By Gary Nager
There is no way that I can say, in all honesty, that the new Stacy’s Gluten Free Goodies, the new allergen-free bakery located in the Cory Lake Isles Professional Center on Cross Creek Blvd., is my favorite place to enjoy cookies, cakes or breads.
What I will say is that Stacy’s goodies are definitely tasty, despite the fact they are not only gluten- but also allergen-free. Owner Stacy Hiles, a CPA whose older son Zachary wasn’t diagnosed with his allergy to wheat gluten (which is know for giving baked goods made with wheat their elasticity and chewiness), dairy and eggs until age 3, has dedicated herself to making tasty baked goods that will allow children and adults with food allergies to still enjoy bakery items.
“Zachary’s developmental delays resembled autism,” Stacy says. “But, once his doctor tested him for food sensitivities and we took those items out of his diet, we slowly started to see a change in him.” Stacy says three years later, Zachary no longer exhibits autistic tendencies and is developing normally.
Interestingly enough, because so many gluten-free breads and cookies use corn as a substitute for wheat, Stacy and her husband Stephen’s younger son Nicholas ended up with an allergy to corn.
“All of us now eat gluten- and allergen-free at home” says Stacy. “We didn’t think it was fair to the kids to have all of us eating different things.”
It’s obvious that Stacy really takes the time to test her recipes, combining the best possible taste with the safest ingredients. For example, while most gluten-free breads aren’t particularly tasty, Stacy’s “Hope Bread” (There is hope for gluten-free bread), which features ingredients like potato starch, tapioca flour, teff flour, organic millet flour, sorghum flour and guar palm oil, is actually very tasty.
So far, of all the items I have sampled at Stacy’s, my favorites are the moist blueberry muffins, the equally moist double chocolate cake, the sunflower butter cookies and anything with her vanilla icing, from a tasty carrot cake to vanilla cupcakes. While her chocolate chip cookies and brownies are never going to make me forget my favorite sweet treats, they are tasty enough to give children and adults with food allergies reasonable substitutions for items they should not eat.
On my most recent visit to Stacy’s, a woman named Mara and her daughter Serena just happened to stop into the bakery when they were visiting another business in the same plaza. The Seven Oaks residents found out that Serena had Celiac Disease only a few months ago and had been struggling to find tasty foods to replace those Serena was told to no longer eat.
“This place is fantastic,” Mara said as she and Serena sampled Stacy’s banana nut bread. “I am so glad we found you!”
Apparently, that’s a regular occurrence at Stacy’s. “We have at least five people a day who just stop in or have been told by someone else about us,” Stacy says. “It lets me know I’m doing the right thing with my mission of sharing this knowledge with people.”
Stacy’s Gluten Free Goodies (10335 Cross Creek Blvd.) is open every Wed.-Sat., 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Call 477-4247 or visit Gluten-Free-Goodies.com to see Stacy’s full menu. Also, don’t forget to ask about Stacy’s catering partnership with Miracles Catering.