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As soon as I read this article in the NYTimes about a vegan publication using stock images that were decidedly NOT vegan, I immediately remembered several Living Without bread recipes that had accompanying images that I was sure were real bread. I am a pretty confident cook and I know a gluten-based bread when I see one. These images were definitely NOT gluten-free bread. And lookie here:

Living Without’s Best Gluten-Free Bagel Recipe.

And Getty Images’ “Basket of Bagels”. Real bagels. Gluteny bagels. Jerks.

Clearly, this is par for the course in publishing. Reader beware.

Hummenah-hummenah. I am in gluten-free bliss. We just got a new waffle maker and naturally couldn’t wait until the morning to test it out. So I was forced to come up with an excuse… ahem… a recipe to use it. And oh, nellie, did I.

The first thing you must know is that I’m way more of a salty gal than a sweet one. Give me leftover pizza for breakfast any day of the week over pancakes with maple syrup, gag. Ok, I dramatize, but you know what I’m saying. When I went to China, they served salty peanuts for breakfast and I thought I’d died and gone to heaven. So why not savory waffles? And for dinner? Yes. Yes.

Mano Y Metate Mole

The second thing you must know is there is this mind-bogglingly good mole mix (actually, there are several) from this company called Mano Y Metate. Only three of their mixes are gluten-free, but of those three, I can recommend all without reservation. For us glutards, there are few shortcuts to great cooking, but listen close, my fellow foodie: Mano Y Metate has got you covered. Use one of their mole mixes and your dinner is a guaranteed success. Heck, I bet it’s even good with ice cream. Erp?

Blab no more. Here is the recipe:

Gluten-free Savory Waffles with Adobo Mole and Tomatillos

Savory Waffles with Adobo Mole and Tomatillos

A savory twist on waffles: Waffles with Adobo Mole and Tomatillos

For the waffles:
  • 1/2 c. each: teff flour, sorghum flour, tapioca starch, and sweet rice flour (or 2 c. of your favorite gluten-free flour)
  • 1 1/2 cups milk of some sort (cow, soy, rice, whatev)
  • 4 T veggie oil
  • 2 large eggs
  • 4 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp xanthan gum
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/8 c. flax seed meal (optional – mainly for extra nutrition)
  • 1/8 tsp cayenne (also optional)
Adobo Mole with Sauteed Tomatillos
  • 1 packet Mano Y Metate Adobo Mole Mix
  • 2 T oil
  • 1 c. vegetable broth
  • 3/4 c. raw, blanched almonds
  • 1/4 c. raw sunflower seeds
  • 2 c. cooked chickpeas
Sauteed Tomatillos
  • 8 medium tomatillos
  • 1/4 c. chopped cilantro
  • juice from half a lime
  • 1 T oil

Directions: Start with the mole: Heat 2 T oil in a sauce pan. Empty the contents of the packet of mole into the oil and saute for a minute or two, being careful not to burn. Add 1 c. vegetable broth and the almonds, sunflower seeds and chickpeas. Turn down the heat and simmer while you prepare the tomatillos and waffles.

Prepare the tomatillos: Peel the papery skin off the tomatillos and wash them to remove the sticky coating on the exterior. Dice the tomatillos into 1/4″-1/2″ cubes. In a large fry pan, heat 1 T oil. Add tomatillos and saute until they begin to soften. Add the cilantro and lime juice. Salt to taste. Turn down the heat to low and cover while you prepare the waffles.

Waffle-time: Combine dry ingredients for the waffles in a large bowl and mix to evenly distribute flours, spice, etc. Add eggs, oil, and the milk. Mix until smooth. Pour into greased, heated waffle iron in batches. Should make 4-6 flat waffles. Top each waffle with the mole and tomatillos. Thank heaven for your good fortune. Salty waffles!?! What could be better!?

Gluten-Free Artisanal Loaf: Look at those air bubbles!!

Gluten-Free Artisanal Loaf: Look at those air bubbles!!

I just stumbled upon this gluten-free artisanal loaf recipe recently and decided to give it a whirl. I think it’s the best gluten-free bread recipe I’ve come across. I followed their directions to a tee, making a half recipe to start. The only change I made was to cook the loaf at 450° rather than their suggested 500°. I also disagree with their advice about waiting until the loaf cools completely to eat it. Wait about ten minutes for it to go from insanely hot to warm. But then dive in because it would be a cryin’ shame not to taste this bread’s spongy goodness while still warm. Oh, nellie. My belly!

