The Whole Foods Allergy Cookbook

200 Gourmet and Homestyle Recipes for the Food Allergic Family

allergy cookbook

Sunday, September 30, 2007




Also, DAIRY FREE, SOY FREE, NUT FREE, WHEAT FREE (obviously!), and LOW FAT!!!!! Seriously? Seriously!

My Mom makes a mean sponge cake. It was always the "go to" dessert for impromptu dinner parties. It's fast, easy to make, and pretty much fool proof. This past summer, I started using
my mom's secret recipe for dinner parties, drinks night with my mommy group (we gather once a month for desserts and wine), rotary club luncheons (just kidding on that one, I don't actually know what a rotary club is). I served it with sliced strawberries, compote, Good Karma Vanilla Rice Divine, etc. and it was always a huge hit. Best of all, I realized I could adapt this recipe for people with food allergies. Sorry to all of you out there avoiding eggs. You can't make this with egg replacer, it requires real eggs. But for those of you avoiding the other top 7 food allergens, or on GF diets, this is the cake for you!!!


1/4 cup + 2 Tbsp. Tapioca Flour (available from Bob's Red Mill)
1/4 cup + 2 Tbsp. Amaranth Flour (available from Bob's Red Mill)
1/4 cup + 2 Tbsp. Superfine Brown Rice Flour (Bob's Red Mill BR Flour is superfine)
1/4 cup + 2 Tbsp. Millet Flour (available from Arrowhead Mills)
1/2 tsp. xanthan gum
6 egg yolks
1/2 cup cold water
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 tsp. gluten free vanilla or almond extract (almond is the traditional ingredient, so use it if you have no nut allergies)
6 egg whites
3/4 tsp. cream of tartar

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a medium bowl, combine the flours with the xanthan gum, and set aside. Using an electric mixer set on medium, beat the egg yolks until lemon colored. Add the water, beat. Add the sugar and vanilla or almond extract, and beat until combined. Add the flour mixture a little at a time. In a separate bowl (be sure it's dry and cool) beat the egg whites until foamy. Add the cream of tartar and beat until peaks form. Fold the egg whites into the batter, gently. Be sure the whites are fully incorporated, but don't over-beat. Pour batter into a greased nonstick 10-inch bundt pan. Bake 30 minutes. Turn pan, reduce oven temperature to 325 degrees and bake 30 minutes more. Remove from oven, let cool in pan about 10 minutes, then turn cake out onto cooling rack and let come to room temperature. Dust with powdered sugar. Serves 10.

Saturday, September 01, 2007

Pamela's Products -- The Gift That Kept on Giving
Wheat-free, Gluten-free, and Allergen-free Baking Mixes

Several months ago, I agreed to test out some of Pamela's baking mixes and new packaged goods. When I took on the challenge, little did I know I'd be asked to do a holiday cookie article for Living Without (5 new GF Allergen-Free cookie recipes coming your way this November!!) and a huge Harvest package for Lime (9 new Harvest recipes from across the country, scheduled for October). Suffice it to say that July and August got eaten up by my own recipe creations (baking holiday cookies in LA in July is crazy). So I'm finally back on track.

What's so great about Pamela's Products? Like Sandra Lee's, they're semi-homemade. So even if you're not a wiz in the kitchen, you can bake your child a home-made birthday cake, or a loaf of sweet-smellin' bread. Additionally, Pamela's products gives various options for preparing their mixes. You can make them completely allergen-free, or tailor them to your diet, using butter or eggs as appropriate. I prepared all of the mixes using the completely allergen-free instructions; egg replacer for eggs, canola oil, dairy-free soy-free vegetable shortening, and water.

Let me start with their star product.


Described on the package as "Rich, Dark, Moist, Decadent Cake", it lived up to its reputation. Unlike so many GF cake mixes, this cake had no bitter after-taste, no grittiness, wasn't too sweet, and stayed moist and delicious for literally A WEEK!!! I added chocolate chips, make it into little cupcakes, and also baked it into cakes. In every form, it stayed fresh well beyond my expectations. It was truly THE GIFT THAT KEPT ON GIVING. I liked it so much better than Cherrybrook Kitchen's Cake mix. I will buy this often.


Loved the chocolate chunks. Loved the simplicity. Great for kids to help with. Not sold on the texture. I found them a little too gritty/grainy, and they were too sweet for my taste. But my kids were happy, and ultimately, that's who they're for anyway.


Yummm, who doesn't love the aroma of fresh baked bread? This bread was yeasty and old-fashioned. I don't have a bread machine, so I used my trusty Kitchen Aid mixer with the bread hook. Baking it made my kitchen smell great, and I couldn't wait to pull it out of the oven, slice it up and eat it warm with some Earth Balance Soy Garden natural "buttery" spread. So delicious. This bread is very close to a loaf of "normal" white bread. Perhaps a little yeastier than most (which I happen to like). To keep it moist, it's pretty dense. But I prefer that to the light and crumbly GF breads you get prepackaged. This bread also stayed fresh and toasted well for several days.


Though Pamela's didn't send me their brownie mix to test, I decided to try it anyway. I baked it in my mother's oven on Cape Cod, which keeps a dubious temperature, but even so, it took twice the allotted time to bake. After 40 minutes, it still hadn't set in the center. Maybe it really needs the eggs after all. And like the cookies, I found the brownies a little gritty, and too sweet. And like the cookies, I loved the chocolate chunks. However, put chocolate chunks in a sponge, and I might eat it.

Overall? These products are simple to prepare, affordable, easily tailored to the individual bakers' dietary needs, and generally pretty tasty. I still like Pamela's prepackaged cookies better than the cookie mix, but for the sake of novelty, it's great to have the semi-homemade option, so children can help bake.

Last but not least, Pamela's sent me their Biscotti. These biscotti are GF, but not Allergen-free. Please NOTE THAT THEY CONTAIN MILK, EGGS, and TREE NUTS.


I couldn't sample these because I'm allergic to walnuts, but my friend Michelle and her son Enzo tried them for me, and were very happy, and they're Italian (so should know their biscotti!)


Delicious! Dunked it in my coffee, kept them in the car for snack attacks, LOVED them. These biscotti are indistinguishable from traditional biscotti made with gluten. Not too sweet, great texture, a real keeper. The only downside is that they haven't come up with one that's tree-nut free yet. Pamela's? How about it?