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Melt in Your Mouth Meatballs

fodmapiconThis old recipe has gone through a few reincarnations, including the use of my own homemade Italian sausage to eliminate the use of high FODMAP ingredients (mainly garlic and onion). Try as I might, I just can’t seem to make Italian fit my low histamine diet requirements, but this does work well for IBS, Gastroparesis and SIBO issues.

If you’re truly desperate and eating low histamine, you could try it without the vinegar in both recipes (for mold intolerance) and you could remove the use of peppers and any chili powders you can’t tolerate and give it a try. I haven’t bothered because frankly I’m not sure what to do with a meatball that’s not spicy and can’t be smothered in red sauce and cheese, but everyone has their thing.

Melt in Your Mouth Meatballs

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil for pan
  • 1 lb Low FODMAP Italian Sausage, uncooked
  • 1 lb ground beef
  • ½ cup low FODMAP bread crumbs or crushed crackers
  • 1 egg
  • ¼ cup water
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon red wine vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire
  • 1 teaspoon oregano
  • 1 teaspoon basil
  • A few dashes Tabasco sauce

Pre-heat the oven to 375 degrees. In a medium mixing bowl, mix ingredients until thoroughly combined. Pour oil into a large, oven-proof skillet and preheat on stove top over medium high heat. Roll mixture into 1 ½” balls and place in skillet, turning every 2-3 minutes until browned on all sides.

Transfer skillet to oven and cook an additional 15-20 minutes, until cooked through, turning once. Add to your favorite pasta and sauce, add to a sub bun to make meatball hoagies or enjoy alone in sauce. Refrigerate or freeze any unused portion.

Prep time: 10-15 minutes

Serves: 8-10

Melt in Your Mouth Meatballs are Low FODMAP for Spoonies

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Low Histamine Pot Roast Poutine

Low Histamine and Low FODMAP Pot Roast Poutine

fodmapiconhistamineiconA staple to our northern neighbors up in Canada, Poutine makes a great meal or appetizer. I fell in love with a local restaurant’s version of Brisket Poutine and decided to try to copy it so I could enjoy it at home. Since I don’t make brisket very often, I usually use pot roast instead. This recipe makes a tasty meal for two, and served with a vegetable, is quite complete. Better yet, it’s pretty quick and easy to serve up.

There were some things I just couldn’t live without when I had to start eating a low histamine diet and poutine was one of them. As I cannot tolerate any amount of vinegar, wine or cheese due to mycotoxin intolerance, I had to go back to the drawing board with this recipe, so it has some distinct differences from my low FODMAP version of poutine, which can be found here.

If you can tolerate cheese, I highly recommend you top this with some fresh cheese curds as my husband does while I look on with a slightly pouty face, but if you can’t, it’s still a delicious meal. I like to make 5 or 6 pounds of pot roast all at once in the crock pot and then freeze it into individual portions, which stops the histamine from accumulating, but keeps me from having to cook long drawn out meals every day while still eating relatively healthy.

Low Histamine Pot Roast Poutine

  • 6 ounces pre-cooked pot roast, thawed
  • 8 ounces plain frozen French fries
  • 2 tablespoons diced scallions
  • 1 cup gravy

For gravy:

  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1 ½ cups beef broth (recipe here)
  • ¼ teaspoon oregano
  • ¼ teaspoon basil
  • ½ teaspoon sea salt
  • 2 dashes Worcestershire

Prepare fries according to package directions, cooking them until they’re a little extra crispy (this helps them stand up against the gravy better). Meanwhile, prepare the gravy.

In a small sauce pan, melt butter on medium heat. Once fully heated, add cornstarch and stir into a paste. Wisk in beef broth steadily, avoiding any lumps. Add spices and cook on medium until slightly thickened. Reduce heat to low.

Cut pot roast into bite size chunks and microwave. On plates, arrange fries fresh from the oven and top with heated pot roast and sea salt. Cover with gravy and top with scallions (and cheese, if allowed). Serve hot.

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Serves 2

Low Histamine and Low FODMAP Pot Roast Poutine

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Low Histamine Beef Pot Roast Dinner + Bonus Broth

fodmapiconhistamineiconThis slow cooker pot roast recipe provides a complete meal with vegetables and gravy. It takes a little work, but it’s a deliciously satisfying, nourishing meal that will set the stage for several more meals to come if you freeze your leftovers and plan accordingly. You can even make broth!

