Gluten-free

gluten freeFenelon Clan (at least those still living at home) is going gluten-free. I’ve been voraciously reading up on this sensitivity, which many doctors are touting as an epidemic. We’ve not been tested, but we have enough of the symptoms on the various checklists and medical histories to make me believe it’s worth doing it regardless.

My new endeavor led me to post some inquisitive statuses on my Facebook page, and I’ve gotten enough responses to open this blog to further discussion about gluten-free living. Folks are interested in sharing experiences and especially recipes. One disclaimer: I, nor my post-ers, are medical experts and do not portend to offer medical advice. If you’ve got something going on health-wise, please, please do your research via reliable sources and check with your doctor!

Okay, my gluten-free friends, let’s roll!

9 Comments

  1. There are a number of wonderful gluten-free flour mixes on the market, or you can mix your own. Gluten-free veterans know that non-gluten flours don’t have the sticking power that wheat flours do. So, we mix various flours and add it thickeners such as xanthan gum, unflavored gelatin powder, tapioca starch, cornstarch, or potato starch. I’d recommend using a good flour mix recipe, as it’s tricky (at least for me) to guess at how much of this or that to add.

    To get myself started, I purchased a wonderful all-purpose flour blend made by Domata. I found it online at Gluten-Free Mall, and have been absolutely delighted with it! I’ve used it for sweet bread, yeast bread, and now chocolate chip cookies. I also have a few recipes for flour mixes, which I have not yet tried.

  2. Here’s the recipe for the gluten-free chocolate chip cookies. It comes from The Gluten Connection; How Gluten Sensitivity May Be Sabotaging Your Health – And What You Can Do to Take Control NOW by Shari Lieberman, PhD, CNS, FACN. I highly, highly recommend this book!

    Without further ado:
    2 1/4 c. all-purpose (gluten-free) flour
    1 tsp. baking soda
    1 tsp. xanthan gum or guar gum
    1 tsp. salt
    1 c. butter, softened (Clan used half butter-flavored shortening and half low-fat margarine)
    3/4 c. white sugar
    3/4 c. packed brown sugar (Clan thought this was a lot of sugar. Next time we make this recipe, we’re going to try 1/2 c. each sugar.)
    1 tsp. vanilla extract
    2 eggs
    2 c. (12 oz) semisweet chocolate chips (Clan used half the amount of chips and it was more than enough!)
    1 c. chopped nuts (Optional. Clan skipped the nuts.)

    1. Preheat over to 375 degrees F.
    2. Combine the flour, baking soda, xanthan gum or guar gum, and salt in a small bowl. Set aside. (Since we used a ready-made flour mix that included xanthan gum, we skipped this ingredient.)
    3. Beat the butter, white sugar, brown sugar, and vanilla extract in a large mixer bowl.
    4. Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition.
    5. Gradually add the flour mixture into the butter mixture.
    6. Stir in the morsels and nuts, if using.
    7. Drop by rounded tablespoonsful onto an ungreased baking sheet. (The cookies will spread out. Smaller dollops are better than larger ones. Clan had no problem with spreading.)
    8. Bake for 9 to 11 minutes.
    9. Let stand for 2 minutes, then remove to a rack to cool completely.

    These cookies are rich, chewy, and absolutely fantastic!

  3. I have had celiac disease for a long time and have collected a vast amount of great recipes. Here are two you might like!

    Flourless Peanut butter cookies:
    1 cup peanut butter , 1 cup brown sugar, 1 egg, optional 1/2 cup of chocolate chips.
    Preheat oven to 350
    Combine ing. Stir in chocolate chips.
    On ungreased cookie sheet drop rounded spoonfuls. Bake 9 minutes.

    Prep time: 10 mins Cook time: 20 mins Total time: 30 mins Serves: 18
    A Gluten Free Take on the popular Samoa Girl Scout Cookie!

