gluten-free baking

gluten-free baking

People, we love you.

Last week, when we posted a recipe for kalamata olive-rosemary bread, we asked you to share something you have learned about baking gluten-free.

That chorus of voices taught us, entertained us, and mostly reminded us of this: we are not alone.

When you are first diagnosed, it’s easy to believe that no one else is struggling with the reading of labels, the relinquishment of favorite foods, and the failed baking attempts in the kitchen. The batches of bread that didn’t work out feel huge, an indictment of you as a baker and what your eating life will be like from now on.

Believe us (all of us here, writing and reading) when we say: it’s not just you. And believe us, it grows better and better.

“For me, the journey into and through gluten free baking has been about setting aside my attempts to recreate what we could eat before. Once I started to respect the ingredients for what they could bring, rather than how close to the “real thing” they could get me, my baking improved.” — the newstead6

“There are a lot of failures in the beginning, but once you get the hang of it, it opens up a whole new baking arena. When there are so many different types of flour, you get to experiment forever!” — Iris

“I haven’t learned much yet about how to bake GF except to let go of all I knew of gluten baking. It’s like learning to walk all over again.” – Susan

“Being able to share meals with great friends is something I treasure, so modifying/finding good recipes and turning them into great gluten-free fare means lots of research and experimentation…but it’s well worth it.” — Taverenus

“I’ve learned (and am still learning) to let go. To let go of the idea that everything has to be perfect (the first time, of course). To let go of the idea that the flours and breads and cakes are something to be rationed or hoarded. Some expensive things may need to be occasional indulgences ’cause they’re pricey, but this is how I eat now — it’s not some strange and unusual experiment to be kept off to the side.” – Alice

We were so moved by what you wrote and how much you shared of yourselves that we’re doing a little primer here, a community gathered together to help each other with gluten-free baking.

What we know (in part) about gluten-free baking.

apple rosemary bread, gluten-free

Don’t be afraid to fail.

“i’ve learned to experiment. i write down adjustments i make, the different flours i substitute and just bake. sometimes the bread comes out great, sometimes it’s just ok. but it’s all bread that my gf husband can eat and it’s all more yummy than store bought.” — babyjenks

“I have learned to be humble as not everything works out the first time. I have learned that you can recapture that moment of your youth when mom was making cinnamon buns on Christmas morning and you thought you would just die from wanting to eat them while they were cooking.”

“GF bread baking has taught me one thing I usually have a severe shortage of…patience. I’m not the type to relax, follow instructions, and breathe. I at least have to some of the time while cooking gluten free.” – Lily

“The most important thing I’ve learned about gluten free baking is that the failures do not make you a bad cook — the zillions of loaves of not-quite-right or horrendously-wrong gluten free bread that have ended up as breadcrumbs (or in the compost) are a testament to our unwillingness to give up. Perseverence is the most important thing for us glutenfreeders!” — Katie

“When I get discouraged about the failures in my gluten free baking, I remind myself that I know more today than I knew yesterday, and get back in the kitchen and try again.” — gfpumpkins

“I’ve learned that gluten free baking takes risk-taking and the ability to try things and fail. While regular baking has a long history and precedent, those of us baking gluten-free are really breaking ground and forging the path to finding amazing recipes. It’s pretty cool I think!“
– Devon

I love Devon’s point. How long have people been baking with gluten? Thousands of years. How long have people been trying to create authentic, memorable loaves of bread without gluten? Maybe 50 years?

We’re pioneers, people. Pioneers.

You see that apple-rosemary bread up there? The one so moist and smacking of apples on the lips that we put it in our cookbook? That recipe took at least a dozen different creations before we found the ratio of flours to fats to eggs that worked, and tasted the way we imagined it. At least a dozen.

Nothing is a failure.

dough ready to chill

Some practical tips.

