Greetings and salutations! For two years I have lamented the loss of rye bread to my celiac diet. How can you have an inspiring reuben sandwich without it? (Truthfully, you cannot!) How can you have a ham and swiss on rye? (Again, you cannot! It is just not the same with gluten-free white bread.) Just too "white bready"......ugh! But send up a flare and alert the media kids, because Mariposa Bakery in Oakland now has rye bread! Now you probably know that celiacs cannot have "true" rye bread. However, much to my delight and amazement, Mariposa has worked their magic once again & created a very good "imposter" if you will, of rye bread. It comes in nice little round loaves and looks somewhat "artisian" to me. Ahhh, but the taste, that is what truly matters. And it strikes a home run! It is the lighter version of rye bread, not the deep dark kind, but it is pleasingly good and it tastes like rye bread!! It has excellent texture. It makes very satisfying toast and I made an awesome ham and swiss sandwich today for lunch! Woo-hoo, it was just what I had been craving. All I can say is; thank you Mariposa.......now I need to go find some good corned beef.
They also now offer a very nicely textured multi-grain bread. It is quite dense with lots of seeds and great nutty stuff. It reminds me of a lovely multi-grain bread I used to enjoy in my pre-celiac days. I would be remiss if I didn't point out that it comes with some actual nutritional value too! I love it straight out of the toaster with a generous dollup of butter (of course). I feel healthier when I eat this as opposed to say white rice bread. Sandwiches are also good and hearty with this bread. Remember, you can order this stuff on line. I really like this company and their attitude and I would love to pay them a visit in the future.
Now onward to Kristy's Kitchen. Kristy and Mike Johnson (lovely people, by the way), are from Tecamah and created gluten-free mixes after Kristy was diagnosed, hence Kristy's Kitchen was born! They seem to be doing very well, I must say! They offer various mixes from crackers to biscuits to scones. I had to take my time baking and reviewing their products because they offer so much that I had to really keep my waistline in check (alas, an ongoing hazard).
First I made their Gourmet Cherry Sour Cream Muffin Mix/Coffee Cake Mix. I made it into coffee cake. I loved the texture and the way the cake rose in the oven. It comes with a streusel topping to which I added 3/4 cup of pecans, because I put nuts in everything (nutrition, don't you know). I have to admit this coffee cake really surprised me. I think it is hard to find a good gluten-free mix but this turned out delicious. I would not hesitate to serve it to non-celiacs, of course never mentioning the lack of wheat........You need sour cream of course and it also called for some water. I always substitute buttermilk or cream when a mix calls for water. I just think the extra butterfat gives it more richness and depth. This is good stuff and it freezes very well. Hats off to you, Kristy and Mike.
Next I made their White Chocolate Raspberry scones. Now I consider myself somewhat of a "scone snob" or scone afficianado. Scones are either really good or rather dreary and boring. (Basically I haven't met that many scones that I didn't like, but they aren't all good). I am happy to report these are excellent and I was really surprised again at how good they were. They are not accompanied by any weird aftertaste that gluten-free baked goods sometimes come equipped with. They have a great flavor and the raspberry and white chocolate added a nice touch without overpowering the lovliness of the scone. There is a Devonshire Cream recipe on the package back that you should serve with these warm scones. It becomes a delicious, festive and somewhat decadent treat all at the same time. What more could you ask for??
I have also sampled their Artisian Graham Cracker Mix and had a lovely cheesecake that boasted a crust made from the graham crackers. I have heard (on good authority) that their Savory Thin & Crispy Cracker mix is quite good, but I have not made them yet. Soon, I will though, soon! And last but not least is Grandma's Sunday Best Baking Power Biscuits. Again I substitued buttermilk for the water it called for. I made an old fashioned strawberry shortcake with them and it was a home run. These mixes can be found at No Name Nutrition, Hy-Vee and Super Foods in Blair, just to name a few places. I think that it is a smashing idea to support local people who take the plunge and start their own business. Give them a try http://www.kristyskitchen.com