Baking at Its Best
Allergic Living gives two thumbs way up for Cybele Pascal’s The Allergen-Free Baker’s Handbook. Pascal had all the right ingredients take on her second cookbook: an accomplished home chef, she earned her stripes in restaurant kitchens, and she lives with multiple allergies in her family. Add two more to the mix: she’s a writer by profession and has boundless passion for baking.
With a team of 20 testers to assist, Pascal mixed, baked, tweaked and rebaked. Everything had to live up to her standards. The result is a truly superb recipe collection and must-have for those with – or without – diet restrictions. Celestial Arts, $29.95. See Allergic Living‘s interview with Cybele Pascal.
Warning: Do not peruse while hungry; you may try to eat the scrumptious pages. This book is a great idea: the manufacturer known for its snacks, bars and breakfasts without top allergens (including gluten) teamed up with Leslie Hammond, a culinary expert with an allergy-friendly focus, and a collection of 150 awesome safe cookie recipes was born.
Young children will be over the moon for: Gimme S’more Bites, the Fantastic Fairy Cookies and Caramel-icious Apple Cookies. And for your own safety, don’t stand between allergic women and the Especially Expresso Brownies and Ludicrously Lemon Bars.
Author Alisa Marie Fleming calls this a “guide and cookbook,” and what particularly impresses is the depth of the former. This is no quick gloss-over: it’s a comprehensive, must-have resource for those avoiding dairy. The author, who’s well-known for her website Godairyfree.org, walks the reader through the dairy allergy basics and offers extensive lists of both hidden dairy sources and ingredients that will inspire.
There are thorough sections on dairy substitutes (homemade margarine, anyone?) and creative recipes, from soups to salads to curries and Make Your Own Pizza (without cheese.) Baking without dairy is usually a challenge, but Fleming rises to the task with the likes of Coconut Fudge Brownies, Orange Chocolate Chunk Cup- cakes, and Pumpkin “Cheesecake”.