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Tuesday, June 3, 2014

The Unusual Gluten Free Pasta Cookbook is here!

So I wasn't exactly keeping this a secret. It's just that I haven't really had a chance to tell you about it. Some of you may remember me mentioning it a while back in passing, with a promise to tell you more about it.  

Well it's here, and it's definitely high passed time I told you about it!  

My new cookbook, Recipes for Unusual Gluten Free Pasta: Pierogis, Dumplings, Desserts and More! is now available!!  (Sorry for all the enthusiastic exclamation marks. One of them is in the book title, and the rest are because I'm just excited!)

So if you've been missing won tons, tortellini, and ravioli, or you've never heard of Bao buns, ravioli nudi, orzo, or Chow Fun, you'll want to keep reading :) 

So what the heck am I talking about?

How about these gluten free steamed rice noodles (ho fun) to start? 

Gluten Free Steamed Rice Noodles (Ho Fun)

Well about a year ago I started researching pasta, and pasta making history. I came across a book called Pasta: The Story of a Universal Food by Silvano Serventi and Francoise Sabban. It's a pretty academic book about the technicalities of how pasta making developed, focusing on Italy and China. But what really struck me as interesting was the definition they used to define pasta. Put simply, they defined pasta as the end product of wheat or durum flour mixed with water or other liquids to create a kneaded dough which is cut into small shapes and then cooked in a moist environment (i.e. poached, boiled, or steamed). That really opens the door on pasta, blowing things so far past pre-packaged brown rice noodles!!

The authors were referring to all kinds of unusual pastas, dumplings, and noodles. And then I came across another book by the same authors (along with the addition of Odile Redon), The Medieval Kitchen: Recipes from France and Italy Well this second book is a lot more fun than the first, and included some fascinating medieval recipes, including some for pasta! It became apparent that pasta has not always been pasta as we know it. 

From there, I researched pasta and food history in places like Eastern Europe, Asia, North Africa, and diaspora in North America. I thought of my own history with pasta, and how different types of German pasta, like spaetzle and fingernudlen, had been integral to me as a kid. How won tons had, in a small way, helped shape my childhood and my desire to learn to use chopsticks. My mother and I used to spend hours in the kitchen when I was little, folding won ton wrappers and shaping pierogi. 

The end result of all this became Recipes for Unusual Gluten Free Pasta: Pierogis, Dumplings, Desserts and More!, a cookbook that includes tidbits of history, cultural anecdotes, and full colour photos. 

 Like this one of Gluten Free Chocolate Pasta Dough used to make Chocolate Fettuccine. 

Gluten Free Chocolate Fettuccine Dough

What will you find in Recipes for Unusual Gluten Free Pasta?

Chapters such as:  

* Rolled, Sliced, and Diced Pasta with recipes for pastas like orzo, beet fettuccine, coloured doughs, and Ho Fun;  

* Noodle-Free Pasta & Grain-Free Noodle Alternatives for things like lazy Ravioli Nudi, and Polish Kopytka;  

* Stuffed Pasta - Wrapped, Boiled, Baked and Fried for dishes Won Tons and Steamed Dumpling Buns

* Beginnings and Endings: Breakfast and Dessert Pasta - because everyone should have pasta for breakfast and dessert at least once!

Over 60 unusual recipes and combinations such as:

* Ravioli Nudi
* Steamed Dumplings Buns
* Hand-cut Orzo
* Tri Coloured Tortellini
* Chocolate Ganache filled Chocolate Pierogi
* Ho Fun Steamed Rice Noodles
* Turkish Piruhi
* Polish Kopytka

And more! (As the title says)

Most of the recipes have vegan options (egg and dairy free), and all have detailed instructions. 

Most of recipes don't require any special equipment, and can be made easily with tools you probably already have in your kitchen.

Right now the book is available in eBook format for Kindle. If you don't have a kindle, no problem! You can download the free Kindle app for your PC/Mac/phone/laptop, whatever, right here.  In July, the book will also be available in print and through iBooks.

So go ahead, get your copy from and start your pasta making journey today!



  1. This is amazing! I love you you delved into the history of pasta and then put your own twist on it. :)

    1. Thanks, Miachel! I'm a super geek when it comes to research, hence my MA in history ;), and I love food, so this was a great chance to combine the two.


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