The National Digestive Diseases Information Clearinghouse, a service of the National Institutes of Health, reports that as many as three million Americans have celiac disease. If you or members of your family suffer from this disease or are otherwise allergic or sensitive to gluten, you know what a struggle it can be to find gluten free products. Once you begin researching what ingredients to watch for and scouring labels, you quickly learn how many everyday, family favorite food items contain gluten. You have probably had to forgo many of the foods that you loved, because you have been unable to find them in gluten free form or gluten free products that you can use to make them.
Fortunately, some popular brands have become aware of this issue and are taking steps to provide quality gluten free products. This means that you may be seeing gluten free versions of some of your old favorites on your local grocery store shelves. One such product is Log Cabin All-Natural, a preservative-free, gluten-free, all-natural brand of pancake syrup.
While pure maple syrup does not contain gluten, it might not fit realistically into your budget. One hundred percent pure maple syrup costs around $1 per fluid ounce, while maple flavored pancake syrup typically costs less than 25¢ per fluid ounce. With a suggested retail price of $4.99 for a 22-ounce container, Log Cabin All-Natural comes out to about 22¢ per fluid ounce. In addition, not only is this syrup a gluten free product, but it is also preservative free.
It does not really matter whether gluten free products are affordable if they do not taste good, though. Happily, Log Cabin All-Natural syrup does not disappoint. Open the charming, crock-like bottle and you inhale a natural maple scent, not the saccharin-sweet, antifreeze-ish fragrance of some pancake syrups. The slow-pouring syrup is thick and dark, and the taste is authentically, deliciously maple.
Even if you are not a pancake fan – in fact, even if you are a breakfast by-passer – you can enjoy the rich, decadent taste of this gluten free product in some of your favorite family recipes as well as new ones. Chef Armand Vanderstigchel, author of Chicken Wings Across America and The Adirondack Cuisine Cookbook, provided the following recipes. As long as you stick with gluten free products for the remaining ingredients, you can whip up meals that the whole family will enjoy.
Summer Fruit and Roquefort Salad with Dijon Maple Dressing
For the Salad:
1 head fresh and chilled romaine lettuce (washed, trimmed and chopped into bite-size pieces)
8 ounces fresh and chilled arugula (thoroughly washed if bought with stem)
½ cup Roquefort blue cheese (crumbled into small pieces)
½ cup chopped walnuts
2 cups diced fresh strawberries (washed and stems removed
1 cup fresh blueberries (washed)
1 small red onion, thinly sliced
For the dressing:
2 tablespoons log cabin® all natural syrup
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
¼ cup fresh orange juice
½ teaspoon ground black pepper
¼ teaspoon table salt
1 teaspoon fresh chopped mint
¼ cup pomace olive oil
2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar
1. In a large mixing bowl, combine and toss romaine lettuce, arugula, Roquefort cheese, walnuts, strawberries, blueberries and onion.
2. In a small mixing bowl combine, log cabin all natural syrup, Dijon mustard and orange juice. Whisk until smooth. Slowly add the olive oil and apple cider vinegar while vigorously whisking. Add salt, pepper and mint.
3. Toss the reserved salad mixture with the dressing. Serve immediately.
Holiday Maple Baked Ham
1 half-boneless pre-cooked smoked ham (about 5 pounds)
For the glaze:
1 cup Log Cabin® All Natural syrup
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
½ teaspoon ground ginger
2 teaspoons unsalted butter, melted
For the sauce:
1 cup water
¼ cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
½ teaspoon cider vinegar
2 teaspoons log cabin all natural syrup
Pinch of salt and pepper
1. In a small sauce pan prepare glaze by whisking log cabin all natural syrup, cinnamon, ginger and melted butter over low heat until warm-set aside.
2. Preheat oven to 325 degrees. With a small sharp knife, score a checkered or diamond ½ inch design in fat side-up of the ham. (Optional but decorative) place the ham fat side up on a rack in a shallow roasting pan. Do not cover or add any water. Insert a meat thermometer and bake the ham for approximately 45 minutes.
3. Proceed to pour the pan juices into a medium saucepan. Skim off excess fat and set the drippings aside.
4. Pour the maple syrup glaze mixture over the ham, and return to the oven. Occasionally baste the ham with the syrup from the pan while it finishes baking an additional 45 minutes .with a thermometer check internal temperature-it should read 145 f.
1. Remove ham from oven and place on carving board.
2. With a small whisk, add flour to the pan with reserved ham drippings-whisk until smooth and lump-free.
3. Add water, mustard, vinegar, log cabin all natural syrup and Worcestershire sauce. Whisk until smooth.
4. Place pan over high heat and stir until boiling-simmer for a few minutes. If sauce is too loose for taste, thicken with a little cornstarch paste. Place sauce in a sauce boat or keep warm. Carve ham and drizzle sauce over it.
Sources: NIH Celiac DiseaseAwareness Campaign
Log Cabin Website