Accepting the challenges in creating a gluten free household

Archive for April, 2012

The BESTEST Hot Dog Buns Ever!!

OK. I know. Bestest isn’t a word. But I wanted your attention! And I got it, didn’t I?

If you don’t live in or near Winnipeg, Manitoba, I’m sorry. This post is not for you. But if you live near here, I have the greatest news ever. I had the best bread I’ve had since going gluten free this week. We took sandwiches to work. We NEVER do that normally! We finished the loaf. We never do that either.

We had hot dogs tonight, and I would like you to know that you haven’t had hot dog buns as good as these gluten free ones I bought last Friday.

I know you want to know where to find this awesome baking. I went to Meyers Drug Store where CocoaBeans Bakery delivers every Friday. Cocoabeans has a website: http://www.cocoabeansbakeshop.com/index2.php#/home/

Maybe one day she’ll have her own storefront and/or cafe. If she does, I’ll be happy to send customers her way. I’ll warn you. Her bread and buns are not cheap. But no gluten free baking is cheap. And if you’re like me, some of what you’ve paid for in the past has ended up in the trash – because a lot of GF baking belongs in the trash. So splurge. Buy a great-tasting gf bread with quality ingredients. But let me get there first on Friday… I need my loaf, too.

Disclaimer: I do not know the baker at Cocoabeans, though I hope to meet her one day. She is not paying me to say any of this!!

Chewy Gooey Flourless Chocolate Cookies

Sometimes it works to substitute flours found in regular recipes.  Sometimes it’s just better to go flourless.  My daughter loves to make peanut butter chocolate chip cookies for her dad when making a meal for us.  They’re yummy!  I think the ingredients are peanut butter, eggs, chocolate chips and sugar.  Another short list… you know I like short lists!!

But this week I craved chocolate (I say that as if it is something new… it is not!)  This recipe called to me.  It did NOT disappoint.

Short list of ingredients (6)… Crispy-chewy, soooooo good!!  You put them away in an airtight container to get them out of sight!!  The only thing I will do different next time is use a smaller scoop to make smaller cookies (and bake a shorter period of time.)  Watch them carefully – 14 minutes may be too long even for the larger cookies.  They spread very thin, and the larger cookies were more difficult to peel off the parchment without breaking.  Of course that meant more cookies for me to eat…

Here is the link to this recipe: http://www.recipegirl.com/2007/11/24/chewy-gooey-flourless-chocolate-cookies/

Hot Cross Buns

It is Easter weekend.  We were invited to bring Paska (Ukranian Easter Bread) or Hot Cross Buns for a coffee time after church tomorrow.  I tried a GF Paska recipe last week, and though it smelled delicious (even tasted good according to my hubby) – it looked awful.  It fell as it cooled, so the inside was rather gooey-looking.

I also had a Hot Cross Buns recipe to try, so this morning I made them, and put them confidently into the oven.  So far, so good.  But I didn’t watch them carefully enough and they got too brown.  Which made them very thick-crusted.  The insides looked wonderful.  That was enough encouragement to try again.  I knew exactly what I’d done wrong.  I tried again.  Success!!  Here’s the Hot Cross Bun recipe I used, the way I made them.  The recipe is based on one by Rebecca Reilly, author of  Gluten Free Baking.  I love the flour blend.  The original recipe is here: http://www.livingwithout.com/recipes/gluten_free_hot_cross_buns-2000-1.html

1 cup bean flour
2/3 cup tapioca starch
2/3 cup brown rice flour
2/3 cup arrowroot starch
⅓ cup sugar
2 tablespoons rapid-rise yeast
½ cup skim milk powder
1 tablespoon xanthan gum
1 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon cinnamon
1 cup warm water
¼ cup light olive oil
3 eggs, lightly beaten
1 teaspoon vinegar
1 cup raisins
Grated lemon zest from 1 lemon
3 tablespoons melted butter, for brushing

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Lightly grease a cookie sheet.

Mix dry ingredients in mixing bowl.  Add grated lemon zest.

In a smaller bowl, mix water, oil, eggs and vinegar, add to dry ingredients and beat for 5 minutes.  Mix in raisins.

Using an ice cream/cookie scoop, scoop out dough and place on cookie sheet with a bit of space between each bun.  Brush the buns with melted butter and cut an X into the top of each bun. Cover with a piece of plastic wrap and let rise in a warm, draft-free spot for 20 to 30 minutes.

Place buns in preheated oven and bake for 20 minutes until golden brown. Remove from oven and cool on a rack. When the buns are cool, drizzle icing over the scored X.   Makes 15 buns.

Icing:
1½ cups powdered sugar, sifted
2 tablespoons milk
¼ teaspoon vanilla

Whisk powdered sugar, milk and vanilla together until smooth. Add more milk if icing is too thick.