Monday, May 17, 2010

Another Gluten-Free Bakery in Nashville!

When I was a little girl I was enamored with bakeries.  Visiting corner bakeries with their glass-front cases bursting with jelly-filled donuts, muffins, cookies, brownies, scones, and fresh rolls was a rare treat, but that was only one of the reasons that bakeries were so special to me.  Another reason is that I got to make a choice.  I could choose any treat in the entire bakery case.  Did I want chocolate or vanilla?  Cream-filled or jelly-filled.  Oooh, and what kind of frosting should I have, and would I choose sprinkles?  Chocolate or rainbow?  Once the decision was made, we'd walk out with sticky fingers and powdered sugar mustaches while nibbling on the best baked good in the entire store.

For those of us who are gluten-intolerant, bakeries are a thing of the past.  Bakeries are now store fronts that initially bring back fond memories, but then they're followed by the disappointing reality that we will never enjoy a bakery again.  Because if we at even a crumb of the sweet treats held within, we'd be sick for days, some of us weeks or even months.

There are several well-known gluten-free bakeries that have popped up within the last few years, but most of them are in large cities.

When my mom and I were in Chicago, we hunted down Swirlz Cupcakes because we heard that they made a different gluten-free option every day. After following the maps app on my iPhone through the streets of the city, we finally found it, and it was well worth the effort.

This is the picture that I took through the glass display case.

My 8-year-old niece didn't seem to miss the gluten.

When we're in New York City I always have to stop at Risotteria.  Not only do I enjoy the chance to eat gluten-free pizza and breadsticks, but I get to linger at the display case wondering how many of the delicacies I can reasonably fit in my carry-on.

This cupcake didn't even make it out the door.  And, no, I don't want to split it.  Get your own.
New York City has another gluten-free vegan bakery called BabyCakes, but I haven't made it there yet.  But just clicking on that link will send your blood sugar through the roof as the sweets craving rushes through your veins.

Well, Nashville, we no longer have to fly to Chicago or NYC to find a gluten-free bakery.  We have not one, but TWO of them right here in our little city!

You know I'm a huge fan of FiddleCakes.  In fact, the Whiskers Family likes to think that we keep them in business.  The last time the Husband stopped in for his favorite peanut butter chocolate chip cookie there was someone new working behind the counter.  When he asked if he'd ever been to FiddleCakes before, one of the owners beat him to his answer.  "Oh, he's a regular."

This weekend I met a new friend named April.  April is the owner of Aunt April's Bakery, Nashville's only completely gluten-free bakery, and I'm so excited to introduce her to you. 

Many of you know April's baked goods because you buy them when you stop in at Matteo's for gluten-free pizza.  The first time you saw her basket of goodies on the counter you were shocked that single servings of gluten-free cookies and brownies existed!  Providing a safe, delicious, convenient dessert for you brings April so much joy.  When she went gluten-free three and a half years ago, she realized that if she wanted a treat she had to bake an entire batch of cookies or a whole pan of brownies herself.  There wasn't anyplace where she could just pick up a simple cookie.  It was her husband who suggested that April start her own gluten-free bakery for that very reason.  "I'm trying to help people with that convenience," April explained.

Some of you have ordered sandwiches on April's incredible gluten-free Flaxseed Bread at The Wild Cow in East Nashville. Ordering a sandwich in a restaurant like a normal person is a gluten-free person's dream.  I've not yet been to The Wild Cow, but April did bring me a loaf of her bread to try.  Take a look at this beauty!
You've seen pictures of MY bread attempts, so you can really appreciate this!  Not only was it gorgeous, but it sliced like real bread.

It handled the weight of my sandwich fillings -- yummy Salsalito turkey, lettuce, tomato, and avocado.
And it even passed the gravity test.

But, best of all, it was delicious.  It was so good that the Husband said, "I think this is the best gluten-free bread I've ever had."  After another bite, he changed his mind.  "No, I think this is the best bread I've ever had."

Even Marcy needed to know what we were so excited about.

You can also find April's products at Yolos Restaurant in Green Hills and The Green Wagon East.

Aunt April's Bakery does not yet have a storefront, but that's not slowing April down.  She's baking and making deliveries all week long.  You can even place an order by contacting April directly. 

I have more to share about April and her amazing baked goods, but it will have to wait for another day.  Time for an evening treat.

Now, where did I put April's gluten-free chocolate chip cookies?  Oh, that Husband!

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