Sunday, June 24, 2012

Simple Gluten Free Pancakes

I always had digestive problems growing up. I just thought it was the way my body worked and there was really nothing I could do about it. When I left home and started university, my digestive problems just seemed to get worse. After several years, I finally saw a specialist, who told me I was fine and all I needed was to eat more fiber. So I did just that, filled up on whole wheat, bran, metamucil, you name it, if it was high in fiber and bran, I ate it! My problems got WAY worse. I started waking up in the middle of the night bent over with horrible pains. I didn't understand. I was filling up on fiber, drinking water, doing just what the specialist told me to do. Why was it getting worse? I gave up.

Time passed and I started a co-op placement, and got along really well with one of my coworkers. We had alot in common, especially our interest in healthy eating. She came in to work one day and told me her naturopath had suggested she try a wheat free diet, and she encouraged me to give it a try as well.  I went and bought some wheat free and gluten free foods to last me a week.  Within a few days, ALL of my symptoms were gone. The cramps, the digestive issues, the fogginess, the lightheaded feelings, were GONE. I could not believe it. I remember thinking well that was simple!  Yeah, the no more bread, cookies, and muffins was sad, but I was just relieved that I had a solution!

It's been over 5 years now. I would be lying if I said I haven't touched wheat or gluten since. While I was pregnant, I noticed it didn't bother me as much, so I indulged probably more often than I should have. But now that I'm not pregnant, it doesn't take long for me to feel unwell after eating it. So I've been avoiding it as much as I can. I know for sure that I feel better when I do not eat it.

It was hard at first, but I got used to it. I can still have bread, cookies, and muffins just made with different ingredients. I find alternatives, and I have more energy to do it because I feel GREAT...well, as long as my kids sleep ;)

bet know alot of people are walking around not realizing that they can feel 100 times better just by eliminating gluten from their diets. Or some people do realize that gluten doesn't cooperate with them but they just don't know how to get started on a gluten free lifestyle.

There are SO many resources out there now. Gluten Free Goddess is my favourite.  Her recipes are fantastic and she has a very  informative page on How to Go Gluten Free.

Pancakes are a great starting point into gluten free baking. They're simple (a.k.a don't need a million different types of flours that some GF recipes call for) and if you screw them up, just add more maple syrup :D

Simple Gluten Free Pancakes

1 cup brown rice flour
1/2 cup tapioca starch
1/2 tsp xanthan gum
3 tsp baking powder
1 tbsp sugar or xylitol
1 tsp salt
1 1/4 cups coconut milk or rice milk
1 egg
3 tbsp oil

Vegan margarine
Maple Syrup
Hemp seeds

1. Combine dry ingredients in mixing bowl.
2. Add in milk, egg, and oil and mix. Add in more milk if the batter is too thick.
3. Melt a spoonful of vegan margarine in a skillet over medium heat.
4. Spoon 1/3 cup of batter onto skillet, and spread batter into a round. 
5. Cook for a couple minutes until bubbles form and start to bust, then flip. 
Apparently flipping pancakes while holding a baby takes practice...
That's Better :)
6. Cook another couple minutes or until browned.
While I waited I tried to figure out what baby Dee's eyes will turn out to be. What do you think?
7. Top with vegan margarine, fruit, hemp seeds, and of course, pure maple syrup! 

I told my boy I made him a yummy pancake WITH syrup and he said "no, I want a carrot".  A veggie you want, a veggie you will get :D 
I think he was pretending to be a bunny.
As for Baby Dee, she was happy with eating her hand. Yeah that's right, she eats her hand like royalty! 

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