Feb 262014
 
gluten-free bread mix (Pamela's)

For the next couple of months, I am going to review Gluten-Free Mixes: flour mixes, bread mixes, brownie mixes, etc. Of course, I mostly critique these mixes by the taste and texture of the finished product, but nutritional value and types of ingredients are definitely important as well.

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I can’t tell you how pleasantly surprised I was by the finished product I got from Pamela’s bread mix (this is not a sponsored review). The bread was soft, chewy, slightly sweet, and had a great shape for gluten-free bread. It came out of the oven smelling absolutely amazing, and I helped myself to three slices–each with nothing but a pat of butter. Eating that fresh-baked bread (with little mess left over and only a few minutes of my time spent mixing it up) was seriously the happiest I’ve been since I calculated my tax returns! As soon as I had eaten what I wanted, I let the bread cool completely and then I sliced it up and froze the individual slices for later.

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The package of the bread mix comes with several alternative additions (I prefer the molasses addition), and several ways to make it: pizza crust, pie crust, rolls, etc. The main ingredient in this mix is Sorghum flour, also a favorite of mine for gluten-free flours as it is a whole-grain and highly nutritious compared to rice and tapioca flours—which are quickly metabolized starches. This mix does contain plenty of these starches, but unlike many other mixes, it isn’t the principle ingredient.

This mix, when prepared offers 3 grams of dietary fiber per slice! Impressive. The sodium content is slightly high, and there are no vitamin or mineral additives (that can be a plus or minus depending on preference). The cost is about average for gluten-free mixes: $5 for 19 oz. package. I was fortunate enough to pick up four packages on clearance for $2.50 each at the Corner Cupboard in Hilbert, WI: a wonderful local discount grocery store that gets in overstocked and recently expired items.

To make the bread in these pictures, you simply take a two-cup liquid measuring cup, add 1/3 cup oil, 2 eggs (egg-free version also included on label), and fill the rest with very warm water up to the 2 cup line and add an additional 2 tbsp. water. Dump it in a sturdy mixer like the almighty Bosch (my personal preference!) with the mix and included yeast packet. I also chose to add 2 tbsp molasses for the earthy, sweet flavor that I love so much in regular wheat bread. Whip it up with your whisk attachments for three minutes, pour it in a prepared bread pan, and forget about it for an hour and a half. It then cooks for an hour. Your total hands-on time is a whopping five minutes.

I’m giving this one a full 5 stars.

Jan 162014
 
Chap Chae (Korean Noodles & Veggies)

It finally happened.  I have lived in this new home for six months and finally they have realized that I’m the crazy lady. My crime?  I suggested someone try a Vegan dinner. Apparently living in “Ranch Central”, USA we are expected to eat a lot of beef.  People are going to start crossing the street [...]