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Gluten Free Cooking

Sep
8

Post by community member:

Hi! I’m Lauren. I’m not only the painter of adorable donkeys, but I like to cook. My sister and I have to continue to learn to cook because we’re gluten intolerant. Gluten is the protein in certain grains such as wheat and barley. Some people can’t digest that protein and it makes them sick. There are different degrees of gluten intolerance. Some people will just get a little sick often, while others are affected far more.


Seven years ago, my Mom found out that my younger sister had this allergy because she was hyperactive, could not pay attention, and doubled over with stomach pain. Her gluten free diet changed all of that for the better. Three years ago, Mom suspected that my getting colds and other illnesses constantly might be related to this allergy. My younger sister had it. Why not me? We changed my diet and I‘ve experienced much better health. When my aunt finally tried this diet, she no longer had irritable bowel syndrome. Plus, to her surprise, other health issues cleared up as well.

When you’re gluten intolerant, you have to read labels constantly. You must also be very careful when you eat out. Gluten can be as obvious as wheat listed on a label, or as hidden as contaminated oats (oats are gluten-free), or French fries in a restaurant dusted with flour to crisp them. Most gluten free diets include rice flour, potato starch, tapioca starch, sorghum flour, millet flour, and buckwheat.

When our Mom first started baking this way, we all wished we could have wheat again, but soon she improved. Now she’s teaching us. That’s why we have a food blog. We want to teach others how to make delicious baked goods. We’d like people to be able to have a diet that really helps them. It would be sad to give up because the first gluten free baking attempts taste like sawdust. We also don’t want people to have to eat store-bought gluten free bread that they can hardly get their teeth into.

There are many good recipe books and sites for this way of cooking. It’s really not hard once you get used to it. Enjoy baked goods and better health too!

Gluten free cookbook recommendations:

*Anything by Bette Hagman, the queen mother of gluten free cooking. She was doing it before it was widely known. (Some favorite Bette Hagman titles include The Gluten Free Gourmet Makes Dessert and The Gluten Free Gourmet Bakes Bread)
*The Best Ever Wheat and Gluten Free Baking Book by Mary Ann Wenniger
*The Incredible Edible Gluten Free Foods for Kids by Sheri L. Sanderson


You can also find Lauren at Gluten Go Bye Bye.

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Posted by on September 8, 2010 | Permalink  

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Comments

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  1. 9-8
    7:53
    am

    Great post, Lauren!

  2. 9-8
    8:45
    am

    Thanks, Lauren! I will be passing this post on to a friend who’s kids can’t have gluten.

  3. 9-8
    9:14
    am

    Wonderful post Lauren! Thank you for the info. I also love your donkey painting!

  4. 9-8
    9:15
    am

    Great post, Lauren! Your site (along with your sister) is wonderful!

    It’s wonderful the way you are being involved with your diet and learning new (good) recipes and sharing 🙂 I’m sure there are many people who are allergic to gluten, but just don’t know it. I’ve already forwarded this post to a couple people 🙂

    Keep up the great work and look forward to some more posts 🙂

  5. 9-8
    1:01
    pm

    Thanks for the wonderful post. I have tried the gluten free diet and it really did help some health issues I had. The cookies and cakes are actually tastier than the wheat flour ones. I have the Bette Hageman cookbooks and I really like her recipes. I prefer the corn and rice pastas, too. HOWEVER, there was one thing that I simply could not get used to and that was gluten-free yeast bread. I tried and tried different recipes and they came out horribly. If I could keep a recipe from deflating long enough to eat it, it tasted yucky!! UGH! I simply could not get used to gluten-free bread. Do you have a recipe for gluten-free bread that doesn’t deflate as soon as you take it from the oven AND also tastes good? I really felt much better on the diet but I love my bread, too!

  6. 9-8
    1:42
    pm

    Your gluten-free desserts look awesome! 😀 I have been on the same adventure of cooking/baking gluten-free, but also sugar-free and all-grain-free (can’t eat corn). Slowly but surely, with little changes here and there each time, my creations improve in taste and texture! I am always looking for recipes from people who have done it all before so I can find new ways of doing something. Have you ever tried Almond Meal as a flour substitute? That, coconut flour, and pecan flour are my bases, as well as xylitol(the stuff derived from birch bark, not corn) instead of sugar.

  7. 9-8
    4:15
    pm

    Really informative post, Lauren. Thank you!

    I have a friend who has an intolerance of gluten too. You’ve inspired me to bake something gluten-free and gift to him and his wife. I just haven’t figured out which of the recipes on your site I should try first… they all look yummy.

    Oh, yes. The donkey picture IS adorable!

  8. 9-8
    8:47
    pm

    The desserts look delicious. What does xantham gum do and where can you purchase this product?

  9. 9-9
    12:17
    pm

    Thank you Lauren! I stopped eating processed sugar and wheat flour and was amazed at how much better I felt. I’ve checked out your website and am excited to try the recipes! I’ll be back to visit often!!!!

  10. 9-9
    5:40
    pm

    Thank you to everyone who left such kind comments.

    North Country Girl- We will try to get a yeast bread recipe up on our blog.

    Lisa- We are familiar with all the ingredients you mentioned. Coconut flour and Pecan flour are very expensive when you’re cooking for six. We use almond meal in some recipes at home.

    Mafong- Xanthan Gum is a binder that helps hold everything together. Without it, baked goods tend to have the texture of cornmeal. It can be purchased at health food stores or any large grocery that has a gluten free section. I believe they sell it online too.

    • 9-10
      8:50
      am

      Lauren, do you think xanthum gum would work in vegan recipes where I need a binder? (Cooking for Weston’s vegan girlfriend.) Can you just add it to any recipe?

  11. 9-11
    6:14
    am

    As a gal cooking for a family of five, I know what you mean about the cost, it can get pricey! Fortunately we’ve been able to find the flours in bulk at a much lower cost, though because of the still-high price, we rarely get the Pecan flour. Coconut flour makes great pancakes, and almond flour makes the best waffles and cakes, so we’re quite content! 😀 It can be hard to bind things, still, but we can’t use Xanthan gum due to it being derived from corn. Have you used guar or locust bean gum before, and do they work very well?

  12. 11-25
    5:46
    pm

    Lisa we are also allergic to corn, plus have to be GF.

    Lauren I too must know, is there something we can use in place of corn starch, potato starch, tapioca starch, also a xanthum gum replacement?

  13. 11-26
    11:22
    am

    Hi Lisa!

    It’s been years since I’ve been on this website and since then I have made some discoveries, bakingwise… Fine-ground rice flour works great when mixed with buckwheat flour! Buckwheat is a (contrary to its name)non-wheat, non-gluten flour. I usually use a half and half mix. Also, Guar Gum works fabulous! Only an 1/8 of a teaspoon per cup of flour is needed, sometimes a little more if you’re making something that has difficulty holding in moisture when baked. I hope that helps! – Lisa N.

  14. 1-7
    3:39
    pm

    Lisa,

    Thank you so much. Yes buckwheat is actually a flour seed, not a grass so no bad gluten. I will try to as I have lots of buckwheat.
    Thank you.

    Also, what is your blog?

    Lisa

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