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Ten Things You Never Knew About Me

My new comfort food. No, I'm not kidding.

Kalyn at Kalyn's Kitchen tagged me for a meme - my first. Hmmm...where to start?

Ten Things You Never Knew About Me

1. My favorite comfort food is peanut butter schmeared on a slice of hot buttered rye toast. Since going gluten free, I've had to settle for peanut butter on a rice cake. I know, I know. I hear many readers thinking, Make gluten free toast. Duh! And I could do that. I even have, on occasion, baked a gluten free bread. But then there were all those sawdust doorstops and hockey pucks that only made me even sadder- and need comfort food even more. Letting go seemed the Zen thing to do.

It takes more than courage to bake gluten free. It takes a strong ego. Because it's not for the faint of heart. Especially if you are also dairy-free and egg-free. Oy.

Or maybe it's all about desire. Maybe if I truly wanted bread again I'd somehow make it happen. Maybe I lack fire. Maybe my passion for sourdough and rye toast was only a crush, not a life-long commitment; because I haven't been courting or chasing the elusive bread replacement. Not with enthusiasm, anyway.

Edit: Years pass. Times change. New flours become available. I now have my toast back. My new delicious gluten-free bread recipe. My ryeless rye bread recipe and my favorite multigrain gluten-free sandwich bread recipe.) Yayness.

2. I was an extra in All The President's Men. I only got to lock eyes with Mr. Redford for maybe three seconds. But as three seconds go? Not too shabby.

3. I don't often wear shoes. Unlike many women- who apparently have a deep and penetrating love of ridiculously expensive, impossible to run in ho-heels, I prefer to go barefoot. Although I do own several one pair of $2.99 jelly flip-flops. And Rocket Dogs. UGGS. Does that count? Okay. Scratch that, then.

4. I can quote The Big Lebowski verbatim. (See Thing #3.)

5. I once had Seymour Cassel believing I was French for an entire week (I don't speak French). 

6. At key moments in my life (some might call them defining moments) I have chosen love over money with no regrets. Even though I drive a used car with a transmission that is steadily declining in performance at an alarming rate. (See Thing #4.)

7. I have learned more from my two children- my fascinating, talented, wise, smart, funny, empathetic sons- than I ever taught them. Motherhood has been a remarkable process of discovery, improvisation and invention. I am in their debt. For life. Not to mention, in love.

8. I'm shy and introverted and I tend to live in my head. That's the reality of the isolated painting and writing life. And that's why I love cooking. Cooking is not only a way to reconnect and share the day with my husband and sons, but also a way to connect with friends-- and now, fellow bloggers and readers. 

Cooking grounds me and brings me back to earth.

9. I'm hot flashing as I write this.

10. In another life (you know, in one of those other ten dimensions the Buddha talks about?) I'm a surfer and live at the beach. (See Thing #4.) The Dude Abides.






TRENDING

My Favorite Gluten-Free Pumpkin Recipes for Fall

My Best Gluten-Free Pumpkin Recipes For Fall... The bittersweet, textured beauty of Autumn has always gripped my heartstrings, pulling me in deeper, connecting with some invisible part of me, so much more so than Spring. Much more so than summer's flirtatious pleasures. And Winter, well. She is a dark and icy mistress. That relationship has always been complicated. So unlike my truly, madly deeply love of Fall. Bake on, my friends. Tis the season for pumpkin. xox Karina

Gluten-Free Goddess Pizza Crust

PIZZA. YES. For years I've missed pizza. Not because there isn't gluten-free pizza available. It's out there. You can find it if you look hard enough. Take a gander in the frozen food aisle of your favorite natural market. Snoop around in the dairy case, next to the gluten-free bagels. You might even hit pay dirt at your local pizza joint (if they understand the ins and outs of cross contamination). So yeah. There are some choices out there. Problem is, most gluten-free pizza sucks. It's usually heavy on the chewy aspect.  Or dry as dirt. Like a cracker.  With zero flavor.  Yawningly meh.  Certainly nothing to brag about. I mean, you wouldn't eat it if you didn't have to. You know what I'm sayin'? It's okay in a pinch. If you're famished and tired on a Friday night.  But it's not exactly inspiring. So last week I started experimenting. I tweaked and baked. And lo and behold. A tasty new gluten-free pizza crust was born.  And this

