May’s Daring Bakers’ Challenge was pretty twisted – Ruth from The Crafts of Mommyhood challenged us to make challah! Using recipes from all over, and tips from “A Taste of Challah,” by Tamar Ansh, she encouraged us to bake beautifully braided breads. Since I’m still not having gluten, this month’s challenge was a bit bittersweet. I absolutely love challah, and find it to be one of the most beautiful breads with it’s pretty braid, and the lovely golden sheen it develops when baking. But after a quick bit of research, I found that gluten-free challah is a whole different beast (as is the case with most gluten-free adaptations), and would probably not resemble normal challah. Still, I was happy to find a Gluten-Free Challah recipe on Epicurious, provided as an alternative to this month’s challenge, that had a couple of rave reviews. After all, if someone else has executed this recipe and loved it, what’s to say I won’t love it too?
This month for the Secret Recipe Club, I was assigned a blog called Wandering Spice written by Yasmeen. I was pretty excited about being assigned her blog, because as she explains, after much moving around, Yasmeen settled in Melbourne Australia. Australia happens to be one of my favorite places in the whole world, and I dream about going back pretty much daily. I spent a semester abroad in Australia when I was in college and it was the most amazing experience of my life, so any associations that remind me of that time and place are very welcome! (more…)
Though I am (currently) a city dweller, I am fortunate to come from a family who lives in a place where they have space to grow their own food. And they’re fortunately all close enough to me that I can reap the benefits of their gardens! When I was visiting my family for Mother’s Day this year, my Grandpa brought me 5lbs of rhubarb from his garden, so I got to work immediately on this tasty, gluten-free dessert. Rhubarb happens to be one of my favorite late-spring produce options, but typically I bake it into cakes and pies, so I was happy to find a way to bake with it that I was able to eat as well. (more…)
I’ve found so far in my new gluten-free baking adventures that there are some things much more easily adapted to gluten-free than others. Breads and cakes especially are vastly different when the gluten is taken away, but things like basic cookies (recipe coming soon!) and these brownies are still totally delicious sans-gluten. This recipe is made with almond flour, and produces a wonderfully rich and fudgy brownie. I brought them home to my skeptical family, and even they enjoyed them as well. (more…)
Brunch at Moksa a couple of weekends ago was my last big hurrah before I went gluten-free, dairy-free, and all-around diet crazy. Saturday night I ate stinky cheeses and loads of bread, and then Sunday morning I headed to Cambridge and filled myself up with delicious dim sum from Central Square’s new Pan Asian Izakaya (Izakaya meaning a kind of Japanese drinking establishment that serves food to accompany the drinks). Moksa is quietly unassuming from the street, adorned with a simple black awning, and a rather barren front room (where we dined). This visit was my first at Moksa, and I was eager to see what it was all about. (more…)
Welcome to post 2 on gluten-free baking! Gluten-free AND dairy-free. I sound like a whole lotta fun now don’t I?! But the good news is I met a GREAT dietitian who inspired me and made me feel hopeful for the first time in nearly two years, and most importantly made me believe that this crazy stupid elimination diet just might make me feel better. For those of you who feel fine every day it’s probably hard to imagine what it’s like to have pain 24/7/365, but for someone who’s had that for nearly two years, the idea that I might be able to lead a mostly pain-free life is hugely exciting! (more…)
Today I have something a bit different to share with you, as a segue into a new time in the life of me, and by association, Sweetly Serendipity. I have battled some pretty awful stomach pains for the past almost two years, and despite lots of tests and doctors visits and second (and third) opinions, all results say I am “healthy.” But being myself and living with the daily pain, I know I’m not okay, so I’ve decided to try out a new diet with the help of an experienced dietitian, to see if I can’t reign in the pain with some eating changes and work towards a pain-free life. (more…)
The Daring Bakers’ April 2012 challenge, hosted by Jason at Daily Candor, were two Armenian standards: nazook and nutmeg cake. Nazook is a layered yeasted dough pastry with a sweet filling, and nutmeg cake is a fragrant, nutty coffee-style cake. I opted for the Nazook, finding it similar to rugelach which I’ve never made, but have always wanted to. I changed up the filling a bit to add some of my beloved chocolate flavor, and to that even added some chopped walnuts to about half the batch. (more…)