I know I spent my last post complaining about the rise of gluten-free celebrities. Not the celebrities who have a genuine need to eat gluten-free, but the ones who do it for weight loss. Now I’m going to completely contradict myself.
I guess not completely, but as a self-proclaimed Food Network junkie, I am disappointed by the lack of a gluten-free focused show. Especially with the rise in people who are partaking in the diet, I would have thought that Food Network would have embraced the gluten-free trend. I love to cook, I still watch Food Network, but it’s not as enjoyable. I find myself sitting there trying to figure out how to make the recipes gluten-free.
They haven’t ignored it completely. Their show Cupcake Wars has repeatedly featured bakeries that specialize in gluten-free baking, including a bakery out of Philadelphia. They also do have recipes on their website that are gluten-free.
Learning to cook gluten-free has been an experience, to say the least. Google and the variety of blogs about gluten-free living have been a god-send. Sometimes, I just wish I had someone to personally explain to me. The first time I made my mom’s beef stew, and used cornstarch to thicken it, was a disaster. I got more of a soupy mess with balls of goo then a nice thick stew. I had no idea what I was doing, since previously I had always used flour as my thickener. Reading what to do it one thing, and I am grateful for the bloggers who have explored these realms before me, but being able to watch someone as they navigate the quirks of cooking gluten-free would be an invaluable resource.
On a slightly related note, last night I wanted to make biscuits. I’m poor; I can’t afford the 8 million different flours each person uses in all the recipes I found. I know I’ve said this before, and I know that the different amounts of each type flour can be beneficial depending on what you are making. For something as simple as biscuits, I thought having all-purpose flour would be fine. I found no recipes online that just said use all-purpose flour.
I took matters into my own hands. I cracked open the Betty Crocker cook book that my mother had gotten me and found the recipe for drop biscuits. I substituted out my flour blend for the traditional flour, and added a teaspoon of xanthan gum. They turned out quite yummy.
I guess the point I’m trying to make is: Why does everything in the gluten-free world have to be so complicated? I understand the need to use things like xanthan and guar gum to create the “gluten” texture or for fancy breads and cakes, the use of different blends of flours, but for everyday use is it really necessary?
And has Food Network really over looked the untapped potential of the gluten-free sector? I would kill for them to create a show that simplifies gluten-free or just covers gluten-free. Just create one show, even though the options for a gluten-free show are endless. They could do a show that is simple gluten-free, gourmet gluten-free, gluten-free baking, 20 minute gluten-free meals, adapt your favorite recipes so they are gluten-free, gluten-free Italian (we all miss Italian food), and the list goes on.
PS- Does anyone know a good recipe, or a place to find gluten-free graham crackers? Its fall weather out and I miss graham crackers to dip in my afternoon tea.