Manhattan – Lauren’s Gluten-Free Kitchen

“I think I oversoaked the lady fingers!” – Abigail Thompson
“Now. Now that’s a sentence you don’t hear everyday…” – Dana Cooper

If Giggletown was an actual place, then an apartment on 18th Street at 9th Avenue, on Manhattan’s west side, would be the epicenter. Or maybe Giggletown is a spontaneously constructed place that occurs whenever more than 5 girls, 5 bottles of wine, music and cheese assemble.


I happen to love any staycation I have in Giggletown. What could be better than a diet of steady laughing, dancing, pasta, sparkling wine and throaty red wine, multiple desserts and more laughing? 
Perhaps knowing everything you ate was gluten-free. Lauren Danziger is a trained chef who discovered she had Celiac Disease some years ago. She was despairing about life being over (No More Pasta!) when she decided to put her chef skills to the test. She wanted to create all her favorite foods so life could be colorful and hearty once more. 
“Oh man! When I found out I couldn’t have pasta anymore I got seriously depressed!” -Lauren
Thankfully, Lauren has figured out the secrets to beautifully crafted pasta sauces and gluten free brown rice pastas. So really, the world is right again. 


I won’t bore you with all the girl talk. But I drunkenly and sloppily wrote down my notes in my trusty green notebook. And I can’t remember why I wrote these two quotes down, but I did. They seemed important at the time. 
“This is the perfect song to do cartwheels to…” – Lauren Danziger
“Lets do cartwheels” – Abigail Thompson









in her own words: Meryl’s Antipasta Platter: I started with the Google search button, but let the store inspire me. I picked Prosciutto Romano (standard staple, I couldn’t NOT get it), Genoa Salami (debated with the pepper crusted, but went with the original), YOU NEED sweet with these meats, so I was going to do cantaloupe but then I found this fig spread, so I went with that, Gouda (aged at LEAST 60 days – straight form Holland, enough said), Manchego and Bread (Carbs are necesary!!). 

The Pasta Recipe is forthcoming, for now, in true Giggletown fashion. Enjoy a dessert first. Before the main course. 
Abigail’s Big Apple Tiramisu
3 eggs seperated
1 cup sugar
8 oz (1 scant cup) mascarpone cheese
1/2 cup heavy cream
2 cups chilled strong coffee or espresso
2 tblsp kahlua
Large chunk of Semi-Sweet chocolate
1 pkg. lady fingers
Beat yolks and mascarpone, along with 1/2 cup sugar in a bowl until pale and thick. About 2 minutes. In another bowl beat egg whites until stiff peaks form. Add remaining sugar. Fold slowly into peaks, beating if necessary to reform peaks. 
In another bowl beat cream until soft peaks form.  Meanwhile in seperate shallow bowl combine espresso and kahlua. Dip Lady Fingers one by one into mixture. COver each side of the lady finger (about 2 seconds). Lay the fingers into an 8X8 dish. Continue dipping lady fingers and lining the dish until the dish is covered. 
Fold whipped cream into mascarpone, fold in the egg whites, slowly. Combine carefully. 
Layer half the whipped mixture atop the lady fingers. Layer more dipped lady fingers, snugly,  on top of the creamy mixture. Repeat until dish is full. Chill for 6 hours or overnight. 
Shave chocolate over the tiramisu before serving. 
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