Sunbutter Cookies

Here's an easy gluten-free cookie recipe made with sunflower butter- a post-modern peanut-free take on those retro peanut butter cookies your Aunt Lizzie used to make. You know, with those jars of Skippy peanut butter (or was it Jif?). Instead of using traditional peanut butter in this recipe, I used sunflower butter, which has a golden nutty flavor not unlike peanut butter, but slightly different. Kinda like peanut butter's wacky, geeky brother. You know, slightly nutty. Fun. Like a bright new bike. And they taste so good you just might want some more. Now, please. I adapted this recipe from a peanut butter cookie recipe (submitted by Erin Smith) to Beyond Rice Cakes , an easy, fun cookbook (especially for teens and students) by Vanessa Maltin, director of outreach and programming at the National Foundation for Celiac Awareness .

Gluten-Free Baking Tips + Substitutions

Need wheat-free gluten-free baking tips? Help is Here. Here's what works- and what doesn't- in quirky Gluten-Free Baking and Substitution Land. From Karina, Gluten-Free Goddess®. Baking Substitutions for Wheat-Free, Gluten-Free and More Notes on GF Flours: Gluten-free non-wheat flours generally fall into three basic weights- light starch, all-purpose medium, or heavier whole grain. A blend of medium and heavy flours with some starch mixed in to lighten, tenderize, and help bind the batter or dough works best, and tastes best (too much starch can result in a gummy texture). Light, starchy GF flours include sweet rice flour, white rice flour, and the ubiquitous gluten-free starches- tapioca starch, cornstarch, potato starch (NOT potato flour, which is whole different animal) and arrowroot starch. Medium flours are akin to 'all purpose flour'- these include sorghum flour, certified gluten-free oat flour, and superfine brown rice flour. If you cannot find sorg

Gluten-Free Pumpkin Scones

Sconelicious. You heard me right. Because I know what you're craving.  I'm craving it, too. Something indulgent.  But not overly indulgent.  Sweet.  But not too sweet.  Something warm and tender, and laced with the autumnal spices you've been shaking and dashing and pinching with abandon.  Something using up that leftover half cup of pumpkin sitting in the fridge. Are you with me?  Are ya feelin' me?  Then let's get sconed. Karina xox

Gluten-Free Pumpkin Cupcakes with Maple Icing

Did someone say... cupcakes? And better yet, pumpkin cupcakes? My favorite, hands down. Warm spicy fall flavors in a sweet morsel of cakey confection topped with a creamy icing. What's not to love? These tender gluten-free cupcake beauties have just the right balance of pumpkin and sweetness, ginger and cinnamon. They're not overly spicy. And as written, they're dairy-free (the cream cheese we used to make the icing is vegan and it worked beautifully). Note that vegan or lactose free cream cheese is typically less stiff than dairy cream cheese. If you are using dairy based cream cheese, soften it first. Have a safe and beautiful weekend! Karina xo

Best Gluten-Free Pumpkin Muffins

We found canned organic pumpkin on the store shelves this week. So be prepared for pumpkin recipes. I, for one, Darling, can't get enough. Pumpkin is my favorite fall ingredient. Maybe because it cozies up to gluten-free flours so well. It adds moisture and depth to g-free baked goods. It flirts with cinnamon and ginger like the sexiest, inscrutable movie star. You know what I'm talking about. It's not overt. Or blatant. It's not over the top. It is subtle. Secure. Pumpkin doesn't demand to be admired. Because it doesn't have to prove itself. It's not a bully flavor that crushes gentler flavors in its wake. It doesn't bark and claw to be Top Dog 24/7. It doesn't have a deep seated need to own the room, to dominate, to control the ingredients it shares a bowl with. Pumpkin goes with the flow. It likes vanilla. And it likes chocolate. You could say, it's bi-flavorful. Which happens to be a quality I admire. Even embody and