October 5, 2017 MariaCantillonMurphy

Italy and all things Italian are a huge passion of mine. Hence, why I decided to study Italian in University. When I studied abroad in Genoa as part of my degree, I fell in love with the place even more. The culture, the people, the coffee and the FOOD in general. If you told me a few years ago that I would go to Italy and not eat pasta, rice, pizza and ice-cream, I would not have believed you. Being on the Specific Carbohydrate Diet (SCD) is one thing. Being on SCD and visiting Italy is a whole different story….

October 2, 2017 MariaCantillonMurphy 11Comment

The Specific Carbohydrate Diet (SCD) is a diet used to manage symptoms of Inflammatory Bowel Disease (Crohn’s disease and Ulcerative Colitis) and other conditions such as coeliac diease and diverticulitis. The bible of SCD was written by the late Elaine Gottschall entitled: “Breaking The Vicious Cycle”. The basic premise of the book is that people with the above bowel conditions cannot digest carbohydrates well and so recommends a diet free from: gluten, grains, lactose and refined-sugar. As a trained biochemist, Elaine describes in detail in the book why certain foods are difficult for those with IBD to digest. For more information on the…

September 27, 2017 MariaCantillonMurphy 21Comment

GLUTEN-FREE, GRAIN-FREE, DAIRY-FREE, REFINED SUGAR-FREE, SPECIFIC CARBOHYDRATE DIET (SCD), PALEO It might seem strange to call these “almost chocolate brownies”. If you are following the SCD diet, by now you’ll know that chocolate is not allowable. Even healthy ingredients such as cocoa powder or carob are illegal. I was never the biggest chocolate fan in the world. That said, I have to admit when I learned I couldn’t eat chocolate, I cried a little. The inspiration for this recipe came from Marilyn’s chocolate cake but I have changed it quite a bit as I wanted a lighter brownie texture. If you’ve…

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Almost Chocolate Brownies
Delicious "almost chocolate brownies" free from: gluten, grains and refined sugar. SCD-friendly and adaptable to Paleo.
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Servings
Ingredients
  • 10 Medjool dates, halved and pitted and soaked for 30 minutes
  • 1 cup (240g) Almond butter
  • 1/2 cup (50g) Cacao butter
  • 1/3 cup (70g) Butter (unsalted) OR coconut oil for dairy-free and Paleo
  • 1 teaspoon Bicarbonate of soda
  • 2 Free range eggs
  • 1/4 teaspoon Sea salt
  • To decorate Shredded coconut
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Servings
Ingredients
  • 10 Medjool dates, halved and pitted and soaked for 30 minutes
  • 1 cup (240g) Almond butter
  • 1/2 cup (50g) Cacao butter
  • 1/3 cup (70g) Butter (unsalted) OR coconut oil for dairy-free and Paleo
  • 1 teaspoon Bicarbonate of soda
  • 2 Free range eggs
  • 1/4 teaspoon Sea salt
  • To decorate Shredded coconut
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to: 160°C Fan, 180°C electric, 350°F or gas mark 4.
  2. Drain the soaked dates and add them to a blender with the almond butter. Process until smooth.
  3. Melt the butter in a cup in the microwave for 30 seconds. Melt the cacao butter using a glass bowl or jug over a pot with hot water on the stove.
  4. Add the butter or coconut oil and cacao butter to the blender with the rest of the ingredients (except for the shredded coconut). Process until smooth.
  5. Pour the smooth batter into an oven safe dish lined with parchment paper.
  6. Bake for 25-30 minutes. Don't leave it longer as the brownies will dry out too much.
  7. Cut into brownie squares. These will keep for a few days in an airtight container in the fridge. They won't last longer than that, trust me!
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September 25, 2017 MariaCantillonMurphy 3Comment

I decided to write a blog post about SCD products available in Ireland (and the UK) as I thought it may be useful for those following the Specific Carbohydrate Diet. Starting this diet can be so daunting and hopefully this list will make it a little easier for you to source some of the items you need. Just because something is listed here and is SCD-legal doesn’t mean that you can tolerate it. Even within the list of allowable SCD foods, each person is unique and tolerates things differently. If you are trying something for the first time, as always…

September 19, 2017 MariaCantillonMurphy

GLUTEN-FREE, GRAIN-FREE, REFINED SUGAR-FREE, LACTOSE-FREE, SPECIFIC CARBOHYDRATE DIET (SCD) I’ve been wanting to make labneh (yoghurt cheese), the traditional Middle Eastern dish for quite some time now. I’ve been making my own yoghurt for the last two years since beginning the Specific Carbohydrate Diet (SCD). Making your own yoghurt at home can seem daunting at first but you’ll be surprised how quickly you get the hang of it. It also tastes so much better than store-bought alternatives. Yoghurt and fruit are part of my breakfast nearly every day. When I first read about labneh, I was really intrigued. I loved the…

