Oh WOE is Me! Poor poor Bebe! No gluten…No fun!
Well, I sure have you all fooled. I’m secretly delighted when I bake something and after everyone devours it with great satisfaction, I tell them that it didn’t contain any gluten ingredients.
This week, at the start of Lent, my 9-year-old son came to me and announced that he was “giving up gluten” for Lent. Partially because he wanted to be a better eater in hopes it would bring on a growth spurt (in his mind), but the second reason was incredible. He has been telling me for years that there was something in his nose, but it wasn’t a “booger.” When I (or his doctor) would look, he would point at the inflamed tissues of his nasal cavity. He said he was tired of trying to eliminate it digitally (which I was constantly yelling him for picking his nose) and told his dad and I that he wanted to see if eliminating gluten would get rid of that awful feeling.
When I explained to him that he would have to give up his usual cereal, bread and snacks and only eat mine, he was fine. He wasn’t even fazed. To take even more stress off, I explained that Cool Ranch Doritos don’t contain gluten ingredients, and that’s all he needed to hear. To make it easy for him and give him some independence, I wrote a “G” on everything in our food pantry that he could eat. Much to both our surprise, there were a lot of “G’s” to choose from. Matter of fact, there were more “G’s” than not, and we never even realized it.
It was unfortunate that he decided to go gluten-free the day before Valentine’s Day. Being the home room mom, I took class room parties very seriously. I’m used to coordinating allergy free products for other children, but never for my own. Instead of providing gluten-full snacks for the class and one gluten-free for my son, I decided to make the class a gluten-free snack and not tell them the ingredients. We went to the library, found a Betty Crocker cupcake book in the recipe section and found a recipe for marshmallow filled chocolate cupcakes. Yum-Yum!
The morning of the party, I prepared a box of Betty Crocker gluten-free chocolate as cupcakes. It’s a very easy recipe that calls for 3 ingredients (just like the gluten-full box mix), but it required a full stick of butter. YIKES! Not very healthy.
I hallowed out the inside of the cupcakes with a grapefruit knife and filled the centers with a mixture of vanilla icing and marshmallow cream. So easy! I replaced the top of the hallowed out section and iced each cake with plain white icing and topped it with a sweet tart.
My son was thrilled when he passed them out to the class, waited until they devoured them and announced that they were gluten-free. No one cared and everyone was sad that there was only enough to have one per person. I would’ve made more, but they were quite expensive to make at $4.50 +/- box, plus the price of butter and eggs. Yikes!
It was all worth it to keep my son on the right track and hopefully give him some relief from his discomfort. I’m keeping a log to see if he has that growth spurt and how he’s feeling through the next 40 days.
Recipe for Marshmallow Creme-Filled Cupcakes (12 cupcakes per box)
- 1 Box Betty Crocker Gluten-Free Chocolate Cake Mix
- Water, Butter & Eggs called for on cake box mix
- 1 Cup Vanilla whipped ready-to-spread frosting
- 1/2 cup marshmallow creme
- 1 can Vanilla whipped ready-to-spread frosting
Pre-heat oven as directed on box mix. Place paper baking cups in each of 12 muffin cups. Make and bake cake mix as directed on box using water, butter and eggs. Cool 10 minutes then transfer onto cooling rack to cool completely.
With a knife, melon baller or grapefruit knife, make deep, cut or 1/2-in-wide indentation in center of each cupcake. In a small bowl, mix 1 cup vanilla frosting and marshmallow creme. Transfer to a pastry bag or plastic bag with the tip cut-off. Using a pastry bag, fill each cupcake with creme mixture. Replace hole cover if necessary. Cover tops of cupcakes with icing and decorate with your favorite gluten-free sprinkles or colored sugars.