Ok, I am such a dork. I’ve pondered for months now how the Silly Yak Bakery in Madison, WI came up with their name. Maybe they just like yaks? Inside joke perhaps? Or maybe, EINSTEIN, Silly Yak is a delightful little play on Celiac… and lord knows we need some humor in our wheatless-treatless world. Ok, it’s not that bleak, and thanks to dedicated gluten-free bakeries like Silly Yak, it’s positively BUMPIN’!!

Not being much of a sweet hound, I’ve mainly tried their breads and buns. The sweetest I’ve gone is their cinnamon swirl bread and I must say it’s deeeelish. Stay tuned for a french toast recipe made with it. HELLO! Hubba hubba.

Now go out and treat yourself to their goodies. And while you’re at it, convince them to open a bakery in Chicago. City of 3 million people got some ‘yaks who be HUNGRY!

On a whim I busted out the gluten-free flour today and started to make a loaf. Inspired by the ease of The Bittman/Leahey no-knead wonderloaf, I wanted to throw something together, give it a grand sweeping mixmix (for dramatic effect more than anything else), and then get on with life and leave it to work its magic. The gluten-free gods were smiling on me b/c it turned out surprisingly well. Future tweaks will make it positively badass.

A very respectable gluten-free loaf

A very respectable gluten-free loaf

Gluten-Free Wonderloaf To Be

  • 2 c. tapioca starch
  • 1/2 cup teff flour
  • 1/2 cup millet flour
  • 1/2 cup oat flour
  • 2 T ground flax seeds
  • 1 1/4 t. dough enhancer
  • 1/2 t. salt
  • 1 t. active dry yeast
  • 1 T sugar
  • 2 cups warm water
  • 1 T olive oil
  • non-stick bundt pan*

Directions: Do you have a coffee grinder dedicated to spice grinding? If not, it’s well worth the $20. Anywhoo, if you do have one, measure out 2 T of flax seeds and grind them finely. If not, I believe flax seed meal can be found at fancy pants grocery stores.

Where were we? Put 1 cup of the tapioca flour and all the other dry ingredients into a large mixing bowl. Add the warm water and stir. Let sit, covered, for 3-4 hours and watch with glee as it rise, rise, rises. Then grease a non-stick bundt pan with the olive oil. Add the remaining 1 cup of tapioca starch to the dough and stir to incorporate. You’ll end up deflating it, which is kind of heartbreaking, but you’ll make up for it soon enough. Spoon the dough into the greased bundt and let rise for two hours in a warm place. Preheat the oven to 350 and bake for 20-25 minutes. Let it cool for a few and then pop it out onto a cutting board. Admire your handy work. Celebrate by tearing off a chunk and dipping it in olive oil. Live fully once again!

* I chose to use a bundt pan b/c I thought it might offer a little support in helping the dough rise and not collapse in the middle. Worked well, but the bread seems to have enough structure that it might not be necessary. You definitely need a pan with walls b/c the dough is too soupy to rise like a traditional loaf, but I might try a springform pan next time to see how I fare.

It’s gluten-free muffin madness! Gluten-free muffins are so great. Aside from the endless variety, I can personally guarantee that no one will miss the wheat. True story!

Gluten-free Muffin Madness: Cardamom-Spiced Banana Nut Muffins

Gluten-free Muffin Madness: Cardamom-Spiced Banana Nut Muffins

Cardamom-Spiced Banana Nut Muffins

  • 2 1/3 c. gf flour
  • 2/3 c. sugar
  • 3 overripe bananas
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 c. milk of some sort
  • 3/8 c. oil
  • 2 T melted butter
  • 1 T baking powder
  • 1 t. baking soda
  • 3/4 t. xanthan gum
  • 1/4 t. salt
  • 1/2 t. freshly ground cardamom (seeds from 8-9 cardamom pods)
  • 1 4 oz. bar of Ghirardelli semi-sweet or bittersweet chocolate
  • 1 c. chopped walnuts

Directions: Mash the bananas in a large mixing bowl with a fork. Add the eggs and mix. Mix in the milk, oil and melted butter. Add the sugar and beat. In a separate bowl, mix together the dry ingredients except for the chocolate and walnuts. Slowly add the dry mixture to the wet ingredients and beat until combined. Add the walnuts and chopped chocolate bar. Line a muffin tin with 12 muffin wrappers and fill to the top. Bake in a 350 ° oven for 18-20 minutes or until an inserted toothpick comes out clean. Makes 12 large muffins.