“I have found that if you are using eggs to separate them, beat the egg whites and fold them in last minute to get a “fluffier” product. I use this in muffins, angel food cake and pancakes (I know… pancakes are not really baking — but it is good).” — GF Crumpette

” One of my tricks is to remove the paddle from my bread machine..GF bread does not like to be kneaded too much, and I also give it an extra 30 min. rising time.” — Ina

“I have learned that potato flour and potato starch are NOT the same thing.” — Krysta

“Bring all ingredients to room temp…and take your time.” — Aiti

“The best thing I have learned recently about gluten free baking is almond flour! I’m trying it in a bunch of things I could never get quite right before, and it’s helping.” — Jennigma

“One thing I’ve learned about gluten-free baking is that good gluten recipes can be converted successfully, but it takes several tries to get it right. I find that usually more liquids are needed. More eggs, more butter. To make things lighter, and to hold everything together.

I’ve also learned how absolutely crucial it is NOT to accidentally forget xanthan or guar gum. If people think it’s some gimmicky additive, just try making a batch of cookies without it and you’ll see that you have just made cookies that are simultaneously a pile of goo and crumbly.“
— Allison the Meep

“I’ve learned that a stand mixer and plastic wrap are life savers!” — Michelle

“I just hate altering recipes so your suggestion to do things by weight was a real light bulb. I now have a scale.” — Elle

“I have learned that you have to make sure yeast is alive before you use it. That gluten free dough puts up a battle against a hand held mixer. ” – Katya Kosiv

“I do have a few tips. Pick your favorite gf flour blend and keep a lot of it (pre-mixed) on hand. Then you can whip something up really quickly.
Always use xanthan gum (or a substitute) to help your flours/starches stick together.
Rice milk is an excellent substitute if you have to avoid dairy and soy.
If you are also baking without eggs, try adding 1 tsp lemon juice in 1 C. cold water (substitute for some of your liquid ~ adjust quantity if your recipe calls for less liquid) and be sure your recipe calls for baking SODA (or add 1 tsp). The lemon juice and baking soda will react and it will help your baked goods rise and be fluffier.
If you are at high altitude you can also increase your baking powder.”

— Allergy Mom

“One of my favourite GF-baking-breakthroughs: use buttermilk in place of milk. Creates a tender, moist crumb and a ridiculously gluten-y mouthfeel. (Especially in cakes.)” – kemenloth

“I have learned that if a recipe has 1/2 cup or less of flour (as the amazing cocoa brownies on Smitten Kitchen do), I can substitute the same amount of Gluten Free Pantry all purpose flour, and the final product is indistinguishable from a gluten-filled baked good! So I can have brownies again. A small thing, but a triumph.” – sam carter

“i have also learned that garbanzo bean flour is usually not my favorite.” —Janaya

“I bake in the high desert, so there are some challenges in dealing with both the altitude and the dry climate. Here’s what I’ve learned:

1) You almost always need to add more liquid than the recipe calls to ensure a moist cake/bread/cookie/etc. I sometimes add an extra egg, more oil, or more liquid, depending on the item and the desired consistency/texture.

2) Baked items take longer to cook at altitude, so they often need to be cooked higher up in the oven so the edges don’t burn while the center finishes cooking. (Or, depending on the item, covered in tin foil. i.e. Pies with a gluten-free pie crust must be covered in tin foil or you end up with a very burnt crust!)” — Codabelle

“A 9x5 inch loaf pan REALLY IS double the volume of an 8x4 inch pan! 8 cups vs 4 cups. If any of you are struggling with getting a BIG/big rise loaf in a 9x5 out of a 3 cup recipe, well… either double it or try a smaller pan!(There may be others out there! Maybe… How to measure your pan: inside to inside. Seemingly across the top, though if you measure across the bottom, a 9x5 will often measure 8x4! The key if you forget this is measure the DEPTH: 8x4= 2″ deep, 9x5= 3″ deep.) — Mel’s Kitchen

