We’re kicking off our first “In the Kitchen” tour with Heather Martin who shows us how she is cooking for food allergies.
The kitchen is the heart of every home, especially when cooking for food allergies. Everyone manages food allergies differently. Some of us manage multiple food allergies and have allergens in the house, while others keep an allergen-free kitchen.
Every month, we’re asking friends from our Zestfull community for a peek into their kitchens. We hope that by sharing our kitchens we learn tips and tricks from each other that will help make cooking more joyful while learning how everyone manages food allergies.
In the Kitchen with Chef Mommy
Heather was born and raised in New Orleans, Louisiana. She is married to Dr. Colin Martin and is the mother of four beautiful children with food allergies. This busy mom is also a member of the national gospel recording group Virtue.
Three years ago, she started a YouTube channel called Chef Mommy to help bring awareness to food allergies, give support to others, and share her journey. She also cooks delicious vegan meals for her family and friends on her Instagram page, The Chef Mommy.
Heather’s food reflects her personality; vibrant, colorful and made with love. Heather is often found singing in her kitchen and cooking with her kids. She has a happy energy that makes me want to be in her kitchen cooking along with her family.
Heather’s Kitchen Tour
7 Questions for Heather about cooking in her kitchen with food allergies
1. Who cooks and eats here?
Everyone does! My husband, the kids, my mom, and when my sisters visit, they do too. And of course I do!
2. Food allergies you or your family live with?
Dairy, nuts, eggs, fish, sunflower seeds, sesame seeds, and flax seeds.
3. Do you have food allergens in your house? If so, what influenced your decision?
Yes. Once the kids were old enough to understand what they can and cannot eat, we decided it was ok to keep a few specific items in the house.
4. What is the best cooking advice you’ve ever received?
Pray before you cook and make it with love.
5. Describe a meal you’re really proud of that you’ve cooked in your kitchen?
I’m from New Orleans so making a vegan gumbo that is safe for my kids to enjoy and still experience the culture was a proud moment.
6. What is your favorite cookbook? Why?
I have so many favorites but right now I am enjoying one by Deborah Madison called Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone. I love it because she uses so many fresh herbs, the recipes are easy to make, and they are so good.
7. What’s on your menu this week?
I don’t usually make a menu. I buy what’s fresh and what looks good to me and then decide what we will eat. But usually each week I can guarantee we’ll have biscuits, or a waffle for breakfast, all homemade. I’ll likely make a kale salad, some kind of curry, red beans and rice, and lots of roasted, and stir fried veggies.
Thanks for sharing your kitchen with us!
Shahla is a mom of two girls who live with environmental allergies such as asthma and eczema. Their food allergies include tree nuts, peanuts, sesame and other seeds. Shahla is trained as a Natural Chef who wants to share the comfort that cooking has brought her family. She believes that everyone, regardless of dietary requirements, deserves a plate full of color and flavor.