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Labneh (Yoghurt cheese)
A delicious Middle Eastern cheese spread. This goes great with my thyme and sea salt grain-free crackers. Lactose-free and suitable for the Specific Carbohydrate Diet.
Servings
Ingredients
For the labneh:
  • 4 cups (1litre) SCD Yoghurt *Use greek yoghurt if you are not following SCD
  • Big pinch of sea salt
For the herb/spice blend:
  • 1 tablespoon Dried thyme
  • 1 tablespoon Dried oregano
  • 1 tablespoon Ground cumin
  • 1 tablespoon Ground coriander
  • 1 teaspoon Ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon Sea salt
  • 1 tablespoon Extra virgin olive oil (plus extra for serving)
Servings
Ingredients
For the labneh:
  • 4 cups (1litre) SCD Yoghurt *Use greek yoghurt if you are not following SCD
  • Big pinch of sea salt
For the herb/spice blend:
  • 1 tablespoon Dried thyme
  • 1 tablespoon Dried oregano
  • 1 tablespoon Ground cumin
  • 1 tablespoon Ground coriander
  • 1 teaspoon Ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon Sea salt
  • 1 tablespoon Extra virgin olive oil (plus extra for serving)
Instructions
  1. Place a cheesecloth, muslin cloth or a bag for making almond milk into a sieve and then over a bowl. Pour the yoghurt into the cloth and add the sea salt.
  2. Tie a knot in the bag with twine and place in the fridge for roughly 30 hours. The curds and whey will separate and you will be left with a delicious cream cheese.
  3. Mix the herbs and spices in a jar. Heat the olive oil on a low heat and add one tablespoon of the herb/spice mix. Toast for a few minutes until fragrant but not burnt. You can keep the rest of the herb/spice mix in an airtight jar.
  4. Spoon the labneh into serving dishes, adding a generous amount of olive oil and sprinkle the toasted herb/spice mix on top. Dip your favourite crackers in and enjoy! The labneh will keep in an airtight container for a week.
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September 11, 2017 MariaCantillonMurphy 1Comment

GLUTEN-FREE, GRAIN-FREE, REFINED SUGAR-FREE, SPECIFIC CARBOHYDRATE DIET (SCD) This french onion tart is seriously delicious. I call it a tart because it’s not as “eggy” as a quiche and the base is thicker. I’ve tried to keep it as close to a traditional french tart as possible and I hope I have done it justice. Traditionally, gruyère cheese would be used which I couldn’t find so I used a really good vintage cheddar instead. This is a typical dish that I would batch cook at the weekends and freeze for work lunches. It freezes really well and defrosts overnight in…

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French Onion Tart
A delicious healthy take on this classic french dish which is free from: gluten and grains and suitable for the Specific Carbohydrate Diet (SCD).
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour 15 minutes
Servings
Ingredients
For the crust:
  • 4 cups (600g) Blanched Almond Flour
  • 4 tablespoons Butter, melted
  • 1/2 teaspoon Sea salt
  • 2 Free range eggs, beaten
For the onion layer:
  • 4 Red onions, large
  • 4 White onions, large
  • 3 tablespoons Butter
  • 2 tablespoons Extra virgin olive oil
Tart filling:
  • 8 Free range eggs, beaten
  • 1/2 cup (120g) SCD Yoghurt or natural yoghurt if you are not following SCD
  • 4 cups (400g) Grated mature/vintage cheddar
  • 1 tablespoon Fresh thyme, to garnish (optional)
  • Extra virgin olive oil (for greasing)
  • To taste Sea salt
  • To taste Black pepper
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour 15 minutes
Servings
Ingredients
For the crust:
  • 4 cups (600g) Blanched Almond Flour
  • 4 tablespoons Butter, melted
  • 1/2 teaspoon Sea salt
  • 2 Free range eggs, beaten
For the onion layer:
  • 4 Red onions, large
  • 4 White onions, large
  • 3 tablespoons Butter
  • 2 tablespoons Extra virgin olive oil
Tart filling:
  • 8 Free range eggs, beaten
  • 1/2 cup (120g) SCD Yoghurt or natural yoghurt if you are not following SCD
  • 4 cups (400g) Grated mature/vintage cheddar
  • 1 tablespoon Fresh thyme, to garnish (optional)
  • Extra virgin olive oil (for greasing)
  • To taste Sea salt
  • To taste Black pepper
Instructions
  1. Chop the onions, first in halves then into slices as shown. Place a saucepan or iron skillet on a medium heat and add the butter and olive oil. Once the butter has melted, add the onions.
  2. Sauté for ten minutes on a medium heat until the onions soften then reduce to a low heat and continue to cook for a further 20 minutes. Stir frequently so they don't stick to the bottom of the pan. Season lightly with sea salt and black pepper.
  3. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to : 160°C Fan, 180°C electric, 350°F or gas mark 4 and make the pastry.
  4. In a blender, combine all the crust ingredients. Grease a large rectangular baking dish well with olive oil, then line it with parchment paper and press it down.
  5. Press the crust into the baking dish with a fork and spoon until even and smooth. Bake for 20 minutes.
  6. Meanwhile, prepare the tart filling by mixing the eggs and yoghurt well in a bowl. Season lightly with sea salt and black pepper.
  7. Remove the pastry from the oven once cooked and sprinkle roughly one quarter of the cheese on the crust. Next, add most of the onions in a layer over the cheese keeping about four tablespoons aside for the top of the tart.
  8. Next, pour the egg and yoghurt mixture on top followed by the rest of the cheese.
  9. Finish the tart by spreading out the onions you kept aside. Sprinkle the thyme on top of the onions. Bake for 45 minutes.
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September 7, 2017 MariaCantillonMurphy

