Gluten Free Girl and the Chef Playing With Our Food Thu, 11 Dec 2014 18:25:20 +0000 en-US hourly 1 silence and happy babble Wed, 10 Dec 2014 06:01:04 +0000 Danny and I were driving in the car yesterday, heading down the interstate toward Seattle. We had just been in a courtroom, for all the best reasons. The hour before, we had stood in front of a…

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Med. Paleo I

Danny and I were driving in the car yesterday, heading down the interstate toward Seattle. We had just been in a courtroom, for all the best reasons. The hour before, we had stood in front of a judge, raised our right hands, and swore that we truly — yes, and we mean it — want to be Desmond’s parents for the rest of our lives. The judge called Lucy up to his bench and had her sit down in his seat. He leaned down to whisper something in her ear, then she banged the gavel three times. “It’s official!” she said. “He’s your son.” Five years after we decided we wanted to adopt, and 8 1/2 months after this amazing little guy came into our lives, Desmond is now legally our son. The relief and joy is enormous.

So there we were, driving on the freeway, grinning. Desmond had fallen asleep in his car seat. Lucy had too. She danced as a mouse in the Nutcracker all weekend, happier than we have ever seen her, and the poor kid was tuckered out. As far as she was concerned, the freeway was boring, only a conduit to the ice cream the judge ordered us to get to celebrate. (She liked that part especially well.) So Danny and I were, for the first time all day, alone to talk as adults, quietly.

We talked about our joy, about the release after waiting all these years. I realized there was some part of my body that had been holding breath since Lucy was 18 months old and finally, that morning, finally I exhaled. We felt good.

A few days before, I had read an idea that had been bopping around my brain ever since. When you’re thinking about the work you do in the world, what are your strengths? And by strengths, this piece was not talking about the traditional human resources kind of stock answer, like what you think your talents are, or what you’re best at during the day. But literally this — what makes you feel strong?

So much of the time, we’re all focused on what needs improving, the gaps and cracks, the broken places. What about the moments in the day when we feel so clear and calm that we don’t think about anything else? What if we organized our days around those moments? What if the bulk of our work came from that place of strength?

So I asked Danny, because we’re always talking. We’re always comparing notes and readjusting and making changes on what doesn’t feel right. Always. Even though I know him better than any person alive, I still ask him how he feels and what makes him tick. So I asked, “Wait, what part of our work makes you feel strong?”

He thought for a bit, a tiny beat, and then said, “The silence that happens when people are eating my food.”

And I laughed, because I had been thinking about the moment after. “I love that happy babble of 20 people around a table, eating and talking, and laughing together.”

That happened for both of us on Sunday.

Med. Paleo II

On Sunday, we hosted a book celebration at our studio. Diane Sanfilippo, Caitlin Weeks, and Nabill Boumrar, the authors of Mediterranean Paleo Cooking: Over 150 Fresh Coastal Recipes for a Relaxed, Gluten-Free Lifestyle came to meet people, talk about the food they love, and eat with everyone. Danny and I made six dishes from their book, part of the price of admission for the event. (Brittany Angell, author of Every Last Crumb: Paleo Bread and Beyond made an appearance too.)

I love a crowd that gathers together to celebrate vegetables. That’s roasted garlic cauliflower hummus behind the carrots and cucumbers there.

Med. Paleo IV

This is a fig and ginger chicken tagine, inspired by the dishes Nabil grew up eating in Algeria. He’s quite the character: voluble, funny, a natural storyteller. He went around to so many people at the party, bending his head down to listen. (He’s a big guy.) I like the man and I like his food.

Med. Paleo V

These are cinnamon-apricot breakfast cookies, which were quite the hit at the party. You’ll have to buy the book to get the recipe. They contained chia seeds, coconut flakes, dried apricots, sunflower seed butter, and coconut flour. No gluten, grains, dairy, or even eggs.

I’m working on my own version now. I gave some leftover cookies to Lucy and she gobbled them up after a dance performance. I’m thinking about dried cherries, hazelnuts, maple syrup, and maybe a bit of dark chocolate. Maybe.

Med. Paleo VI

The food was good but the company was better. One lovely guy came all the way from Vancouver for this event, riding his bike the length of the island to find us. (Hi, Matt!) Michelle and I discovered we have wonderful friends in common in Seattle and we started the makings of a playdate. (Thanks for the honey, Michelle.) There were connections and conversations all around the room, the laughter bouncing off the high ceilings of our studio.

For the past year, Danny and I have been thinking about teaching classes and doing book events in our space. It’s our second home now, this studio. We adore it. It’s big and filled with light, even on grey days. Our landlords have a 12-acre farm, with sheep, rabbits, and chickens squawking near the garden. It’s a real, working farm. We have a professional kitchen, an island around which a clutch of people can gather, and a 24-foot-long table made for eating.

But for the past year, we’ve been thinking that we needed to make the place even prettier before we could begin. Work just kept getting in the way of having the right napkins or even buying enough chairs to seat everyone. There was, of course, a Kickstarter campaign, all the research and work to make that possible, a new cookbook to write, and a darling baby who entered our lives. If the place wasn’t perfect, I understand now. Still. Wouldn’t we have to bring a design consultant in to spiffy up the place — build spare white shelves filled with perfectly placed pastel dishes or make everything reclaimed teak and marble countertops — before we could start teaching people there?

Somehow, lately, we’ve come to our (imperfect) senses again. The best parties are always the ones where the hosts are relaxed and happy to be there.

This event on Sunday? Our landlord is fixing the water heater and he had left it in front of the closet. We didn’t have chairs that matched. We didn’t even have enough for everyone to sit on. (We were expecting a sort of cocktail party, everyone stand and chat kind of experience.) Someone who came to the party had four folding chairs in her car from Thanksgiving still. Everyone gathered around the table. As you can see from this photo, we left the calendar of Kickstarter rewards — the force that is driving our lives right now — up on the wall for the party.

No one seemed to mind.

And so, we’re paying attention to our strengths again.

Starting in January, we’d like to invite you into our working space to cook and eat and laugh with us. We’ll be posting a schedule of classes soon. We’d love to feed you, to gather together, to laugh.

We’d like to share with you that silence while everyone is eating. That happy babble.

Med. Paleo III

jicama salad with pomegranate seeds and a citrus vinaigrette

I love jicama during the winter. It’s not only deeply refreshing with a watery crunch most vegetables cannot provide, but it is also considered a prebiotic, which means it’s good for gut health. I’m always thinking about gut health, since I have celiac. But don’t present this dish at a holiday party and announce, “This is good for gut health!” Focus on the cool crunch of the jicama, the pop of pomegranate seeds, the way the citrus segments slide between your teeth, and the sweet acidic taste of this vinaigrette that brings it all together. Or, just put this jicama salad with citrus vinaigrette down on the table and let people eat.

