I’ve often heard chefs talk about how you first taste a recipe with your eyes. I couldn’t agree more and I see it play out so often with my little men. If I make something that doesn’t look appealing to them, they won’t even try it. For me, same goes for cookbooks. I have always loved cookbooks. Seriously, it’s on the verge of an addiction (just ask the Hubster).
I have a pile of cookbooks on the floor by my bed and many nights I will flip through, page by page, flagging recipes that I want to try until I reach the end of the book. Of course, I generally regret the nightly reading because I always end up going to bed hungry. But I just can’t stop! Hence the addiction!
I’ll read any cookbook, but I prefer cookbooks with pictures. There I go again with the “first tasting a recipe with your eyes.” So when I received, Chrystal Carver’s cookbook, “Sweet & Simple Gluten-Free Baking” I couldn’t put it down! Each recipe is accompanied by a beautiful picture of the sweet treat. Each recipe is gluten-free, of course, and contains 10 ingredients or less! How awesome is that!! All of her recipes call for simple ingredients that can be purchased at your local grocery store.
Many gluten-free cookbooks require you to have a variety of specialty flours. Not this one! All of the recipes call for a gluten-free flour mix. So you can either use your favorite or you can create your own with one of Chrystal’s recommended gluten-free flour blends. Another thing that I love about this cookbook is the plethora of info that she has included at the front of the book. She breaks down each specialty flour and explains it, she has a wonderful list of baking-tips, and she also includes a list of substitutes for those who are avoiding other things like dairy and eggs.
For those of you who are avoiding other allergens, many of her recipes include a “Substitution Solution.” This is where she shares ways to omit other common allergens. After pouring over every recipe in her book, there are only a handful of recipes that I wouldn’t be able to make for our family. This cookbook is wonderful for all kitchens – even a top 8 allergen-free kitchen!
From Cookbook to Table…
I couldn’t wait to bust out my KitchenAid mixer and start baking! What to make first? I started with the Banana Muffins as I had some overly ripe bananas begging to be turned into something delicious. I substituted a mixture of flaxseed meal and water for the egg. They turned out perfectly! I even added Enjoy Life chocolate chips to half of them.
Do you want to take a guess at what I baked next? If you know me well, then you know that I have a weakness for donuts. So I busted out my donut pans and whipped up a batch of Cake Donuts! I also made some mini donuts but I filled them too full, so they look like mini muffins! HA! I also took Chrystal’s recommendation and substituted vegan sour cream for the buttermilk. Once they cooled, I coated some of them with powdered sugar and the rest with cinnamon and sugar. They were delicious!
If you are interested in purchasing Chrystal Carver’s cookbook, “Sweet & Simple Gluten-Free Baking,” you can purchase it on Amazon.com. You can also connect with Chrystal on Facebook, Twitter and you MUST check out her blog, www.GlutenFreePalate.com! Plus, Chrystal has joined the MyLifeWithFoodAllergies.com team! You should sign-up to receive weekly updates so you’ll never miss one of our articles!
Thank you Chrystal for sharing your cookbook and recipes with our family and food allergy community!
Disclosure: I received a copy of “Sweet & Simple Gluten-Free Baking” to review. The opinions expressed in this post are always honest and do not necessarily reflect those of the brand. Affiliate Links Are Used. You can read this site’s full disclosure here.