Meet Leah Moss, baker extraordinaire! After adding Leah’s Gluten Free to foodjunky and getting rave reviews from customers, I decided I needed to know more about the woman behind the brand! Read below to find out more about the inspiration behind the gluten free brand and to see what’s currently baking in Leah’s kitchen.
Leah’s Gluten Free
How long have you been baking for? Do you enjoy cooking as well?
I really learned to bake during the summer before my senior year of college while living on the West Coast for an internship. It was a transformational summer and food was a huge part of that for me. Ever since, I’ve cooked most nights for myself, and my boyfriend and I will often cook dinner together. However, I only have been eating gluten-free since my celiac diagnosis, which was two years ago.
What inspired you to start sharing your baked goods with everyone?
When I was first prescribed the gluten-free diet, I went to the grocery store seeking out prepared baked goods that I could eat – I really needed to satisfy my sweet tooth! Unfortunately, what I found was that most of the products tasted like the cardboard packaging in which they were sold. For those that didn’t (and were yummy), I had nutrition label shock; the products were terrible for you. After that, I was determined to figure out a better solution, and I started tinkering at home. I’d bring items to parties, not mentioning they were GF, and just say I brought cupcakes, for example. Only after people ate them would I say that they didn’t contain gluten, and people were always pleasantly surprised. After a while, people started telling me that I needed to sell them.
What is your favorite thing to whip up in the kitchen? What is the most popular item you bake?
It’s a toss-up. On the one hand, I love a really good chocolate-chunk oatmeal cookie, and on the other, a rich apple-cinnamon crisp. Either way, I like them warm from the oven – waiting is too much of a challenge. Other people seem to really enjoy my peanut butter and jelly bars, as well as my signature pumpkin-spice cupcakes with chai buttercream.
I’ve tasted some “gluten-free goodies” that are definitely lacking flavor, what is your secret in make sure your recipes come out just as, if not more, delicious than regular baked goods?
I use a combination of gluten-free flour types, rather than just one ingredient. If you use just almond flour it may be too nutty, or just rice flour could taste too dry and chalky. Every ingredient has its own flavor profile, so by blending them together, they imitate a “normal” all-purpose flour most closely. I also try to adjust recipes to make them a bit healthier wherever possible, substituting no-sugar-added applesauce in place for some oil or butter, or nonfat Greek yogurt instead of sour cream, for example. I feel better about eating sweets this way for myself, so I always feel better about serving it to others as well!
Have you tried something gluten-free lately? Want to suggest Leah’s next baked good? Leave a comment and let us know!