(Also, putting together this recipe, we realized how many techniques we know by heart but you may not. It’s time to go back to videos again too. Soon.)

1 large jicama (or 2 medium-sized jicama)
1 navel orange, peeled
1 white grapefruit, peeled
1 ruby red grapefruit peeled
seeds from 1 pomegranate (watch this video from our friend John at Food Wishes!)
1/4 cup white wine vinegar
3/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
salt and pepper
1/2 bunch fresh cilantro, chopped

prepare the jicama. Peel the jicama with a sharp knife. Slice the jicama into 1/2-inch pieces. Cut off all the rounded edges and slice the straight wedges into matchsticks.

supreme the citrus. Put an orange on a cutting board. (Make sure you place a damp towel underneath.) Cut the ends off. Start at the top and slice the peel off. After you cut the first part of the peel, you’ll be able to see where to cut — where the white part ends and the fruit begins. Slice off the entire peel. Hold the orange in your hand, over a large bowl. You’ll be able to see the membrane, the tiny sliver of connecting tissue between the segments of the orange. Carefully slice into the membrane and cut all the way to the center of the orange. Slice into the membrane on the other side. This will release the segment of orange. And the juice will fall into the bowl. Finish the orange. Repeat this with the two grapefruits. (If this doesn’t make sense, watch this video on how to supreme an orange.)

make the vinaigrette. You should have about 1/2 cup of juice in the bowl. If you don’t have that much, juice another orange to make 1/2 a cup. Mix the citrus juice and the white wine vinegar. Slowly, whisk in the olive oil until the dressing is emulsified. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

compose the salad. Toss the jicama pieces with the citrus segments, pomegranate seeds, and cilantro. Drizzle a thin stream of the vinaigrette around the edges of the bowl, then toss to coat. Add salt and pepper to taste.

Feeds 4.

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pragmatic and imagined Thu, 04 Dec 2014 22:22:50 +0000 Did you deposit that check yet? We should make a list of all the tasks we have to undertake to get the flours shipped to people’s homes and assign dates to every one. Who’s picking…

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carrots with cumin

Did you deposit that check yet? We should make a list of all the tasks we have to undertake to get the flours shipped to people’s homes and assign dates to every one. Who’s picking up Lucy from the Nutcracker rehearsal today? Here’s an idea — what about doing a video series with Sam, teaching me how to make pastry? I really want to incorporate more greys into the photographs, now that it’s the low-ceilinged time of the year. What about a soup with sweet potatoes and coconut, tomatoes and chickpeas? Hey honey, can you make up a bottle for Desmond?

Standing at the island in our kitchen, I was preparing to make date-almond chocolate biscotti for the gift baskets we are sending out for Kickstarter pledges. (Thank you again and again and again.) The knife was duller than I wanted (add sharpen knives to the list!), and so I had to press down harder than I expected on the red cutting board beneath my hands. I had to pay attention. Within a few moments of the slow sashaying rhythm of the knife on the dates, I paused. Everything felt good, my body lined up. I looked down to see my battered clogs next to each other, planted. I looked up and realized I felt grounded for the first time all day. Too many practical matters on paper and in bank accounts and emails leave me feeling flighty. When I put my hands in the food, I can imagine again.

These days, my life feels likes a constant, slow — and sometimes sudden — shift between the pragmatic and the imagined.

Time slips away as the light moves from the window behind me in our kitchen studio — Desmond jumping gleefully in his jumper across from me with Michael Jackson playing — to weak glimmers in late afternoon through the window near the refrigerator. Claire and I talk, making plans, everything that needs a list and has to be put on the calendar. Danny moves through the kitchen, nimbly, cooking and cleaning. He’s always listening. Whenever we are stuck, he looks at us, says something pithy and true. Then he makes us laugh. And then he feeds us lunch. Some days, it’s carrots slow roasted with cumin, cinnamon, and honey.

Danny is the most grounded person I have ever met. I’m full of ideas and talking it out and hands weaving strands of fabric in the air. Danny stands in the kitchen and makes food. And when he cooks, he thinks. He imagines. He listens. He knows far more than I do. And he’s kind enough to let me flutter, ever the writer, imagining, poking at ideas, trying them out by talking, and then watching the silly ones disappear out the door. Danny is all practical actions. And then he imagines. And he knows.

These past few weeks, as we have been pondering the intricacies of starting a small business, I’ve been trying to be pragmatic all day long. I have constant to-do lists in my speckled composition book, in green sharpies and stubs of pencils I find on the dining room table after Lucy has been drawing. They rattle in my head, those to-do lists, startling me awake at 3 in the morning with their noise. I’ve been thinking that what I need to do is buckle down, set aside my writing, quiet all those ideas, and just be practical.

I can’t, though. There’s no point in going against my essential nature. It never works. If I flutter my ideas into my hands, and make bread once again, just a bit better this time after my late-night thoughts about hydration made it onto the page, then I’m happy. My emails get answered after I have baked. After I’m done with this piece, I’m tackling a proposal I have to write, something quite exciting that scares me at the same time.

And here I am, writing yet another non-traditional, far-too-rambly piece of writing for a food blog. I’ve broken all those rules again.

Fine. I’m not much good at rules that make no sense to me. We have too many of them in this culture anyway.

Now that we are in the midst of starting a small business, I have been working on the assumption that our success lies solely in the pragmatic. And I make lists of those practical things and tackle emails and cross off lists. And then an entire day goes by, the light moving from limpid bright to those faint glimmers, without me making up a recipe or imagining a connection I hadn’t seen before or writing a piece like this. And then I go home defeated. Exhausted.

Those ideas that flutter out of my hands into the air around me, to the ears willing to listen or scared by them? They are the most practical things I do.

This morning, I read this piece about the founding of Top Pot Doughnuts, here in Seattle. I used to love those thick, sugar-crusted treats before I had to give up gluten. And to my delight, this piece is the story of how haphazard and sometimes chaotic the building of the Top Pot empire actually was. It was always about the vision, the design sensibility, the way they tried to make people feel when they were in a Top Pot shop. This is my favorite passage from Michael Klebeck:

“’Along the way, there have been ups and downs. But mostly, it feels like growth. Organic, authentic, and solid rather than ephemeral,’ Michael says. ‘The idea is the most important thing. The idea is everything.’
He pauses for a moment. ‘It was never about the doughnuts.’”

The idea is everything.

So I’ll keep dancing that line between the pragmatic and imagined, trying to find my balance new each day. Give me the chance to learn and keep my brain awake with fire, to deal with chaos, to go home exhausted some days and wake up ready to go the next morning. I’ll take that over tidy and too pragmatic any day.

