A few weeks ago I stumbled across a blog titled Simply Sugar & Gluten-Free by Amy Green. I was delighted to see she had a cookbook, and even more excited to get my hands on it! In her cookbook Simply Sugar & Gluten-Free: 180 Easy & Delicious Recipes You Can Make in 20 Minutes or Less, Green uses simple sugars, like agave nectar and palm sugar, to create simple delectable recipes.
In the back of the cookbook, Green places a detailed appendix that provides the reader with not only Baker’s Tips, but also a Conversion and Substitute Chart. Baker’s Tips is fun and informative. Green provides suggestions and reminders to help first time bakers bake the perfect gluten-free product. We found her reminder to “taste and smell your flours” very helpful, as it reminded us to check our flours before we use them. She also notes how gluten-free “needs extra help releasing from pans”. Green is the first author that we have found who has acknowledged this difference between gluten-free baking and regular baking that we have found.
We were delighted to see a whole section dedicated on how she stores her flours to great ideas for what to do with your stale bread. She even provides tips on how to cook perfect gluten-free pasta – a “feat” within itself. Green also lists white sugar alternatives and talks about how they affect her cooking both nutritionally and in taste.
Each recipe is well written and easy to follow. Quick Tips and Variations are spread throughout the cookbook, providing a fun addition to the recipes. Out of the many enticing recipes, we will review: Ruthie’s Apple Crisp and Grilled Balsamic Dijon Chicken.
Ruthie’s Apple Crisp is a great way to put turning apples to work. The directions were easy to follow and Green’s substitution list made replacing ingredients we didn’t have easy, without compromising the quality and taste of the Crisp. Green’s quick tip to place the apples in a bowl of water with lemon juice kept the apples unblemished and crisp, perfect for baking.
After the crisped cooled, the inside was soft and warm. Its texture was reminiscent of German pancakes with a crumble topping.
The Grilled Balsamic Dijon Chicken was chosen for its unique combination. With simple everyday ingredients Green helps the average cook whip up something delicious. The directions were easy to follow and the marinade, while it doesn’t look like a lot, coats everything evenly.
After grilling the chicken was moist and melted in your mouth. This recipe had a perfect balance of sweet and tangy. Our picky eaters loved it and could not eat enough. We found the basic marinade to be amazing even if the meat marinades for a fraction of the time recommended. This versatile recipe has become the go-to recipe on busy work nights.
Our biggest criticism is the book had no page numbers. While we managed our way through the cookbook, we found the lack of page numbers frustration as recipes and the index reference page numbers. Outside of this, Simply Sugar & Gluten-Free is an excellent cookbook. With Green’s written encouragements and great instructions anyone can bake wonderful gluten-free, healthy meals. We give Simply Sugar & Gluten-Free 4 out of 5 stars.
Simply Sugar & Gluten-Free: 180 Easy & Delicious Recipes You Can Make in 20 Minutes or Less by Amy Green can be purchased at your local bookstore, or online at Barnes and Noble, Amazon.com, and Powell’s Books.
Amy Green has a Masters in Education and has received her pastry degree from Collin College in Frisco, Texas. Green also teaches local sugar-free, gluten-free cooking classes. Green is the sole contributor and owner of Simply Sugar & Gluten-Free, an online blog dedicated to eating healthier.