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Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Bob's Red Mill Everyday Gluten-Free Cookbook


If you are at all nutrition-conscious, then you are probably familiar with Bob's Red Mill products.

They carry a wide array of whole grains, flours, baking mixes and cereals. I've been buying them for years and am a big fan.

When I was approached about reviewing this cookbook, I eagerly agreed.

I actually thought all the recipes would be using their all-purpose gluten-free flour blend, which I have not purchased before, but it actually does not.  It contains a wide array of recipes from salads to mains, to desserts, using many different gluten-free flour and grains from their product line, including millet, quinoa, teff, buckwheat, sorghum, etc.

This impressed me because I often find gluten-free recipes are anything but healthy and nutritious since they often use nothing but white rice flour, tapioca and potato starch to replace other flours.  These are low nutrition, low fibre products which I try to avoid.

The book begins with a section introducing the various types of grains and flours, and how best to use and store them.

It then has the following recipe chapters:

Breakfasts
Soups, Stews and Chilis
Salads and Sides
Meatless Main Dishes
Seafood, Poultry and Meat Main Dishes
Breads, Muffins and Snacks
Desserts

The recipes sound amazing and are interesting and inventive like, Cardamom Amaranth Granola, Mushroom and Sorghum Frittata, Avocado, Orange and Millet Salad, Edamame and Ginger Stir-Fried Quinoa, Chocolate Snowball Cookies, and (vegan) Chocolate Truffle Pie.

The author, Camilla V. Saulsbury, does use potato starch in some recipes, but mostly good quality, whole grains and flours are used.  She also has cane sugar in a lot of the recipes, which I would swap out for coconut sugar, stevia, xylitol or erythritol (i.e. sweeteners that don't spike blood sugar). 

Recipe pages do not have photos, but there are several sections of pictures featuring particular recipes, that are colourful and attractive.

Although the book is not strictly vegetarian or vegan, there is the Meatless Main Dishes chapter, and many of the baked goods, desserts and salads are vegan.  The main dishes with seafood, poultry and meat, could be modified to be vegetarian or vegan if need be.

Overall, I think this is a great book for someone who needs to avoid gluten and is looking to create  delicious and diverse meals that won't leave you feeling deprived.  Remember, gluten-free is not inherently healthy, refined sugar and flours are still unhealthy, even if they are gluten-free.  But eating a healthy, delicious and satisfying gluten-free diet is possible, this book is proof!

Disclosure: The publisher sent me this book, but all the opinions on this blog are my own.