A New Favorite Gluten-Free Dessert

Thanksgiving was wonderful! It was so much fun to have all of my family at my house. I made three gluten free desserts for Thanksgiving this year. As I told you in my last blog, this was my first gluten-free Thanksgiving and the dessert portion of the meal has traditionally been my territory. I usually make pumpkin pie and pumpkin cheese cake. However, this year, I added a Pumpkin Roll, and it was truly scrumptious. (that reminds me of a song from Chitty Chitty Bang Bang) Anyway, the Pumpkin Roll is basically a thin pumpkin spice cake rolled around a filling made of mascarpone cheese, whipped cream, powdered sugar, vanilla and cinnamon. It was amazing! You can find the recipe on a blog called Baked Bree. And now that I am thinking about it again (the pumpkin roll), and I am sad that it is all gone — I will just have to make another one —soon. The only thing I might add next time around is some liquor. I think the roll was calling out for some. Just sayin.

Anyway, the Pumpkin Roll recipe was not one that I found in a gluten-free search or labeled as a gluten-free recipe on Pinterest or on the internet. No, the Pumpkin Roll recipe was chocked full of gluten— it called for ¾ cup flour. This recipe was just a fabulous recipe for your average gluten eating person which I found on a food blog. This is a fantastic lesson to learn about living a good gluten-free life. You can modify recipes you find — sometimes very easily. I followed the Baked Bree recipe, but substituted the flour with a gluten free flour mix by Tom Sawyer that advertises that you can substitute it cup for cup for the real thing. And in this case they were absolutely right. You can find this gluten-free flour at www.glutenfreeflour.com.

I found the Pumpkin Roll recipe while I was doing some perusing of the websites of presenters for a food conference I am planning to attend. It looked like fun, the recipe had PICTURES (which is always good) and Bree said it was fun to make —-so I just had to try it. I mean really — you get to roll a cake in a hand towel! Yes, it was fun! And it didn’t fall apart. I thought for sure that the lack of gluten would make it disintegrate in my hands as I tried to roll it—but no, it behaved. And I did the rolling part super slow. Not sure if that helped, but I pretended it was helping, and it all worked out.

I found the Tom Sawyer gluten-free flour at a small gluten-free store in North Carolina when we were at the beach this summer. I was trying to make a gluten-free angel food cake for a rainbow icecream cake. You know the type of cake where you toss the angel food cake pieces in dry Jello to color it and flavor it and then layer it in a pan with fruit and icecream. I had been dreaming of this cake since I was a kid. It had been that long since I had eaten it, and now that I was gluten-free it seemed imperative that I have it again. Don’t ask me why. But that is what led me to the small gluten-free grocery store and the Tom Sawyer gluten-free flour. I was on a mission. However, sadly I had not anticipated that the rental where we were staying would not have a mixer (which I definitely needed to beat the egg whites) and so I had to just make the rainbow icecream cake with a store bought gluten laden angel food cake for the kids. And I was not able to have any of the rainbow icecream cake. I have yet to try the Tom Sawyer gluten-free angel food cake recipe that is posted on their website. Sounds like a plan for next week.

So the lesson in this story, is that the recipe that you want to make, might not be labeled gluten-free, but there are lots of ways to make adjustments to recipes. In this case I made my cake gluten-free and ate it too!

I am looking forward to meeting Bree this weekend and thanking her for the introduction to Pumpkin Rolls. Yum! And now that I have a shallow pan I am going to experiment with making rolls with various cakes and fillings. This is of course not helping my weight to be focused on baked goods, but it is helping me transition into a new world of eating with the knowledge that I can still have something sweet when I want it.

Katherine: I am a Stay at Home Mom. I have been married to my husband for 11 years and have a son who just turned 10. I have recently been diagnosed with Celiac Disease and have started cooking gluten-free meals for my family, which has been an enormous adventure and learning experience and I am eager to share all of my discoveries and tips with other families. Our family is also living with autism. My son has autism and seizure disorder, and we have been very involved with the use of applied behavioral analysis teaching at his wonderful school, and at home, since he was two.

– Katherine writes a weekly column about gluten-free information for MadameDeals.

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