Baking

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Hello Everyone, As an adult, I'm cooking much more and I am really beginning to enjoy baking. My question is about baking with "safe chocolate". I love white chocolate or vanilla almond bark (quick note - I'm not allergic to tree nuts only peanuts). So I have never had terrible with almond bark, however, I'm wondering what brands are safe to use?

I have not had any problems lately, but with the increasing cross contamination issues, I was just wondering what brands of chocolate, cake mixes, brownies mixes or any sweets that everyone uses.

Thanks, Melanie

On Jul 11, 2001

Hi Melanie

I just started baking more for myself recently too (I had some REALLY dumb questions though!). Unfortunatley I can't help you because I'm in Ireland, but from what I can remember, a lot of people on the board trust Hersheys chocolate. You should check out the products/manufacturers threads for more info - some moms/dads of pa kids may not check in this section due to the title.

Happy baking [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/smile.gif[/img]

gwen

On Jul 12, 2001

I bake a lot and I too, enjoy it. I use either Kellies Candies or Vermont Nut Free Chocolate (contact info. available on the Peanut Free Businesses board). I use a lot of Betty Crocker stuff but you have to be sure to read their labels. I use the King Authur flour since my mother took a tour of their plant and was assured there are no peanut products made on the manufacturing line. I just made some cookies and instead of using chocolate chips, I used some Smarties (from the UK). If I think of any more, I'll let you know.

[This message has been edited by Heather (edited July 16, 2001).]

On Jul 12, 2001

There is an excellent premium or gourmet brand of chocolate called scharffen-berger that is manufactured from scratch in the SF bay area in a nut free plant. It's very rich, strong and flavorful and is a good baking and candy chocolate. However, it is most definitely on the expensive side and they don't make chocolate chips or milk chocolate. They make small bar chocolates, baking bars, powdered cocoa and chocolate, and something called cocoa nibs. They also do not use "slave" cocoa beans from the Ivory Coast. It is a good product, but I am in dread they will "extend" their small candy bar line to include nuts in the bars. The candy bars have lecithin.

This chocolate is in specialty cooking stores and in upscale grocery stores on the west coast of the U.S. There is a web site [url="http://www.scarffen-berger.com"]www.scarffen-berger.com[/url] if you want to check it out.

On Jul 12, 2001

Correction to Scharffen-berger link

[url="http://www.scharffenberger.com"]www.scharffenberger.com[/url]

On Jul 16, 2001

I have to make a correction about the King Arthur flour since I was just there this past weekend - it is made on a nut free line but not a nut free facility.

On Jul 17, 2001

Just to clarify on the Scharffen-Berger chocolate. This is the email response I received from them today. I'm expecting another email response and will post it ASAP.

Greetings....

We are nut-free. Our one ounce bars, however, are molded at a co-packer's facility. They do use nuts in other products they produce. Although there is a remote chance of cross-contamination, we do need to let people know that our co-packer uses nuts.

Please let me know if I may assist further.

Brian Bageant Customer Service Manager Scharffen Berger Chocolate Maker [url="http://www.scharffen-berger.com"]www.scharffen-berger.com[/url] 510.981.4060 800.884.5884

On Jul 17, 2001

I believe that Brian will be checking on the chocolate *sauce* as well. I had a nice call from him this morning.

I really enjoyed their website -- despite the fact that it made me ravenously hungry for chocolate! The chocolate "nibs" sound like a great substitute for nuts.

Already looking forward to Christmas baking...

Sue

On Jul 18, 2001

In regard to my previous post, I wrote:

Thank you for your reply. I just want to make sure I understand your message that all your products are safe, with the exception of the one ounce bars due to a risk of cross contamination. Is this correct?

Second response from Scharffen-Berger was:

This is correct. Thanks for the e-mail.

On Jul 18, 2001

Ryan's mom-- Hi! Hope it didn't sound like I was questioning your post -- I wasn't. [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/smile.gif[/img]

When Brian returned my phone call, he mentioned the one ounce bars, and then, in the course of our conversation, mentioned that he wanted to double check on the sauce as well -- he was pretty certain it was okay, but wanted to be absolutely sure.

I haven't heard back from him yet, so (as always) would suggest that anyone ordering the sauce do their own double-check -- though the response you received certainly sounds like it will be another "safe" product for us all to enjoy!

We're close enough to Berkeley that we're even considering stopping for a tour the next time we go to the Bay area.

...Or we were, until I just read the fine print. Minimum age for the tour is seven! Oh, well. Rather have to decline for age than allergy.

--Sue

On Jul 20, 2001

M'smom,

I'm really interested in finding out about the chocolate sauce. I'll be checking for your future post.

Also, if you do tour the plant, I look forward to that post too.

On Oct 17, 2001

I asked this question on the "chocolate" post: Does anyone know if Hersheys powdered cocoa is safe for baking? Also, there is a post on "Manufacture's and Safe Foods" about KA flour NOT being safe. I also wanted to know if anyone uses Swan's Cake Flour? I thought baking from scratch was safe but now I'm not sure. Help!

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On Jul 19, 2002

I bake a lot. I called Hodgson Mills a while back and they do not make anything with nuts. So I have been using their flour. The whole wheat and rye. For white flour I use Wauneta Mills. Hopethis helps Connie

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