Growing Pains

Today was the craft boutique in Monaca. It was a lovely event and we’ll run. It was not the right place for Baked True North.

As I have a tendency to do, I over prepared for this show. I baked dozens of cookies, half dozen yum-breads, 2 dozen doughnuts, put together the most attractive table I could with samples and all! But I suppose I am still learning.

I am actually writing this from my table at the event because it has been so uneventful here. I thought the North Boroughs had a lack of gluten-free products and knowledge, but as one would expect, the further from the city you go, the greater the population who truly seem to be disgusted by the idea of gluten-free. At all my other events, people try the cookies and are buying whether they need it or not because it tastes good. Today people are just looking away like I’m selling a medication or something they don’t need.

Thankfully I stopped myself yesterday from making more. I haven’t rolled out the surprise yet and I decided last minute to scrap the paleo cookies.

But as all learning and growing experiences are, I know what I’ll do differently for next time I’m at a show… And I’ll probably stay out of Monaca for now. It was lovely to meet everyone and I’ll come back whenever you want to order! Haha

Now for the exciting part… Up to 50% off everything I have left over until midnight on Tuesday!

  • Doughnuts $3/half dozen
  • Yum-breads $3/mini loaf
  • Jars of mini chocolate chip cookies $10/jar
  • Pumpkin spice waffle cookies $4/half dozen
  • All large cookies (oktoberfest/pumpkin chocolate chip/signature chocolate chip) $3/each

Email me at bakedtruenorth@gmail.com to order!

Thanks for all of your support as I find the rhythm of business.

Stay delicious,

Lauren

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Gluten… what is it REALLY?

While I was waiting for my heavy cream latte to be prepared at a lovely coffee shop, I perused the goodies on the counter, because of my chronic sweet-tooth. Seeing what looked like an oat based bar, I asked the woman behind the counter (with very little hope) if she knew if that “healthy” looking bar was gluten-free.  In near disgust she assured me it was not, and told me nothing at the shop was gluten-free and I probably couldn’t even drink my latte.

So… maybe you follow Baked True North because you know Lauren or Nick… and maybe you like Baked True North goodies.  Maybe you eat gluten-free occasionally or even faithfully.  MAYBE you even know what gluten is!? I didn’t. I assumed gluten was bread, because that’s what it was described to me as by someone else who was not educated on the topic.

Google describes gluten as a mixture of two proteins, present in cereal grains, especially wheat, that is responsible for the elastic texture of dough. Not likely to be found in a latte, but it sneaks into more things than wheat bread. The things that caught me the most off guard to discover had gluten were thick creamy soups and a lot of sauces, especially soy sauce.

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Above is a picture from my pre-gluten-free days, with a maple bourbon bacon doughnut in Key West on our honeymoon. I grew up eating mac & cheese, sandwiches and the croutons off my salad (not necessarily the vegetables). The two questions I get asked the most are, “why does it seem like this is all of a sudden a problem?” and “Jesus spoke a lot about bread… so how can it really be bad?” The simple answer is that gluten is not what it used to be. The more complicated answer is, Norman Borlaug won a Nobel peace prize creating a shorter wheat called dwarf wheat that produced a lot of grains on less acreage. This was all in the name of solving world hunger, so let’s not get upset at him right off the bat. Mark’s Daily Apple provides a much more in depth explanation if you’re interested.

In further summarizing Mark’s article and the research behind it, dwarf wheat was found to be less nutritious, based possibly on the increased yield per plant or the shorter roots, not allowing in as much nutrition. Certain gluten proteins that were not barely present in the older strains of wheat now are rampant and are causing a higher rate of gluten sensitivities to appear.  Additionally, bread and similar goodies used to be made by home-grinding wheat kernels, but now wheat is processed and potentially rancid by the time it gets to the local burger establishment to be delivered with your “meat” patty.

Hopefully that helped explain what gluten is and why bread is different today than it used to be.  I hope to share more information on gluten-freedom in future blog posts.  Please feel free to shout out questions you have or discoveries you’ve made in the comment section!

Stay delicious,

Lauren Marts

 

 

 

Beach Baking

This week my family took a vacation to Hilton Head Island, South Carolina. Seeing as I still work a full time job and don’t get a ton of time to bake for fun, I brought my almond flour and doughnut pan with me on the trip, just in case I got a moment of delicious inspiration.

A moment is sometimes hard to come by on these vacations as it is typical for us to squeeze a run, tennis, swimming, kayaking, biking, and golf in… Likely all in one day. But fortunately or unfortunately, depending on how you look at it, we had some various rain and high winds, caused by a hurricane hitting Florida, sending tropical storms our way.

So, I got a chance to bake 3 times! (Four if you count the savory beet pesto pizza with goat cheese, pictured below in my mouth!)

First, in honor or my mother’s birthday we had a fresh batch of my Signature Chocolate chip cookies. These did not last long, mostly thanks to my dad who could out eat anyone in a chocolate chip cookie eating contest. Second, as I mentioned, I had my doughnut pan with me, so I made an experimental batch of chocolate glazed coconut flour doughnuts. Honestly, these tasted like the traditional Enteman’s doughnuts I used to devour, but healthier. 🙂

Third, I made another batch of chocolate chip cookies, but used organic raw honey for half the sweetener (out of necessity). Surprisingly this gave the cookie a very different taste and crispped much quicker. Not specifically going to alter any recipes in the future on account of this experiment, but these cookies didn’t last long either.

Also, fixed up my website a bit, adding prices and explanations to my top 3 cookie options in response to all the excitement and inquiries I’ve been getting lately. More to come on the website, so stay tuned!

Lastly, the winner of last month’s cookie giveaway is………

Lori! I’ll be in touch with your cookie details. Thanks to everyone who followed, commented, and liked my content. Please keep sharing the gluten-freedom with your friends and loved one’s to help Baked True North grow!

Stay delicious,

Lauren Marts