I wanted to call these Pemon Loppyseed Muffs because they’re all backwards: light poppyseeds in a dark cake. But my google analytics tell me that not so many people search for pemon loppyseed muffins, so I’m copping out and going mainstream. How boring.

Anywhoo, you’ve heard me talk about Indiaville in Chicago and the buckets of delectable spices you can buy for pennies or peanuts a pound. Last time I was up there, I came across white poppy seeds. Did you know they existed? I sure didn’t. So this is a recipe for lemon poppy seed muffins using white poppy seeds and dark flour. Change it up a bit – why not?! Obviously, you can substitute regular poppy seeds if you can’t find the white ones.

Gluten-Free Lemon Poppyseed Muffins

Gluten-Free Lemon Poppyseed Muffins

Crazy, Confused Pemon Loppyseed Muffins

  • 1 stick butter, room temp
  • 1/2 c. veggie oil
  • 1 c. brown sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 3/4 c. white poppy seeds
  • 1 c. milk of some sort
  • 2 3/4 c. gluten-free flour*
  • 1/2 c. almond flour
  • 1 T baking powder
  • 3/4 t. xanthan gum
  • 1/8 t. salt
  • 1 T brandy
  • 3 t. lemon zest
  • 1 t. lemon juice

TO make the muffs: Preheat the oven to 350°. Combine the gf flour, almond flour, baking powder, xanthan, and salt in a small bowl. Stir and set aside. Combine milk and poppy seeds and heat in a small pot on the stove. Let it get steamy and then turn it off and let it sit. In a large mixing bowl, cream the butter. Add the oil and beat until smooth. Add the brown sugar and beat another 3-4 minutes. Add the eggs one at a time and beat until incorporated. Add the flour mixture and milky poppy seeds in small increments until completely combined. Mix in the lemon zest, brandy, and lemon juice.

Plip, plop. Fill to the top: Line a muffin tin with cupcake holders and fill each holder to the top. Bake in the middle rack for 18-20 minutes or until toothpick inserted comes out clean. Makes 12-18 muffins, depending on how zealous you are at filling the holder.

*I use equal parts teff, sorghum, sweet rice, and tapioca.

Muffins! A gf-pastry-lover’s dream. What other breakfast delectable comes in so many endless varieties? And what other gluten-free treatsie can you pass off to your wheat-eating friends as “normal” (meaning wacky-flour free)? Today’s muffin magic: zucchini walnut.

Gluten-Free Zucchini Walnut Muffins

Gluten-Free Zucchini Walnut Muffins

Zucchini Walnut Muffins (GF, of course!)

  • 3 cups GF flour (I use 3/4 cup each: tapioca, sweet rice, teff & sorghum)
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 3/4 tsp xanthan gum
  • 3 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp allspice
  • 1/4 tsp ground ginger
  • pinch of ground cloves
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 cup veggie oil
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 2 cups grated zucchini
  • 1 cup chopped walnuts

Preheat oven to 325°F. Line a muffin tin with paper wrappers. In a medium bowl, mix together dry ingredients except for the walnuts. In a separate bowl, whisk eggs, oil, vanilla and sugar together. Add zucchini. Slowly add the dry ingredients and mix until combined. Add walnuts. Spoon into muffin cups and bake 20-25 minutes until a toothpick inserted into the center of each muffin comes out clean. Makes 12-18 muffins, depending on how enthusiastic you are about filling your muffin cups.

