A gluten-free, vegan survey

Hi! Yes, I still exist, and yes, I’m still a gluten-free vegan! I’ve just been busy – we bought a house in April, closed in June, and had a whirlwind summer of travelling, unpacking, and being with friends.

To get started blogging again, I thought I’d do something very low-key and post my responses to this survey on gluten-free vegan eating. Note that xgfx is their shorthand for gluten-free vegan.

1. What’s your favorite gluten-free flour?
Tough one! It changes depending on what I’m making. Lately I’ve been loving coconut flour, but of course you can only use it in things that you want to have that coconut flavour. Of course, my go-to flour for 99% of what I make is sorghum, so maybe I should say that.

2. What have you always wanted to deglutenize, but haven’t yet?
Seitan! Apparently, it IS possible….

3. What’s one of your favorite xgfx meals to make?
Pad Thai

4. Your biggest gluten-free success that makes ya most proud?
Well, there isn’t one specific recipe, but I’ve found that I’m able to convert almost any cake, cookie, quick bread or muffin to a gluten-free, vegan version. Admittedly it sometimes takes a few tries, but I usually do succeed eventually! As I described to someone once, it’s really just about chemistry.

5. Most “epic xgfx fail”?
Oh dear. Not long after I went gluten-free, I bought potato flour instead of potato starch for a bread recipe. Lets just say the bread turned into a rock, and I’m not even sure the squirrels I tried to feed it to were going to eat it.

6. What product do you wish was xgfx that isn’t?
Veggie dogs! I’m totally serious. Here in Canada no one makes a tofu dog, only a tofu-and-seitan dog read more. I can very easily make a gluten-free, vegan bun! I just need a veggie dog to put in it.

7. If you could pass along one gluten-free tip to a gluten-free newbie, what would it be?
Learn to appreciate the foods that are naturally gluten-free, like rice and quinoa. If you’re always trying to replicate foods that have gluten in them, you’re going to be disappointed sometimes.

8. What’s your favorite xgfx product?
I’ll say two:

In Toronto: bread from Bunner’s Bake Shop.

Available all over the place: Sol Cuisine Veggie Breakfast Patties

9. Is there anything you miss being gluten-free?
Regular bread. Not being able to eat bread means finding a quick vegan meal can be difficult.

10. Any xgfx techniques you’ve learned that have been most helpful?
My main advice to anyone baking gluten-free is to blend flours. Never try to make something with just a single flour – you won’t get the results you’re hoping for.

11. Have you found a favorite gluten-free pizza dough recipe that makes your heart sing?

Yes! Sometimes I play with the flours I use and it STILL comes out tasty every time. Rich likes it so much that he doesn’t like going out for pizza, he prefers that I make one instead.

12. Xanthan gum. Do you or don’t you? Love it or leave it?
I’m meh about it. I’ll use it when I need to, but try to leave it out if I don’t.

13. Favorite gluten free prepackaged bread?
Well other than the great stuff from Bunner’s, I do really like the buckwheat bread from Organic Works and the quinoa bread from Little Stream. Oh, and Organic Works also makes a yummy cinnamon raisin loaf, if you want something a bit more sweet.

14. What’s your favorite way to nosh on quinoa?
Quinoa salad. Easy to make, easy to modify to your own tastes.

15. Name five of your most coveted pantry staples.
Chickpeas, short-grain brown rice, gluten-free tamari, rice pasta, good quality olive oil.

16. If you could only buy three gluten free flours to last you for three months, what would they be?
Sorghum, corn starch, chickpea.

17. Any xgfx ingredients you are intimidated about trying?
Nothing I can think of at the moment! I’m pretty, err, daring in the kitchen.

18. Favorite place to buy foods?
I have a few: Karma Co-op for their bulk gluten-free flours, nut butters, and spices, Fiesta Farms for their ‘international’ groceries section, and Sweet Potato because they are in my ‘hood and a good place to get organic veggies and fruits.

19. Favorite meal when dining out?
I like foods that are naturally gluten-free and vegan, like a lot of Indian or Thai curries. Easy to order and very yummy.

20. Name one xgfx product you’ve tried that you didn’t like.

A LOT of the breads out there are not very good. I’ve been disappointed many times. The only brands I buy are the three mentioned above, plus sometimes if I can find them I get Aidan’s gluten-free breads or bagels.

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