I chose to go gluten-free. The point being, although I am very happy to be well, I know what a pancake is supposed to taste like. And I know it well enough to have a good solid craving.
Gluten is a protein that resides in wheat, barley, and rye. It's the honeycomb structure of gluten that helps build air pockets and gives bread and pasta its springy texture and form. Gluten-y goods are complex in structure; ergo, delicious. It follows that it tends to be somewhat difficult to find gluten-free products that aren't incredibly dense. A pancake, for example, should be almost crisp on the outside, light and fluffy inside; a hockey-puck pancake simply will not do. Much to my delight, in the years spent sampling gluten-y eats, the gluten substitution industry has really come quite a ways.
I came across this review of King Arthurs' Gluten-Free pancake mix in my reader in conjunction with a serious pancake craving early last week. Fate? I think so. I've tried several decent, even good gluten-free pancake mixes in the past three years, but nothing that really blew my socks off.
So I bought online.
Combination of different types of flours; rice, potato, and tapioca, with xanthan gum.
Started off kind of soupy... concerning.
But then started to thicken
until it coated the back of a wooden spoon; a standard batter consistency.
They held together nicely for the flip. Voila! Pancakes!
I made slightly larger pancakes than recommended, and the batch yielded 11 instead of 16. Plenty for two, plus leftovers.
These blew my socks off. They were rich and tasty, light, chewy and even fluffy. They also tugged at the socks of my somewhat picky gluten-eating compatriot, who so generously agreed to go gluten-free for the morning and pronounced them "delicious" and "just as good as real pancakes." Hooray!
It's taken a few years to stop seeing my gluten-intolerance as a prison sentence, and start viewing it as a way to be able to live and be healthy, while still enjoying simple pleasures like a pancake breakfast. Fancy things, too. We made gluten-free tiramisu the other night using gluten-free cake as a ladyfinger stand-in. Our friends agreed, it was delightful.
I've been looking for a new creative outlet, and think I may have found one in attempting to understand and improve upon gluten-free cooking. I'm hoping that doing my research and trying new things will open new doors in regards to cooking delicious gluten-free substitutes for myself and my friends and family. In the meantime, try King Arthurs. Delish!
I'm also going to be working on my photography skills. Clearly, they could use a bit of spit-shining as well.