I have been doing a lot of experimenting lately, trying to recreate my favorite dessert recipes, in a brand new way (sans gluten). And I’m not just talking about recreating a few favorites either. I have a LOT of recipes, since the bulk of my 20 plus years as a chef has spent doing pastry and baking, and 6 of my cookbooks are completely devoted to scrumptious desserts. But just because I can’t eat gluten anymore, doesn’t mean that I am willing to give up on delicious desserts. Oh no!
When I first realized that I wouldn’t be able to eat gluten anymore, I shed a few tears. Well, it might have been more of a pity party. I felt like the rug was being pulled out from under me. How could I not bake and eat everything that I loved? And everything that I loved suddenly seemed to be full of that evil, mean stuff, that was causing my stomach such horrible distress.
I honestly think that I knew it was coming. Call it a premonition, or a gut feeling (literally). Maybe it was the subtle warning signs at the time that I was conveniently ignoring. I started thinking that with so many people avoiding gluten, maybe I should become better versed in gluten-free baking, and share recipes that everyone can enjoy.
It was when I dove into the kitchen to bake GF, that I realized that it isn’t cut and dry. I’ve had some amazing successes (like my cupcakes, macaroons and chocolate cups), and a few awful flops (like the pina colada cake that was seriously akin to a rubber tire). As frustration set in, I decided that I needed to be patient. I needed to push my sleeves up and experiment. I needed to have fun. Sometimes the recipes will work, and sometimes they won’t. So I not only made peace with being gluten-free, but I have lit a candle to the gluten-free baking gods, and am having a lot of fun time learning to do something that I love, in a whole new way.
And, since I know you’re wondering, the cake above is something that I baked a few weeks ago, to celebrate my son’s 19th birthday, as well as his going off to college. Yay! It was a pumpkin spice bundt cake with a chai glaze, and it was delicious! But, I am still tweaking the recipe, so it’s not quite ready to share. Oh, and did I tell you that I am crazy for Bundt cakes? I am obsessed because I think they are the coolest things ever!