Monday 3 August 2015

Announcements & a Giveaway!

I have some exciting announcements about the upcoming GFAF Event on August 15th in Raleigh, NC! First of all, I have 4 tickets to give away - so if you're in the area and would like a ticket, leave a comment! (Or, if you pre-register for the event online, you will get a free subscription to Delight Gluten-Free magazine for a year.)
Traditional American yeasted rice bread - wonderfully
chewy crust, and the inside is soft and moist.

Also, I will be speaking at the event!! The title of my topic is "No Gums Required!: Heirloom recipes, regional specialties, & forgotten techniques for baking with GF whole-food ingredients." I will be covering some of the special techniques involved in making traditionally-GF recipes work, and explaining how to apply selected techniques to other recipes. 

Some background: As you may know, one of my main areas of research is the chemistry of GF flours. Common minimally-processed binders such as flax, chia, and even psyllium have long been used as food in various ways, but as far as I know, using them specifically to give structure to bread is actually a pretty recent development. This means the enormous variety of traditionally-gluten-free baking - and it really is an enormous variety! - relies on different methods for structure. A number of these techniques and traditions involve eggs, but there are also plenty that don't, with all the structure coming from the flour(s). 
Fluffy, puffy rice-flour bun, hot from the oven.

Some of these traditional recipes have gotten some attention in the GF community and/or the food community in general - just a few well-known examples include pão de queijo, socca/farinata, and of course the ever-popular macaron (of which there are actually many, many varieties and similar treats - some of which bear little resemblance to the trendy colorful sandwich cookies). Others are less known in the US but are popular in other parts of the world, particularly throughout Asia, Africa, and the Middle East - these include a large number of flatbreads, steamed breads, cakes, and pastries made from pretty much every GF grain, bean, starch, and/or nut you can think of. 

Oat bran bread - very springy and soft,
with lots of flavor.
Even less known are the many styles of breads and cakes from American and European history. These breads gradually disappeared as wheat flour became cheaper and more widely available than other flours. (There were, of course, loads of other factors involved - but the changes in the food system were certainly major contributors.) Most frequently, these use rice, corn, buckwheat, pea, sweet potato, white potato, oat, chestnut, and (in the case of cakes/cookies) various other nuts, depending on the region. These pictures are just a few examples! I will be posting more pictures, along with some of these traditional recipes, soon!

Again, the event will be on August 15th from 10 am - 4 pm. Directions are on the event websiteI am super excited, and I hope to see some of you there!!


  1. I would love to win free tickets!

    1. Great! Just send me an email ( with the name you want on the ticket and you can pick it up at will-call on the day of the event.