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Debbie Sharp Loeb, teacher by training but full-time mom to a disabled son, craftsperson, bead artist, great cook, creative homemaker & terrific spotter of cool new products for everything under the sun, presents Hodgepodge: recipes, household hints, stories about children, friends & relatives, cool stuff, music, & much more.

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Monday, December 29, 2008

Gluten-Free Desserts and Other Tips

Hodgepodge reader Nancy J. sends along information to a website on gluten-free desserts.

"Gluten-Free Baking Classics" book by Annalise Roberts, (Agate, $17.95) the creator of , a Web site for people on gluten-free diets.

And these tips are shared when having guests that are on a gluten-free diet:

"Start with simple food in its natural state. It's when you get into processed foods that you run into problems. Fish, chicken, meat, vegetables and fruit are all fine, if they aren't processed."

"If you want to do a pasta dish, there are some wonderful gluten-free pastas. It's easiest if you make it for everyone. Tinkyada and Schar are good brands."

"For appetizers, there are delicious rice crackers, and Diamond Brand nut crackers are good. "

"Desserts are pretty easy: chocolate mousse, fruit, crème brülée, many puddings, even flourless chocolate cake can work."

"If you want to create a crust on something, use rice flour, and for thickening or making a roux, get potato starch."

"If you use processed foods, keep the packaging so your guest can take a look at it."

The president of Cincinnati Celiac Support Group, adds these tips for hosting someone with serious celiac disease, who needs to worry about cross-contamination:

"If you take a portion out for the guest, keep it in the kitchen, don't mix it with other food on a buffet."

"Start with all-new ingredients, like butter or mayonnaise."

"Always wash your hands between handling gluten-containing ingredients and gluten-free."

"Don't be offended if your guest brings his or her own food"

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