October 20, 2011

Gluten Free Betsy Bookclub: Babycakes Covers the Classics

I haven't baked in forever.  Other than a box mix here and there, I haven't created anything from scratch in quite a while. I think I'm finally getting over my scars from being kicked out of culinary school last year.  I never talked about it on here because I never knew how to approach the subject.

In a nutshell, I enrolled in baking classes at my local community college last fall, they approved me working with gluten free flours, then they reneged on the decision and forced me to either work with regular flour and get sick (I would be required to taste the products and that wasn't going to happen since I would never knowingly poison myself) or leave.  With lots of tears and heartache, I chose the latter.  I took it pretty hard and stopped baking altogether.

Then last month I turned 30 and decided that I wasn't getting any younger and the time to do what I love is now.  So I picked up my mixing bowls and got to it.  Ever the encouraging soul, my dear celiac sister (from another mister) continued to buy me cookbooks and baking goodies.  For my birthday, she gave me Babycakes Covers The Classics. As I was flipping through it my friend, Stacy, was looking at it over my shoulder and told me, "you need to master all of those recipes by my New Year's party." Done and done!  Everything looked so good, especially the donuts.

I ordered a mini donut pan from Amazon.com and when it arrived I whipped up a few batches of the cake donuts.

What I loved about this recipe was the ease of throwing everything together.  You'd think with vegan donuts, there were be lots of complicated steps involved, but it couldn't have been simpler.  A nice blend of gluten free flours, unsweetened apple sauce, and coconut oil made these donuts soft and delicious.  The ¼ cup of vanilla extract threw me off, however; I put ¼ tsp of vanilla bean paste in for the first batch and then added a little more for the second and third batches, probably about a tablespoon altogether.  Dipped in cinnamon and sugar, we all thought they turned out perfect.

Mini Cinnamon Sugar Cake Donuts

Have you tried any of the recipes from Babycakes Covers The Classics? Or rather, what's your favorite gluten free donut recipe? 

October 14, 2011

Last Minute Reminder for UC Celiac Event - TOMORROW!!

If you follow my blog through Facebook, you may have seen an update a couple of months ago about the University of Chicago Celiac Center's Free Annual Celiac Screening.  Well guess what?  That day is HERE!

Tomorrow, October 15th, the UC Celiac Center will hold free blood screenings for celiac disease.  The blood screenings are by registration only and registration has now ended, but you can still attend the very informative expert panel and vendor fair for F-R-E-E!

The event starts at 8:30am and continues until noon, with the experts speaking at 10:30am - 11:30am.  There is no need to register to visit the vendors or hear the speakers, just show up hungry and enjoy finding new gluten free products and foods.

I, unfortunately, will not be in attendance this year, but I've gone for the past three years to enjoy samples (Helllloooo...Swirlz Cupcakes, Marcello's Pizza, Udi's Gluten Free, Kettle Cuisine, Glutino, and many, many more!) and listen to the top Celiac experts speak about the latest discoveries in celiac research and answer questions from audience members.  It's well worth the trip out, even if you already have been diagnosed with celiac disease or other gluten issues.  You can meet other gluten free people and receive lots of gluten free samples.