The toddler is napping and the older two are doing art, so I thought I would take an unusually quiet moment to ignore the dishes and come share a granola recipe with you.
But first, a bit of a GAPS update is due (feel free to jump to the recipe if you don’t care to follow our GAPS journey. It is hardly a page turning adventure novel.)
Natalia started GAPS diet because she reacts to new foods every few months to a year since she has been born. Her reactions usually cause eczema (often bloody), keep her up at night (we aren’t entirely sure why, it might simply be discomfort), causes upset stomachs and alternating diarrhea and constipation, and in general makes a sweet happy girl a cranky angry miserable child, who reacts in ways you would expect a miserable four year old to act (even if they aren’t necessarily good reactions). We last did allergy testing with her a year ago and she came back reacting to 21 new things to add to her list of four.
She will be starting intro in about a week, something we should have done sooner but we started GAPS knowing we would be moving soon (I had been planning and prepping for months at that point) and then I got quite sick for the first few months of us being here (more on that in a bit).
Even before intro though, we have seen healing. Her reaction to getting some coconut was not nearly as strong as it had previously been *happy dance* and she can have some dairy. We think. Ask me in a few weeks, the first few weeks of us trying butter, and now fermented cream and some cheeses, have gone remarkably well though. I am willing to still admit I am wrong though and take it back out!
Valerie, my two year old who was going to be doing GAPS intro was actually helped tremendously on simply full GAPS (and possibly the copious amounts of probiotics she has been getting thanks to her Kombucha obsession).
When we last tried dairy with her right before starting GAPS it was pretty miserable. We had a clingy, fussy, and extremely congested baby for a few weeks. She is now eating butter, fermented cream (sour cream), and some cheeses along with the rest of us. We start trialing yogurt as soon as I make GAPS yogurt again.
I can hardly believe it. The only thing we have successfully introduced into their diet in the last two years has been ghee.
We also tried chicken eggs with Valerie, something we had been avoiding like the plague since it affected her so much as a baby (6 weeks of screaming before we removed them kinda made me scared to try again.) But, Natalia can have egg whites so we tried, and she was once again fine. I do not know if GAPS helped her or if she simply outgrew it but most everyone here can now freely eat eggs.
She also tried gluten (grabbed a piece of bread with toddler lightning speed) and simply threw up instead of screaming for three days and having bloody stool like last time. So, we are going to be adding some gluten-free Non-GAPS food in her diet that will be an easy addition to Natalia being on GAPS.
GAPS is the type of diet you are supposed to transition off, it is temporary. It is very restrictive, and removes food that aren’t even necessarily unhealthy but can be taxing on a damaged gut, so time to get some more carb-y and starchy foods into her diet.
I personally was doing GAPS diet to help with some health issues, but had to stop because I was getting very sick on it. It probably wasn’t the GAPS diet fault so much as it was GAPS diet + all the other restrictions + not sleeping + me not having the time to make sure I was getting everything I need because of all that is on my plate.
I accidentally went way too low carb because most of the GAPS carby foods Natalia can’t have (squash, peas, green beans, honey, coconut, a lot of the fruit), we weren’t buying because of budget (most fruit) or I can not stand/tolerate (bananas and lentils).
GAPS is not designed to be a low-carb diet, and I knew this, but wasn’t realizing just how accidentally low carb I had gone!
It took a few months (ending with a few weeks of me passing out multiple times) for me to realize what happened. I haven’t come out and said this, because frankly I am embarrassed to admit it. GAPS diet does NOT mean low carb. *cough*
I actually went cold turkey, and paid for it with a very very miserable stomach. Now the theory is, like Valerie I will be eating what Natalia eats on intro + some snuck in carbs (we can’t eat sweet potato in front of Natalia without it being an emotional issue).
Is this the right move? I have no bloody idea. But, I do know that I can’t be passing out and I can’t keep track of three different specialized diets (GAPS with plenty of carbs for me, but without much fruit or beans + GAPS plus none of Natalia’s restrictions for Natalia, with lentils because we need them budget wise + transitioning of of GAPS for Valerie). I already proved that that is too much for me when I accidentally went too low carb on a diet I know is not supposed to be low carb.
Way to put a cheery and fun post here, huh? I promise, next post will be light and quick. I just want to keep y’all up to date.
Now we finally come to the second, far more fun, purpose of this post– the food.
This is a basic granola, sans basic ingredients (sugar and oats). Delicately sweet and with plenty of crunch. I grind the seeds (nuts can also be used) to make the texture far more classic then most grain-free granolas I have seen.
It is perfect for easy full GAPS breakfasts, and since we just started school, I am all about keeping it easy for breakfast. On full GAPS I was making these for those who can have it, and making miniture energy bites for Natalia to eat at the same time.
- 4 C nuts/seeds of choice (raw, not roasted and salted I used 3 cups sunflower seeds and 1 cup pumpkin seeds for this batch)
- 1 TBSP coconut oil
- ½ tsp salt
- 8 oz coconut flakes (not toasted)
- 2½ tsp of apple pie or pumpkin pie spice*
- 1½ tsp vanilla
- ⅓ C honey
- 1-2 C add ins of choice (raisins, chopped dried apples, toasted nuts/seeds that aren't chopped)
- *You can also just do 1½ teaspoon cinnamon, these just give a bigger variety of flavor because it is a mix of spices.
- Put the seeds/nuts, honey, salt, spices, and oil in a food processor. Pulse to chop together.
- Put the nut/seed mixture into a bowl and stir on the coconut
- Put on two sheet pans and put them in the oven. Turn oven on to 300. Stir every 5 minutes until golden and toasty (about 15-20 minutes).
- Cool, then stir in the add-ins.
- Store in the fridge and eat within a week or two.