Everyone is ‘something-free’


Nothing reminds me of my childhood more than the smell of roast beef. Having recently concluded my forth decade, I still have vivid memories of watching my mom come home from work, donning her blue apron over her work suit (and the inevitable flouncy bow at the throat — this was the 1980s after all), and meticulously slitting holes in the meat and inserting garlic cloves. OK, probably she wouldn’t have been doing this on a weeknight; it takes hours for a rib roast to cook, and eating it was an event to be savored. In any case, my diligent mom would cook dinner — from scratch — just about every night. She had to.

These days, just about everyone is “something-free.” Whether it’s gluten, dairy, nuts, or something else, most people are at least familiar with the concept of restricted food. Most people we know routinely ask guests if they have any dietary restrictions before serving them. But food allergies in the 80s were a strange and exotic phenomenon. Only the most progressive places asked if you had a “special diet,” then served the same thing to everyone who responded. Most people didn’t bother to ask and acted put out if you did.

For my mom, her allergies to eggs, nuts, peanuts, and shellfish were a constant frustration. Eggs had dozens of different names hidden in hundreds of different products. Peanut oil was common for cooking, but sometimes was not disclosed because it wasn’t, technically, an ingredient. And eating out? You get the picture. So my mom cooked, read labels, and educated herself about food. And I watched.

Now that I’m a mom, I try to cook for my family several times a week. Some things are popular, others not so much. I enjoy tinkering in the kitchen and every once in a while I find a keeper. I’d like to share some of my favorite recipes, and hope you can help me make them even better by offering your suggestions and shortcuts. I am always open to suggestions, so if there’s a topic or a food you’d like to see me write about, please let me know.

Thank you for giving me the opportunity to cook and learn with you!

– Judith


Judith is our Active Mama’s Munchie Maven and Yoga Maven. That means she teaches Active Mama’s Cooking Basics Chef classes, and is also our instructor for Active Mama’s Mommy Yoga with Judith.

Judith is refreshingly laid back, exceptional at what she does, and is the able mother of 3 beautiful children.

Judith comes well-accredited. She earned her Masters of Public Health and her passion is helping people find ways to make their lives healthier.

If you have questions for Judith she can be messaged through http://www.meetup.com/Active-Mamas

To become an Active Mama’s Maven yourself, email Robyn at rehcooper@gmail.com.