Since I went low histamine, I’ve had to change how I treat beef and pork quite a bit because I’ve had to change my reliance on cooking wines and vinegars as meat tenderizers and flavor injectors. Unfortunately, this means I’ve had to give up on steak entirely, as my stomach is having too hard of a time processing it without having the benefit of a chemical breakdown process first. The good thing about no longer being able to use the items mentioned is that I can now use my pot roast slow cooking to make quick and easy broth, so I’ve included the directions below.

I use a number of cuts of beef for pot roast. While chuck roast is the standard for pot roast, with gatroparesis it’s difficult to digest fatty meat. I’ve moved almost exclusively to using bottom round and top round roasts instead, because they are so much leaner. I still put them in the slow cooker and treat them as I would a chuck roast, cooking them until they are tender and ready t fall apart. This way they are nice and soft and easy for my stomach to process. I love a good medium-rare roast, but it simply doesn’t agree with my stomach anymore.

I use pot roast not only as a main dish item, but in a number of different recipes to try to keep life interesting. I usually cook anywhere from 4-6 pounds all at once. The night I cook it, we have a traditional meal of pot roast with gravy just like the recipe below. The remainder is frozen in meal sized portions (6-8 ounces for the two of us) in zip lock bags or storage containers so I only need to thaw some in the microwave when I’m ready to make enchiladas, poutine, beef and noodles or some other recipe. I do the same with whole chicken or chicken breasts, pork tenderloin and so forth. This helps me to save energy and time.

Low Histamine Beef Pot Roast

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • Beef Roast (whatever cut you choose)
  • ½ teaspoon oregano
  • ½ teaspoon basil
  • 1 teaspoon dried parsley
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 4-8 cups water
  • 1 rib celery
  • 3 carrots
  • 2 medium potatoes

For gravy:

  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 3 tablespoons cornstarch or flour*
  • 2 cups broth from crock pot
  • 2 dashes Worcestershire
  • Oregano, basil and salt

For Pot Roast:

Begin heating water in crock pot while cutting up vegetables and searing roast. For a 2 pound roast, use 4 cups and add a cup per pound.

Peel potatoes and carrots and cut into 1 ½-2” pieces. Cut celery into 3” chunks for easy disposal later, as it’s more to flavor the broth than eating, though if you like it and want to include it as part of your vegetables, then I would dice it.

To sear the roast, heat a skillet on medium-high heat and add oil. Once fully heated, add roast and cook 2-3 minutes per side, ensuring all exposed surfaces are browned. Transfer to crock pot and add vegetables and spices. Cook for 3-5 hours on low. Chuck roasts may require up to 6 hours.

For gravy:

Once your meal is ready, retrieve 2 cups broth from crock pot using a measuring cup or ladle and set it by the stove.

In a small sauce pan over medium heat, melt the butter. Once completely melted and heated through, add your cornstarch and stir into a paste. Whisk in broth, eliminating any lumps. Add Worcestershire and allow to thicken slightly. Adjust spices and needed before serving.

*cornstarch is preferred for consistency and color, but wheat or gluten-free flour can be used if corn allergy is present.

Remove any remaining beef and vegetables and allow to cool to a safe handling temperature. Using a mesh strainer and cheesecloth or coffee filter to line it with, strain broth into a pitcher to remove any remaining spices and solids. Refrigerate until fat forms a hard layer on top. Dig out with a spoon and discard. Pour broth into containers and freeze.

If using glass containers, be sure to leave at least 2” at the top of your container or cover with plastic wrap for the first 8 hours to avoid breakage (liquids expand as they freeze). The amount of broth you get will depend on how much beef/water you use, but will be close to the amount of water you put in.

Pot Roast Dinner with Bonus Broth is Low Histamine and low FODMAP

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Grandma’s Potato Salad

fodmapiconhistamineiconThis potato salad is unlike any other potato salad I have ever tasted before and it’s always been a big hit with any crowd, so it’s often my go to picnic/barbecue/pot luck recipe. According to my Great Grandmother Petty, it’s a recipe that came from the Schreiber side of the family, so she always assumed it was German. I’ve had to modify it only slightly, replacing diced yellow onion with the dark green parts of scallions, which should only be added when serving, as they don’ t have a very long shelf life and look a whole lot prettier that way, anyway.

Like most recipes in my family that have been passed down from one generation to the next, I don’t know that this recipe has ever actually been written down. There were no measurements to go by. Instead, my mother and grandmother always just added what looked right to them, stirred, tasted and adjusted as needed. This usually yielded great results, though I have to admit as my mother aged and her lupus and undiagnosed EDS began to take their cognitive toll, we came to fear dinner invitations a bit. As my sisters and brother never learned her recipes and she’s gone now, I am the sole owner of this family knowledge, which makes me sad, as I have no children of my own for whom I can pass this knowledge. So I pass it on to you instead, with properly assigned measurements. I hope it brings your family as much joy as it’s always brought me and mine.

