Finding Neverland

Sometimes we're thrown curveballs that we think will devastate our existence. Maybe it's losing someone we love. Maybe we are losing the love itself. And sometimes it is something smaller and more superficial - but just as maddening and disheartening. Recently I lost wheat. And right along with it I lost the local pizza joint, fresh baguettes, a good sandwich on crunchy coated chewy bread. There were lost opportunities in social aspects. The loss of Cheez-Its. Where does the madness end and the new beginning start?


I introduce to you the best bread I've had in almost 5 months.

Maybe, a little backstory.
Since I am a vegetarian and now avoiding wheat due to severe migraines, my Dad was wondering just what the hell I was going to eat for Thanksgiving this year. No turkey, no stuffing, no fresh baked bisquits and even no green bean casserole (the onion topping stuff)!
Enough to make one crazy mad right? And to be honest with you all. I didn't care. I kind of had given up. In fact just nights before Thanksgiving, I had decided to try homemade GF pasta dough in a Roasted Butternut & Shallot Ravioli recipe I found. it didn't go so well. Let me just conclude that story and move on with one sentence that sums it up. After working for about 1.5 hours on the prep and dough - I fast-pitched it into the floor and punched a cutting board. (I am not really prone to violent anger - but this was just too much). No fresh pasta, no fresh bread, no convenience foods. I felt like I was destined to a life of mediocrity in food. And food is my passion. MY PASSION PEOPLE!

Anyways my Dad is a pretty swell guy and decided on what he could do to make Thanksgiving special for me. He went to the store, found a bread mix and read up on making it in his breadmaker. Fast forward... I show up and see a very mischievious and happy Dad who urges me to go unwrap the towel in the kitchen. I do. In it, is the most fantastic tall loaf of bread. But I'm hardened to the game of deceiving appearances. I grab a serrated knife, slice off a piece. Slather it with butter and bite. And bite. And bite. Oh my GOD! It most definitely is not artisan bread, in fact it's not even like wheat bread. What it's most like is Wonderbread. Now, I have to be honest here. I haven't eaten white bread for over half of my life. But I am in lurv with this bread. And here's why... GF bread is tough. It's smaller than a real loaf of bread. I've had about a zillion varieties, from the GF bakery in town, to the frozen varieties...it's either a dense brick, or so crumbly it doesn't hold together, or gummy. But this, this bread was good crumbly. It was tall. It smelled like bread. Real bread. So I guess you could say I've come full circle on bread. And isn't that where it all begins? With bread?

So, Brian, being the most loving and wonderful man I know secretly ordered one along with an Allergy Cookbook. He's so good to me. Upon reading the manual we discovered the reason the bread comes out so good is because the Breadmand TR2500BC Ultimate has a Gluten Free program. So it cooks the loaf of bread differently. Wonderfully. And it comes with a handful of recipes for GF bread. Yay! Brian made the first bread - Pumpernickle. And it tasted like sweet, earthy goodness!! Love love love it.

I'm making the Onion Dill Bread now. I'll let you know how it goes.


Winkyboy said...

Yay to great bread! As you know I'm not gluten-free, and I don't really plan to get there - but I do appreciate it and quite frankly enjoy the occasional GF comestible. Got some GF tortillas from Trader Joe's in the fridge as I type, matter of fact.

Anyway, just wanted to say that it's cool you've got some "real" bread again!

P.S. I've been experimenting with other butters for a little bit. I tried Ghee, which is clarified butter (y'know that stuff you get with lobster?). It's really yummy even as butter but I can get sick of it REALLY quickly. I've now moved onto coconut oil - and I think I will stop here forever and EVER. If you like the taste of coconut, I totally recommend getting some food-grade and replacing your butter with it. I could eat this stuff straight. (I mean, I would eat this stuff straight AGAIN.)

P.P.S. Blog comments in a popup window? WTF? It's all whack in Firefox. :(

lollya said...

Thanks Dan for your comment. Coconut oil eh? Interesting... Where might one find it? At their local co-op?

Winkyboy said...

Well, I bought a gallon of the stuff through OrganicLivingFood.com but you should be able to find it in most stores. Cub Foods might even have some... I recall buying some there, although I think the kind I bought there was for topical use. Not sure. Regardless, you'll want to get "organic virgin coconut oil" because that's the good stuff.

The book I'm reading now (The Coconut Oil Miracle) recommends actually eating 3-4 tablespoons a day STRAIGHT UP. Like I said before, this is very, very easy to do because it's that delicious.

One other note: it turns liquid at 76 degrees F. In winter, this is perfect because you can just leave it on your countertop and use it in place of butter. In summer, you'll probably have to put it in the fridge, which hardens it as much as refrigerated butter.


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