First off I’d like to say I love Ember CLI! It’s Awesome and It just works.
The only problem I have with it is I can’t just work on a build tool if I can’t understand or tinker with its underlying parts.
Anyways for a long time I thought ember app kit was great but there wasn’t a good tool (pre-cli) which not only ran blazing fast but also was super configurable for the kind of weird projects I was working on.
We created EAK-Gulp pretty much did the same stuff ember app kit did but with gulp rather than grunt. not that theres anything wrong with grunt…
Anyways If you would like to give it a try check out: https://github.com/sargentsurg/Gulp-Ember-App-Kit
This is intended to be a good starter point for w/e app you want to build but if you want to modify using gulps fancy streaming syntax go right ahead and modify the gulpfile.js
tldr: I made Ember app kit using gulp https://github.com/sargentsurg/Gulp-Ember-App-Kit