy/Peanut free (The meals will be entirely plant-based!)
ACA Accredited Camp
Age range: 10 to 15
Date: July 28 to August 1
Cost: $290 per camper, $300 with credit card

Progresso chicken and rice soup NOT gluten free anymore!
Lesson learned.....check even tried and true labels.

Gluten free Passover Info:

1. You're in luck b/c Passover is an amazing thing for celiacs. Basically
everything Kosher for Passover is GF, EXCEPT for anything with matzoh meal.
I know this sounds weird, but there are certain Jewish sects that don't even
eat products made with matzah meal over Passover. So there are tons of
products that are made without any matzah and therefore are GF. These
products are all labeled non-gebrok (meaning no matzah). If you live in an
area where there are a lot of Jews, there may be a Kosher grocery store.
You can find tons of products that are GF, ranging from yogurt to cheese to
salad dressings, etc. All these products are made without any grains and
the vinegars used and foods starches used are all made from potatoes. They
even have amazing (though full of sugar) desserts, made only from potato
starch. A great bakery that makes kosher for Passover desserts and even
states they are GF is called schicks. Their web site is
You should check it out. Passover is a haven for celiacs. Just read labels
and stay away from any products that contain matzah meal.

2. I know a lot of celiacs who pine away for Passover time to stock up on
grain free chocolate chips, margarine, baking powder, etc. I buy all the
chips and such we can have for a year -- my four celiac children like
chocolate chip cookies like everyone else -- and when we run out, we're out.

3. Actually, there are lots of gf passover foods. I stock up on some things
at passover for the whole year, since they need to be made without the 4
grains. Just check to make sure there is no matza meal. There is even gf
certified oat matza. there's gefilte fish also. Just look for the words
"non-gebreucht" and it won't have matza meal. So many things are made with
potato starch instead- even some blintzes and they are actually good. Also
remember that the "u" inside the "o" is not enough. it needs to say "P"
inside the "U" and be "non gebreucht" to not have the matza meal in the
recipe. Also lots of desserts are in this category.


1. Just look for the Kosher for Passover label. Cakes are made from almond
paste or a nut base or potato starch.

2. Also the potato pancake mixes are ok. Potato starch boxes have some
recipes on them (banana bread and sponge cake).
I use "Ho-Grain" crackers, made out of rice, as matzah. I make "matzah" brie
(yum!), "matzah" stuffing with mushrooms and onions... I find "Ho-Grain"
crackers at my heath food store...Wild Oats or Whole Foods should have them.
Manischewitz kindly posts a gluten-free product list -- here's the direct
link to that page:
Leibers makes GF matzah ball soup mix.
There are GF potato and vegetable blintzes.
Gefilte fish is a tough one, but, I hear there is a GF one.
There are a ton of prepared baked goods made with potato starch.
There is Gf Matzah! Yes, made in Israel by a Dr. who found a rare strain of
oats and super-refined them to make for his CD daughter. Kosher markets will
know about it. It costs about $18 a box though!
"Kedem gefilte fish for Passover" has NO matzah Pesach Crumbs by
Paskesz Candy Co (Brooklyn NY) and make the matzah ball recipe from the
side(seltzer is the key)they are very good. Many Kosher food stores have
things without flour or matzah meal (NON GEBROKS), Schicks Kosher for
Passover baked goods for Pesach (from NY #718-436-8020 but sold in our Chgo
area kosher store) are GF and taste like the real thing we used to be able
to eat.(I buy it now and keep them for the year). There are Passover ice
cream cones made by Tovli out of Brooklyn N.Y. which you can then use all
year. We also make our own gluten free Matzoh. Start by making your own
general purpose gluten free flour: 2 parts white rice flour to 2/3 part
potato starch flour to 1/3 part tapioca flour (this flour can be used all
year round for a number of gluten free treats). To make the matzot, mix
approx. 1 part water to 3 parts flour. There result should be a "dough" that
feels more like play-do than the familiar elastic feel of real bread dough.
Form the dough into balls roughly the size of golf balls. Place each ball on
a non-stick cooking sheet and roll out to paper thinness. I usually put a
piece of waxed paper over the dough before using the rolling pin to prevent
sticking (you might also have to dust them with a little of the dry flour
mix). The finished product must be quite thin. Poke holes in the flat
sheets. Bake at about 375 degrees until they turn golden brown. Time varies
depending on the thickness of the dough, so you just have to keep an eye on
them. Don't expect them to look like Manishevitz matzot when done. They'll
look more like large, irregular shaped crackers. We take comfort in feeling
this is more like what our ancestors ate than what you buy in the
supermarket. If you're going to attempt to be true to the kosher method of
making these, no more than 18 minutes may elapse from the touch of the water
to putting the matzot in the oven.

I've saved this video clip of a lady (also by the name of Ellen) making
matso for Passover. It gives step-by-step directions on making it yourself
GF! I can't wait to try this myself. I am not Jewish, but keep Passover

All Bob's Red Mill Gluten Free products are certified Kosher by Kehilla

All 1-2-3 Gluten Free products are Kosher pareve (CRC certified). They are
not Kosher for Passover.

You can find some sites by googling kosher gluten-free.
There is one from Hebrew...but you click on the American flag
for English. I think they put out ads on our listserv at the end of every
month. I notice it, but I don't usually order anything online, so I couldn't
tell you specifically. I do keep two kosher homes (including changing for
Passover), and have had celiac for decades.

You may or may not know about the booklet that the Union of Orthodox Rabbis
(O-u....can't do the symbol online), comes out with a booklet every year for
kosher for Passover products...showing those that do not have matzah
products in them....medications, cosmetics, etc. I pick one up every year at
my local Shop-Rite, but you may be able to write to them.

Ener-G Foods Inc is Kosher supervised by the Kof K.
We are not however Kosher for Passover. If you have a fax machine I can fax
you a copy of our Kosher Certificate.

The Manichewitz web site has a health tab. From this tab you can choose
gluten free and it identifies all of the products we can have.

Tuesday, April 01, 2008

Another Hodgepodge Birthday!

Today is the third year for this column.
Many thanks to all of you for your help and inspiration.

"When someone shares something of value with you,
and you benefit from it,
you have a moral obligation to share it with others." *
~ Chinese Proverb ~

. . . . and believing that ~Knowledge is nothing if not shared.~ I'll continure passing on things, sometimes serious, other times informative, or maybe just entertaining.
Thanks to you my readers and to my fellow "Farmers" for another great year!
Hugs all around!

*(Tagged onto an email from my friend Peggy.)

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