“One thing I’ve learned over 10 years of GF baking is that when I find a recipe I like, I set up a row of zip-lok baggies and measure out all the dry ingredients at once. Then I zip and store. When I want to make that item again, I grab a bag and proceed with the recipe. Saves a lot of time getting out all the different flours and gums.…… And quite easy to vary the final product with different herbs, nuts, seeds, etc.” — Mary

“i’ve learned to appreciate croutons and bread crumbs— why waste a good failed bread?
i made up a huge batch of delicious meatballs last week that transformed past bread disappointments into tasty treats.” — Valerie

I love all of these, and learned from them too. (Buttermilk, eh? I’m going to try that soon.) We could write an entire book together of these helpful tips. Keep them coming.

banana bread, spontaneously

Following recipes and finding joy.

“I’m new to GF baking, but I’ve learned that I have to keep doing it over, and over, and over to get it right. I made the pie crust recipe 4 times before I felt like it turned out.“
— Heather Shea

“The one thing I have learned about gluten-free baking is to try, try, try. It is so rare that I try out a new recipe and it works. I can’t imagine if I quit trying after one failure. Bread would never be in my life again, pies would be out of the question, and cookies would be gone forever if I did not keep at it. Gluten-free baking has taught me to never give up and to accept that everything is not perfect.” — playfood

“I’ve learned to take endless notes! I was never a recipe follower until I started baking GF — then I quickly realized that not only do I need a recipie, but I MUST actually follow it at least once and take careful notes of any later changes, otherwise madness and tasty crumbs are the result, instead of whatever yummy concoction I was going for.” — Dorian

“I have learned that a kitchen covered in a dozen types of flour and two friend covered in dough eating a fabulous new gluten free, sulfate free creation is worth more than anything in the whole wide world.” – Krysta

“Make gluten free baking fun by embracing gluten-free baking as a new challenge. Cooking with limitations is, I think, actually more exciting because it takes some backbone, dedication, and willingness to fail. When something turns out, and you are able to exceed your own and others expectations, it’s all the more gratifying and tastes just that much better.” – Mish Piece

“I think the main thing I’ve learned cooking GF is that even the failures aren’t failures. They’re a way to learn how the different flours work together. I love that GF baking is a challenge and I know more about different ingredients and techniques than I did with gluten filled baking.“
– Cindy

Yes.

lemon cake

And finally, it’s clear we do all this for more than just the baked goods.

“What have I learned about GF baking? It is one of the greatest expressions of love I can show my gluten-intolerant husband. I have never been a baker, so I want to learn so that he can have delicious breads and sweets.“
— Anne

“I have learned so many things since my kids and I have needed to eat gluten and dairy free. I think one of the best things to happen though is the need to make the food my kids and I eat ourselves. We can’t just grab a package of cookies at the market. We must take the time to make them. I think it is also teaching us some patience in that we can’t always immediately fulfill every food desire we have immediately. I am also enjoying the time teaching my kids to be able to provide themselves with food. — Jenni

“once i got over being really p-oed that i couldn’t eat bread and started opening my mind more and more to the possibilities that there might just maybe be some decent gf alternatives,
i started realizing more and more just how lucky i was to not be able to eat wheat/gluten!
the gf world is full of healthier, more tasty and just plain more interesting alternatives. grains and nice things i don’t think i ever would have tried if i was still a gluten girl.” — spilling beauty

“I’ve learned it’s worth all the effort of mixing flours and then baking to keep my kid healthy, happy, and feeling un-deprived. You really just need a good recipe and a little practice.“
— Tiffany

“Back before I was gluten-free, I used to rush through a recipe, tossing ingredients together in anticipation of the end result. No more. Now I bake slowly and more mindfully, playing with substitutions, enjoying the journey as much as the destination.” — rkdelaney

“I have learned that if I keep in my mind what I ate before I knew about food allergies as the gold standard then I am missing out on a whole other experience. I don’t try to REcreate any more, just create. Eat my food and know that the ingredients are good and nourishing for what they are, not what they are not. In short, I do not set myself up to fail anymore.” – e.e. spenner

