This past week, my family and I experimented with two gluten free treats. 'Why?', you ask... We have a boat load of food allergies and sensitivities in our family. My husband is allergic to tree nuts, and most fruit that grows on trees (apples, bananas, pears, peaches, cherries). Jordan, my oldest daughter, is allergic to everything under the sun... no not really but it seems like it... Wheat, soy, eggs, peanuts, tree nuts, sesame seeds, sunflower seeds, melon, and bananas. Now, my darling, Mia, is following right in her father's and sister's footsteps, besides being allergic to every environmental allergy, she is also newly allergic to peanuts, tree nuts, sesame seeds, and soy. I have a major sensitivity to nitrates and MSG (Migraines, boo) Now, you understand some of my latest posts in regards to food. After a trip to Whole Foods- Glen Mills and Trader Joe's I found some new products to try, a pancake mix and a brownie mix...
Arrowhead Mills Organic Gluten Free Pancake & Baking Mix
My first thought was, yes... Jordan loves pancakes, this should be awesome! I read the ingredient list, like I have to do with everything...seemed cool! The only issue, was the instructions for making pancakes called for eggs... Problem! Jordan's allergic to eggs, but I remembered reading a few websites on Google which said you can substitute applesauce or bananas (nope) for eggs... So, I tried it. I decided to upgrade the flavor by adding apple pie spice and vanilla extract, making them apple cinnamon allergen-free pancakes. I made a bunch of mini pancakes, the girls gobbled them up for breakfast, then froze the rest for fast breakfast on school mornings. My personal opinion was that they were a little chewy. I think they really need the egg, instead of the applesauce.
Trader Joe's Gluten Free Brownie Baking Mix
Here goes nothing, I thought... We love brownies, but to make brownies without oil or eggs... well, this became a true experiment indeed. The mix called for egg, water, and oil. but since I only had vegetable (which contains soy) or olive oil... I opted to sub applesauce for the oil, and for the egg. I added my signature organic chocolate chips, which I add to all box Brownies. I baked them in mini muffin pan, so the kids could have bite size brownies for school. The girls enjoyed them, Daddy and I had the same thought... Good flavor but chewy. Again, I think they needed the egg.
My question becomes, are all gluten-free products chewy? I made my traditional fruit bread, but instead of the bananas I added pumpkin puree, used the King Arthur's Flour Gluten (soy, wheat, nut) free flour, and used applesauce in place of the egg. I then added pumpkin pie spice to make it more like pumpkin bread. I also made a regular loaf of fruit bread. Again, the allergen-free fruit bread was chewy and not as fluffy, it was also not very sweet like normal. I didn't account for the loss of sweetness by taking away the bananas. Jordan did not care for her special fruit/pumpkin bread. I found it to be tasty with butter and sprinkled with cinnamon and sugar.
These new food allergies are going to take some getting used to, but I'm having a blast experimenting and trying new products. I'll keep you posted on new allergen-free products. Pray that my kids grow out of some of these allergies! If you have any fun food suggestions, please share!!