Tag Archives: gluten free

Avoiding Pumpkin Pie mistakes: To avoid cooking up a foamy disaster, mix in the right order.

Ask me how I know.  It’s not the food science education, but it should have been.

Last Thanksgiving I made two pies.  The first one was the Official Pie for Thanksgiving dinner, and it was a damned good thing that I took my time and followed the directions (for once).  It was a thing of beauty, and tasted like one too (thanks, back of the can and crushed Mi-Del gluten free ginger snaps mixed with butter and ripped apart in the Cuisinart).  Not very tall, because I used a glass pie plate, but still awesome.

This post is not about that awesome pie, but about the second pie.  Ever have a pie come out like this?

Well.  I was in a mighty big hurry the second time I made pie, which was in the middle of the holiday rush.  I bake cookies a lot, and I’m used adding eggs and sugar first.  Whipping those together creates bubbles — helpful in rising cookies and cakes using steam, but absolutely NOT what you want when making a pumpkin custard, which is at the heart of pumpkin pie.  The bubbles probably held together because of the egg whites, and as they rose they made that hideous foam that, though still kind of edible, destroyed the texture and look of the pie.

Beating the eggs allows the yolks to properly work as binders between water and fat, and it also prevents some of the bubbles from forming when you add in the pumpkin along with the sugar.  Lesson learned.

I dislike following directions, but there’s a reason why Libby’s has had a well-used pumpkin pie recipe for so long.  It works. So read the can each time, and with any recipe you use, don’t add the eggs first.   Also, low heat and patience, my friends.

 

 

Advertisements

Erin McKenna’s Bakery

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Erin McKenna’s Bakery

A splurge, but delicious.  Ask for ingredient list if you have FODMAP issues, because there is a lot of agave syrup in some items.  The good news is that you can look up the ingredients beforehand.  I wish this place had a public bathroom or we would have stayed for the coffee or tea.  They also have vegan soft serve with optional gluten free cone.  The atmosphere is very friendly (a discussion about Wow Airlines eventually involved the lady behind the counter, the gent talking about it, us, and a couple of bystanders) and there is a lot of foot traffic.  Refrigerate within 1.5 hours of leaving and keep the stuff there to retain the freshness.  (Unlike other baked goods, which tend to stale from being tossed into the fridge).  Also in New York and Orlando.

https://www.erinmckennasbakery.com/

  • Gluten Free, Vegan & Kosher
  • 236 North Larchmont Blvd,
  • Los Angeles, CA 90004
  • 855-GO-BABYCAKES
    855.462.2292
  • larchmont@erinmckennasbakery.com
  • Hours of Operation
  • Sunday-Thursday: 9am-9pm
  • Friday-Saturday: 9am-10pm
  • Kosher Certificate

Three places to visit in Highland Park

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

 

20170807_100533

Order first while pondering the beauty (and I’m not just talking about that mustache). Also, get the baked goods for later first. You’ll see later why (spoiler: long lines!)

20170807_102304

Buckwheat pancakes with coconut! Blackberries! You won’t need to eat for the rest of the day! Seriously.

Kitchen Mouse (gluten free)

Monday – Friday  •  8am – 4pm
Saturday & Sunday  •  7am – 4pm
5904 N. Figueroa St.
Los Angeles, CA 90042  •  MAP
323.259.9555
20170807_095117~2

Mr. Holmes. Looks too fancy for you and me, but they’re NICE NICE NICE inside!!

Mr. Holmes Bakehouse (not gluten free)

101 S AVE 59
LOS ANGELES, CA, UNITED STATES

HOURS

7AM – 2:30PM WEEKDAYS / 8AM – 3:00PM WEEKENDS

Shorthand

HOURS

Everyday – 11am – 7pm

5028 York Blvd Los Angeles, CA 90042 USA

 

 

Gluten-free blueberry coffee cake thanks to My Baking Addiction.

This gluten-free blueberry coffee cake recipe is so outstanding, with fresh berries and a cup of tea, it totally made my day. 

Here’s the recipe and thanks so much to the author.

The recipe is perfect with the exception that you will need to allow for a very long baking time more on the order of an hour and 10 minutes or so. But the top is buttery and the inside has a texture you rarely find in a gluten-free cake. I used Trader Joe’s gluten free baking flour and added xanthan gum. I also mixed the flower with the xanthan gum all together and then divided it for the crumb topping.