GLUTEN-FREE, GRAIN-FREE, DAIRY-FREE, REFINED SUGAR-FREE, SPECIFIC CARBOHYDRATE DIET (SCD), PALEO I’m always saying that drinks can be a difficult aspect of the Specific Carbohydrate Diet (SCD). I was never a huge fan of fizzy drinks but I would enjoy a cold glass of Coca Cola on a rare occasion. I was partial to some orange juice with my breakfast the odd day. Little did I know how much pesky sugar was added. SCD doesn’t allow many drinks that you can buy in the shop – either alcoholic or non. That means us SCD-ers have to get a bit inventive. Enter,…

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Iced Coffee
A delicious dairy-free iced coffee drink free of refined sugar. Paleo-friendly and suitable for the Specific Carbohydrate Diet (SCD).
Servings
Ingredients
  • 1 serving Italian espresso, decaf* *Decaffeinated only by a natural method
  • 1/2 cup (112 ml) Coconut milk*
  • To taste Raw honey
  • Ice cubes
Servings
Ingredients
  • 1 serving Italian espresso, decaf* *Decaffeinated only by a natural method
  • 1/2 cup (112 ml) Coconut milk*
  • To taste Raw honey
  • Ice cubes
Instructions
  1. Make an espresso in the traditional Italian way on the hob. Alternatively, you can use filtered coffee but I have never tried this.*
  2. All the coffee to cool to room temperature and for best results, chill for a further 30 minutes. Mix the cooled coffee with coconut milk and add honey if desired. Add a few ice cubes and enjoy!
Recipe Notes

*NOTE: Instant coffee is not allowed on the Specific Carbohydrate Diet (SCD).

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September 4, 2017 MariaCantillonMurphy

GLUTEN-FREE, GRAIN-FREE, REFINED SUGAR-FREE, SPECIFIC CARBOHYDRATE DIET (SCD) I have been craving french toast for so long! It was my husband’s and my all time favourite breakfast. Over the last few years he still has it sometimes and I try not to weep longing for my old foods! When I developed a grain-free sandwich loaf that I was happy with, french toast was next on the list! Luckily, I was right. My sandwich loaf recipe is definitely robust enough to be fried and it is so delicious. My husband even eats this version now. Trust me, that says A LOT! There…

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French Toast
A delicious french toast recipe using my grain-free sandwich loaf. Entirely free from: gluten, grains and refined sugar-free. Suitable for the Specific Carbohydrate Diet (SCD). Perfect, for a lazy weekend breakfast!
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 5-6 minutes
Servings
Ingredients
  • 2 slices My SCD sandwich bread
  • 2 Free range eggs, beaten
  • 6 tablespoons SCD Yoghurt or natural yoghurt if you are not following SCD
  • 1 teaspoon Raw honey
  • 1 tablespoon Butter
  • 1/2 teaspoon Vanilla extract*
  • Pinch Cinnamon, nutmeg
  • Pinch Sea salt
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 5-6 minutes
Servings
Ingredients
  • 2 slices My SCD sandwich bread
  • 2 Free range eggs, beaten
  • 6 tablespoons SCD Yoghurt or natural yoghurt if you are not following SCD
  • 1 teaspoon Raw honey
  • 1 tablespoon Butter
  • 1/2 teaspoon Vanilla extract*
  • Pinch Cinnamon, nutmeg
  • Pinch Sea salt
Instructions
  1. In a wide bowl mix the : eggs, yoghurt, honey, vanilla, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt. Stir or whisk until well combined.
  2. Put the bread slices into the bowl and soak for at least 5 minutes on either side.
  3. Put a frying pan or iron skillet on a medium-low heat and add the butter. Once melted, add the bread slices. Fry for 5-6 minutes until cooked and nicely brown on both sides.
  4. Serve with some extra butter, fresh fruit, yoghurt, broken nut pieces and more raw honey, if desired.
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August 30, 2017 MariaCantillonMurphy 5Comment