Our lives are not neat. But as long as I’m dancing, and Danny is cooking, we’re going to be fine.


roasted carrots with cumin, cinnamon, and honey 

5 large carrots, peeled
2 teaspoons ground cumin
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
kosher salt and cracked black pepper
1 teaspoon cinnamon (we like the fresh cinnamon from Cinnamon Hill)
1/4 cup raw honey

Prepare to cook. Heat the oven to 425°.

Cut the carrots. Lay a whole carrot down on the cutting board. Cut a 1-inch piece on the diagonal. Twirl the carrot and cut again. This will give you carrot wedges. Repeat with the remaining carrots.

Toast the cumin. Set a small skillet over medium heat. Add the cumin. Toast the cumin, stirring frequently, until the smell of the cumin fills the air, about 3 minutes. Turn off the heat.

Season the carrots. Toss the carrots with the olive oil, and then toss them with the toasted cumin and cinnamon. Season with salt and pepper.

Roast the carrots. Roast the carrots until they are tender to the knife, 20 to 25 minutes.

Finish the carrots. Toss the carrots with the honey. Serve.

Feeds 3.


Feel like playing? You might want to try this with parsnips instead of carrots. Depending on their size, they might take less time to cook. Also, if you make these carrots without salt and pepper, and puree them, a baby you know might be very happy eating this dish. Just leave out the honey, as it is recommended that babies less than 1 avoid honey.

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Mediterranean Paleo Cooking Tue, 02 Dec 2014 18:11:51 +0000  Want to have brunch with us at our kitchen studio on Vashon this Sunday? To sign up for the event at Brown Paper Tickets, just click on this link.  Danny and I just sent in the copy…

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 Want to have brunch with us at our kitchen studio on Vashon this Sunday? To sign up for the event at Brown Paper Tickets, just click on this link

Danny and I just sent in the copy edits for our new cookbook, American Classics Reinvented. It has been almost two years since we first began working on a recipe list. It will be another 10 months before the book can be in your kitchen. Writing a cookbook is an arduous process, but enduring that process makes for better recipes. Last night, I made one more batch of the hoagie rolls, using a technique for making bread I hadn’t known a year ago. Those rolls are crusty on the outside, soft and full of air holes on the inside, and perfect for a lobster roll or Philly cheese steak sandwich.

There’s a reason great books take so long to make.

It’s hard to explain this process to people. The only folks who understand are people who do this crazy job too. Danny and I adore fellow cookbook authors.

This weekend, at our kitchen studio, we’re celebrating some of our fellow authors. And you’re invited.

We would like to invite you to an exclusive event to honor the publication of Mediterranean Paleo Cooking: Over 150 Fresh Coastal Recipes for a Relaxed, Gluten-Free Lifestyle.

Danny pored over this book, inspired and intrigued. He was intrigued by the kefta lamb kebabs, the cumin-cauliflower soup, and the arugula and artichoke salad with citrus dressing. He loves that the recipes are infused with the flavors and spices of Algeria and Persia and Greece, and that these are clearly dishes conceived by a chef.

This cookbook is a collaboration between husband and wife team Chef Nabil Boumrar and Nutrition Consultant Caitlin Weeks, and Diane Sanfilippo. (Diane is one of my favorite people and the author of a book I turn to regularly, Practical Paleo: A Customized Approach to Health and a Whole-Foods Lifestyle.)  The more than 150 recipes in Mediterranean Paleo Cooking emphasize local seafood, pasture-raised lamb and chicken, fresh vegetables, bold spices, rich broths, and a deep love of food. The recipes are also adaptable for those following the autoimmune protocol, low-FODMAP, low-carb, SCD, GAPS, nut-free, and egg-free diets.

There is something here for everyone.

This Sunday, we are hosting a book event in honor of these authors at our kitchen studio on Vashon Island.

On Sunday, December 7th, from 11 am to 1 pm, come meet Nabil, Caitlin, and Diane, listen to their insights on food and healing, and talk with others interested in eating good food.

As part of the book event, Danny and I will be making food from the book. It’s part of the price of your ticket. Listen to this menu:

Shaved jicama salad with citrus vinaigrette
Roast garlic cauliflower hummus
Fig and ginger chicken tagine
Rosemary-garlic lamb breakfast sausage
Cinnamon and apricot breakfast cookies
Crepes with pomegranate sauce

The cost is $35.

Copies of the book will be available for sale at the event. It’s a great holiday gift!

This event is limited to 35 people, so act fast.


To sign up for the event at Brown Paper Tickets, just click on this link


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GFF magazine Mon, 01 Dec 2014 17:44:00 +0000 It’s December 1st. At our house, with a very excited and articulate 6-year-old, that’s a big day. Rehearsals for Lucy’s first Nutcracker performances began last week. We put up our tree last night, to the…

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Processed with VSCOcam with s2 preset

It’s December 1st. At our house, with a very excited and articulate 6-year-old, that’s a big day. Rehearsals for Lucy’s first Nutcracker performances began last week. We put up our tree last night, to the befuddlement of poor Desmond. (His face looked like: “Can you people please explain to me why we now have a tree in the house?”) And our girl has been talking about Christmas for weeks. Months, really. She was singing Jingle Bells with great gusto in July. The other morning we had a dance party to Bruce Springsteen’s Santa Claus is Coming to Town.

Two days ago, in the dark of 5:45 am, she informed me: “Mama, I’m too excited to sleep for the whole month. I might sleep in the day after Christmas.”

So there has been no end of anticipation here. However, today we opened the first day of the advent calendar — it was a wacky little drawing of Santa barreling down a snowy hill on a sled.

Officially, the season has begun.

Whether you celebrate Christmas, Chanukah, Kwanzaa, or even Festivus (my brother and his wife do), this can be a joyful season. It can also be a confusing season. What the heck do you buy for everyone in your life in this season that implies a constant state of gift giving?

We didn’t go shopping on Black Friday. I refuse. I haven’t been to a mall in years. We don’t have a lot of money, so there’s no mindless spending here. Instead, we’re choosing our gifts for loved ones carefully, with great mindfulness. All through this month, we’d like to share some of the gifts we might be buying for friends and family, especially those who are gluten-free.

If you know someone who is gluten-free and loves food and great magazines, we highly recommend a subscription to GFF Magazine.

Erika Lenkert began GFF this year, with great passion and a successful Kickstarter campaign. (She was quite the inspiration for our campaign.) She’s driven, kind, and determined to bring great food and stories to those of us who have to be gluten-free. We’ll let her tell you the rest.

Why did you decide to start GFF?

A lot of people ask me why I would start a magazine, given how challenging it is to make a go of it now that most media has gone online. In that way, GFF is the definition of a passion project. I’d been writing about food, wine, and travel for national magazines and cookbooks for 20 years, and I’ve been gluten-free since 2001. I have a nine-year-old daughter who had to be gluten-free for several years. Simultaneously, I’ve always been obsessed with exceptional food and life experiences and have never sacrificed taste or satisfaction eating gluten-free. I saw a perceived disconnect in the marketplace between exciting food and gluten-free food. I wanted to bridge that gap and give the gluten-free community something to get excited about. And I tend to write about what I know.

