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Thursday, February 19, 2015

Gluten Free flours...

Today I wanted to share a gluten free comparison flour chart with you. When you are  mixing your own flour blends together for gluten free recipes, this is a handy tool to have. It helps you decide which flours will work best for your own personal diet needs. The chart basically tells you which flours are the "healthiest' to use based on carb count, fiber, proteins, and calories. The flours highlighted in RED are NOT gluten free but are on the chart only to give you a example of their properties in comparison to the gluten free flours....

Although the top flours on the chart would indeed be the healthiest to use, we must be logical  in  the knowledge that when baking gluten free no single flour will work  as well alone as it does when mixed with other flours and starches.

I personally love using oat flour. It has a mild, sweet taste that I am use to. I also like to use Millet, as it is easily digestible and contains fiber, which can be missing in many baked goods. It gives the finished product  a somewhat nutty taste. However, use this flour sparingly because it can be overbearing and some people won't like the taste of your baked goods as well. Sorghum is also one that you will sometimes find in my mixes. Although it is not as easily digested, it does add structure and a nice taste to baked goods. Rice flour is always in my pantry as well. I avoid bean flours, as they and I just do not agree with one another. I have not had as good of luck with coconut flour, but love to use coconut oil in place of the oil and shortening in my recipes. Its loaded with fiber, healthy,  and gives baked goods a great taste. ( you can order coconut oil to the right of this site)

 Don't forget your starches....Although they do carry their weight in carbs and calories they also add texture, browning power, and lightness to your desserts. I personally like using arrowroot powder, tapioca starch , and potato starch  in  my baked goods. Arrowroot basically has no flavor so it doesn't take away from the finished products taste. Tapioca helps your baked goods brown nicely, and a blend of all three in my mixes really gives my desserts the taste and texture they need.

 I hope the chart helps.  So mix away, and Good luck! Also drop me a line and tell me what  flours you use in your favorite mix, and why you believe it works for you...



Thursday, February 12, 2015

Goat cheese stuffed tomatoes...

Tomato's, tomato's, tomato's....No mater how you slice it they are one of my favorite fruits...Yes I said fruit! I love anything with tomatoes in it, on it, or cooked in them... Pizza, pasta, and fresh from the garden with some salt and pepper. I am so excited that Spring is only weeks away and I can't wait to start my raised veggie garden this year after recently moving back to my home state.
I thought I would jump ahead a little to Spring and share a great light and refreshing recipe with you all. Anything to hopefully take your mind off this cold weather...That's what friends are for ya know :-)
Anyway here is the recipe which you can use even now as there are some pretty of good tasting tomato's in the stores right now. I hope you will give it a try and drop a line and tell me what you think.
Until next post....
 Goat cheese stuffed tomato's:
8-10 small vine-ripened tomato, even Roma's will do...
½ cup goat cheese
5-8 fresh basil leaves, minced
½ teaspoon extra virgin olive oil (plus a little to garnish)
Salt and pepper to taste
Hollow out the tomatoes by cutting carefully into the top to remove the top and stem. Use a spoon to remove the seeds. The remaining hollowed out tomato will look similar to a tulip.
Mix the goat cheese, basil, olive oil, salt and pepper.
Stuff the goat cheese mixture into the tomatoes.
Serve on a plate and garnish with a little olive oil and strips of fresh basil.

* If using Roma tomatoes take a small slice off bottoms so they will stand upright on the plate...

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Gluten free cookbook...

Hi all. Well I have had the past few days off from work as we are having some issues with our washing machine that seriously needed to be taken care of. It sounded like a helicopter taking off when it was on the spin cycle, and spitting black stuff onto my floor....I sometimes feel that life is out to get me, along with the washing machine!

A few days ago I posted that I was going to try agar agar in my bread recipe and let you know how it turned out. I have only made one loaf so far and I had actually tried a new flour mixture at the same time, so I honestly can't give a reasonable opinion. I will say however that I did keep the finished loaf and its in my freezer, so I guess it wasn't all that bad!!!

For the past month I have been feeling out of sorts with a irritated stomach most of the time, and when searching the web on gums and their affects I  found out that I had  many of the symptoms that others who can't consume xanthan gum have had...Seems not only was it affecting my gut, but also the lining of my nose and its membranes. Since I have been careful not to consume products the past few days with any xanthan gum in them my symptoms seem to be clearing up. I will keep you further posted on this matter when I have been off  it for a longer period of time...

Also I have been doing some intense research on the web about using a gum replacement along with the agar agar, or on its own, and have ordered another product that I am hoping will help solve my dilemma. I will also keep you posted on this venture.

Tomorrow it will be back to work as usual :-( , and after being retired once, I am definitely looking forward to that day soon again. Its hard working on new recipes and flour mixtures when I am so tired after a day of work...All I want to do is prop my feet up and try and relax. Maybe someday I will finally be able to complete the cookbook I started over a year ago....

Well that's all for today. Hopefully my "surprise" gum replacement will arrive this week and I can post some hopeful results for you all soon.

Until then have a great gluten free week.