Tag Archives: GF

Healthier Banana Chocolate Chip Pancakes

I had been meaning to try these “healthy” Banana Chocolate Chip Pancakes from Elana’s Pantry for awhile. We had some cashew-based pancakes in Thailand that were delicious and knowing that they are a celiac-friendly option makes them perfect.

The ingredient list is pretty short with only seven ingredients, including the coconut oil you fry them in.

I whipped ours up in my Kenwood Cooking Chef food processor attachment to grind the cashews first before adding the other ingredients.

Bananas and heaps of vanilla? This has to be good!

…annnd the chocolate chips.

Unfortunately for me, I still have not gotten the knack of cooking gluten free pancakes. They set up OK and the mix was a good balance of liquid to dry, but I just couldn’t flip them before they burned!

As hard as I tried, any time I knew they were bubbly and should flip, I couldn’t get my darn spatula under there. The whole pancake would just slide away on the pan, mocking me.

In the end, I was only able to flip them when they were already kind of burning. Man. If that’s not depressing on a Saturday morning, I don’t know what is.

Still, since I doubled the recipe (yeah, we eat a lot!) it made heaps. Too much for us really. I think one recipe would have sufficed.

And even though they are a little burnt, don’t you think they look tasty? They still were… but they definitely need some practice. Although, we are in serious need of some more syrup before new pancakes can be made. Kay is a bit sad because the imported maple syrup is extremely expensive in Switzerland and not the best quality.

Do you have any tips for GF pancakes? Friends are telling me I should reduce the heat a lot more next time. I wonder if it’s also possible that my pan is too oily?

Gluten-free Dutch Babies

With nine children, my mother never had time to make us breakfast in the morning. Most days it was cereal, toaster waffles or toaster strudel (OMG !) and in the winter she would heat up water for oatmeal. Special breakfasts like pancakes, crepes, Belgian waffles and my beloved dutch babies were only made for dinner from time to time.

Dutch babies were and probably are still one of my favorite foods in the world. Covered in syrup, they are not the healthiest meal. When my sister and I inherited the recipe from my mother, we learned that they are actually supposed to be sliced and eaten as a dessert and not served whole to a single person. Oops!I tried to pass on my love of dutch babies to Kay, but like popovers, he thought they tasted to eggy and he didn’t really care for them. Shame!

Since I know he doesn’t like them, I always made dutch babies whenever Kay was gone for breakfast. He traveled a lot for work, so I definitely got my fill of dutch babies over the years. But it’s never enough!

Sometimes it’s these “secret single behavior” things that makes me the saddest about missing out on gluten. I attempted my first dutch baby a month or two into the gluten-free diet and it did not turn out well. It was still edible, but that’s not saying much.

I tried a few more times and my results were even worse. They were thick, didn’t puff up and cooked strangely. I thought about giving up on dutch babies, because making these gluten-free versions while Kay was away was actually depressing me more than cheering me up, but I decided to look at some recipes for gluten-free versions online.

I followed one recipe (can’t remember which one) and the results turned out pretty well. One of the tricks mentioned was to make sure the eggs were room temperature by warming them in a bowl of water. I had always used eggs straight out of the fridge with no problems, but I guess something changed when I switched to gluten-free flour.

I decided to make my mother’s recipe with the egg trick and what do you know, the dutch babies are turning out more and more normal each time! I think I am getting the hang of this. 🙂

Gluten Free Dutch Babies

3 eggs, warmed to room temperature in a bowl of hot water
1/2 cup GF flour like the Aha mix from Migros
1/2 cup milk, preferably dairy-free these days
pinch of salt
2 TBS Butter (28.4g), eyeballed. No exact measuring butter here folks!

  1. Warm your eggs for a bit in a bowl of hot water to bring them up to room temperature. Not enough to cook them, but enough so that your yolks are nice and runny when you crack the eggs.
  2. Start preheating your oven to 400ºF/205ºC.
  3. Beat eggs and then add flour, milk and a pinch of salt. Beat all until combined, but don’t over beat the batter.
  4. When the oven is almost hot, cut the butter and put it in your pie pan in the oven to melt it while it reaches the correct temperature. (Don’t stick it in too early and let your butter burn!)
  5. Take the pan with melted butter out and pour in your dutch baby mix.
  6. Bake for 15-20 minutes or until puffed up.
  7. Drench in maple syrup and enjoy!

