A couple of weeks ago, Drew and I visited with Anna Sobaski, creator of Breads From Anna, and took a tour of her production facility. We even got to sample a new mix that she’s perfecting (in our opinion it’s delicious already). Anna shared with us some tips for gluten-free baking, her favorite recipes for the holidays, and a few mixes to try at home.
Breads From Anna makes nutritious, affordable mixes, and their product line includes bread, pancake, muffin, and piecrust mixes. They are amazingly delicious and the bread has a light, fluffy texture that is disarmingly similar to bread made with gluten. We especially love the piecrust mix.
Anna is interested in the idea of food as medicine, and her culinary degree came from the Natural Gourmet Institute, which focuses on nutrition and health. All of the Breads From Anna mixes contain healthy grains, and the resulting products contain a lot of protein and fiber without any fillers or a lot of sugar. These breads are nutritious and delicious for anyone—not just for those of us with dietary restrictions.
Breads From Anna mixes are all gluten, soy, nut, and rice free, which is great for people with multiple allergies. Many of the mixes are also yeast, dairy, and corn free as well. The production facility is setup to ensure that there is no cross contamination between mixes.
For the purpose of quality control, Breads From Anna bakes a loaf of bread from each batch of mix that they prepare and package (they mix in small batches—only enough for 100 loaves at a time—to ensure high quality). Because Anna bakes a loaf of bread every day, she has tested many bread machines over the years. Her favorite is the Zojirushi Home Bakery Supreme Breadmaker, which would be a terrific addition to your Christmas wish list.
Anna also gave us some great ideas about how to use her mixes for the holidays:
- Make a savory Chicken Pot Pie using the Pie Crust Mix.
- Make the Classic Herb Bread Mix into stuffing (this is what we plan to do for Thanksgiving). I baked a loaf of this bread last week and it was so good that just thinking about it makes my mouth water!
- Make a triple berry pie with the Pie Crust Mix and filling it with a mixture of fresh cranberries, raspberries, and blueberries and a little sugar or maple.
- Add walnuts to the Pumpkin Bread Mix and make the batter into muffins. Finish with cream cheese frosting.
Anna gave us a Pumpkin Bread Mix to make at home, and although I’m not much of a cook, the muffins came out moist and delicious. I followed her suggestion and added walnuts. I was inspired by the quality of Anna’s mix to create a higher quality frosting. So, I adapted my old frosting recipe using better quality ingredients, and the result was nothing short of amazing. Here’s my new recipe for cream cheese frosting:
Cream Cheese Frosting (makes more than enough)
- 8 oz. cold cream cheese (Philadelphia is gluten-free)
- 5 Tbsp. softened salt-free organic butter
- 2 tsp. vanilla (Nielsen-Massey’s Madagascar Bourbon Pure Organic Vanilla – it’s certified gluten-free, and it’s simply the best)
- 2 C. organic powdered sugar
- pinch of Kosher salt
Beat the cream cheese, butter, and vanilla until combined (but do not whip). Add salt. Gradually add powdered sugar with the mixer on slow until the desired consistency and sweetness is achieved.
Visit the Breads From Anna website for more great recipe ideas!