But more than that, GFF was an opportunity to do what I love most: seek out incredible people, food, and experiences and celebrate and share them with others…and to get inspired to do a lot more cooking, and boy is that happening around my house these days!


A dear friend of mine who is a painter always says, “You have to create the art you wish existed in the world.” What are you trying to provide with GFF that didn’t exist in the world before that?

My aim has always been to create the best new food magazine out there, period. I didn’t want to focus on the medical aspects of gluten-free diet or the things you couldn’t eat. I longed for a gluten-free food magazine that featured the kind of inspirational cooking that Gourmet did in the mid-1990s, where recipes were exciting and gorgeous and helped you broaden your cooking repertoire and feel proud just by making them.

I also wanted a trusted source for gluten-free product recommendations, because there’s nothing worse than wasting your money and time on yet another new brand of sawdust-y GF bread or slimy GF crackers.

Beyond that, I wanted to create a good read loaded with interesting articles and tidbits and infused with playfulness, because food is fun!

Plus, I love the good, old-fashioned print magazine that you can hold in your hands, and that builds up its own stories and memories with each dog-eared page and chocolate smudge. We evolved that notion by making GFF a sort of collectable cookbook-magazine hybrid with super thick pages and high-quality printing. We wanted to make something people would keep and would stand the test of time, but we also created a digital version for people who don’t share my sentimentality.

Partnering with my friend and photographer Maren Caruso for GFF was critical to realizing the vision. She brings all the deliciousness to life through food photographs so beautiful, you want to eat them right off of the page.


Can you tell us about some pieces from issue #1 you want everyone to read?

I’m in love with pretty much everything in that first issue. The pasta recipes by ex Chez Panisse chef Niki Ford are masterpieces. Everyone should make at least one, though I repeatedly make the Corn Orzo and Heirloom Bean Soup and freeze it in single-servings. Aimee Lee Ball’s Gut Instincts article is an important read on the state of gluten-free affairs, and Lena Kwak’s lightning-fast rise to Cup4Cup flour CEO stardom alongside famed chef Thomas Keller is fascinating. Then there’s the off-the-hook holiday menu by James Beard Award-winning chef Craig Stoll of San Francisco’s Delfina restaurants. I’m obsessed with the Brussels sprouts. Our first “Skill It” feature (a reoccurring section that teaches GF cooking fundamentals) is truly a Perfect Piecrust by allergen-free baking expert and regular contributor Jeffrey Larsen. And then there’s your wonderful piece, Shauna. I really could just list the table of contents!


What are you planning for issue #2?

We are finishing the next issue right now. It’s coming out in January and I’m excited to say I think it’s even better than the first. You’ll discover how to make insanely good vegetable dishes using everyday winter produce, learn how to whip up Perfect GF Scones, read about the Jestons–like high-tech advances being made in the food industry, and get the moistest, most chocolaty gluten-free chocolate cake recipe ever. Our food muse Niki Ford is back with an exotic, to-die-for brunch and a dinner that’ll romance the pants off of anyone, and we’ve got spectacular gluten-free, dairy-free baking recipes from a top New York bakery. We also tell you where to find the best GF food in Hawaii. (Can you tell I’m excited?) Oh! And two-Michelin-star chef Daniel Patterson’s way to cook a whole chicken, which is also included, changed my life. Seriously.


What are your plans for the future?

We’re two working moms spending every free moment on GFF so my first goal is grow our visibility and readership so we can afford to get more help! Beyond that, we are building out our website ( so there will be immediate gratification in the way of recipes, articles, and easy access to our favorite food and products. And of course there’s the spring issue, which we’ll start working on right after the holidays. Until then, my plan is to do a lot of GF cooking, eating, celebrating, and working to get our inaugural issue under as many Christmas trees and menorahs as possible. With that in mind, please let your readers know they can get 40% off the print version of the inaugural issue until December 15 if they use coupon code holiday40 at checkout and take 35% off print subscriptions with coupon code gff35. They make great GF gifts and come in a fancy box, too.

To buy a single issue:

To buy a subscription:


Erika has kindly agreed to do a giveaway: a copy of issue #1 to 3 lucky readers. Leave a comment here about why you are interested and we’ll do a random drawing at the end of the week! 






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my fennel fascination Wed, 19 Nov 2014 22:24:00 +0000 My fennel fascination has begun again. The other day, our dear friends Tita and John came to the studio for lunch. We try to take the weekends away from the office, but when our office…

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fennel salad

My fennel fascination has begun again.

The other day, our dear friends Tita and John came to the studio for lunch. We try to take the weekends away from the office, but when our office includes a 24-foot-long table, a professional kitchen, and a small clutch of sheep out the window, it’s hard to stay away. Besides, it was John’s birthday celebration and the power had gone out for half the island, including our house. (It’s one of the quirks of living on a rural island during windstorms.) So, to the studio we go.

Danny had made a batch of fall-apart pork shoulder in the slow cooker. (My new three favorite words: slow cooker leftovers.) There were roasted potatoes. There were carrots roasted with cumin and honey. Lucy set the table with water bottles and napkins for everyone. It was a Sunday supper feast.

Even with all those delicious choices, the first dish I pulled toward me was this fennel salad I can’t stop eating. I joked with Tita, “As soon as it feels like winter outside, my body craves fennel.”

She said without joking, “That’s your body taking care of itself.”

She’s right. My wise soul of a friend is almost always right. I think our mouths crave starch and cookies and stuffing and bread things during the long winter months — and winter has hit here early, as it has in much of the country. (Buffalo! I salute you!) With Thanksgiving next week, we’re heading into the starchiest season.

(This is where I should remind you that we have a gluten-free Thanksgiving baking app for the iPad. And a digital download full of recipes, techniques, and formulas for flour blends you can make. If you’re having any trepidations about Thanksgiving, and you need some calm advice to help you make great and grateful food, we’re here to help. Next year, you can bake Thanksgiving with our Gluten-Free Girl flour blends in your pantry.)

But last year, I started to listening to another part of my body than my mouth. During the winter, my gut and joints and now my head want vegetables. It’s easy as pie to get starchy baked goods for the winter. Clearly, I’m a fan of baked goods, since we now run a gluten-free flour company. And I’d eat one of these grain-free ginger molasses cookies any time.

We have to work to find vegetables on our plates, sometimes, but especially in these cold months. Celebrating the funny, lumpy vegetables like fennel and celery root appeals to me more now than it did a few years ago. Danny and I have found that if we plan our meals around the vegetables first? We feel better. It’s as easy as that.

