Mother's Day usually involves having brunch or dinner somewhere delightful, but eating out can be tricky when serious food allergies or sensitivities are involved.
Joanna Schultz discovered that first hand after her daughter developed a severe food allergy. She ended up leaving her corporate career to launch Pikanik, a bakery that specializes in all delicious things free of gluten, wheat, nuts, and dairy, along with vegan options of the same. The South Surrey spot offers everything from blueberry muffins and sweet-potato cornbread to sandwich bread and lemon tea cookies.
Schultz has come up with all sorts of other recipes too, including one for gluten-free Piña Colada French Toast. It would blow any mom away on Mother's Day, whether she has allergies or not.
"I think we can all agree it’s been a long winter in Vancouver," Schultz tells the Straight. "I was lucky enough to get some sunshine in January on a trip to Thailand. Coming home was rough, and I was desperate to feel the warmth of the sun again. Instead, I created this French toast recipe inspired by the many piña coladas I drank on that trip. This dish has it all going on: texture, flavour, and, believe it or not, sunshine."
You can treat your mom and yourself this weekend by whipping up Schultz's dish.
Pikanik Piña Colada French Toast
Cooking time: 10 minutes Active time: 20 minutes
1 small (160 ml) can of coconut milk
2 Tbsp Malibu liqueur
8 thick slices of gluten-free bread (such as Pikanik honey sandwich bread)
1 Tbsp extra virgin coconut oil (divided)
2 cups fresh pineapple, cut into 1/2” pieces
2 teaspoons sugar
1 cup pineapple juice
So Delicious CoCo Whip
Mix coconut milk, Malibu, and eggs in a bowl. Beat well until fully combined.
Dry fresh pineapple on paper towel. Sprinkle with sugar. Place pineapple in a pan on the stove, medium high heat. Allow pineapple to caramelize, turning occasionally to ensure it browns well. Once browned, add pineapple juice and turn down to medium-low heat, allowing the juice to reduce down until it’s reduced by half.
In a large frying pan over medium heat, melt 1/2 Tbsp coconut oil. Dip sliced bread into the coconut milk mixture until well coated, hold up allowing excess liquid to drain, and place in the hot coconut oil. Cook for a few minutes per side, until it’s golden brown on both sides. Add more coconut oil as needed for additional slices.
Place French toast on a plate, top with pineapple, add a generous dollop of Coco Whip, and drizzle the pineapple juice reduction on top.