QUICK: World’s worst place for a gluten-free veghead to park his butt for dinner? Think fast… mmm…KFCArbie’sPizzaHutWeber’sOutbackSteakhouseFogoDeChao…. That’s it! One of those ubiquitous Brazilian BBQ joints that seem to have become so popular in the last few years. Have you ever been? I went as a gluten-eating carnivore a long time ago and it’s quite the scene. Waiters walking around with huge skewers of meat, meat, meat. Pork sausage, chicken boob, beef butt, you name it – all sizzling hot, pulled from the fires of Mordor. Unlimited, all-you-can-gorge-yourself-on meat. It’s a lion’s dream and a vegetarian’s personal hell. Butt, butt, butt… there is one little unassuming gem that comes to your table which made quite an impression back then. Tasty little cheese breads that you just couldn’t get enough of (in case the brontosaurus burger they just slapped on your plate wasn’t filling you up). Little did I know how significant those cheesy goodballs would become after becoming gf…

Naturally GF: Tapioca Cheese Bread

Naturally GF: Tapioca Cheese Bread

I don’t know how I found it out, but those dang cheeseballs are GLUTEN FREE! NATURALLY! No substitutions necessary! It’s astonishing, I know, but dang it, it’s true. So spill the beans – Gimme the recipe, you say! Certainly. (And if anyone can tell me their proper name, I’d be much obliged.) Here it be:

Tapioca Cheese Bread

  • 1 1/2 c. tapioca flour
  • 1 egg
  • 1 c. milk (soy milk works too)
  • 1/4 c. oil
  • 1/2 c. cheese of your choice (try cheddar, parm, asiago)
  • 1/4 tsp. salt

Bring the milk and oil to a boil in a small pot. Turn the heat off and immediately add the tapioca flour, stirring until it’s all incorporated. It makes a sticky, messy mess, but let it cool and it’s easier to handle. When somewhat cool, transfer to a food processor and add the remaining ingredients. Pulse for a couple of minutes until the dough is somewhat smooth (it won’t ever be very smooth) and pulls up from the sides of the food processor. Form into golfballs and bake at 375F for 20 minutes. Try not to overeat. Ha! AS IF.

Fun variations to try:

  • For the glutton: stuff a cube of cheese in each golfball before baking.
  • For the adrenaline junkie: add fresh hot chilis to the dough
  • For the sophisticate: try using feta as your cheese and add chopped kalamata olives to the dough

Not deterred by the lead-loaf of last week, I kept my starter alive by continuing to feed it 1 c. of water and 1 c. gluten-free flour (some combination of brown rice, teff and sorghum, depending on how I was feeling each day). This time I decided to be guided by Living Without’s recipe for gluten-free French Baguette, which is the tastiest gf bread I’ve come across to date. On a scale of 1 to successful, I’d say it’s successful. Definitely no lead-loaf. Next time I’ll bake it in a smaller dutch oven b/c mine is too big and the bread flattens as it bakes – kind of like a pancake for the BFG. But other than that, it’s lovely, light, luscious and sour. Yum.

Second Gluten-Free Sourdough Attempt... Less leaden but more vertically challenged...

Second Gluten-Free Sourdough Attempt... Less leaden but more vertically challenged...

Gluten-Free Sourdough, Take 2… Closer

  • 2 c. sourdough starter
  • 2 1/2 c. Living Without’s GF High Protein Flour Blend
  • 2 tsp. xanthan gum
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 3 T sugar
  • 1 1/2 T active dry yeast
  • 1 T olive oil
  • 1 1/2 c. warm water
  • Special equipment: Dutch oven (4 Qt. size should work – mine is too big, and I think it’s a 6 Qt.)

Scoop sourdough starter into large bowl (apparently contact with metal inhibits the yeast, so make sure to use plastic measuring cups and a glass or plastic bowl.) In a separate bowl, mix together the high-protein flour, xanthan gum, salt, sugar, and yeast. Add to the sourdough starter. Add luke warm water and oil and beat with an electric mixer until smooth. Oil and flour your dutch oven and spoon the dough into a mound in the center. Cover and let rise for 30 minutes in a warm place.

Preheat oven to 400F. Place covered Dutch oven on the middle rack and bake for 30 minutes. Remove the lid and bake for another 5-10 minutes until the crust is a nice golden brown. Leftovers make for great focaccia sandwiches.

Next-time-notes: I may try less yeast next time and a longer rising time. I read in this fab gf baking book, Gluten-Free Baking Classics, that a shorter rise time leads to a loaf more likely to collapse. This is indeed what mine did b/c it had risen nicely when I put it in the oven but turned into the horizontal loaf above by the time I took it out. Wohn wohn. Oh well. Something to fiddle with next time.