A couple of weeks ago a friend of mine arrived from Canada to spend a few days with us. As I was putting together our meal plan, I knew it was going to be a marathon cooking session as I had dozens of recipes in mind to make with her. I needed to pare it down to a manageable list that would still give me time to take care of all my blog posts.
I asked if she had anything she particularly wanted to make and she asked about cinnamon rolls. My heart skipped a beat because I haven’t made gluten-free yeast bread yet and I’ve heard horror stories about my friend’s attempts. At almost the exact same minute as I got my friend’s email about the cinnamon rolls, I also got an email from Taunton asking if I wanted to do a review of a new gluten-free book. What perfect timing!
Gluten-Free Breakfast, Brunch & Beyond is written by Linda Amendt, an incredibly talented award-winning cookbook author and a fellow IACP member. Linda has many years of competitive baking experience that has taught her many tricks for success. She has taken this knowledge and is sharing it with us again, this time as it specifically applies to gluten-free baking.
Linda does not have to eat gluten-free, but she understands the challenges that dietary restrictions can have on your life – she cannot eat anything in the nightshade family. This includes tomatoes, peppers, tomatillos, potatoes, eggplant, paprika, cayenne, etc. Most prepared foods contain paprika for color, tomato paste to boost flavors, and often hot pepper sauce for spiciness. Just like those of us with gluten issues, Linda has baked from scratch so she can control the ingredients she consumes.
To help us have even more success with gluten-free baking, Linda has included instructions on how to convert our favorite recipes to gluten-free with invaluable information on how different ingredients behave and their purpose in baking. If you have ever wondered about the science behind successful baking, Linda explains it in easy to understand language that makes everyone a better baker!
While the recipes in this book have been designed to use the base gluten-free flour blends she developed (provided in the beginning of the book), you can also replace the GF flours with regular all-purpose flour for regular baking, making this book a winner for anyone who loves to cook. I’m seeing holiday gifts in my friend’s futures!
This cookbook covers the entire span of foodstuffs that are typically served at breakfast or brunch, both sweet and savory. But we all know that breakfast for dinner is fabulous for busy weeknights! She has a delightful selection of biscuits, muffins, breads, cakes, scones, pancakes, waffles, French toast, quiches, stratas, etc. Over 100 recipes that will give you plenty of ideas for that perfect Sunday or holiday brunch, ladies luncheon, baby or wedding shower, or family reunion.
As I scanned through the recipes, one recipe caught my eye immediately, a beautiful sour cream coffee cake that reminded me of my old favorite pre-gluten-free baking recipe, full of a sugar-cinnamon streusel that immediately had my mouth watering. This is also one of The Artist’s favorites and I knew he would love to have it as a special treat.
My friend and I set about to make this coffee cake. It was her first time making anything without regular all-purpose flour and she had a great time mixing and baking while I acted as her sous chef. I guided her on how to measure dry ingredients and made sure she had everything prepped that she needed. As soon as the cake was in the oven we sat down to share a cup of coffee while it baked.
It wasn’t too long before The Artist came downstairs, his nose sniffing the air, asking what we were making. The cake came out of the oven, perfectly raised and golden brown. It was all I could do to keep him away from the cake while it cooled enough for us to glaze it. This gave us time to select the props we needed and set up the photography lighting.
My friend had a chance to see all the steps we bloggers go through to bring you the beautiful homemade recipes and articles on our websites. In my case it includes creating or reworking a recipe, shopping for ingredients, preparing the foods, planning and setting up the props, plating and photographing the finished product, then tasting, evaluating, and finally writing the article.
I have to tell you – this coffeecake is as good an any that I’ve ever made, and I’ve won multiple blue ribbons with mine! This was light and airy, full of delicate flavor, and there was no way you could tell that it was gluten-free. That is the highest honor I can give a GF recipe. I would give it as a gift to a friend, take it to a potluck, or any other event without hesitation. This is a winner all the way!!
Now to the fun stuff … the giveaway! I have a copy of Linda’s Gluten-Free Breakfast, Brunch & Beyond by Taunton Press and I am adding a gift certificate from Amazon.com to help you buy any gluten-free ingredients you may need. If you’ve been wanting to try GF baking, need to make a switch, or are just curious to see what everyone is talking about, this is the perfect contest to enter!
