Sunday, April 26, 2009

A Gluten-free Weekend

I had a good weekend. Saturday morning I went to the Portland Farmer's Market, where I scored some great lamb steaks from SuDan Farm, ate some habanero caramel chocolates from Alma Chocolate, and bought some vegetable starts for my garden. Then I went to the Gluten-free Food Fair, which I heard about through the Gluten-free Portland website. New Cascadia Traditional was there, as well as numerous other vendors. The highlight was sampling the gluten-free pizza from Mississippi Pizza Pub, which I hadn't tried before. The crust was really good, kind of like an herby foccacia bread, but not too thick. I'll have to go down there and do a full review of the place soon. I hear they also serve GF beer there.

After the fair I went to Bob's Red Mill for the first time. They have a good selection of GF pastas and other products in the store. I bought some Ener-G White Rice Spaghetti that I'm excited to try, as well as some Tinkyada spinach spaghetti that looks good. I also bout a 25-pound bag of brown rice flour and another 25-pound bag of white rice flour. Both flours are certified gluten-free. Not only that, but they were only about $24 and $27 each! I estimate that I'm saving at least a dollar a pound getting these flours in bulk. At this price, the flour is about the same cost as whole-grain rice!
I celebrated all of this flour today by trying to make gluten-free pancakes for the first time. As my readers may know, my waffles are second to none. However, I haven't tried to make pancakes even once since I went gluten-free. I can't explain exactly why, other than that I just love my waffles so much that I just haven't ever craved pancakes.

I wanted to try out quinoa flour for the first time, too. I also wanted to create a recipe that I could post with all of the flour ingredients, instead of saying "use your favorite gluten-free flour mix" as I usually do. (My own GF flour mixes are still a secret).
Well, I failed. The pancakes actually had a really good flavor, but the consistency was way off. Oftentimes gluten-free flours just make a much thicker batter than wheat flour does. This batter was indeed too thick, so the flapjacks didn't cook right. It didn't help that I had the stove way too hot. I haven't cooked pancakes in so long I practically forgot how! After throwing most of them away, I finally got a few good ones toward the end, pictured above. I'll be working on some modifications to this recipe which I will post when I have it perfected.
I spent the rest of today planting some more vegetables in my garden, which is really taking form. I might build another whole garden bed later on if I get around to it, but I have the basics in already.
As you can see, I can stand to do a little more weeding.

I'm very content with my gluten-free weekend.


Emilia said...

Those pancakes look really good, even though they didn't turn out the way you wanted.

I have for some time been cooking just coconut pancakes, they taste a bit "coconutty", but other than that they are ok.

The recipe is something like this, if you want to try them, 2 eggs beaten, 2 tbls oil, 2 tbls milk, 1 tsp sugar, sprinkle of salt and 2 tbls coconut flour, all just mixed together and then cooked.

Gina said...

That sounds great! I love coconut anyway, so I wouldn't mind the coconutty flavor at all. I've never used coconut flour either, so I'll have to give that a try.

My pancakes actually were pretty good once I go them to the right consistency. I had to add tons more liquid than the original wheat-based recipe called for. I should have known!

jacobithegreat said...

Gluten free pancakes ARE hard. I love your garden!

Endless Possibilities said...

Your weekend looked fabulous! I am so bummed! NY and now OR had GF Fairs this past weekend, AZ needs to organize one. Cute garden!

Linda said...

Gina, those pancakes look great. I have nominated you for the Attitude of Gratitude Award.