“What have I learned about gluten free baking? Probably the same thing everybody else has had to learn: you have to change your expectations a little. Gluten free baking can be so delicious (especially now that we have all these fabulous people working so diligently on new and improved recipes), but it won’t have the exact same structure and flavor as foods made from wheat flour. Accepting that and moving in with an open mind to explore these new flavors is everything…and so much more satisfying.” — Kate

It’s the look on my brother’s face when he eats a slice of the gluten-free lemon cake I made for his birthday, and it’s much better than he ever expected. It’s the moment I wake up in the morning, after Danny got up early with Little Bean and let me sleep until 7:30, and I smell warm banana bread in the kitchen. It’s the hours spent baking at the kitchen counter with my daughter, who is now so familiar with the routine that she stands at the opening to the kitchen, points, and shouts “BAA!” when she wants to start again. (And puts the KitchenAid bowl on her head.)

It’s the moments together, the feeding each other.

Gluten schmuten. That’s all that matters.

gluten-free baking fail
World Peace cookies, gluten-free (a collaborative recipe)

Even with all that, sometimes the failures are still spectacular.

This is the batch of World Peace cookies I pulled out of the oven the other day. Full of hopes of dark chocolate circles with fleur de sel, I opened the oven and found this monstrosity of a mess instead.

Luckily, I started laughing right away. Then took this picture.

These were meant to be wonderful. They were going to be the recipe I shared in this spot this week. Instead, I decided to share your voices. (I’m glad I did.)

And ask for your help.

Listen to this. How could you not want to make these cookies?

“These butter-rich, sandy-textured slice-and-bake cookies are members of the sablé family. But, unlike classic sablés, they are midnight dark — there’s cocoa in the dough — and packed with chunks of hand-chopped bittersweet chocolate. Perhaps most memorably, they’re salty. Not just a little salty, but remarkably and sensationally salty. It’s the salt — Pierre uses fleur de sel, a moist, off-white sea salt — that surprises, delights and makes the chocolate flavors in the cookies seem preternaturally profound.“

Let’s adapt a recipe together. How would you make sandy chocolate perfect cookie from Dorie Greenspan into a gluten-free wonder?

Leave your comments and suggestions here. If you make it without dairy or eggs of anything else that might be an allergen, let us know. If you make the cookie of your dreams, write down how you did it, and let us know.

Next week, I’ll publish the best recipes and give everyone credit.

Come on, everyone. We can do it.

38 comments on “gluten-free baking

  1. Courtney

    THANK YOU! I feel as though I’m part of a special community, even though I’m just the one who cooks-not the one who has Celiac disease-in my household. I do get upset when I spend an hour or two (or 5!) making some kind of baked good and it flops. I’ve realized after reading this that we are still lucky to not have other allergies on top of the gluten allergy. I need to be grateful that we have our health and the means to eat well. Thanks for the reminder. This was an inspiring way to start my day!

  2. Ellen

    Yes!
    Don’t be afraid to fail! That is exactly what I meant in my response to your lovely recipe for blueberry polenta pancakes!
    Can’t learn without mistakes, and I am bound to make a lot more.

    Great work here! Thanks for all you do!

  3. Patricia

    oh shauna, I have been gluten free since I was ten (18 years now), and those comments and this post are still teaching me new things. and may i admit that i was SO glad to see that photo of your cookies…oh boy, have i seen that before!

  4. Emily

    I’ve actually made this recipe a few times already (like you, Shauna, I just could NOT resist that description), and I found that subbing in Whole Foods 365 GF baking flour worked extremely well. I didn’t have to measure out my own flours at all…the GF Pantry all-purpose flour is similar to the Whole Foods one, so you could probably use that in there as well. They were delicious…my non-GF family ate most of them the first time around, which is usually how I judge success!

