Hello to all who have joined me on this adventure. I am changing the name of the site to “The Mad Science of Gluten Free Baking”. The new blog address will be madscienceofglutenfree.wordpress.com. I am in the process of setting up a redirection for the site. So if you sill search for madscienceofglutenfree.wordpress.com you will be automatically redirected to the new address. Thanks! Jamie
We hear it every where it seems these days. Gluten free is a healthy diet and everyone should shun wheat and the like. Better yet a grain free diet is the best, or so goes another diet “health” fad. Still another one is saying that we should consume only ancient grains. Side note: don’t ever tell someone on a gluten-free diet that you are going on one “Just Because”. It is like slapping us in the face. Back to the real point of this post. I am here to tell you (brace yourselves) that gluten-free and even grain free are not healthier. Just look in stores and you will soon discover that eating this way isn’t a healthy way at all. Many of the products we crave and can get are full of starches and sugars. We have just transposed the traditional American diet to the trend of Gluten Free.
Most people feel great when they initially get rid of gluten. That is because they have eliminated most of the middle of the grocery store. No more processed foods, creamy salad dressings, forget the bakery aisle, and eating out is limited. Many candies are off-limits too. But then these same people discover the “Health Food” stores or sections of stores. Low and behold there are cookies, candies, and snacks without gluten. There are boxed dinners, microwave dinners, and quick mixes for cake. These people have just traded one bad diet for another, more expensive bad diet.
We consume to much of everything. Did you know that Americans consume more soy then most people in Asian countries. I have been told by friends and family who have traveled to China and Japan that our soy based products are more numerous than theirs. The following is a non-alarmist article on soy and how it is to be consumed. http://www.soyconnection.com/newsletters/soy-connection/health-nutrition/article.php/Guidelines+for+Healthy+Soy+Intake+?id=233
I use this example because, in my opinion, we are doing the same thing with the gluten-free craze.
I am sorry for the rant and if you are feeling a little depressed at this point. I do have a solution, although it may not be to everyone’s taste. Cook your own food. That is right, just learn how to cook. Even if you don’t eliminate wheat from your diet you will feel so much better by making your own healthy food. Limit you intake of sugar. This includes honey too. Honey can spike your blood sugar (check out the American Diabetes Association website). The one thing I make every week is bread. I make different varieties. I use the basic bread mix as a start then add buckwheat and even other grains like millet and teff. We do not have cookies and cakes every week. We don’t even have sandwiches for lunch everyday. Keep a lot of fruits and veggies on hand. If you don’t like them then learn to like them. Did you like the redundancy of the solution?
Thank you for taking time to read through this rant. Cheers!
Last Sunday I wanted to do something special for the family since it was Epiphany. Epiphany is 12 days after Christmas where many celebrate the Magi presenting gifts to the Christ. In our family I try to do fondue and make a special night. This year I didn’t get it together. I wanted a yummy dessert besides the traditional Kings Cake. I have a boat load of pears I canned this summer and so went searching for a recipe. I found one and of course quickly converted it to our liking. Enjoy!
One unbaked pie shell, 9″
2 cups peeled, cored, and diced pears (the original recipe called for fresh but I just used my home-canned pears)
1/2 cup sugar
1 egg, beaten
2 tsp potato starch
1 cup greek yogurt or nondairy substitute (yes I am sorry that this actually has a dairy in it, I would try coconut cream for a substitute)
1 tsp vanilla
1/8 tsp salt
1/2 cup sugar
1 tsp Cinnamon
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1/3 cup MJ’s bead mix
3 Tbs coconut shortening
Preheat the oven to 350.
Combine all the ingredients for the filling, gently blending them together. Spoon into the unbaked pie shell and bake for 25 minutes. Meanwhile, combine the topping ingredients until you have course crumbs. Sprinkle the topping onto the pie and return it to the oven for 30 minutes. Let cool. This is good served warm or cold.
Here is the link for the pie crust:http://madscienceofglutenfree.wordpress.com/2011/11/22/help-its-thanksgiving-and-im-gluten-free-part-2/
Out of all the holiday treats gingerbread cookies are my favorite. So this by far is my favorite seasonal oatmeal we have done. Again there were no leftovers on this one.
2 cups cooked oatmeal
1 Tbl molasses (I used black strap molasses)
1/4 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp allspice
1/4 tsp ginger
1/4 tsp nutmeg
Add all ingredients then taste. You can add another 1/4 tsp of each spice if you need more bold flavor. If you need it more sweet add another sweetener and not more molasses.
Serve in cute little Christmas mugs with a splash of milk. We didn’t have any cookies on hand but for a special treat you crumble some on top. Happy eating!
Ok so the first time I ever had a sugar-plum was this Thanksgiving when my wonderful sis-in-law brought them over. The oatmeal isn’t exactly like a sugar-plum but I am sticking with the name.
2-3 cups cooked oatmeal
1/4 -1/3 cup plum jelly (I made my own this year)
a sprinkle of cinnamon
a dash of nutmeg (very little and add more if you want)
Add a sweetener if needed
Serve in Christmas cups with the Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairy playing in the background.
The kids and I are on a roll. We decided, after the beautiful attempt at pumpkin spice oatmeal, that we would do a holiday themed oatmeal breakfast week. Today we made apple pie oatmeal and it was delicious. My son asked for seconds once again. Here is your recipe. Enjoy!
2 cups cooked oatmeal
1/2 cup applesauce *see note below
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp nutmeg
pinch of cloves
sweetener of your choice
milk of your choice
Cook the oatmeal until almost done. Add the applesauce and cook through. Take off heat and add spices and sweetener. Add more spice if you want. Serve hot with a little milk on top. For an extra treat on the weekends you could put dairy free whipping cream on top.
Note on the applesauce: We can our own and we like it chunky. Making your own applesauce is really easy. Just take sweet apples, core, and peel them. Add them into a pot with a little apple juice on the bottom or water. This is so the apples will not stick on the bottom. Heat until they are tender enough to mash. If you are not canning the sauce add some fresh lemon juice so that they will not brown and keep in the fridge for up to a week.
Oh my word have you ever had pumpkin spice oatmeal? neither have I but this morning I was in the mood for more pumpkin. Seeing as I had left over pumpkin puree in the fridge I began to add this and add that. Soon we had a delightful fall breakfast. My kiddos loved it! Here is the recipe.
1 1/2 cups rolled oats (there should be gluten-free varieties in most stores)
3 cups water
1/4 cup pumpkin puree
1/2 tsp cinnamon or more to taste
1/4 tsp ginger
1 pinch of cloves
milk of your choice ( I would use a plain soy or almond milk to avoid extra sugar)
Bring water and oats to a boil and then add in pumpkin. Cook until almost done then add all the spices. Take off heat and add brown sugar to taste and milk to cool. Enjoy!