Tuesday, November 23, 2010


It has been a couple weeks since my last post. This is not because I am lazy, cooking less, uninspired or having blogger block, it is because after months.....actually maybe a year or so of undiagnosed abdominal pain, I think I have made a discovery. Last weekend I met up (while both of us were travelling separately for work) with my wife in Chicago, our hometown, to visit with family. We met for dinner with family including one of Catherine's cousins, D-. While ordering, D- ordered a gluten free pizza. We asked her if she was celiac, and she was. She had pain similar to mine and had spent months seeing several doctors without a diagnosis. She was turned on to a gluten free diet and all pain went away. She has never been happier and healthier. After thinking about this, and quite frankly hoping it would not be my cure (since I love pasta and bread, oh, and beer; being a homebrewer and all) I spent a few days gluten free and my pain went away.

So...this blog seems to be starting at the right time of my life. Yes, there are many gluten free blogs, but I am in a unique position to be starting my gluten free lifestyle, and you get to start on this journey with me. You can experience this and experiment this with me.

I am not a chef, just a guy who loves to cook. It is very relaxing for me to come home after work and dice celery, onions, bell peppers; make a roux of oil and flour; stir arborio rice for an hour to make a wonderful mushroom risotto.

So after reading several blogs, websites and books over the past few days I learned a lot about how to replace those things I cannot eat with those I can.

One thing I have been trying to make over the past few months is the brownies my mom made for me as a kid. She passed away when I was in high school and I have not had those brownies since. She used cocoa, not chocolate. So I searched websites including the Hershey's site to find the recipe, to no avail. But today I started reading the 'gluten free everyday cookbook' by Robert M. Landolphi. In his awesome cookbook there is a recipe for 'WOW! Brownies'. These were not like my mom's, but the recipe gave me the GF basics. I substituted the bittersweet chocolate for cocoa and the whole eggs for egg whites and I think I am pretty close to what mom used to make.

I did not take pictures since I was not sure how this would turn out, but it was much better than I thought. So here is the recipe....pictures to follow.

Mom's brownies, GF style

1 1/2 sticks butter
1/2 cup cocoa
2 cups sugar
5 egg whites
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup GF flour (Bob's Red Mill makes amazing products)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter a 9 x 13 - inch baking pan.

In a small saucepan melt butter over low heat. When melted, slowly add whipped egg whites and vanilla to the pan.

In a separate large bowl mix all dry ingredients; cocoa, sugar, and flour.

Add butter mix to the dry mix until well blended. Pour the mixture into the prepared pan and spread evenly with a rubber spatula. Bake for 40-45 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean. Remove from the oven and let cool completely in the pan. Cut into bars and serve.

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