Everyone has an opinions, a different idea of what perfect taste is. There are many ways of cooking to getting the job done, maybe you learned at home like me. People say different things to us, trends change and dietary restrictions. Everyone seems to have a problem with gluten but imagine you are a baker for 30 years. A tradition and a way that has gone on forever. Then, one day you start to realize that things are changing at your business. This beautiful delicious baked bread that you have made for generations, something that you hold up like an NFL trophy in terms of standards. Slowly the people stop buying at much of your bread, customers start requesting different bread. Just like the changing of the days, so to you must change the bread that you have made. The original flour you have made it with is considered by some to be harmful. In a blink of an eye you have to learn how to make a gluten-free bread. Something that resembles your earlier product but with a twist on ingredients you are not unfamiliar with. As a chef or baker that is super difficult to deal with. It’s out of the typical routine everyone gets comfortable with. I am always down for a challenge or a switch up in my life. Nothing good in life is not without its challenges. This new challenge is learning about being “gluten-free” and the next mountain that all chefs are learning to climb.
Lately my most recent challenge has made gluten-free donuts. I want a krispy kreme like donut that all people can enjoy. I like to make brunch and whats brunch without the donuts! It has been very difficult for me, it just not the same. It just doesn’t work as it should. I am working on it, have faith. It works but the donuts suck. I have now tried everything from potato flour to 1 to 1 ratio flours and more. It just isn’t the same. A disappointing and unsuccessful challenge to this point. Why? I keep asking myself, again and again. Why would I put myself through this stressful process. As if cooking and running a kitchen wasn’t enough. But I am ready for it. Even if it is more expensive, not local and somewhat of a food science in terms of making it. It can be very frustrating but I want everyone who eats my food to be happy (at least while eating it ;-). As a chef I am always looking for favors and I want to share them with everyone. I even try to create flavors and refine old flavors.
Gluten free donuts came out a lot like funnel cake. A dense deep-fried dough covered in powdered sugar served at your local fair grounds or food festival. Delicious as it is. It is not the soft donut that can only be described as heavenly. The gluten-free flour I used was developed by a very popular Chef Thomas Keller. Its called Cup4Cup. It says just replace this gluten-free flour with any normal flour to create your favorite dish. The thing is that there are all these one to one baking flours like Cup4Cup but they don’t tell you, that need to make adjusts other ingredients. It’s beginning to feel like a gimmick, using Cup4Cup. I am going to figure this out… have no fear.
If you can not actually eat gluten remember to hold your ground, I know it hard. Especially if the products are not as good as the original or compare. Some do. Look out for the restaurants that are adapting with the times and are offering great flavors. I know that any customer can make or break you. Social Media, words of mouth and any form of a message is very powerful today. I prefer making customers. Keep going out to eat and keep challenging chefs to make you a gluten-free meal. Don’t except it’s not possible, it okay to challenge and ask for more. It is your hard earn dollar. Its easier to give up and not face the impossible. Good luck out there. As gluten-free becomes more popular, be ready if you’re a chef. If you are a diner be ready to taste some interesting dishes and twists of all kinds. Don’t forget to ask, Is this gluten-free? Its everyone’s new favorite question. Chefs, keep cooking.
Gluten Free Opinion… Making & Baking Donuts
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