  5. Gluten Free Crumpette

    When I first replied and commented on a tip, I must have clicked “notify me of each response.” WOW. I couldn’t believe how my inbox was filling up so rapidly. So many amazing tips and so cool to hear everyone’s experiences! What a great idea. I then imagined all of the emails you must get everyday from people thanking you for changing their life. I can only imagine the warm feeling of “good” you must feel for each letter you get. If anyone considered celiac as a “lemon”, you’ve perhaps made the best gourmet lemonade I’ve ever tasted. Shauna — You are really doing something amazing and I can’t thank you very much for not only changing everyone’s life with gluten intolerance and celiac but mine as well.

  6. kate

    … maybe this sounds nuts, but i don’t bake, and i don’t bake because when i’ve tried it’s been epic fail after epic fail. and as a single person it hasn’t been fun or nourishing, to make a big batch of something, knowing i’m going to have to eat it for a while, and then to spend so much effort and time, and have it be inedible, and then make myself eat at least some of it, and then feel sick. but i come to you guys’ blog, and read the posts, and the comments, and i know i’m working my way towards trying again.

    right now my hands are crazy rashy, because yet again i needed a baked good and bought the only gf cake available in town, and it has soy in it, which i’m allergic to, too.

    but i keep thinking about your gf cinnamon rolls, and how i could do them, because you tried so many batches first, and let us in on the very best one you made.

    life can be so crazy. sometimes we need a little sweetness, and sometimes we need it to come from a warm baked good fresh from the oven …

    so glad you folks are around … bloggers and commenters … thanks guys … awesome …

    1. Anne

      When I try new recipes, I usually make just half or even a third or a fourth of it so I don’t waste so much if it doesn’t turn out.

      Also, Laurel’s Kitchen Bread Book has a section on what to so with your “bricks” (those loaves of bread that turn out flat and heavy). One idea is to crumble them up for bread pudding. I particularly like her idea for cheesy bread pudding.

  7. excelsior

    Does anyone else see that all of this is good advice for life? Try substituting LIFE for GLUTEN-FREE BAKING and look at what you get:

    “i’ve learned to experiment.” — babyjenks

    “I have learned to be humble as not everything works out the first time.”

    “LIFE has taught me one thing I usually have a severe shortage of…patience.” – Lily

    “The most important thing I’ve learned about LIFE is that the failures do not make you a bad cook… Perseverence is the most important thing for us who live!” — Katie

    “When I get discouraged about the failures in my LIFE, I remind myself that I know more today than I knew yesterday, and get back in the kitchen and try again.” — gfpumpkins

    “I’ve learned that LIFE takes risk-taking and the ability to try things and fail.” — Devon

  8. Sho

    Shauna,

    I have learned that I have a lot to learn about gluten-free baking.

    Thanks for showing us your cookies that did not turn out the way you wanted. I feel like I am the only one happens to.

    Shoshannah

  9. alice

    Hah! Nothing like the ego-boost of reading your own quote to make an afternoon brighter.

    Not sure if I’ll get to those World Peace cookies, as fleur de sel isn’t a staple here, but I wanted to thank you for requesting our comments in that way last time — thinking about how I can end up ‘hoarding’ my GF things and making gluten-ey things for the guests was a very good thing to do in advance of our houseguests. Gluten-free scones, pancakes, crepes and pound cake were all a hit, and it wouldn’t have happened if I were still being a skinflint.

  10. Valerie

    Yes those cookies DO look familiar.
    I used to bake professionally (and oh-so-gluteny )… in order not to ruin 450 cookies, my teacher had a little trick. one that i had forgotten UNTIL I started baking gluten-free. bake off three cookies. yes, it adds another 15 minutes to your process but you will know ‘needs more flour/needs more fat/needs more xgum’ before you kill the whole batch.… it has made all the difference for me
    thank you everyone for sharing your processes!

  11. Dina

    I’ve just started with GF baking and find it difficult. I will hang in there and keep trying.…otherwise I’ll spend the rest of my life with horrible allergies!

