01 August 2011

Blackberry Gluten-free Scones

I don't usually post about food since others do that much better than I ever could, but these gluten-free blackberry scones are (well, were...) worth a few words...

I used to make everything from scratch (strange phrase) -- no mixes, no ready-to-eat, no processed foodstuffs (except Kraft macaroni & cheese), no shortcuts... But between being gluten sensitive, working full-time, and trying to develop my artistic practice I've sort of let go of the food purism.

I have a plethora of alternative flours but gluten-free baking seems to be very hit-and-miss for me -- probably because I don't really have time to do the experimentation that I need to do to figure out how much of which kind of flour and whether to add xantham gum or guar gum or whatever... so I bought Bob's Red Mill gluten-free baking mix (think organic, healthy Bisquick). The scones turned out perfectly...
2 1/2 cups Bob's Red Mill Gluten-free baking mix
add 1/2 cup of organic raw sugar, cut in 1/2 cup of organic butter
add 1 cup of vanilla almond milk (was out of the plain variety) stir until all is moist
gently fold in 1 1/2 cups of organic frozen blackberries
press out onto a baking stone, score into 8 scones, sprinkle with more sugar if you want
bake at 375 until browned and flaky
eat while they are so hot you can barely stand it
It's been a gradual relaxation of a set of unspoken food rules I had for myself. I realized I had fallen from food grace when, late one recent supperless evening I found myself standing in front of the frozen food section of Target (egad) eyeballing the frozen veggies (not so bad), and the frozen pre-cooked chicken strips (argh!) and frozen ready-to-heat-and-eat brown rice (bizarre and shameful)... I caved -- mostly because I was starving and it was almost 9pm and I couldn't face going home and either cooking a full meal, or eating a peanut butter sandwich. Got home, dumped it all in the wok with some broth, some shopped garlic and ginger and a bunch of tamari sauce... food in 20 minutes, not delicious, but edible...

When I was a make-it-from-scratch purist I was a stay-at-home mom with 5 - 9 kids in the house and food was my main creative outlet. I made 2-4 loaves of bread every day, baked a dessert twice a week, raised and processed my own meat (lamb and chicken and the occasional deer), gardened and preserved the veggies, made my own jams and jellies and butters...

I guess I could still be a purist if all I wanted to do was work and do foods. But now my life is about more than that, and until someone wants to move into the empty bedrooms and take this task on... well, some convenience foods once in a while won't kill us.

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