Monday, March 31, 2014

Pics from my balcony and why I don't like Bob's Red Mill Gluten Free Flour

So the other day I was sitting down to write a review of Bob's Red Mill Gluten Free Flour, and I realized I should take a picture of the coffee cake I had made.  I also realized that I was drinking tea out of an adorable tea cup that my friend gave me (my friends are the best).  I also realized that it was a beautiful day outside.  So I got a stool, a tea-towel to cover the ugly stool, and snapped these photos.

Here's the thing - I'm afraid of our balcony.  I'm not afraid of all balconies... just ours.  You see, when you step out on the balcony, it jiggles.  It really does.  And, maybe I'm weirdly paranoid, but I just don't trust that the balcony is going support my weight and remain attached to the building.  So I try to avoid it as much as possible.  But the views are just wonderful.

View facing right, toward the ocean:

View facing straight ahead:

This tea towel was embroidered by a lady at Peter's family's church in Sao Paulo.  It was a wedding gift!  How cute!

View facing slightly left:


When I decided to be gluten free, I basically stopped baking or eating baked goods.  The minimal recipes that I tried just avoided flour whatsoever, or called for almond flour.  I have bought some pre-baked goodies that tasted ok, but I just try to avoid the sweets altogether.  However, somehow, when we moved to Brazil, I ended up with a couple of packages of Bob's Red Mill Gluten Free All Purpose Flour (I think some family members gave it to me to try).  So over the past 8 months, I've tried baking with it.  Some recipes that I've tried: Brownies, Coffee Cake, Apple Fritters, Cupcakes, Fried Fish, etc. 

Here's the thing - it's gross.  It tastes really gross.  You know how a lot of people don't like gluten-free sweets because they taste "weird?"  Yeah, this is the flour that tastes weird.  Bob's Red Mill Gluten Free All Purpose Flour is a mixture of garbanzo bean flour, potato starch, tapioca flour, white sorghum flour, and fava bean flour.  I'm not sure which of those ingredients gives it the weird taste.  I have used tapioca flour before, so I know it's not that.  Maybe it's the sorghum?

I'm not an expert food reviewer, and I really don't know how to write a food review.  So, for me, what it all comes down to is the taste.  All I can say is, this stuff tastes gross.  It doesn't matter what other flavors you add to it (sugar, cinnamon, vanilla, etc), it just doesn't taste good.


Side note: I did try making the coffee cake recipe you see pictured above using a different gluten-free flour blend (a Brazilian brand), and it tasted reeeeally good.  I need to tweak the recipe a little bit before sharing, because even though the flavor was amazing, it turned out super dense and difficult to eat.

So I hope this post was helpful to someone, and I hope you enjoyed my pictures!  Rio de Janeiro is a beautiful city, and I'm really sad that it *most likely* won't work out for us to stay here.



P.S. By the way, "beijos" (bay'-joos, with a soft j) are kisses in Brazil.  Another post on that, soon.


  1. The plate is beautiful (and I think, antique?). A relative of mine has a set like that. The coffee cake looks good too!

  2. Thanks, Bethany! I don't know anything about the plate... It is the saucer to a matching tea cup that my mother-in-law gave me! It's beautiful though!


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