  12. allison

    LOVE the picture! been frustrated lately with my diet (thinking of all the things I can’t eat), but this made me laugh. i don’t think i’d want to eat these :-) however, i can’t wait to see the final recipes that you choose!!

  13. flyraeven

    Thank you! Thank you! Thank you! This was the perfect first entry to read as I re-embark on my gluten-free journey. I wish my mother had had this as a resource when I was a child eating gluten-free! It would have made such an impact!

  14. CLRCassie

    What kind of flour did you use in the recipe?

    I always use the Authentic Foods Multi-Blend Flour (Karen Robertson’s recipe) and substitute it 3/4 cup for 1 cup flour and it always works really well. I also double the baking powder/soda.

    From looking at the recipe, I’m sure that substituting this flour for the all purpose wheat flour will work.

  15. Kate

    Your blog is such an encouragement when I am feeling frustrated with this whole “gluten free/dairy free” situation. And such great feedback! I will definitely send a recipe — I have been working on some cookies that are free of major allergans (gluten, dairy, eggs, peanuts, tree nuts) but don’t require too many hard to find ingredients. The more I talk to others about Celiac and allergies — the more I find other people with the same struggles.

  16. ML

    I’ve adapted the World Peace cookies using Pamela’s mix or Annelise Roberts’ flour mix for a one-to-one swap with the flour in the recipe. Works perfectly! I would also recommend adding a pinch of espresso. For a peanut butter version, swap approximately 1/4 of the butter for peanut butter. Enjoy!

  17. Jeni

    My favorite homemade flour blend for cookies is 2 parts sweet rice flour to 1 part potato starch and 1 part tapioca flour (all by weight), and 1/2 teaspoon of xanathan gum per 5 ounces (roughly a cup) of this blend. It’s never failed me, and I use a modified version of this for cakes and quick breads as well.

    For world peace cookies? I’d use 3.25 ounces sweet rice flour, 1.5 ounces each of tapioca and potato starch, and about 3/4 teaspoon xanathan gum. I might add in an egg or a little flaxseed powder in water into the wet ingredients to add a little more protein into the mix, depending on what my instincts told me about the quality of the dough. Finally, I’d mix in a scant 1/2 teaspoon of espresso powder to bring some va-va-voom to the chocolate, and skimp on the salt in the dough in favor of dusting the cookies lightly with flakes of sea salt (I love the way a good flaky salt catches the light — much too pretty to hide in dough!)

    I guess I know what recipe I’m playing with this weekend.…

  18. Jennifer

    Shauna, you always inspire me. Always. I’ve never attempted gluten-free baking, and have no known allergies, yet it is on my list to stock the pantry with items I need because of you. The way you write. They way you make it all UNintimidating. I think that’s why even non-GF bakers and cooks like myself are drawn to you. In the end, it’s about inspiring everyone to get into the kitchen. I’ve got one of those world peace cookies, baked by Dorie herself, so maybe that cookie should be my first attempt since I’ll have the tast fresh in my mind.

  19. Tulip

    I’ve just made a batch of Wheat free yorkshire puddings which were successful but I felt could do with a bit of a lift. I came searching for help and found your site…Thank you.…so many tips here but not enough time to read them all! I have been wheat free for over 7 years now and as a pampered chef consultant I am always getting asked to provide GF menus so I will be back to use all those wonderful tips to pass on to my guests!
    Photos of my yorkshire pudding are on my blog if you’d like to take a look?

  20. Joy

    I saw the wrapped logs upthread and thought — she has a korova recipe! I’m thrilled! Can’t wait for next week’s post!

  21. Lorna Yee

    Shauna, we all admire your dedication at perfecting a recipe. Can’t wait to try the latest version of your apple rosemary bread.

  22. Anonymous

    I’ve been GF for about 5 years now and have been dealing with the adjustments in a practical, joy-less mode. Now as I read your blog I realize I’m ready to dive in and reconnect with the joy of baking delicious, delicious food. Thank you!