They are also wonderful with strawberries or other fresh fruit, jams like raspberry and whipped cream if you are being extra indulgent. Don’t judge me for all the syrup on this one!!

Mmmmmm. Are you a fan of puffed oven pancakes?

Gluten-free Homemade Muesli

As a typical American, I came to Switzerland eating cereal for breakfast. Kay, on the other hand, ate a very Swiss breakfast of freshly sliced bread slathered in butter and jam. For years it went on this way. He had his bread and I had my cereal.

One could argue about the healthiness of either breakfast, but eventually Kay switched over to the dark side so that he could be a little faster in the morning and sleep a little longer. Slicing bread and doing all that buttering and spreading takes a long time! But he didn’t switch to conventional brand cereal like me… no. He started buying ingredients to mix his own muesli so that it would be healthier and less sugary than whatever I was eating.

I called it “Pferd Futter” or “Horse food” because that’s what it looked like to me.

Anyway, I more or less stopped eating cereal in an effort to incorporate more fresh fruit in my diet and then with the celiac diagnosis and Kay’s absence, I didn’t even want to think about cereal and how depressing it is here. We don’t have Chex in Switzerland. You can buy gluten free cornflakes from Migros and Coop, and from Coop you can also buy chocolate crispy rice for kids. From non-specialty stores, that’s it!

L-R: Bio cornflakes: 2.20CHF for 300g ($2.45 for 10.5OZ) / Schär cornflakes: 2.90 for 250g ($3.23 for 8.8OZ) / Schär Flakes Milly Magic 123: 4.95CHF for 250g ($5.51 for 8.8OZ)

You can’t even buy most normal muesli ingredients in the store without them being laced with gluten. I can buy puffed amaranth from Migros, but all the soy flakes are coated with malt flavoring, making them a no-go.

So why don’t I just let Kay buy his normal muesli ingredients and let it go? Crumbs. CRUMBS. Or shall I say, dust. Every time Kay makes muesli in his tupperware and every time he gets some out in the morning, cereal dust flies into the air and all over the counters.

If that cereal dust happened to be wheat-y, barley, malt or otherwise gluten-y… it would be all over our counters. And because we are in a hurry in the morning, that gluten death trap would be there in the evening too. Cleaning up his muesli mess is not one of Kay’s strong suits, but if he did… I would have to worry about him contaminating the dish towel and then forgetting to change it out with a new dish towel. I know… anal. But with celiac, you have to be.

There’s always a question of how much gluten is bad for you, but in my own home, I would rather not doubt what I am eating. I don’t want to worry about wheat particles flying around while I bake, nor do I want to question what the dish towel was last used to clean. Nope. Gluten-free cereal for all is the way forward.

But since oats are a no-no the first year, I wanted to find a way to make oat-free granola to mix with those boring cornflakes. I’ve been lurking on Against All Grain and found this recipe for Spiced Pumpkin Granola, so I had to try it out!

First I soaked the nuts overnight which is supposed to break down the phytic barrier and give the granola a nicer crunch. Kay just thought I was crazy to be soaking them in water and then dehydrating them.

All chopped up and ready to be baked. We have a convection oven, so I used that instead of going out and buying a dehydrator, but after baking 3-4 hours at 75ºC/170ºF, the muesli still came out pretty moist.

I didn’t feel like baking it longer at this point, but I would definitely bake it longer next time. I feel like buying a plastic dehydrator from the store seems like a waste of money when we have an oven with airflow, but maybe I’m wrong.

I threw all the muesli in Kay’s new GF cereal container with GF cornflakes, buckwheat flakes from the health store, puffed amaranth balls, and millet flakes from the health food store. Then I poured it in a bowl to mix before putting it back in the container.

This muesli is delicious! It smelled heavenly and it had a lovely autumn flavor that had me wanting to start eating cereal again too!

See all that mess up there? Haha… homemade muesli is still quite messy, but I don’t have to worry about it being a gluten mess now! And by watering down the expensive health store gluten-free alternative flakes with homemade muesli and cornflakes, I can feel better about the cost of our gluten-free muesli.

Even if you aren’t gluten free, you should go try this muesli out! It is seriously delicious!