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Feb 18, 2009 08:43 AM

gourmet, non-chemical gluten-free and dairy-free recipe sources?

My best friend was recently diagnosed with an intolerance to dairy/gluten.

For her birthday, she requested that I cook for her/teach her how to cook gluten free/dairy free. It's a pretty tall order and I really want to do right by her (she's an amazing person and has had a very tough year).

I want to make food that I can teach her to make, without a whole ton of weird GF ingredients (25 types of flour...). I worked in food technology r&d on gluten-free baked goods, so I'm somewhat familiar.

I'm looking for recipes (yes, I can use google, but sometimes other people have better ideas) where all the ingredients can be purchased at a typical grocery store, are cost effective and delicious. The words "xanthan gum" will make her run in the opposite direction; no strange chemicals. Bonus if they are processed-sugar-free.


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  1. Try 101 Cookbooks:

    While not all gluten free, a majority are. I can attest that many of these recipes are great. The blogger has also developed a natural foods search engine that might be of use for finding gluten-free recipes:

    1 Reply
    1. re: sagestrat

      101 Cookbooks immediately came to mind for me too. This is a great site. If you browse through her recent postings, she wrote about a new book coming out from an Australian author that would fit the bill of what you are looking for too.

      Obviously no dairy in these recipies and many are gluten free as well. Is she okay with soy?

      14 Replies
      1. re: enbell

        I love this website. I've made a lot of recipes from the site and everything was delicious.

        You can also try I made a chickpea noodle soup last night that was amazing.

        1. re: cheesecake17

          I probally riffed off your reccomendation, because I stumbled upon it thanks to someone else's tip. Man, though, it is so great. Not a bad recipie yet :)

          1. re: enbell

            What have you made from the site?

            We loved the impossible pumpkin pie and the mushroom stuffed tofu.

            1. re: cheesecake17

              Oh my gosh, there must be over 20 eggplant dishes! The Asian eggplant and the eggplant lasagna are my favorite so far. Also the garlic/ginger broccoli is good as is the garlic/ginger asparagus. I had my neighbor over last week and made the mushroom stroganoff. She's an omnivore but loved it.

              1. re: enbell

                yum, mushroom stroganoff. I'm going to make that next week!

                1. re: cheesecake17

                  Yep, very tasty. I want to try one of the veggie burgers, but don't know which one. Veggie burgers are so subjective, and so much depends on the binder. Maybe I'll just start at the top of the list and work my way down. Have you tried any from the web site?

                  1. re: enbell

                    I haven't tried any veggie burgers from the website but I have made veggie burgers in the past. After making the burgers the first time, you'll pretty much know what the texture should be like. You can always make the burger mix and cook a mini "test" burger before cooking the whole batch.

                    1. re: cheesecake17

                      I've made plenty a veggie patty, but it seems that I'm always on the quest for the perfect one that combines flavor and texture flawlessly. The test burger is a good idea though, thanks :)

                      1. re: enbell

                        Yup, it works great. I do it with turkey burgers all the time.

                        1. re: cheesecake17

                          Talk about a "DUH!" why didn't I think of that moment. Sheesh, seems so obvious!

                          1. re: enbell

                            it might actually be a rachael ray thing.. she's given me some good advice in the past. (But I stay very far away from the prepared stuff she loves)

                              1. re: cheesecake17

                                Another good RR trick she used, that's perfect for this thread, was subsititue\ing food processor grond rice crispies for panko.

                                1. re: Stuffed Monkey

                                  That sounds really good and probably cheaper than panko, especially if you use the generic brands. I would do this but grind up a while box and store it in a container in the pantry.

        2. Depends on your or her definition of gourmet...

          The Gluten-Free Vegan by Susan O'Brien

          Pure and Simple: Delicious Whole Natural Foods Cookbook. Vegan, MSG Free and Gluten Free by Tami A. Benton

          She'll miss out on lots of great baked goods if she avoids xanthan gum...

          10 Replies
          1. re: lgss

            Maybe once she gets more comfortable cooking vegan and GF, she'll start using xanthan gum and more "exotic" ingredients. At least for me, when I started cooking vegan , I stayed away from nutritional yeast.. now it's always in my cabinet.

            1. re: cheesecake17

              We still avoid nutritional yeast.

              1. re: lgss

                Why? Is there anything wrong with it? I enjoy it in breading for veggies but I don't really use it in much else... except a sprinkle on tomato soup.

                1. re: cheesecake17

                  Not interested, haven't gone to the trouble to research it.

                  1. re: lgss

                    lgss, just curious...what do you need to "research" about nutritional yeast?

                    1. re: goodhealthgourmet

                      I don't know enough about it to determine whether I would want to use it or not.

                      1. re: lgss

                        I have a complicated health history and have to be careful what I ingest.

                        1. re: lgss

                          there's not much to know. it's an inactive yeast that's extremely rich in Vitamin B12 (great for vegans). it's completely GF & vegan, and has a savory, umami, almost nutty's sometimes called "vegan Parmesan."

                          you can sprinkle it on popcorn, steamed veggies, pasta...i even use it to thicken homemade dressings & dips.

                          hope that helps in case you ever decide to try it.

                          1. re: goodhealthgourmet

                            I'm with you. I use nutritional yeast often,mainly as a cheese substitute. Great with tofu scramble, pasta, veggies and polenta. I used to miss cheese, but this has helped ease the pain of cheese withdrawal.

                2. re: cheesecake17

                  Had banana muffins from Pure & Simple cookbook this morning. No "exotic" ingredients.

              2. One of my favorite vegan experts, Jae Steele, has a cookbook called Get It Ripe which is filled with totally dairy free recipes, many of which are gluten free. At the end of each recipe, she makes a notation with each recipe regarding dietary requirements. She also has a fantastic blog:

                Once you get into dairy free/ gluten free cooking, it's really interesting. There are many wonderful blogs and cookbooks now, but I am especially fond of Jae's.

                1. 101cookbooks also came to mind for me.

                  I'd also buy her one (or more) of Bette Hagman's baking books, for those occasions when she wants to bake!