Most of the blogs I visit regularly are to find out about new gluten free recipes and products. However, I certainly enjoy the wit and creativity of their authors! I used to visit a blog that had to do with uh...domestic perfection. You know, posts about the perfect table setting, or the perfect Thanksgiving craft with the kids. I'm not deriding this particular writer or these type of blogs, because there is this rather large vein running through me that wants to do it all and do it well. There's a lot of great ideas out there! However, I think we can learn a whole lot from each other's struggles as well as the shining moments.
I hope that in my posts I can encourage another gluten free cook like myself. I want you to know that for every post about something that came out "great" there's several attempts that are just "so-so" or "let's not repeat that again!" When I first found out about my son's Celiac diagnosis 18 months ago I made a trip to the health food store to buy some really awful frozen millet bread and a few other items that were marked "gluten-free". I was disappointed in half of them. I also bought some xanthan gum as well as packaged gluten free flour mixes so I could begin baking for him. Now, I'm not shy in the kitchen as I was making our bread (yes, full of things like wheat, rye, and barley) for quite awhile. However, it took me two full weeks to get in there and bake a loaf of gluten free bread. Hey, it's not that confusing - mix the dry, mix in the wet, spoon in the pan and bake. But those words - rice flour, xanthan gum, mucho egg whites - I just couldn't get past it all!
Well, I did bake that first loaf and then was on a bit of a roll (pardon the pun). Then, I went through a period where everything I attempted seemed so disappointing. So, there are moments of glory that send me dancing in the kitchen and moments where I want this whole thing to go away and cooking seems such a chore. So, be encouraged wherever you are at in the process and know that good cooks fail and then can hopefully laugh about it and move on.
Laughing is just what I did when I read "One Ugly Calzone" , a post from Hold the Gluten. I love the fact that Maureen posted a picture of this oozing, alien-looking disaster. I was more encouraged by her flop at that moment than I had been reading a few recipes beforehand. Why? Because life is like that and I can connect!
So, in the spirit of transparency, let me invite you to peek into my kitchen the other day. Let me say, that when I was teaching BK (before kids) I used to think that I could multitask. Perhaps I could. All I know is that multitasking for me now is not effective, but rather messy and dangerous. I must be continually losing precious brain cells ever since becoming a mom or embarking upon the "perimenopausal path". Whatever the reason, I know I'm not what I used to be because my efforts to "do it all" have left me often in quite a mess - literally.
Now, I have to explain this picture. We're currently in the middle of a remodel. We're adding on to the kitchen end of the house as well as finishing off the new attic space above. I've taken down every picture in the kitchen except for the outdated wall weed that is askew. (In the middle of a remodel, things like that become normal and you don't notice them anymore). We also have boards across the top of the ceiling that are anchored to the trusses above to make the kitchen ceiling (which will get replaced) stable. Yes, folks - this is where I cook nowadays. This particular day, I was washing out far too many canning jars, making bread, and canning the many blackberries I picked. What you can't see is the blackberry juice on the counter where my son, Nathan was "helping" me as well as the breakfast dishes still in the sink and about 40 canning jars on the counter. The picture actually looks so neat compared to the nightmare in person! So, if you're feeling less than perfect, be encouraged! I shall never be a domestic goddess, but I am learning to cook gluten free!