More and more Americans are avoiding gluten or dairy foods – or both – due to allergy, intolerance, or sensitivity. In my January 20th column in the Princeton Packet I profiled an excellent new book containing 150 recipes that are not only dairy free and gluten free, but also made with whole foods (as opposed to processed, chemical-laden substitutes). As a bonus, many of them are also free of other common allergens, such as egg, soy, nut, sugar, and oil.
The book is The Dairy-free & Gluten-free Kitchen: 150 Delicious Dishes for Every Meal, Every Day by Denise Jardine. You can read my take on it in my column, where I’ve also included her recipe for kale and mushroom lasagna. As part of that recipe I made her Dairy Milk Alternative, which in turn includes her Date Syrup. The syrup can take the place of sugar. When I wound up with leftover syrup – which is really a puree the consistency of applesauce – I used it to replace both brown sugar AND applesauce in my usual recipe for applesauce raisin muffins. It works like a charm! Here’s the tinkered-with recipe:
DATE SYRUP & RAISIN MUFFINS
1/2 cup mild vegetable oil, like canola
1-1/3 cups Date Syrup (recipe follows)
1/2 cup raisins
1-3/4 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/8 teaspoon ground allspice
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line a 12-muffin tin with paper liners. In a large bowl mix together the eggs, oil, date syrup, and raisins. In a smaller bowl, combine the remaining (dry) ingredients. Fold the dry ingredients into the wet, mixing until just combined. Spoon the mixture into the 12 muffin cups and bake for 20 to 25 minutes. Remove to a rack to cool.
From The Dairy-free & Gluten-Free Kitchen by Denise Jardine
This alternative to refined sugar is, Jardine writes, “rich in potassium and a good source of iron, magnesium, copper, niacin, and fiber.”
1-1/4 to 1-1/2 cups filtered cold water
1 cup pitted medjool dates, halved (12 to 14 dates)
1 teaspoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
In a blender, combine all the ingredients. Cover the blender and pulse the mixture a few times to break up the fruit. Whirl at top speed, occasionally scraping down the sides, until the mixture is smooth and creamy, about 2 minutes. Transfer the syrup to a glass container with a tight-fitting lid, label it with the date, and refrigerate for up to 2 weeks. Before using, stir the syrup to blend. Makes 2 cups.
By the way: Another good resource for those with food allergies, or so I’ve been told by my friend Anne whose daughter has life-threatening allergies to dairy and nuts, is Allergic Living magazine, which works in cooperation with the Food Allergy & Anaphylaxis Network (FAAN), the leading advocacy group.
Now onto the giveaway!
Not only will one lucky commenter win his or her very own copy of The Dairy-free & Gluten-free Kitchen, but also a similar cookbook – one that I profiled in The Packet in October 2011 titled The Gluten-Free Asian Kitchen: Recipes for Noodles, Dumplings, Sauces, and More by Laura B. Russell.
To enter, leave a comment on this post before midnight EST, Sunday January 29, 2012. To earn a bonus entry, simply “like” this post. If you post about this giveaway on your own website or blog, post the link here and get yet another extra entry. The winner will be selected using random.org. Good luck!