Improving on Bob’s Red Mill Gluten Free Cornbread Mix

cornbreadplateI make cornbread for us about once a month. A 12″ cast-iron skillet and one bag of mix yields a giant skillet of cornbread. We use ¼ to 1/3, and I freeze the rest for later (which can be mighty convenient on a 100-degree day when I’m only up for tossing a salad). I’ve made a few amendments to the mix, and I think they really help. First, and I know sugar is a villain so feared that, like Voldemort, we dare not to speak its name, I add it anyway (I really like to live on the edge). Second, I add more milk – ¼ cup more. Third, the way you mix the batter matters. Continue reading

Emergency food

This building fell on the cars below.  A nice new building has replaced it, but it took years.  Luckily, no one died here.

This building in nearby Sherman Oaks fell on the cars below. A nice new building has replaced it, but it took years. Luckily, no one died here.

We’re just around the corner from the 20th anniversary of the Northridge earthquake.  During the horrible jolt and subsequent shaking, my husband threw himself over me while saying over and over, “It’s okay.” When the second round of violent shaking  began, he changed his tune to, “We’re going to die!”

We made it, though everything in our kitchen except one dish didn’t.  Even the bread maker and the microwave took it in the shorts.

Now we have a little stash of earthquake supplies, including backpacks we bought on sale after the school-time crush was over, bits of medicine and gauze, an emergency bucket-toilet that the kid thought was the greatest purchase we ever made, and emergency food and water.

Yesterday I made a trip to S.O.S. Survival Products — a great place for this stuff — and discovered something odd: There are NO emergency bars without gluten.  For the past three years, our emergency food has included only food I cannot eat. (For the rest of you, I heartily recommend the 2400 calorie bars and other smaller bars they sell.  They have a 5-year shelf life and taste great).

The solution for us will be food with a long shelf life that we will change out more often.  Costco has nut bars, peanut butter, and other grain-based cereals and bars that we can store for up to a year.  They also have gluten-free soups by the case that are inexpensive.  However, here are some links with more options:

Be sure to check ingredients and expiration dates.  Program your phone to let you know when it’s time to buy new supplies.

If you do nothing else, put together a few cans of food, a gallon of water or more per person, a small first aid kit and a plan.  What you really want is to get out alive, shut off the gas and have something to eat on hand — for three days or more.  Don’t forget medications, and don’t forget your pets too (we even had a fish bowl for our aquarium fish!).  Just in case, here is my most popular post: it’s about how long refrigerated/frozen food stays at a safe temperature without electricity.

I hope it never happens, but we’re told we’re in for a big earthquake at some point, and while I’m not an Armageddon-level prepper, I’m inclined to believe it.  If it does, for a good bit of time we’ll have no one around to help us except each other.  Plan accordingly.

Japanese cooking shows are BOSS!

By the time 6:30 am rolls around, I’m tiring of both working out and all of the morning news shows.  The news generally runs out within ten minutes of the start of the broadcast, and the broadcast never covers world news.  Channel surfing landed me on NHK World, where there is both world news and the weather everywhere — everywhere! — in Celsius.  I know 37 degrees = 98 degrees F, but for the rest, I have to guess.

Then at 6:30 am, NHK airs cooking shows.  I absolutely love Lunch ON!, which features not only lunch, but the lives of the people making and eating it.  Top it off with a overly eager narrator who really piles on the flourishes and you’ve got the beginnings of a great day.  Not that I wouldn’t watch it ALL day, because I would.

This morning the listing for NHK said, Viewers’ Choice, so I saw Seasoning the Seasons instead.  This episode showed Ekiben — bento boxes one eats while traveling — from around Japan.  The cuisines differ based on region and history within the prefectures.  In the process, the show also visited artisans making koji, cooking sake, and the bento boxes themselves.

Koji is the base for soy sauce and miso, made by fermenting soy beans and cracked wheat in a place where the air is rich with wild yeasts and microbes, or by inoculating the mixture with them.  I never forget koji because I missed a question about it on a test once.  Cooking sake is fermented sushi rice.

This had me wondering about avoiding gluten in Japan, and I came across an interesting post about how deceptively difficult it can be to avoid it here and here.  Though I really wish I could enjoy more of the food, and would search long and hard for a good mochi, I would endure rice and SoyJoy bars for a long while if I could visit Japan.