Going dairy free & rethinking treats


by Sarika @ attune foods

Who doesn’t love a treat?  My long time favorites include ice cream, hot chocolate, frozen yogurt, milk and cookies, a nibble of milk chocolate, a slice of my Auntie Margie’s cheesecake, crème brûlée…mmmm.  Apparently, there is something about the combination of dairy and sugar that warms the cockles of my heart (did I mention freshly whipped cream?)  I am sure there is a scientific explanation for this glorious combination – something about the fat and sugar (perhaps akin to the ‘malliard reaction’ in baking…) but whatever the reason, I know I can turn to this combo when I really need it.

The only problem is that, several months ago, I discovered my infant’s immature digestive system can’t tolerate dairy in my diet. Since I am breastfeeding, and because my incredible daughter is at the top of the short list of things I love more than dairy and sugar, I have completely cut dairy out of my diet.  I don’t even eat butter.  (Dear Corner Bakery…I loved you while it lasted…)

Yes, treats as I have known and loved them are gone (for the next 6 months at least).  In redefining my relationship with the treat, there have been some dairy substitutes (of which coconut is key, and soy just does not work for me..) but I’ve mainly started to replace treats with other enjoyable experiences.  The dairy free ice cream doesn’t do it for me, but I’ve found that indulging myself in other ways – an extra long shower (while my husband watches the baby), 30 guilt free minutes to watch bad (yet good) TV, or 10 minutes to enjoy a cup of tea..  can often get me to the same feel good place as my beloved dairy.  And, of course,  the happy baby giggle is the ultimate reward.