So I slide a fennel bulb over the mandolin, then chop up those curlicue white rings into slivers. I fluff them with my fingers, then add segments of clementines and lots of fresh chopped thyme. Small slices of Israeli feta. A few splashes of apple cider vinegar and olive oil, sometimes sesame oil, and some salt pinched between my fingers. That’s it. Maybe sunflower seeds if they are within reach. Just writing this, I realize some briny kalamata olives might lend another texture of taste to it all.

Seriously, though, it’s hardly a recipe. I can’t write it up as one. It’s just a winter staple, something comforting for the end of the afternoon, as the light slowly fades into dusk.

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thank you. Fri, 14 Nov 2014 05:40:16 +0000   Dear Wonderful People, From the deepest part of our grateful hearts, we thank you. Thanks to the generous support of 1563 wonderful people, we not only met the goal for our Kickstarter but also exceeded…

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Kickstarter funded!_


Dear Wonderful People,

From the deepest part of our grateful hearts, we thank you.

Thanks to the generous support of 1563 wonderful people, we not only met the goal for our Kickstarter but also exceeded it by 17%! The Gluten-Free Girl Flour Blends will be on the market soon.

And we are probably most grateful for this: with the exception of some very generous individuals who had the capacity to give more (thank you!), most of this campaign was funded by those of you who gave $10, $25, $50, and $100. This isn’t a campaign that went viral in the news or had a cute hook and garnered a lot of attention. This community of backers built slowly, one pledge at a time. It was YOU who did this.

Those of you who have been reading our website and making our recipes and buying our cookbooks? YOU made this happen. Every single pledge counted.

Thanks to your generous moral and financial support, we’ll be able to bring the All-Purpose Flour Blend to market very soon, and then the Grain-Free Flour Blend to market after that.

Since the Kickstarter was funded, we’ve been hard at work. (There will be no resting here for awhile.) We’ve been finalizing contract negotiations with the package manufacturer for the first run of boxes, having the flours analyzed for the nutrition panel on the boxes, finding out how to obtain bar codes….It’s a fascinating process.

The other day, our co-packer sent us the first batch of the all-purpose flour with the final formulation of flours from the suppliers we have chosen. It was a singular moment — I was surprisingly nervous. As soon as I felt the flour in my fingers, I felt relieved. And immediately, I made a pie dough. That’s how I would know if we had the flour we dreamed of — if it made a great pie.

It makes a great pie.

It also makes great pancakes, which four hungry children devoured in our home a couple of mornings ago. Three of them can eat gluten. They each asked for 100 more pancakes. There have been waffles, banana bread, crepes, and sandwich bread with those bags of flour from the co-packer.

We are so happy with this flour.

We can’t wait to help you bake great gluten-free food in your home with these flours.

We’ll be updating you on the progress of the flours on a regular basis. As soon as we have a date for when you can buy the flours online, we will let you know in ALL CAPS!

We’re also moving forward with fulfilling our rewards. We have our Thanksgiving baking class this weekend! We’re making pies for people, refining our recipe for grain-free gingerbread men, baking biscotti, and making plans for our recipe PDF so many of you will be receiving.

We’d love to know feedback from you: what 10 recipes would you like to have in that PDF? Some of the recipes are set in our minds, but we’re open to urgent suggestions! Let us know by emailing me at

In the meantime, we’ll be going back to stories and recipes here soon. There’s plenty happening right now — and the next few weeks promise plenty more new details and new learning — but we’re still cooking in our kitchen. And we can’t wait to invite you in again.

Thank you so much for all your support and kind messages, and mostly, for your donations. We’re still in amazement. We will always be grateful.

In warm gratitude,

Shauna, Danny, and Claire




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Meet Our Sponsors: Cecelia’s Marketplace Gluten-Free Grocery Shopping Guide Mon, 03 Nov 2014 06:07:22 +0000 When I was first diagnosed with celiac, back in late April of 2005, I was exhilarated to have an answer to the question plaguing me for years: why do I feel so awful? But I…

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gluten-free shopping guide

When I was first diagnosed with celiac, back in late April of 2005, I was exhilarated to have an answer to the question plaguing me for years: why do I feel so awful? But I was also overwhelmed, especially the first time I went grocery shopping. That first trip took me 3 hours. I spent 3 hours in a small grocery store, picking up every single food item and examining the labels, wondering if I could eat it. Would there be cross-contamination? Did it have hidden gluten? Was mayonnaise safe? How about that yogurt? I persisted, and I figured it out, but those first six months or so of being gluten-free meant living in a constant state of unrest and doubt.

What I would have given to own a copy of Cecelia’s Marketplace Gluten-Free Grocery Shopping Guide. This handy guide contains exhaustively researched lists of food items, currently on the market, that are gluten-free. It’s an excellent resource for anyone who is gluten-free but especially for those of you who are new to living gluten-free.

This is why Cecelia’s Marketplace Gluten-Free Grocery Shopping Guide and their accompanying smartphone apps (download them today!) are our newest sponsor. We’re proud to bring them to your attention. You need this resource.

We asked Dr. Mara Matison to tell us about her company and their story.


What made you begin writing the Gluten-Free Grocery Shopping Guide?

After years of mystery symptoms that my doctors could not find an answer for (heart palpitations, tingling lips, itchy bumps on my skin, sudden urgencies to run to the bathroom), I am forever grateful for the gastroenterologist that finally diagnosed me with celiac disease in 2006.

But going gluten-free was not always an easy road. I initially had a very difficult time finding gluten-free products. Not knowing a thing about “gluten-free” at the time, except for the information I researched online, the whole process was an overwhelming experience. Every day I had to question what I put in my mouth, in fear of gluten ingestion and a relapse of symptoms. It was this drastic lifestyle change, that involved a lot of reading labels, calling food manufacturers and worrying about cross-contamination, that drove me to publish our gluten-free guide. There was no “easy reference book” available and my frustration grew rapidly.

So, as my husband and I gathered all this ‘golden’ information we decided to compile it into a small guidebook. We figured other people being diagnosed must be feeling the same way as me? Lost, confused and looking for answers. Well now, 8 years later and 6 new updated editions, Cecelia’s Marketplace Gluten-Free Grocery Shopping Guide is the nationwide best selling guide on the market, won numerous awards, has received rave reviews and has helped thousands of people safely follow a gluten-free diet! In addition, for those people that have multiple intolerances, we expanded our guide selection to include a Gluten/Casein Free and Gluten/Casein/Soy Free Grocery Shopping Guide.


How do you hope to help people?

I hope and truly believe that we have already helped thousands of people ease into a gluten-free diet. I remember that there were days that I had tears in my eyes that I was so frustrated and felt so isolated thinking “what can I eat”? My hope is that I have helped to eliminate that doubt and frustration from anyone looking or needing to start a gluten-free diet. For some people, including myself, this can be a life-changing experience. Going from feeling horrible with no energy, to feeling a thousand times better, energized, and able to live again!