    Ingredients
    2 Large Egg Whites
    2/3 Cup of Granulated Sugar
    1 1/2 cup Shredded Sweetened Coconut
    1/2 tsp Vanilla Extract
    a dash of salt
    1 Cup Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips
    10 Kraft Caramels unwrapped
    Directions
    Preheat Oven to 325 Degrees F
    In a CLEAN bowl beat egg whites and dash of salt on medium speed until soft peaks form.
    Slowly add Granulated sugar & Vanilla while continuing to mix. Beat until glossy and thickens. (#1)
    Fold in the Shredded Coconut in to the egg mix gently. (#2)
    Place in heaping teaspoonfuls 2 inches apart on parchment lined cookie sheet and bake 15-20 minutes until golden brown. (#3)
    Allow Cookies to cool for 5 min. (#4) While cooling place chocolate chips in small bowl. Microwave for 1 minute at 50% Power. Stir. Microwave for another 30 seconds at 50% power until melted enough to drizzle.
    Drizzle Melted chocolate over cookies.
    Use the same method to melt the unwrapped caramels. Drizzle the caramel over the cookies.
    SERVE.

  4. Can’t wait to try these- I have been getting more and more requests-I have to label them gluten friendly- as they won’t be made in a totally gluten-free environment- just with gluten free products- any future recipes will be much appreciated- and I will look for that book too. Thanks to all who respond.

    • I believe in the Giver’s Gain philosophy- so here is my contribution for today.
      Jan’s Monster Bars
      cream: 1/2 c. butter, 1 c. brown sugar, 1c. white sugar,
      Add: 1 1/2 c. creamy peanut butter, 3 med. eggs, 1 t. vanilla
      mix well.
      add: 2 t. baking soda, 4 1/2 c. quick oats, 1 c. m&m’s, 1 c. choc. chips, 1 c. nuts (optional)
      mix well pour into ungreased 10×15 jelly roll pan.
      baked 350 for 15 min. cool , cut, eat.

  5. Most of the recipes I’ve run across call for a gluten-free flour mix. Here’s a recipe to make your own mix (cheaper than buying pre-mixed flour). One hint: I was able to purchase most of the ingredients at cheaper prices in the International Foods aisle – tapioca and potato starch near the Asian foods, for example. Also, look in the Middle Eastern section for Besan flour. It’s the same as chickpea flour, which can be substituted for the more costly garfava (bean) flour. It took me some time to research these items, but it was well worth it. I’ve been meaning to stop at an Asian or Indian food market to price out the ingredients, but haven’t gotten there yet.

    From Gluten-Free Cooking forDummies:
    2 1/2 c. rice flour
    1 c. potato starch flour
    1 c. tapioca flour
    1/4 c. garbanzo bean (chickpea, besan) flour
    1/4 c. cornstarch
    2 1/2 Tbsp. xanthan gum

    From Bette Hagman’s The Gluten-Free Gourmet Bakes Bread:
    Light Bean Flour Mix
    3 c. garfava bean flour
    3 c. tapioca flour
    3 c. cornstarch

    Note that Bette Hagman’s recipe does not include xanthan gum, you would have to add it to the recipe. I’ve read that twice the amount of unflavored gelatin powder can be substituted for once the amount of xanthan gum. I priced it out, and found xanthan gum to be about the same to a bit cheaper considering you use half the amount of unflavored gelatin.

  6. is there some rule of thumb as to what flour substitutions work best for say a torte or cookies?
    I tried a torte this week – mixed 1/2 all purpose and 1/2 rice- it tasted good- but the crust was a little hard to get out of the pan- will try it on a few other people to see what they think before I post it- yeah it uses up 8 c. grated zucchini too!

    • There is a rule of thumb. I really like the flour mixes that Bette Hagman uses. I also like the Domata pre-mixed flour, available at Gluten-Free Mall.com, but it’s more expensive than mixing it myself. Here’s nice all-purpose mix:

      Basic Gluten-Free Flour Mix
      Rice flour (2 parts) 6 cups
      Potato starch (2/3 part) 2 cups
      Tapioca flour (1/3 part) 1 cup

      Featherlight Rice Flour Mix
      Rice flour (1 part) 3 cups
      Tapioca flour (1 part) 3 cups
      Cornstarch (1 part) 3 cups
      Potato flour (1 tsp/cup) 3 Tbsp.

      Adding a teaspoon or two of xanthan gum to a recipe really helps with moistness and sponginess.

  7. have you checked out the magazine living without- gluten free living- it has some great recipes in it- worth the price so far

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