I have always known I wanted to be a teacher. When I was younger, I used to read aloud to my stuffed animals, chastising them for whispering during the page turns. Teaching was always my passion…still is.
But then came food.
When I got to college, I barely knew how to cook. My mom recalls a story where I called her once, asking how to microwave ramen. That’s right, I didn’t even know how to cook it in the microwave. In my defense, though, the instructions on the package only tell you how to cook it on the stove.
See? I wasn’t kidding!
Then I met boyf.
Being a poor college student, I took to baking him treats instead of buying him gifts for various occasions. The look on his face as he took a bite was priceless; he was so full of love and appreciation while his mouth was so full of cake. I knew then that I wanted to try more recipes, more delicious items I could make for him.
I began to try out my recipes on my family, too. My mom made (and still does) the best reactions: gasping, sighing, a variety of mmmm noises, and saying how “terrific” and “amazing” my desserts are, no matter what they tasted like. She also needed to tell everyone about what I made, and made everyone taste it.
I started small, using box mixes and pre-made ingredients. My favorite was my famous ice cream pie: pre-made graham cracker crust filled with a pint of Ben and Jerry’s ice cream. My go-to was Cherry Garcia, with fresh, sliced cherries on top. It was very Sandra Lee of me.
A year or two later, I discovered I was severely lactose and dairy intolerant. Womp womp. Box mixes and store-bought items were now off limits, and I struggled to find ways to eat desserts that didn’t make me immediately sick.
I took to baking my own items from scratch, and found that I loved not only the physical process of baking, but that also the desserts tasted so much better than store bought treats. Even when I did find a supermarket confection that was dairy free, it tasted so processed when compared to my goods. To this day, my tasters say that the dairy-free treats make them feel lighter than the full-milk, full-fat ones.
I became fascinated with substituting non-dairy milks and butters into regular recipes, trying my hand at all sorts of challenging delicacies. Some crashed and burned (non-dairy pudding never really sets correctly) and some were great successes! (See my website for my most successful items…all available for purchase!)
Check out my site for delicious treats for purchase!
I have pledged to live my life dairy free for over 2 years now, and every day is a journey in substitution-I want mac and cheese, but I don’t want to eat too much soy (most dairy-free cheese is made of soy). I am craving ice cream, but non-dairy ice cream is expensive, and Whole Foods is far away. Hot chocolate sounds amazing on a cold, winter day, but the Swiss Miss packets contain milk.
I started this blog to chronicle my dairy-free life. Yes, most of this will be mostly about baking, my trials and tribulations as a lactose intolerant baker. You’ll see a lot of my cats, Munch and Wally. My students call me a crazy cat lady, and I’d say that’s pretty accurate. You’ll see boyf from time to time, a wonderful souz chef, sounding board and brain-stormer for all things dairy free, and a great encourager of my culinary endeavors. Welcome to my life. I’m excited to share my world with you.
How cute is this face?!