Can you tell us about your smartphone apps? How do they meet a different need than the guidebook?

Ahhh…the new smartphone apps. Yes, they are wonderful! These are for all you “techies” out the there that don’t like reading books anymore. We released our updated iPhone app earlier this year and for those of you writing us and patiently waiting….you’ll be happy to know that your prayers have been answered. Our ANDROID app was just released last week!

Both apps, iPhone and Android, have the same layout. One great thing about these apps is they can search for gluten-free products by either company name or by product category. The apps have the same information as our guidebook, minus the bonus OTC pharmacy section located in the back of the book (which includes toothpastes, shampoos, lotions, etc.). The apps are comprised of strictly food and drink products. Maybe we’ll come up with an OTC pharmacy app next…who knowsJ

But in support of our guidebook, I feel it’s always nice to have both on hand, the book and the app that is. I know there have been times that my iPhone battery was dead and I luckily had a copy of our guidebook in my purse to quickly double check the gluten-free status of a product. Some people also are just more “book people”, they need to see it written out, like me. While others love all the new technology and would rather opt for the app. It’s just a personal preference.


Can you share a story of a customer whose life has been helped by your product?

Wow…this is a toughie. Seems like there have been hundreds of tear jerkers that we’ve either experienced personally or received via email. I will name a few. My sister…2 years of severe panic attacks (to the point where her social life was getting so compromised by these heart pounding, sweating, uncomfortable, “get me out of here” situations, that I suggested maybe she should try a gluten-free diet.) I gave her our GF guide and within 1 month, all her symptoms were gone! Totally gone! Kind of crazy if you think about it…those nasty little proteins…what they are doing to our bodies.

Another story. My girlfriend, diagnosed with Langherhans cell disease. Basically started out with small ulcerations in her skin that kept expanding and eating away at her skin. What a devastating very cruel disease. Multiple doctors ran tests, and by accident she found out she also had a high sensitivity to gluten. She went gluten-free and used our GF guide religiously and the ulcerations completely disappeared. This was such a miraculous recovery that one of her doctors proceeded to investigate the possible link. I’m not saying this is a cure for the disease, but a lot can change in your body when your immune system is no longer compromised.

Okay…one more story that sticks in my mind. A young girl came up to our booth at a book signing event we were hosting. She said, “I’d like to thank you for all the work you have done. Your book saved my life.” She proceeded to tell me that she had been misdiagnosed with MS (Multiple Sclerosis). Parts of her body were shutting down. She was no longer able to move her left arm and her speech was getting slurred. Someone, somehow… recommended a gluten-free diet. She used our GF guide book, followed a strict gluten-free diet and started regaining all feeling in her body. When I met her she was a happy healthy college student, and you would have never known what she had been through.

 What do you see as the future of gluten-free? Where is your place in it?

The gluten-free market is growing at such a rapid pace, I know that some skeptics think it may crash and burn, along with other diet fads. But, I think completely the opposite. First of all, it’s not a fad. For most of us, like me, with celiac disease….it is a permanent lifestyle change. There are so many people yet to be diagnosed with celiac disease and so many others with gluten-intolerance that I only see great things for the gluten-free market in the future. Tastier breads, beer with great flavor, crispy pizza crusts, lower affordable prices, and more restaurants offering gluten-free menus.

What I feel will further this upward trend is the fantastic feeling people get from following a gluten-free diet. For instance, my husband chose to go gluten-free with me a year after I was diagnosed. His psoriasis completely cleared up, his post nasal drip cough disappeared and he’s had better nights’ sleep. He won’t even touch a piece of regular bread now. So if eliminating gluten from one’s diet helps them get rid of unwanted symptoms, I believe gluten-free is here to stay.

As long as customers are continuously looking for the most ‘up-to-date’, most reliable gluten-free product information, Cecelia’s Marketplace Gluten-Free Grocery Shopping Guide will be here for them. The 2014/2015 edition is now available. We have re-verified all of our product information, including the new labeling laws, the latest product ingredient changes, new GF dedicated facilities, new certified gluten-free products, and added new gluten-free products. With our Gluten-Free Guide, as well as our Gluten/Casein Free and Gluten/Casein/Soy Free Guides, we have helped thousands of GF dieters nationwide find the most accurate gluten-free information possible.

For more information on all of our helpful gluten-free resources, please visit


The Matisons would like to give away a copy of the Cecelia’s Marketplace Gluten-Free Grocery Shopping Guide to three lucky winners here. Simply leave a comment explaining why this would be of use to you! We’ll choose three winners at random on Friday, November 7th and inform the winners by email. 

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this month, this work Wed, 29 Oct 2014 06:09:34 +0000 No matter what we do, there is good food and light. It’s how we work. This past month, however, while we have been running the Kickstarter to bring the Gluten-Free Girl Flour Blends to market, the…

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light on the desk

No matter what we do, there is good food and light. It’s how we work.

This past month, however, while we have been running the Kickstarter to bring the Gluten-Free Girl Flour Blends to market, the emphasis has been on the word work. We’ve had the computers on, the pens uncapped, the notebooks filled with scrawled ideas and snippets of blog posts and updates for Facebook. Good food has fueled us. We’ve been lifting our heads only to look up, notice the light, and then get back to work.

Kickstarter- how many people we need

The next time you see a friend post a Kickstarter link on Facebook? Do your friend a favor and give some money. Until you have run a Kickstarter, you have no idea how anxious your friend probably is, nearly every moment of the day.

There has been little sleep the past few weeks. Every few moments, we all looked up at this piece of paper taped to the window: “We need at least $2800.37 a day to make it. That’s an average of $62 per person. We need at least 1280 people to pledge to reach our goal.” (After a couple of weeks, we looked at the total and changed the amount we needed every day to $2307.67.) Every night I woke up between 3 and 4 am, wondering how we could encourage another 45 people to pledge an average of $63 the next day. Should we offer to make them pie? Should we send cookies? How many times should I put up an update on Twitter before I annoyed thousands of people by talking about it again?

We took this on voluntarily. I’m not really complaining. If you dream bigger than you ever have in your life, and have the chutzpah to believe you can raise nearly $80,000 in 4 weeks, all on the good will of people on the internet? Well, hard work is the only way. We can sleep in November.

claire in the studio_

Before I go much further, I have to tell you about this incredible woman, the third part of the we I’m writing about here. This is our right-hand woman, partner-in-crime on the Kickstarter, and now one of our favorite people in the world, Claire Moncrief. Without her work and encouragement, we would be falling down useless in this enormous work.

