BEFORE GLUTEN FREE….
So many things were different before gluten free.
A cake made from scratch?
No, not ever from me.
Homemade pasta, fresh scones, a pie crust not frozen?
Not then. But now? Yes. I gladly make them by the dozens.
A gluten free bread loaf made with these two hands?
No.. Oh yes! And it has earned me some of my greatest fans.
A smoothie, bright green? Not in my blender, oh no.
But now, it is a Vitamix – whirring kale – that I happily own.
Farmer’s markets, Co-op’s, hauls from CSA’s
The bounties of these leave me fully amazed.
All of them full of foods safe for us to eat,
But no labels needed: just naturally “G – Free”
So if you are new to gluten-free and just starting out.
Go through those emotions, then get out those pouts.
But once you have said so long to that wheat.
Just know what is waiting can be forever sweet.
Embrace it and greet it with arms open wide.
The gift to your health will be your greatest surprise.
For us, gluten-free has changed for good who we will be.
But the gluten free “label” will not define who is “we”.
It is the lifestyle, the love, the fresh foods that are grown.
And it has shaped forever what our meals mean in our home.
With that, I will leave you with my recipe for homemade Cinnamon Vanilla Applesauce. It is the easiest thing to make and you will never want to eat the store-bought stuff again. I got into making it when I started making my boy’s baby food. Who knew that making applesauce from scratch could be so simple, yet so rewarding?
I make this a lot of this during the fall and winter months, especially. It goes so nicely with a good savory pork roast, or even as a topping for my cinnamon vanilla ice cream (recipe coming soon). Either way, give it a try and you just might be surprised by how easy this is. And, of course, it is naturally gluten free, dairy free, nut free, egg free, soy free, corn free, … (somebody stop me). And, staying true to my pumpkin obsession, I have also included a little optional pumpkin twist to this recipe…
CINNAMON VANILLA APPLESAUCE
(with an optional Pumpkin Twist)
5 Apples, peeled, cored, and cut into 1 inch cubes (my favorite apples to use are Fuji’s or Pink Ladies – naturally sweet, they need very little additional sugar)
2 teaspoons lemon zest
Juice from 1 lemon (about 3 tablespoons)
1/2 cup water (or Apple Cider)
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 – cinnamon stick, about 3 inches long (this will be removed at the end before mashing/pureeing)
1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice (or more cinnamon)
2 Tablespoons Maple Sugar (or Organic Palm, or Coconut, Sugar)
2 Tablespoons Brown Sugar (or Organic Palm, or Coconut, or Maple Sugar)
1 Tablespoon good Vanilla
1 Tablespoon Coconut Oil (or 1 Tablespoon Organic butter, if not Dairy-Free)
2 Tablespoons Organic Pumpkin puree (totally optional)
1. Place lemon zest, juice from lemon, water (or Apple Cider) cinnamon, cinnamon stick, pumpkin pie spice, sugars, vanilla, coconut oil (or butter), and pumpkin puree (optional) in your heavy bottomed saucepan and stir until combined.
2. Add apples and toss to coat evenly.
3. Bring to a boil on the stove, then lower heat, cover, and then simmer for about 18 minutes, until very tender.
4. Remove cinnamon stick. Either using a potato masher or an immersion stick blender (once cooled), mash or puree to desired consistency (do not over-do it if you like a little chunk to your applesauce). **Note: if adding the coconut oil instead of the butter, using the immersion blender will emulsify the oil better, in my opionion (but is not necessary).
Now..who were you before gluten free?
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