I have been trying out different Gluten Free foods lately. I'm looking to start avoiding gluten as much as possible. We don't have any specific food allergies in our family that causes us to avoid foods, thankfully, other than a mild legume allergy from my daughter. However, I want to try to avoid certain foods when possible to help with my weight loss and health journey.
When I was in contact with Namaste, I was able to pick out 3 of their different products. I had a lot of fun going through their website looking at all the different foods they offer. I decided to try out their Hot & Spicy Coating Mix, Bread & Roll Mix, and Chocolate Cake Mix. I had an actual plan for why I picked these, and not just because they looked good.
First, I wanted to try foods that I would eat. I wanted something that would be my normal foods that I'd feed my family. I wanted their opinion on these foods too.
Second, the coating could be easy to review on my first impression. However, bread and cake aren't exactly something I've had good experiences with when going Gluten Free. They are generally pretty dense, and are generally pretty grainy in texture. I wanted to try a more challenging food and put it to the test.
Hot & Spicy Coating Mix
The Hot & Spicy Coating Mix was very easy to use. First off, I was very excited to see that it came supplied with the bags to shake the chicken in.
I get excited over the silliest things sometimes.
I had 3 1/2 pounds of chicken drumsticks, and that was what each packet called for. I used 1 of the 2 coating packets for this. I put the 9 drumsticks in a bowl and put a little milk on the to moisten them (as the recipe said), and then put each drumstick in the plastic bag (1 drumstick at a time), and shook it in the mix until coated. Then put the drumsticks, one at a time, on a cookie sheet to bake.
I baked them at 350° for 30 minutes, and they were perfectly done at over 160° internally.
The mix coated the chicken very well. It stuck on the skin, and baked perfectly.
The taste, is pretty good. I love spicy foods, so this was actually pretty mild for me. It had just a little spice on the back of my tongue. It also lacked salt, and is much better if the chicken is salted. That's something to keep in mind. It has a little tang to it. Kind of like the sour in a sweet and sour flavor. It's good, and I liked it. The only thing I'd do is salt the chicken some before cooking, and then I'd love it to be a bit spicier.
Bread & Roll Mix
This boxed bread mix was easy to make. It called for a mixer, but sadly my kitchen aid is not exactly working. My speed control switch died. Since that isn't an option, I decided to pull out my bread machine. Although I also could have done this by hand. I put it on the dough cycle, so it would only mix and it cook. I put the mix in, then the water, yeast packet (included), egg, egg whites, and the oil. It sat for the 30 minutes to activate the yeast and then mixed it. It came out as a batter, and I put it in a bread pan that I oiled only on the bottom.
I let it rise in my warm oven for 20 minutes, and then the last 10 minutes on the counter as the oven got to temperature.
Although it calls for 65-70 minutes, my oven doesn't actually cook correctly, so at 45 minutes it was done.
I decided to put some butter on the top after it came out.
After it cooled off I sliced it up. Although it did stick to the bottom some when I removed it from the pan about 10 minutes after it came out of the oven, it stayed whole.
After slicing it up, I shared with the family. I want to add that every single time I've had Gluten Free bread, it's been unpalatable. It was grainy, and just unpleasant.
This Bread & Roll Mix is completely the opposite. It was more of a soft and spongy texture. It was not grainy at all. The bread reminded me of English Muffin Bread, but had almost a sweet malty flavor. I think that flavor was from the rice flour. It was very good, and everyone except my 5 year old son liked it. I was very impressed with this bread, and would absolutely eat this all the time.
Chocolate Cake Mix
The cake was very easy to make. We mixed it up according to the recipe with eggs, water, and oil. I added it to my cake pans. However, I did oil my pans and used a tablespoon of the dry cake powder mix to "flour" the pans. This kept it Gluten Free, and also was not losing any of the cake mix. The recipe was right on with my oven, and it cooked for 30 minutes. I pulled the cake out when it was "just" done. It was barely not sticking when I tested it.
I let it cool completely out of the pans. I put some cherry preserves between the layers, and then frosted it with a cream cheese frosting I made. I chilled it for a couple hours, and then we tried it out.
I really like this cake mix. I'm really, really impressed. I actually liked it best the next day, as it was still incredibly moist, but the flavors all had time to meld together. It also seemed to be a bit dryer the day of, and moistened up by the next day. There is absolutely no gritty texture at all. That's what impressed me the most. It is spongy, like a gluten cake, and very pleasing to eat.
Everyone loved this in my house, and would be perfectly fine with this cake instead of our normal flour based cake.
Now, a little more exciting news!!
I am hosting an amazing giveaway from Namaste!
Namaste will provide a wonderful Namaste reusable grocery tote bag full of one Pasta Meal, Baking Mix, Coating Mix, Soup Cup and information to give away to one Big Family Review reader!
If you can't wait, and want your Namaste foods now, you can find more information on purchasing their foods at http://www.namastefoods.com.
To enter the contest, click the link below.
All thoughts and experiences are my own. I love to cook and try new foods at my house. The joy is getting to express my thought to my amazing readers, and share that opportunity for you to try it yourself.