Tips for New Gluten-Free Cooks
Sticking to a gluten-free diet during your college years can be especially hard. Living and food-prep spaces are often cramped and shared, and not all university dining hall personnel are hip to the needs of gluten-free students and staff. These circumstances make it tough to rely on others to feed you safely. Yet what a terrific opportunity this presents for you to learn to cook! Cooking may seem intimidating at first, but it can be quite rewarding — after all, the result is delicious food!
Here are some tips for new gluten-free cooks:
Cook with other people who know how to cook or want to learn.
At first, choose recipes that don’t rely too much on flour. Adjusting a recipe that calls for a tablespoon or two of flour is an easy substitution issue, but baking an entire gluten-free cake from scratch takes a bit of practice.
When you’re cooking for someone important, don’t try out a new recipe. Stick to gluten-free dishes you know how to prepare and that you know turn out well. Do a trial run with the recipe if you need to.
Take the time to read through the whole recipe before you begin cooking.
Use parchment paper for lining baking pans, especially when baking gluten-free. Parchment makes removing your baked goods from the pan much easier, and it makes cleanup a dream — no butter-flour mixture or errant batter to scrape off!
Always use sharp knives. Not only are sharp knives safer (because they’re less likely to slip), but they make your work much more efficient.
When cooking meat, make some extra to use in the next day’s meal.
When cooking on a stovetop, make sure that the handle of your pan is turned away from you so you don’t accidentally hit it and cause the hot food to go flying off the stove.
If your recipe flops, consider how you can change the food into something good. For example, you can turn flat gluten-free cookies into an ice cream topping or cookie crumb pie crust.
Clean as you go to save time at the end.