GLUTEN-FREE, GRAIN-FREE, REFINED SUGAR-FREE, SPECIFIC CARBOHYDRATE DIET (SCD) I was on the Specific Carbohydrate Diet (SCD) quiet a long time before I dared to make a sandwich loaf. I worried that being the bread-lover that I was, no grain-free bread would ever live up. However, as the summer approached this year I needed a good sandwich loaf for convenience. We love family picnics. One of favourite things to do at the weekend is pack up the car for the day and set off in any direction. Nothing beats the freedom of staying outside in the fresh air all day and…

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Sandwich Loaf
A delicious gluten and grain-free, robust sandwich bread. Great for picnics or lunches. Also, suitable for the Specific Carbohydrate Diet (SCD).
Cook Time 40-45 minutes
Servings
Ingredients
  • 2 1/2 cups (375g) Blanched Almond Flour
  • 1 teaspoon Bicarbonate of soda
  • 1 cup (160g) Dry curd cottage cheese/SCD dripped yoghurt
  • 3 Free range eggs, beaten
  • 2 tablespoons Apple cider vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons Raw honey
  • 1/4 cup (55g) Unsalted butter, melted
  • 1/4 teaspoon Sea salt
Cook Time 40-45 minutes
Servings
Ingredients
  • 2 1/2 cups (375g) Blanched Almond Flour
  • 1 teaspoon Bicarbonate of soda
  • 1 cup (160g) Dry curd cottage cheese/SCD dripped yoghurt
  • 3 Free range eggs, beaten
  • 2 tablespoons Apple cider vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons Raw honey
  • 1/4 cup (55g) Unsalted butter, melted
  • 1/4 teaspoon Sea salt
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 160°C Fan, 180°C electric, 350°F or gas mark 4.
  2. Combine all the ingredients in a powerful blender and blend until well combined. Pour into a loaf tin lined with parchment paper.
  3. Bake for 40-45 minutes until cooked and golden brown.
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August 25, 2017 MariaCantillonMurphy

GLUTEN-FREE, GRAIN-FREE, DAIRY-FREE, REFINED SUGAR-FREE, SPECIFIC CARBOHYDRATE DIET (SCD), PALEO Ah, ice pops. So many fond memories of ice pops from my childhood. In Ireland, holidays at home usually meant begging Mom for ice pops even when it was lashing rain outside. It didn’t matter the weather, summer meant frozen treats. Back then all I knew was Wibbly, Wobbly, Wonders and Ice-burgers. The recent (unusual) heat wave here had me craving some refreshing so I set out to make SCD-legal treats. I ordered stainless steel ice pop moulds on eBay. I won’t say that I don’t use any plastic any…

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Cherry Ice Pops
Delicious and healthy cherry ice pops perfect for making with kids. Gluten, grain, dairy and refined sugar-free. Paleo and specific carbohydrate diet (SCD)-friendly.
Prep Time 15 minutes plus freezing time
Servings
Ingredients
  • 1 1/2 cups (200g) Fresh cherries
  • Juice of 1/2 orange
  • 1/2 cup (120ml) Coconut cream*
  • 3 Frozen bananas
Prep Time 15 minutes plus freezing time
Servings
Ingredients
  • 1 1/2 cups (200g) Fresh cherries
  • Juice of 1/2 orange
  • 1/2 cup (120ml) Coconut cream*
  • 3 Frozen bananas
Instructions
  1. Add the cherries and orange juice to a saucepan and place on a low-medium heat. Cook for 15-20 minutes until the cherries break down, stirring often. Allow mixture to cool in a bowl.
  2. Blend the coconut cream with the frozen bananas. Once the cherry mixture has cooled, stir it through the coconut and banana mixture and pour into the moulds.
  3. Freeze the pops for one hour first before then adding the wooden ice pop sticks. Continue to freeze for at least 4 hours or 6 hours at best. Enjoy!
Recipe Notes

*You can make coconut cream from refridgerating a can of coconut milk upside overnight. The next morning, turn it right side up and scoop the cream from the top of the can. Reserve the leftovers for smoothies or pancakes.

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