If you think being on a gluten free diet means never eating some of your favorite foods, think again. There has been an explosion of gluten free products over the past few years so become familiar with the brands that work for you. Bionaturae has many options for pasta like elbows, spaghetti and penne rigate.
Here are important tips to cooking good gluten free pasta:
- Make sure there is plenty of water when boiling.
- Add salt to the boiling water.
- Start testing the pasta 1 minute before the recommended time. If it’s not done, test in 1 minute intervals.
- Don’t over mix or over cook gluten free pasta; it will fall apart.
The key to a satisfying macaroni and cheese is learning to make a good cheese sauce. By making a few adjustments from a traditional recipe, you’ll soon be in business.
Most cheese sauces are thickened with a roux, which is a mixture of butter and flour. A cornstarch slurry is a popular substitution but is cooked differently. Slurries, a 1:1 ratio of cold water to cornstarch, can really thicken any sauce or soup. The texture of a sauce or soup made with cornstarch is slightly different but compared with the option of never having sauces again, it’s a good alternative. The slurry is added to hot liquid and cooked for a few minutes. If your sauce or soup feels starchy on the tongue, cook longer. You can also use other starches like potato or tapioca if you can’t tolerate corn.
Try this cheese sauce with vegetables or rice. Your gluten free family will thank you.
Gluten Free Macaroni and Cheese
- 1 1/2 – 2 cups of gluten free pasta, like Bionaturae elbows
- 1 cup of milk (you can also use plain soy or rice milk)
- 1 Tbl cornstarch mixed with 1 Tbl cold water (cornstarch slurry)
- Sprinkle of nutmeg
- 1/2 tsp salt
- Few grinds of black pepper
- Sprinkle of dry mustard and garlic powder
- 3/4 cup of shredded cheese (I used a combination of cheddar, parmesan and a shredded Italian blend that you might use for pizza)
1. Heat water in a medium pot on the stove. Make sure to use a cover so that the water boils quickly. Make sure there is at least twice the amount of water as pasta. If you have plenty of water, you do not have to add any oil to the water; it won’t stick.
2. While you are waiting for the water to come to a boil, place a small sauce pan on medium heat. Add milk and cook until it is hot but not boiling.
3. When milk is hot, add cornstarch slurry and whisk. Add spices. Continue to cook until slightly thickened. You might need to raise the temperature slightly.
4. The water should be ready by now. Once it is boiling, add at least 1 tsp of salt. Be careful because the water might spit a bit and burn you when you add the salt. Add pasta and stir. Sitr occasionally. Cook 1 minute less than the recommended time and then start testing for doneness.
5. Once white sauce (that’s your milk sauce) has thickened slightly, turn off heat. Add cheese mixture and stir. Stir occasionally.
6. Once pasta is done, drain and add back to pan. Add cheese and stir to combine. Serve immediately.
Author Information: Amy Fothergill, San Francisco, CA
Amy Fothergill is the mother of two and owner of The Family Chef. She teaches cooking classes and provides consultations. She blends her culinary techniques with delicious ingredients to create gluten free, healthy dishes that the whole family enjoys.
Blog: http://thefamilychef.blogspot.com (a food blog which is a blend of gluten free and regular recipes)
Gluten-free recipes: http://www.examiner.com/x-13910-SF-GlutenFree-Food-Examiner