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Good morning GUSglutens!!!  I'm working on my "stoutness."  Not really stout but have more pounds on me than I prefer (10-15) and they have all settled at my waist.  I have long since known that white flour is deadly for me -- meaning most bread, pasta, desserts (even though I'm not a dessert person).  I'm also desperately trying to find a decent cookbook suitable for a kid with type 1 diabetes.  My little buddy who just turned 4 in August was recently diagnosed.  Really shocking for all of us.  This is an active kid -- not overweight -- but . . . . I know his diet hasn't been stellar.  Lots of McDonalds and take out.  

My little buddy's mother really is dedicated to his wellness now.  Scrupulous about his diet and trying to learn all she can about the disease.  I'm going to a diabetes workshop on Wednesday because I, too, want to learn all I can -- especially as to cooking/baking.  The kid has shown interest in his fantasy world in cooking.  I think it can be a good project for the both of us.  Did I say how much I love that child????

Ok -- first things first.  

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The first recipe is from Peter Reinhart and Denene Wallace's The Joy of Gluten-Free, Sugar-Free Baking: 80 Low-Carb Recipes that Offer Solutions for Celiac Disease, Diabetes, and Weight Loss.  I read through the Intro to see if this was just a B.S. money maker or legitimate cookbook.  It appears to be legitimate.  The general complaint is that it doesn't provide the Nutritional data after each recipe.  I agree -- that's a flaw. But, those who have to watch carbs and/or sugars will recognize the beauty of this book.  It is not for the faint hearted cooks/bakers.  Many of the "flours" are home ground nuts.  Not a big deal -- don't be deterred.

Also, the timely (currently) rec list diary Compassion Side Jesus and Bob's Red Mill Foods provides an excellent reason to buy any number of Bob's specialty flours like the garbanzo bean flour in the first recipe.   Two years ago, on his 81st birthday, Bob gave the company to his employees!  Reinhart and Wallace also recomment Bob's as you will see in the Tip for the first recipe.

brown bread

The first recipe, from Reinhart and Wallace's cookbook is perfect for those who have an intolerance to gluten and also diabetics.  


"Stout" Bread

This hearty bread, which toasts up beautifully, is made with garbanzo bean flour (ground chickpeas) and is almost a meal in itself.  As the name says, its stout.  That doesn't refer to beer; it's a reference to the thick, solid texture of the bread.  It has a wonderful crunchy crust and a deep, old world flavor with a slightly peppery finish, making it a good companion to all types of soups and stews.  

This is a recipe that is easier to make with an electric mixer because the batter is very stiff, though you can make it by hand if necessary.

Ingredients:

2 cups (8 oz./ 227 grams) garbanzo bean flour *  See Tip
1 cup (4 oz./ 113 grams) flaxseed meal
1/2 cup whole golden or brown flaxseeds
1/4 cup Splenda or Stevia in the Raw, or 2 tbls New Roots Stevia Sugar
4 tsps Baking Powder
1 tsp Xanthum Gum
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp ground pepper `(optional)
4 eggs
1 cup unsweetened soy milk or other milk
1 cup water
1/2 cup salted butter  (I always use unsalted in baking)

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Line loaf pan with parchment paper and spray with Pam or oil it up.

In a medium bowl, mix al the dry ingredients.  In a large bowl place all the remaining ingredients.  Using a whisk or paddle attachment, beat together until aerated.  If dong my hand -- use a whisk.  Add the flour mixture and blend for 3 minutes in electric blender (a mazillion days by hand).  Pour into prepared loaf pan.

Bake for about 40 minutes -- until golden brown and inserted toothpick comes out clean or you know how to press down for that right springyness.

Remove and allow to cool in pan for 5 minutes -- then turn out.  Wait 15 minutes to cool before cutting and serving.  

* Working with Garbanzo Bean Flour

Although a variety of legume flours are available, we believe garbanzo bean flour is one of the few that diabetics can generally use without risking a spike in blood sugar.  However, some diabetics do experience glycemic spikes even with garbanzo bean flour, so monitor your blood sugar closely to see if it works for you.

Bob's Red Mill and a few other companies make garbanzo bean flour so you can purchase it if you like.  If it isn't available locally, you can buy it online.  Or, as with nut and seed flours, you can make it at home.  Because the dried beans are so hard, you will have to work in smaller batches, and it does take awhile to grind them into fine flour.  The more finely you grind them, the softer the loaf.

Do not blame me for the poor grammar -- love the cookbook, but they need someone who went to Catholic school in 1950-1970 to write their text.
Now for the totally not diet healthy but most delicious Porter Cake.  Do not serve to anyone you know who is diabetic or has gluten problems.

Irish porter cake

Irish Porter Cake

Ingredients:

    1/2 pound butter
    3/4 cup brown sugar
    1 bottle Irish stout or porter (Guiness or the $9 bottle of Porter I got suckered into)
    1 orange, zest only
    1 cup sultanas
    1/2 cup raisins  (I add 1 1/2 cups raisins -- I'm not fond of sultanas)
    3 tablespoons chopped mixed mixed peel (orange/lemon)
    3 1/2 - 3 3/4  unbleached flour (the mix should be heavy, sticky but not runny)
    1 level tsp baking powder
    1 tsp ground cinnamon
    1 tsp freshly grated nutmeg
    3 eggs, beaten

Method

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F (180C/160C fan/gas 4). Line the base of a buttered deep spring-form pan (see picture) or loose-bottomed angel food cake pan with greaseproof paper.

2. In a heavy-bottomed saucepan, melt the butter, sugar and stout together over a low heat. Add the orange zest, sultanas, raisins and mixed peel. Bring to the boil and leave for 3 minutes. Remove from the heat and cool slightly.

2. Sift the flour, baking powder, cinnamon and nutmeg into a large mixing bowl and add the warm fruit mix.  Then gradually pour in the egg, stirring well.

3. Spoon the mixture into the pan, smoothing the top over with a knife. Bake in for around 1 1/2 hours, or until an inserted skewer comes out clean.

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