Note to low histamine dieters: This recipe is not appropriate for people with mycotoxin (mold) sensitivity. Even if you take out the bacon and pickles, the vinegar in mayo is very likely to cause a reaction. However, if you don’t have any mold issues, you could do it without the pickles, pepper and bacon.

Grandma’s Potato Salad

  • 4 large or 6 medium Russet Potatoes
  • 3 eggs, hard boiled and diced (LH, yolks only)
  • 1/3 cup dill pickle chips, diced (omit for LH)
  • 8 slices hardwood smoked bacon (omit for LH)
  • 2-2 1/2 cups low FODMAP mayonnaise (only okay for LH is no mold reaction is present)
  • 3 tablespoons bacon grease (omit for LH)
  • 1/2 teaspoon Celery Seed
  • 1 teaspoon Parsley flakes
  • 1 teaspoon Salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon Pepper (omit for LH)
  • 2-3 scallions (dark parts only), diced

One day to 8 hours before making, boil potatoes whole in a large stock pot over medium-high to high heat. DO NOT remove the skins. Potatoes are cooked through when a fork slides through the middle easily. Drain and allow to cool before refrigerating at least 4 hours. Cook bacon in a large skillet over medium heat until well browned on both sides. Remove and set on paper towels to drain. Reserve 3 tablespoons of bacon grease.

Peel cold potatoes, removing eyes and bad spots. Cut into 1-1 1/2 ” pieces. Place cut potatoes in a large mixing bowl. Pour reserved bacon fat over potatoes and crumble bacon on top. Add remaining ingredients, except scallions. Using a large, sturdy spoon, stir until all ingredients are well distributed throughout your potatoes. Best if covered and refrigerated overnight. Sprinkle with scallions before serving.

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City Chicken


City Chicken is a dish that fascinated me growing up, mostly because I didn’t understand why it wasn’t actually chicken. According to Wikipedia, it hails as far back as the early 1900’s, but was most popular during the depression era of the 1930’s. This is because it was usually made from pork and/or veal which was skewered on a short stick and made to resemble a chicken leg. Back in the day, chicken was a lot more expensive than pork, so in order to capture a “fried chicken” taste, this is what the working class did when they couldn’t afford real chicken.

City Chicken is also a regional dish, known primarily to the larger cities of the Great Lakes and Appalachian Regions, such as Pittsburgh, Cleveland and Cincinnati. I can’t speak to whether those other cities held onto the tradition of City Chicken, but today, skewers of pork tenderloin are still sold here in Cincinnati and labeled as City Chicken and I grew up with many a City Chicken Sunday dinner in my mother’s home. I loved the tender, juicy breaded meat kabobs and I remember asking my mother why it was so much juicier than chicken breasts. She laughed and told me that was because it was actually pork, but she had no explanation why it was called City Chicken.

I’d come to miss this dish quite a lot during the years I lived in other cities and had I realized it was simply pork tenderloin on a skewer, I probably would have made my own. I introduced my husband to it and he loves it so much, it’s become a twice monthly meal for us. It’s simple to make (even if your butcher doesn’t keep already prepared skewers) and tastes like little else. If you don’t want to cut your own tenderloin, just talk to the butcher at your local grocery, more than likely, they won’t have any problem doing it for you and may even skewer it for you. Kroger certainly will and has for me anytime their out. In fact, I found a 3 lb tenderloin discounted to $3.79 and one of their butchers cut and skewered the entire thing for me at no extra charge.

After referring to several recipes online, I also realized that my family recipe is a bit different than most. A lot of recipes call for browning it and then cooking it in the oven, but we’ve always cooked ours through in the skillet, which gives it an extra crispiness outside while still remaining tender and juicy inside.

To make this recipe low histamine, simply omit the pepper and use the right flour choice for your profile.

City Chicken

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 lb Pork Tenderloin cut into 1 ½ inch cubes
  • 6 4-5” wooden skewers
  • ¼ cup all purpose or gluten-free flour
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon poultry seasoning
  • ½ teaspoon pepper (omit for hist amine diet)

Skewer pork tenderloin cubes through the center with skewers. Pack skewers tightly, leaving no space in between, from end to end. Preheat oil in a large skillet over medium heat.

Place flour, and spices in a zip lock bag and place skewers inside. Shake to coat well with flour. Remove with tongs and place in skillet. Cook 5 minutes a side, rotating with tongs. Serve hot.

Serves: 2-3

Prep time: 5-10 mins

Cook Time: 20 mins