Hi there! I’m Jeanne. I live in Seattle. You might remember my blog as Four Chickens (fourchickens.blogspot.com)–the title when I first started it in May 2005 (the name referred to the chickens that we have in our urban back yard). Eventually, in 2010, I decided that since my passion is gluten-free baking it was time to re-name my blog so people didn’t think it was a farming blog. Um, yeah. Originally, years ago, it was more of a knitting and gardening blog–so there was all-kinds of confusion. Just so you know, for now I’m keeping @fourchickens as my Twitter name, so I haven’t completely abandoned the chickens thing. We do have chickens in our urban backyard.
In case you’re wondering, our chickens are: Billina (Welsummer) and Clover (Partridge Rock). We refer to the them collectively as “The Girls.” Lulu, our Golden-Laced Wyandotte, whom you might read about on the blog, and Peep, our Silver-Laced Wyandotte died last year from separate raccoon attacks.
I’ve been baking gluten-free since the birth of my daughter in 2000 triggered my gluten-intolerance. Ever since, I’ve been experimenting with how to bake gluten-free goods that taste just like their wheat counterparts. There has been a lot of research and trial and error during this journey, but I am happy to share with you my successes! I also share my disasters when I think it will help folks. In addition, I like to share various baking tips to help my readers bake the best they can! I love to bake and I want my readers to have the best experience possible. I often tackle hard stuff (like puff pastry), but I try to make it as accessible to everyone.
My second baking cookbook, Gluten-Free Wish List: Sweet and Savory Treats You’ve Missed the Most again with Chronicle Books, came out October 2015.
If you want to see what I really look and sound like, as well as how I approach gluten-free baking, check out my Google talk!
As an author, I am represented by Sally Ekus at The Lisa Ekus Group.
I have 1 daughter I refer to as Girlfriend; 1 husband I refer to as dAhub* (it’s a reference to Moby Dick and the hunt for the mouse-bats in our house–search “mouse-bat” on the site for more info); two chickens; one organic garden in a constant state of disrepair; 10 million books; 5 million cookbooks; a zillion unfinished projects rolling around the house; more knitting yarn that I can use in my lifetime; and 1 Ph.D. in an interdiciplinary, experimental theatre field. I teach gluten-free baking at various venues around Seattle, which is fun and allows me to help people know that gluten-free baking can be easy and delicious!
Not only am I gluten-intolerant, I have a life-threatening allergy to wheat (apparently I am the only one my allergist has ever seen with an actual wheat allergy). I also react to oats themselves (even gluten-free oats). Read about this common intolerance that gluten-free folks often have at Oats and Gluten Intolerance: It’s Complicated. And I have have Oral Allergy Syndrome (OAS), which means that I cannot eat most fruits, vegetables, and nuts in their raw state (I can eat most of them well-cooked except for broccoli, avocado, and eggplant). My daughter has a life-threatening allergy to peanuts and is sensitive to soy. Add to this a husband who reacts to almonds and lemons–and you can imagine how this combo platter keeps life interesting, to say the least!
I was also the website editor for the site Canning Across America. Currently the site is down–we’re trying to decide what to do with it. Canning Across America was an ad-hoc collective of folks all over the US who want to keep the traditions of food preserving alive. Canning is very fun and I love to do it with my family and with my pals. I then use my canned goods (mostly jam) in my baked goods. Win-win!
* in relation to the whole mouse-bat thing, you may call me Ishmael.