You now can take any recipe and make it work for you. So, dig out your grandmother’s or your great aunt’s recipe cards in that old-fashioned script that you can barely read and transcribe them into gluten-free delicacies. I did exactly that and have recreated the memory and the taste of Aunt Ruth’s Crumb Cake.
Aunt Ruth’s Crumb Cake
Topping and Flour Mixture:
1 cup sorghum flour
1/2 cup arrowroot starch
1/2 teaspoon xanthan gum
1 cup white sugar
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter
Blend these ingredients with a pastry blender and set aside 1/2 cup of the mixture to use as topping.
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/4 cup heavy cream and 1/4 cup water (or 1/2 cup whole milk)
1 cup golden raisins
1/2 of a large Granny Smith apple, grated (peel can be grated)
Add second set of ingredients to first mixture, after removing 1/2 cup for use as topping. Mix only until blended. Pour into a greased 9-inch round pan. Sprinkle with topping and bake in 350 degree oven for approximately 1 hour (convection oven: 325 degrees for 40 minutes).
Your family members weren’t bakers? There’s no reason to settle for expensive books about baking gluten-free, which sometimes make it harder than it needs to be. Instead, look at garage sales and flea markets for the time-tested recipes in booklets that might cost a dime or a quarter. Although the pictures of coiffed matrons baking in their skirts with their 20-inch waists are both antiquated and amusing, the recipes are nothing to laugh at. And even though no one was thinking gluten-free when these booklets were published, they provide a great resource for those of us baking in new ways today.
Here’s a recipe for Sour Cream Banana Bundt Cake with a streusel filling that I found in one of those supposedly outdated booklets and changed using the “secret” formula.
Sour Cream-Banana Bundt Cake
1/2 cup chopped pecans
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
1 and 1/3 cups sorghum flour
2/3 cup arrowroot starch
1 teaspoon xanthan gum
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 very ripe bananas* (1 cup), mashed
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 cup sour cream
*Ripe bananas can be frozen after removing skins, wrapped in plastic wrap, so that you them ready any time.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Mix streusel and set aside.
Cream butter and sugar. In a separate bowl, whisk together flour, arrowroot starch, xanthan gum, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Add to creamed mixture, along with banana, vanilla, eggs, and sour cream. Mix thoroughly but quickly. Then spoon half the batter into a greased bundt cake pan, followed by the streusel, and then the rest of the batter. Bake for about 45 minutes at 350 degrees, until toothpick comes out clean (convection oven: 45 minutes at 325 degrees.) Cool slightly before removing from pan.
I baked this for a gathering of my family members, who still grimace a bit at the idea that they are eating gluten-free. Everyone, from my son-in-law the chocolate lover, who is not thrilled about fruit in his sweets, to my 16-month-old grandson, loved the cake, and I was lucky to be able to take a bit home to share with my writing group.