Claire arrived in our lives about 18 months ago, a complete surprise, the way everything that matters in my life has arrived. Last May, when Danny and Lu and I were in New York for book tour, I put up a photo of a moment of street life on 5th Avenue on Instagram. Someone left a comment saying “I want to meet you!” Okay, that happens quite a bit. But Claire followed up with an email. She was a newly diagnosed celiac, a big fan of ours, and a producer for CBS. Sure we can meet, I wrote to her. I walked to a coffee shop to meet her and stopped to take a photograph of a quote from Katherine Anne Porter scrawled on a chalkboard out front: “Miracles are instantaneous, they cannot be summoned, but come of themselves, usually at unlikely moments and to those who least expect them.” I walked inside and met Claire. Immediately, inexplicably, she felt like a sister to me. We were connected.

(About a month ago, I stumbled on that post again, more than a year later, with Claire inextricably a part of our lives now. When I sent it to Claire, she texted me immediately. “Look at the photo of the quote again.” I looked and looked but I didn’t see anything. “Look behind the signboard,” she wrote me. And then I saw it. In the back of the photo, walking toward me, is Claire, in her green shirt and black sweater. There she was, unlikely and unexpected. Miracles are instantaneous, indeed.)

Life took its twists and turns. Danny and I promoted our book, taught in Italy, came back to Vashon to start the next cookbook. And we looked for our second kiddo. Claire stepped away from her work as a television producer, even though she loved it, because she realized she could not heal fully from her celiac in that frenetic life. We talked and talked, wrote emails, encouraged each other, and tried to figure out how we could work together someday. Danny and I made plans for possible new websites and cookbooks but mostly we coalesced our ideas for bringing our flour blends to market. Claire decided to leave New York for awhile, to heal more fully. And since her family lives in the Pacific Northwest, she decided to work here for awhile. And, to collaborate with us.

Everything, everything in our lives has changed for the better because Claire is here. She’s a fierce woman and funny as hell. I can’t imagine my work days without her throaty surprised laugh. Claire has strong ideas and she’s unafraid to act on them. Danny and I have our own talents, but we’ve needed someone to help us aim for our goals with more organized clarity. And for years we have needed a colleague who believes in our work and what we want to give to the world deeply enough to call us on our crap and suggest better ways.

Claire has accompanied us on this path we’ve been taking, trying to build a sound business and a community on Kickstarter. Her years of experience covering hurricanes, political conventions, breaking news stories, and the top stories of the day make her swift of mind and talented at saying no when it’s necessary. She’s a powerful force of a woman and colleague. And we cannot find the words to say how grateful we are to have her in our lives.

desmond jumping_

Also, this little guy has given us so much joy the last seven months that we’re happy wandering through stress-induced sleep deprivation along with his six-month sleep regression. Look at that smile while he dances to early Michael Jackson songs. Desmond, you’re one of the biggest reasons we’ve made it through this month.

wide shot of the studio_

All day long, while Lucy is at school, Claire and I have stood at the big white door we propped up on a pile of cookbooks or at the 24-foot-long douglas fir dining table we had built for the space. We pace around, talking with Danny as he cooks and cleans, the three of us working and planning new ideas and following through on details.

I’ve started calling us the tripod. Without one of us legs, the whole thing falls down.

Danny keeps us fed throughout this. He listens. And then he throws in the pithiest idea of the day as he stands at the stove and prepares another meal.

This is our kitchen studio, a 900-square foot space we rent on a 12-acre-farm on Vashon. We adore our landlords, who run a pastured pork and grass-fed beef meat company. They come in and out of the studio, asking how we’re doing, cheering us on, and wondering what is for lunch. This is our professional test kitchen, as well as my writing space, Desmond’s jumping place, and the best office I’ve ever worked in.

This isn’t a bad place to spend a stressful work month.

oven in the studio

We’re so grateful to KitchenAid, who last year asked if they could send us appliances for our new kitchen studio. We jumped at the chance, of course. But more importantly, we have been using this oven and stove for nearly a year, baking every single recipe for our new cookbook in it, sautéing salmon, simmering soup, and making sauces. This oven has seen daily hard duty, cooking and baking and making great food. And I’ve never loved an oven as much as I have loved this one. There’s a lot of good food karma in this appliance.

always dishes to do

And since we never, ever stop doing dishes at the studio, we are especially grateful for this dishwasher. It is the quietest dishwasher I’ve ever encountered, with a silverware rack on top that leaves plenty of room for the stockpots and pie pans and casserole dishes we seem to always be washing. We would never have made it through this month without this workspace.

Danny making lunch

Even though we’ve been telling you about the flour blends we’re trying to bring to market, and thus showcasing baked goods on our Instagram feed and Facebook page every day for the last month, we have been eating as many vegetables as we can this month. I love baking. I love the creative process, the feeling of pie dough on my hands, and the joy in people’s faces when they see I have made them pumpkin bread or chocolate chip cookies. But let’s be honest — vegetables and good protein should still be the majority of our diet.

Thank you, Danny, for making us such gorgeous lunches every day.

Danny eating while looking at app

Danny and I both believe that it’s vital to put down the phones, turn off the work, and eat together in companionship, free of technology. But not this past month. All of October, Danny and Claire and I have sat at the big long table, in as much light as we could find, eating something great, and working working working. (That’s the Kickstarter app on Danny’s phone.)

I’m looking forward to a quiet lunch soon.

But we have one full day left on our Kickstarter. Tomorrow, we’ll be at the studio, working working working, eating Danny’s food, and coming up with new ideas for how to remind you about what we’re doing and why we’d like your support.

I’ll never forget this month. Thank you to every one of you who have pledged so far. We can’t wait to work until the very end.

And then we’re going to celebrate by sleeping.

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baking in your home. Tue, 28 Oct 2014 06:15:53 +0000 Thank you to everyone who has pledged to our Kickstarter campaign to bring the Gluten-Free Girl Flour Blends to market. In the moment I am writing this, more than 1400 of you have pledged to…

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Thank you to everyone who has pledged to our Kickstarter campaign to bring the Gluten-Free Girl Flour Blends to market. In the moment I am writing this, more than 1400 of you have pledged to make this dream a reality. We are so grateful.

Wee have 54 hours to go, folks. And the more money we raise, the more quickly we can bring the grain-free blend to market. So many of you have expressed interest in the grain-free blend that we’d love your help spreading the word on this.

And so, in that spirit, I want to share a few stories with you.

For years, we’ve had the formula for our all-purpose flour blend on this site, and in our latest cookbook, Gluten-Free Girl Every Day. I’ve exhorted for years: it’s not that hard to combine the flours. You can do it today, if you want.

In fact, the other day, a woman asked me for the formula for our all-purpose flour blend on Twitter, in the midst of this Kickstarter campaign. I wrote it out for her immediately. I don’t believe in keeping this a secret. We want you to bake. She wrote back the next day to say the pumpkin muffins she made with our All-Purpose Flour Blend were the best gluten-free baked good she had ever eaten. She can’t wait to bake again.

