When I had the idea to start a blog event where gluten-free bloggers could “adopt” a gluten-free blogger and try and blog about one of those blogger’s recipes, I knew almost instantly whose blog I wanted to adopt first. I picked Karina, the Gluten-Free Goddess herself, because I love the artistic and healthy spirit of her blog, and I admire her determination to make a restricted diet glorious. I also highly appreciate her respect for and creativity with vegetables. Some time back, her readers (including me, obviously) were sad to hear that Karina’s diet had become more limited by various allergies as well that would strain the most creative soul. Her readers and admirers rallied, and BytheBay of Gluten-Free by the Bay hosted a blog event called cooking for Karina. It was a great testament to everyone’s fondness and appreciation for Karina and her lovely blog when the gluten-free blogging community put their creativity to the test to create allergen-free recipes. (I made a recipe for Grilled Sesame Vegetables and Cashew Cream Fruit Salad- not to be eaten together, of course.) But besides the dishes that were cooked FOR Karina, I have not made NEAR as many of her recipes as I want to. I did make her excellent Flourless Gluten-Free Apple Cake Recipe, and posted about it in the early days of the Book of Yum. DH and I both thoroughly enjoyed the apple cake. In fact, thinking about it now… I want to make it again! Maybe next week. Anyway, this week I had the unenviable task of picking JUST ONE of her recipes. I cheated and picked two, her lovely recipe for Gluten-Free Sesame Noodles and her recipe for Vegan Baked Mac and Cheese that Karina made for a romantic Valentine’s Day with her sweetie. What’s not to love about a vegan mac ‘n cheese, with all the fun and none of the guilt (or cholesterol) associated with dairy? Other versions I’ve made in the past have often been too reliant on one ingredient for flavor- with overpowering mustard or tahini announcing all too loudly that “THIS IS A VEGAN MAC, if you please! None of that dairy stuff for us, thanks!!!” These are usually recipes I make once and then sadly close the cookbook on, with little intention to make it again. But Karina’s Mac and Cheese was a totally different story. Some of the familiar vegan staples were there, it’s true- mustard, nutritional yeast, even tahini… but also some new additions, like organic white wine and golden balsamic vinegar. I was intrigued, and bewitched by the crumb topping that made this something more than everyday-mac-n-cheese. It wasn’t until I tasted it that I realized how masterful the recipe was, with subtle flavors harmonizing together in new and different ways. It wasn’t cheese- exactly- but it was creamy and addicting and perfect all by itself, with no need to apologize. And honestly, I think if I hadn’t asked DH what he thought the dish was made of, he might not have even realized he was eating VEGAN food that night. He proclaimed it YUMMY, and I was definitely sold on yet another Gluten-Free Goddess recipe.
So the next time you’re looking for lovely, sensitively assembled recipes where fresh ingredients sing through, you should definitely find your way over to Karina’s blog. Not only can you find some wonderful recipes, many of which are perfect for readers with multiple intolerances, but you can ALSO find an amazing collection of groovy goddess t-shirts and goods- I have a few in my own closet, including a gem proclaiming “My Kisses are Gluten-free” and another telling the world “Gluten is yucky.” (DH had way too much fun doing his online Christmas shopping a few years ago.) So what recipes of Karina’s have you made? Share in the comments- recipe URL’s are welcome!
This concludes my first entry for the “Adopt a Gluten-Free Blogger Event.” And now I will somehow have to pick between a million other bloggers that I’d love to “adopt” for next month. I may just have to resort to picking a name out of a hat! So, here’s my entry- who will YOU pick for our March-April installation?