  23. greybon

    This is an awesome post. I love reading all the thoughts from the community. They are all so inspiring! I also love the idea excelsior did above with substituting gf for life. It’s very fitting. And I love the message of not being afraid to fail with recipes too! That’s a hard one I’m still trying to learn. Seeing that pic of the cookies really does help! :)

  24. La Niña

    Happy Valentine’s Day Shauna, Danny and Lucy!

    I just found a recipe for flourless chocolate raspberry molten cakes, and in the spirit of experimentation I’m going to make them tonight. If the recipe works out, I’ll send you a copy. I’m using my own canned raspberry jam in it. That, chocolate, butter, eggs, vanilla and sugar– we’ll see how the texture is. Can’t be too bad with those ingredients!

    My favorite sign of all times was on a carpet cleaners in Ballard– it said:
    “If you don’t make mistakes you won’t make anything.”

  25. Sue

    Thank you so much Shauna, for sharing the photo of your failed cookies. It is SO encouraging that even yours sometimes turn out like that! Thank you for your humility. And thank you for your recipes. I have friends who start off pitying us for our gluten free lifestyle, UNTIL they taste our spicy cookies, or our light and fluffy muffins. Who’s laughing now???!!! Thank you xxxx

  26. Simply Colette

    I love following your blog. Gluten-free baking can be quite intimidating, but I love catching your recipes and advise. :)

  27. Diane-The WHOLE Gang

    Wow, this is great! I’m a cook but I’m learning to bake. I like the idea of finding a good gf mix and keeping it on hand. That’s where I run into problems. Besides gluten and dairy I can’t eat rice. So many mixes have rice flour. I’ve been trying sorghum as a substitute but would love to have more options. Can’t wait to hear the ideas on this!

    Thanks for sharing the photo of the cookies. I’ve found that same cookie in my oven way too many times. We usually start giving them funny names.

  28. Kaye

    While I don’t need to eat gluten free, my 4 nieces do. They are coming for spring break in a few weeks and I would love to be able to have them share my love of World Peace cookies. Can’t wait to see the gf recipe for them. Thanks for all the great recipes! They think their Aunt Kaye rocks because of them!

  29. The Picky Foodie

    Shauna –
    Thanks for sharing your experiences, and then sharing others’ as well. In addition to the ingredients, the experiments, the failures (I once served guests a GF “pizza crust” that seemed to be made of rocks — not pebbles, rocks) and successes (finding a GF flour mix here in the UK so I didn’t have to keep begging my friends in the US to send me containers of Bob’s Red Mill), I have found three things to be equally important as we venture down this road:
    - patience
    - perseverance
    and
    - community.
    Knowing that we are not alone, opening the discussion, comparing notes — all of these offer encouragement when it seems we’ll never eat our favorites again, as well as a space for celebration when we succeed.
    I am always so grateful for your posts and for the comments made by your readers.

    Gabriela — ThePickyFoodie.com

  30. deena

    I posted a link to my finished World Peace Cookie recipe earlier in the comments, but to give my at-a-glance rundown for this conversation: I used 1/2 cup rice flour, 1/3 cup each tapioca and sorghum, and 1/2 tsp xanthan gum and 2 egg yolks to bind. I also reduced the butter to 1 stick, and added instead two hard-boiled egg yolks — all of the richness, none of the melty mess. Some of the best cookies I’ve ever had, GF or otherwise.

  31. Mary

    OMG I am laughing so hard at those cookies that there are tears. After being GF less than a month I feel like I’m 12 years old again and don’t really know how to bake any more. Yesterday, in fact, I tried a dessert called “thank you pie” which starts with 2 cups flour, 3/4 cup chopped pecans and 1/2 pound butter. You mix it all up and bake it to form a lovely, crumbly crust. I used a GF all purpose flour that I’ve had some success with. Not last night. The whole thing went into the trash.

    Even with experiences like these, I love the possibility that I, too, could have a positive outlook and really have fun being gluten free instead of just tolerating my condition!