Glutenopia or Glutenfree Hell

Posted on August 16, 2010


Well its been a couple of months since I’ve had to readdress my whole eating habit, I’ve tried looking at it a number of ways, a new diet, being healthier, etc and then I slowly (if you call 2 months in, slow) sunk into the 2 year old child syndrome of ‘it’s not fair’ and ‘I want it…. because I can’t have it’, all in all its definitely a new way of life and an interesting learning experience.

What I’ve learnt so far is that its not just the things you immediately think of that you can’t have, it’s anything that’s been cooked near or in something else that contains the two ‘nasty’ critters that I can’t eat, forget chips if they’ve been cooked in the same fryer as onion rings or anything with batter, forget pesto, mayo, even a roast beef dinner out becomes a no go – and the list goes on and on.  So unless you really want to take your own food everywhere you go, eating out becomes very difficult, as does lunchtime at work.  There are restaurants that do gluten and wheat free if you ask but what you get left with is a piece of plain  meat/ fish and some salad or very sorry looking veggies and to top it all I find they still charge you full price – I’m thinking I could be onto something here if I can create the perfect sandwich bar for Coeliacs.

Also if you’re like me and you’ve tried a whole host of gluten free rolls, breads, pastries, pittas, crumpets and crackers you will know that eating polystyrene has proven to be more enjoyable and they are the most inedible ‘delicacies’ you will ever be unfortunate enough to pass over your taste buds – mine seriously went on strike and for want of tasty food my mind took over and gave up but that’s defeatist – yes I know I wrote the book on that one just lately. 

Anyway back to my hair brained scheme of the Coeliacs Sandwich Buffer, after about a month of eating salad for lunch because there was nothing else available to me I decided to buck up my ideas and start thinking a little more positively, if I can’t have things I really crave, like Tuna Baguette or Subway Chicken, chilli and jalapeno sub, couscous, even Sushi became a zero tolerance area, then I’m going to have to start thinking about other things that I can have.

I decided  to give it a go, I went out bought all the special gluten and wheat free alternatives (which for the price of I could of bought several small children from some far away island and flown them back first class)  I made my own bread, well made maybe a slight exaggeration but to say you could of built a BBQ with it or at least started was an understatement, I could of used it as a deadly weapon but I would not of been able to eat the evidence.  However what I also learned here was an extremely valuable lesson – the timings need to be altered when cooking the alternatives.

So attempt number 2 and this time I managed to make what I thought was a pretty decent loaf of bread (yay me) the smell was what Sunday mornings are made of, plus it was crusty without being knuckle breaking on the outside, it was hollow to bang (a good sign in bread making) but when I cut it open, you can imagine my disappointment that it wasn’t quite cooked.  It was still very doughy so I chucked it back in the oven for another 10 minutes, although whilst I was merrily patting myself on the back for being at the breaking point of making a superb delicacy and probably the only decent tasting gluten/wheat free loaf I’d ever had, I immediately forgot about it and nearly managed to give the EB fire brigade a night at mine.

Unperturbed I decided to give it another go – so attempt number 3, well the odds were slightly stacking against me and although I’d got the timings right, the smell, the colour (the colour is all important, apparently), I could not get the little bugger out of the tin.  I did wrestle with it and 2 broken knives and a chipped nail later I gave in.  In my haste of trying to make the perfect loaf I’d forgot to grease the tin – hence now the tin and said loaf are somewhere between the NCC rubbish collectors and the local landfill site. 

There hasn’t been an attempt 4 just yet – I’m gearing myself up for it when I’m not likely to throw it at the neighbours cat, mainly because the little cutie likes to pee up my door.

What I have managed to do so far is make a lovely jam Swiss roll, chocolate cake, Yorkshire puddings (must add baking soda otherwise they don’t rise) and a whole host of delectable goodies, but this still hasn’t solved my craving for the holy grail known as gluten free bread.  It also has thrown out my theory of I’m going to lose weight because I can’t eat……
I’m still going to at some point make that perfect little angel loaf but in the meantime I’ve discovered that just because I want doesn’t mean I can’t have.  Gluten and wheat free do have some fantastic alternatives to certain things – I love the pasta, I love the beer and I love the sauces – oh and a big shout out – I love Mrs Crimbles anything, so apart from the bread that eludes me I can pretty much make anything else I want 🙂

The bread that wasn’t meant to be