flour can remain in the air for up to 8 hours after baking with it, and therefore find it's way into your breakfast, lunch or dinner, onto your fruit in the bowl you leave on the counter, or simply into the exact air you breath and ingest, both while you're baking and for the hours afterwards - which could have gluten making it's way through your guts in no time flat, just from trying to do something lovely for the gluten lovers in your life.
if you're gluten intolerant, then i'll leave this up to your own perogative, as there is such a spectrum of how this may or may not affect your body. if you're celiac, then you need to trade in every bit of that gluten flour and either hire your friends to do the baking for you in their houses, or find some really great gluten free flour and make the switch for all of your baking.
and it's settled then.
a few other common mistakes when it comes to gluten free Christmas baking are... drumroll please....
1. contaminated equipment. rolling pins, baking sheets, whisks and electric mixers are prime suspects. rolling pins will have no doubt absorbed gluten if you've done any baking with gluten-containing flour in the past. toss that, and use a water bottle to roll things out in the mean time if you have to. baking sheets, same story. if you're not prepared to buy Christmas presents for everyone in your life AND invest in new baking sheets, parchment paper could make this your lucky day. just make sure your baking doesn't touch the pan itself. as for loaf and cake pans, you're going to have to replace those bad boys, there's no way around that one. whisks and electric mixers are risky business as they just have so many sneaky places to hide bits of old dough or batter. if you feel 100% confident that there is nothing leftover in any cracks or crevaces, then go ahead and get mixin! if you have any doubt, hit up target and invest in a new one. after all, once you've spent what we do on gluten free flour and the works, it would be a shame to contaminate it because of a $20 mixer!
2. flavors and add-ins. beware of vanilla extract, or peppermint and any other flavors you care to add. also, colors, candied fruit for Christmas cakes, and chocolate chips can get you in a pickle. as for extracts, do a little research on what you already have in your cupboard - if that doesn't pan out to be safe, clubhouse is an easy company to go with and aside from being easily accessible at major grocery stores, it's also a company that has made huge strides in producing gluten free products! same goes for colors - clubhouse food coloring is safe, i can't say that it's healthy, but it's safe and it colors things! candied fruit is tricky, visit your local natural food store for the options available near you or make your own! and chocolate chips - the company enjoy life is a simple solution, and hershey's chipits are also a safe option.
stay tuned for some great baking ideas, including my favorite gluten and dairy free sugar cookie recipe!
mmm... gotta love this time of year and what it does to our waistlines -