March 21, 2011

kinda weird, but good.

Has anyone else noticed that it's all "wheat-free" this and "gluten-free" that lately? My prediction: this is a trend that isn't going away anytime soon. You heard it here first, people (not really).

I'm sort of fascinated by learning how foods interact with our bodies. I already know that dairy is not my friend but I've always wondered about wheat. I really do try not to jump on the food fads band wagon, but I have my moments. I am especially easily influenced when someone like my girl crush Gwynnie proposes something crazy. And that crazy thing is called a cleanse.

I just finished two weeks on the Clean program (I was actually supposed to do three weeks, but hell, I'm no Gwyneth Paltrow). I'll spare you too many personal details about why I decided to do it, but I will tell you that I'm glad I did and it was all worth it because I feel better than I've felt in a long time. And the great news is I'm experimenting with some new kinds of baking that are a little easier on the tummy and the stuffy nose. I never thought I would do this, but I made my first foray into gluten free baking this week. And it was kinda weird, but good. Not too bad at all...I mean, they're no butter-and-cream scones, but when you've been eating two shakes a day for two weeks, your standards are a little different. 

In all seriousness, I would highly recommend the cleanse to anyone who feels sluggish all the time (like I did) or has some chronic problems that never seem to go away. It will change your whole outlook on eating, I promise.

Chocolate Walnut Scones (gluten and dairy free)
Adapted from the Clean recipe by Jenny Nelson
3/4 cup coconut oil
1/4 cup water
1/2 cup dates, pitted, chopped, and smashed into a paste

1 T agave nectar
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/8 teaspoon baking soda

2 cups gluten free all purpose flour (I used Bob’s Red Mills) +1 T for dusting
Pinch sea salt
2 oz organic dark chocolate, chopped

1/2 cup toasted walnuts, coarsely chopped

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Grease a baking sheet with a dab of coconut oil, or use a silicone baking mat. 

Heat the coconut oil in a medium bowl until liquid. Add the water, agave, dates, and vanilla and whisk well to combine (there will still be little chunks of dates). Set aside.

In a large bowl, whisk together all the dry ingredients. 

Add the coconut and date mixture to the dry ingredients. Stir in the chocolate and walnuts. Sprinkle some flour on a cutting board and turn out the batter onto the board. Shape the batter into a large circle; cut the circle in half. Arrange each half into a smaller circle. Cut each circle in half, and then in thirds so that you have six little triangles from each circle, or 12 total. 

Spread the scones evenly across a large baking sheet. Bake for 16 minutes, or until golden brown. Cool, enjoy, and congratulate yourself on being so resourceful.

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