Videos now online.

I have finally gotten around to putting some of Linda’s cooking videos online.  Under the tab “Your Pantry” you will find 2 series of instructional videos. 

Your Pantry

The first series is “After School Snacks”.  It consists of 5 new videos for making great gluten free after school snacks.

The second series is called “Gluten Free Whole Grain Quick Breads”.  It also has 5 different videos showing you how to make great whole grain quick breads that are all gluten free.

It always was Linda’s intent to have them available and be shared.

Sorghum Banana Muffins with Chocolate Chips

sorghum banana muffin

sorghum banana muffin photo by vsimon

Oh, these are big and beautiful. These muffins are adapted from a recipe for banana bread with chocolate chips.

Now it is gluten free, dairy free, and whole grain.

Banana pure makes them very moist and tender, not crumbly. And they hold well in the fridge without getting dry.

Vince says (always) that he would prefer some banana chunks, not all blended up. That suggestion (always) causes me to make faces. Banana chunks are just too slippery for me. He will have to make his own if he wants chunks. He (always) knows this.

I use dark brown sugar because it has more antioxidants than many other sweeteners. To me, 1 cup of dark brown sugar overwhelms the banana flavor, adding a molasses undertone. But most people like their muffins very sweet. And these are plenty sweet.

Some people (me) would be happy with less, say 3/4 cup of sugar. The ripeness of the bananas impacts the sweetness too. The riper they are, the sweeter they are. This is a great place to use bananas that are getting really soft, spotty, and fragrant.

The demerara sugar topping is fun. But it is optional. Demerara sugar is washed raw cane sugar, in big crunchy crystals.

sorghum banana muffin

nice tender texture photo by vsimon

Sorghum Banana Muffins with Chocolate Chips

makes 12 metric measures
3 large very ripe bananas, peeled 500 gm
¼ cup canola oil 60 ml
1 large egg 50 gm
2 cups sorghum flour 250 gm
1 tsp xanthan 4 gm
1 cup dark brown sugar, or less 200 gm
1 1/2 tsp baking powder 6 gm
½ tsp salt 4 gm
¼ cup chocolate chips 40 gm
2 tablespoons demerara sugar, optional 25 gm

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Put bananas, oil and egg in a blender and process until smooth.

In a large bowl, mix flour, xanthan, sugar, baking powder, and salt.

Pour blended bananas into the flour mixture. Stir until smooth.

Allow to rest for 5 to 10 minutes to allow the xanthan to rehydrate. The batter will get thicker.

Put papers in muffins tins.

Stir the chocolate chips into the batter.

Evenly divide the batter into the muffin papers. Sprinkle generously with demerara sugar.

Bake for 30 minutes. It really does take this long.

PS I love banana muffins, but will not eat a raw banana. Most people just cannot understand that. I say, everyone doesn’t like something. For me, it is raw bananas. Do you love them? Or turn them into treats?

PPS Your opinion counts! Please see the poll in the sidebar and vote for the 3 topics you would most like to see in video cooking classes.

S is for Sorghum

Sorghum is my new favorite all purpose gluten free flour. I cannot use it straight up to replace wheat flour in every recipe. But it works in many. I also like that my regular grocery store stocks it now, it is not crazy expensive, it is easy to work with, and it’s whole grain. It is not a nutritional super food, but it sure beats refined starches.

Sorghum flour is successful in pancakes (recipe below), waffles, muffins, piecrust, and fruit crisp toppings. The flavor has some natural sweetness. And I am in love with sorghum syrup, which is made from sorghum stalks. They look and stand tall just like corn stalks.

Pancakes with sorghum syrup, fruit and a sprinkling of nuts for dinner is true comfort food for me. If you have sorghum flour on hand, you probably have the other essential ingredients in your pantry. 100% sorghum flour pancakes are a great introduction to sorghum.

I do make a special trip to the health food store to by 6 jars of syrup at time. It is thicker and not as sweet as pure maple syrup. Perfect for my taste. A mix of sorghum syrup and corn syrup is available in my regular grocery store. But I don’t want the corn syrup part. Just 100% sorghum syrup please.

My “go to” recipe for pancakes includes buttermilk, nice thick buttermilk. But I do not always have it so I substitute soured milk with tasty results.

Please notice, I use soured milk, not spoiled milk. You simply add a tablespoon of acid, like lemon juice or vinegar, to a measuring cup. Then add milk to the one-cup line. Stir and allow to sit for a few minutes and you will notice the milk curdles. That is soured milk.

Right now, there are many posts and comments in the blogosphere regarding the safety of distilled vinegar. Please see Gluten Free NYC and Tricia Thompson’s blog post on diet.com. There is a simple solution if you choose not to use distilled vinegar, use lemon juice. You get a similar tart flavor, acid and no gluten.

I used cows’ milk, but you could try this with other kinds of milk. Goat, hemp, nut, rice or soy. I am interested to know if you try any of these and how you like the results. The lower protein milks probably will not curdle. But you still need to add the acid to make the baking soda fizz and raise up the pancakes.

The finished soured milk pancakes are a bit thinner than the buttermilk version. And the batter itself thinned while I was cooking the pancakes. The first pancakes cooked up evenly round. The later, thinner batter made scalloped pancakes that looked a bit like pretty flower petals. They all tasted great.

sour-milk-sorghum-pancake photo by vsimon

Sour Milk Sorghum Pancakes with Sorghum Syrup and Blueberries

Serves 2                                               Metric measures

1 tablespoon lemon juice or vinegar       15 ml  

   (not malt or flavored vinegar)

nearly 1 cup milk                                   225 ml

2/3 cup sorghum flour                           75 gm

1 teaspoon sugar                                  5 gm

1 teaspoon baking soda                         4 gm

½ teaspoon salt                                    3 gm

1 egg                                                    1

2 tablespoons oil                                   30 ml

1 cup blueberries                                   130 gm

sorghum syrup

Measure lemon juice or vinegar into a one cup liquid measuring cup. Add milk to the 1-cup line. Stir and allow to sit for about 5 minutes.

In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, sugar, soda, and salt.

In a small bowl whisk together soured milk, egg, and oil.

Add milk mixture to flour mixture, whisk until smooth.

sorghumpancakebatter

stirring-out-the-lumps-in-sour-milk-sorghum-pancake-batter photo by vsimon

Preheat griddle and oil it. Ladle enough batter onto the griddle to make a 3-4” pancake. Do not make them too big, or they will be very hard to flip. Drop blueberries onto the batter. Cook until bubbles form on the surface. Flip and cook a few minutes more.

Adding the blueberries to the batter on the griddle evenly distributes the berries, and keeps the color of the pancakes lovely. Stirring the blueberries into the batter in the bowl can make the pancakes an unappealing grayish blue. This is a bigger problem with frozen berries as they thaw.

sourmilk (13)

sorghum-pancake-with-blueberries photo by vsimon

Sorghum has also saved the day for gluten free beer. Beer with pancakes?  Ick. No, I usually have tea or milk. I do not drink much beer so I cannot comment on sorghum beer. Other than, I think it is cool that it is available.

What wonderful things have you made with any type of sorghum?

Update 8-30-2009  This post was entered into the Slightly Indulgent Monday kick off blog event, started by Amy Green of  Simply Sugar and Gluten Free. The whole grain sorghum flour and the rich syrup make this slightly indulgent. I can’t wait to see what else is entered!