Follow the directions from Rafflecopter (below) and you can earn up to 10 entries for the giveaway. The contest is open through the end of the month so be sure to share it with your friends and have them enter too!
I can’t wait to make Linda’s cinnamon rolls, pancakes and other goodies. She has amazing recipes that will make everyone look like a pro and bring you years of delightful morning repasts!
Good luck on the contest and have a wonderful weekend!!
Always read the labels of all ingredients carefully for hidden sources of gluten.
Gluten-Free Sour Cream Coffee Cake
From Gluten-Free Breakfast, Brunch & Beyond by Linda J. Amendt
Reprinted with permission from Taunton Press
Yield: 1 (10-inch) coffee cake; about 10 servings
3/4 cup gluten-free all-purpose flour (see recipe below)
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup firmly packed brown sugar
3 tsp ground cinnamon
1-1/2 cups chopped pecans
6 tbsp (3/4 stick) unsalted butter, cut into pieces
3 cups gluten-free all-purpose flour (see recipe below)
2-1/2 tsp baking powder
3/4 tsp baking soda
3/4 tsp xanthan gum
1/2 tsp table salt (1 tsp kosher salt)
3/4 cup (1-1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
1-1/2 cups granulated sugar
4 large eggs
2-1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract
1-1/2 cups sour cream
2 cups confectioners’ sugar
2 tbsp half-and-half or light cream
1 tbsp unsalted butter, melted
1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract
Preheat the oven to 350°F. Grease a 10-inch Bundt pan with unsalted butter or nonstick cooking spray. (Avoid any baking spray that contains flour for gluten-free safety.)
Make the Streusel: In a small bowl, whisk together the flour, granulated sugar, brown sugar, and cinnamon until well blended. Stir in the pecans. Using a fork or your fingers, work in the butter until evenly combined and the mixture starts to come together. Set aside.
Make the Cake: In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, xanthan gum, and salt until well combined. Set aside.
Ina large bowl, using and electric mixer on medium speed, cream the butter and granulated sugar until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Scrape down the sides of the bowl. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Scrape down the sides of the bowl. Stir in the vanilla.
Alternately add the flour mixture and sour cream to the butter-sugar mixture, starting and ending with the flour mixture, stirring between each addition until blended. Mix until smooth, about 30 seconds.
Spoon 1/4 of the batter into the prepared pan. Sprinkle half of the streusel mixture over the batter. Top with half of the remaining batter. Crumble the remaining streusel over the top of the batter. Top with remaining batter and spread smooth with lightly greased fingers or the back of a greased spoon.
Bake until golden brown and a wooden pick inserted in the center comes out clean, 50 to 60 minutes. Let the cake cool in the pan on a wire rack for 5 minutes. Gently run a knife blade between the cake and the edge of the pan to loosen. Invert the coffee cake onto a wire rack to cool.
Make the Icing: In a medium bowl, combine the confectioners’ sugar, half-and-half, butter and vanilla. Beat until smooth and spreadable. Spread or drizzle the icing over the cake.
Linda J. Amendt’s Gluten-Free All-Purpose Flour Blend
Gluten-Free Breakfast, Brunch and Beyond by Linda J. Amendt
Reprinted with permission from Taunton Press
Yield: about 9 cups
4 cups finely ground or stone-ground white-rice flour
2 cups stone-ground brown-rice flour
2 cups tapioca flour or tapioca starch
1 cup potato starch (not potato flour)
In an extra-large bowl or container, combine the rice flours, tapioca flour, and potato starch. Whisk together until the ingredients are thoroughly blended. Use a large spoon to bring the flour from the bottom of the bowl up to the top and whisk again. Repeat a few times to make sure the flours are evenly distributed throughout the entire mixture.
Lightly stir the flour before measuring. Spoon the flour into the measuring cup and level off the top with a straight-edged utensil, such as the back of a knife.
Store the flour in an airtight container or zip-top storage bag at room temperature for up to 1 month. For longer storage, keep the flour in the refrigerator or freezer. Allow the flour to come up to room temperature before using.
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