Over the past several years, I’ve come to realize I have quite a few food intolerances, one of them being gluten. Sure, I was more than a little bummed to say sayonara to the convenience of delivery pizza, but these days I’m finding that my dietary needs are more of a small annoyance than a giant inconvenience, thanks to some great gluten-free products. I have only come to say this after much whining, tantrum-throwing, pity partying and–most productive of all–researching.
When my husband and I found out that we both have some of the same food issues (gluten), we decided it might be best to begin avoiding gluten altogether for our daughters, determining that it could be hereditary. Of course this resulted in more whining and tantrum-throwing–mine, not theirs.
Would I become one of those mothers whose children never tasted cupcakes or pizza or yummy sandwiches? Ever? What would become of them? After bemoaning their lost gluten-filled childhood, I became resolute: We would all have our gluten-free cake–and we would eat it, too!
So, whether you’re in my boat or you’re just looking for a nice gluten-free recipe, here are some of my favorite resources for gluten-free cooking, baking and eating. May they help bring you and yours (if gluten-challenged) back to your favorite foods.
“BabyCakes: Vegan, (Mostly) Gluten-Free, and (Mostly) Sugar-Free Recipes from New York’s Most Talked-About Bakery” and “BabyCakes Does the Classics.” These books comprise the baking bible to celebratory and everyday gluten-free baked goods. The secret to a moist gluten-free confection is coconut oil, which makes for the most delectable yum-yums you’ll ever eat. There are fantastic recipes for cobblers, donuts, cookies and even my girls’ favorite–carrot cupcakes. Some of these treats are my husband’s favorites of all time.
Pamela’s Products. Miss the everyday ease of grabbing a muffin or whipping up a quick batch of pancakes and waffles for the family? Look no further than the good lady Pamela. There are gluten-free mixes for everything from pancakes to cookies to brownies and pizza dough. She even provides a mean ready-made chocolate chunk cookie for the car ride home from the grocery store.
Gluten-free blogs. Bloggers like the Gluten-Free Goddess are solely responsible for making me excited about cooking and baking again.
Udi’s Gluten Free Foods. Prepared muffins, pizza crusts, loaves of bread (yes, really!) and the best granola you’ll ever eat–all available in a regular grocery store chain as well as Whole Foods. Udi’s means you can once again make a sandwich for lunch. Power to the people!
Local and national chain pizzarias. Gluten-free pizza dough is popping up everywhere. Some aren’t so great (back to the drawing board for you, Mellow Mushroom!), but others like California Pizza Kitchen are making some major strides. The best I’ve ever had is from Nashville-based Pizza Perfect, so check with your favorite local pizza joint, and always remember the supply and demand principle: If enough of us demand it (politely, of course), they will supply it.
For more information on gluten-free recipes, check out magazines like Vegetarian Times, Whole Living and a myriad of other cooking and nutrition magazines.