So here are some stories sent in by readers who have made up our flour blends and used them successfully.

grain-free pancakes

“I’ve used your recipe for a gluten free all-purpose flour mix for a long time. When I first went gluten free, your site was the first that I went to. Your instructions were easy to follow and the results have been fantastic. I tend to use your whole grain mix more now, but when I want something a little more indulgent, I reach for the AP mix. I’ve never had a bad result.”

Megan M.

“Your all purpose mix is amazing. I use it all of the time to make a huge batch of pizzas… I throw half of them in the second freezer outside, just so I always have them on hand. Thank you thank you thank you for such a wonderful mix. Oh my gosh, it’s a great thing to have on hand for when company comes over —.just set up a make your own pizza buffet. I also have to say I’ve tried local gf Chicago pizza and a gf pizza in DC. None can touch how amazing yours are! Thank you!!”

Lauren S.

“I use the mix for any recipe that I’d use regular all-purpose flour for: cakes, cookies, waffles, pancakes, crepes, gravy, brownies, muffins, crisp, crumbles and cobblers, pizza dough, naan, and pie crusts…..I’ve baked for picky friends who can’t tell that my desserts are gluten-free and enjoy them just as much as my old ap-based treats. While it’s more obvious that the pizza crust is different it is so delicious no one cares.”

Kathleen C.

“Your all-purpose gluten free flour blend saved my life! I know, I know, that sounds dramatic, but before I tried making my own flour blend with your recipe, I felt deprived and would “cheat” as a result. And I don’t have to tell you how bad that is!

Always a baker, I had tried commercially available mixes but was always disappointed with something: texture, flavor, or a metallic taste. I tried making other blends at home, but never liked them much either. Plus I seemed to have a sensitivity to the gums other blends called for.

Since I started using your recipe about four years ago I haven’t cheated once! This was back when you called for seven or eight ingredients, but I now use–and love!–the newer, simplified version. At your suggestion, I started baking by weight and I can make any of my favorite family recipes–pancakes, quick breads, even cinnamon rolls! I use it to thicken soups, make roux, and bread fried foods. And the best part? No one knows that it’s gluten free until I tell them!

Thanks for developing this wonderful recipe and helping this gluten– free girl eat right!

Amy S

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So you see? You could make this flour blend today and not need to buy a box from us. Go right ahead.

However, after all these years of delighting in mixing up flours and deciding on the best formulations for blends, I understand why you might want to buy our flours already blended, in a box that can sit in your pantry, instead of having to blend them up yourself.
The other day I heard myself say to Lucy, when she wanted me to play with her: “Honey, I’d love to play with you. I just have to make up a flour blend first.” If I wished I could just grab a box of flour to bake with her immediately — and then color at the dining room table while the scones wafted their scent from the oven — then I imagine you must feel the same.

For Lucy — and soon for Desmond — baking gluten-free is no big deal. Just like I did with my mom when I was a kid, she helps me pull out the flour, the baking powder, the soda, salt, and sugar from the pantry before we begin baking. The recipe for chocolate chip cookies or apple pie is the same as the one I made with my mom. It’s just the flour that is different. That’s it. It’s just a different flour.

Yesterday, Lu called to me from the landing at the top of the stairs. “Mom! I’m having a bake sale. Would you like to come buy something?” It was imaginary, her bake sale, so I sat on a step below her and asked what she was selling.
“We have ginger-melon cream puffs, Chinese five-spice banana bread, maple-blueberry pudding, lime zest cornmeal cookies, and lemon yogurt cake with chocolate ganache,” she told me.

(I swear — she said all this.)

“Wow,” I said. “That’s a great selection. Are any of them gluten-free?”

She looked at me in surprise. “Mama, they’re all gluten-free, of course.”

For my girl — and soon my boy — there’s nothing weird or difficult about gluten-free baking. It’s just baking. And it’s magic. That’s the story in our home.

Here’s the main reason Danny and I have created these flour blends and want to make them available to you. We want these flours to be part of the story of your family’s life, the story of your kids baking cookies with you. I don’t want any kid to feel left out of the joy of standing at Mom or Dad’s knee and making magic with butter, milk, eggs, and flour.

We have only a couple of days left to get this Kickstarter funded as much as we can, to get both of these flour blends in your home.

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gluten-free baguette Fri, 17 Oct 2014 16:53:06 +0000 See that baguette? It’s gluten-free, of course. I shouldn’t say of course. You know we wouldn’t post a photo of food that contained gluten on this site. Still, you probably wouldn’t guess this is a gluten-free baguette.…

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Processed with VSCOcam with s2 presetSee that baguette? It’s gluten-free, of course.

I shouldn’t say of course. You know we wouldn’t post a photo of food that contained gluten on this site. Still, you probably wouldn’t guess this is a gluten-free baguette. Look at those air holes. That crust. That bread is pliable and soft in the crumb and crisp on the outside. It’s a baguette.

And the recipe for this baguette — the recipe we have worked on for 8 years now — might be yours soon. It will be in the PDF of 10 recipes reserved exclusively for supporters of our Kickstarter. Everyone who pledges $25 or above will be receiving this PDF. How about a great gluten-free baguette for the new year?

Of course, if you’d like to learn how to make that baguette, plus sourdough bread, great pie crust, and any other gluen-free baked good of your choice, there are a few pledges that might interest you.

Tickets to the gluten-free Thanksgiving baking class ($250) we ran last week have all been snapped up. There was so much interest that we’re adding a December holiday baking class, for a pledge of $250. (That gets you two tickets!) It will be in Seattle this time, at our favorite bookstore/teaching space, Book Larder. We’ll be offering the class the evening of December 2nd, at 6:30 pm. You’ll learn how to make this baguette for holiday party appetizers, plus pie! And other delightful goods. If you pledge to Kickstarter soon, you could be part of this exclusive baking class.

If you’d like to gather a group of friends together, and come to our kitchen studio on a 12-acre farm on Vashon, then we have a $1000 pledge on the Kickstarter. That sounds like a lot, but if 10 people go in together, that’s only $100 a piece. There are only 4 of these pledges left for the in-person class. You could also do it virtually, if you live outside of Seattle.

Of course, if you want us to bake for you, there are a few options left.

We have the holiday gift basket for $250: copies of all three of our books, the 10 recipes exclusive to the Kickstarter, and a tin of gluten-free biscotti. There is only one left!

And if you are feeling concerned about a gluten-free Thanksgiving, let us make your pumpkin pie. This is a limited offer for only 10 people. We’ll make your gluten-free (and dairy-free, if you need it) pumpkin pie. Pickup will be on Vashon and in Seattle.

Folks, we’re doing all of this to help you bake. It’s our first and most important goal. Help us help you by pledging to the Kickstarter today.

p.s. Look again. That’s a gluten-free baguette. And it’s easy to make. You want this recipe.

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