Wednesday, December 17, 2008

100th Post and the Gluten Free Diet

Just noticed this is my 100th post. Hmmm...

Don't know if my words do much besides clutter up the web but I guess it's become an outlet for me. Time will tell if I have anything intelligent to say!

As for the gluten free diet. WOW! It's great to feel about 75% better.

While we were in Traverse City I went to the Oryana Food Co-op. Wonderful staff and what a selection of Gluten Free (GF) foods. They have a "red dot" program that identifies all CERTIFIED gluten free foods in the store. So it's a simple matter of watching for those red dots as you push your cart down the aisles. I came home with a pancake/waffle mix by Namaste, a 1#,8oz. bag of soy flour, a 10 oz. box of rice lasagna noodles, an 8oz. box of rice twist noodles, and two packages of GF wraps. Total bill was $23.10!!! I about died. But onward I go.

Had some GF pancakes this morning. Should have taken a picture. They were delicious and very light! I liked that. This afternoon I tried a wrap with some mashed pinto beans, salsa and lettuce. That was good too.

So, you know me, I can't resist doing a little experimenting. Mainly because I'm cheap. I cannot afford to pay $23.10 for six items.

Today I made a thinner version of potato pancakes. Tomorrow maybe I'll make a batch of them and take a picture. Suffice to say, they were great. Made two of them; kind of like crepes. Yeah, I'm drooling already. Have to make more and share the recipe tomorrow.

Also made a grocery list for my new diet: rice flour, tapioca flour, zanthan gum (it's a binder), rice milk powder (a milk substitute; I'm allergic to dairy too!), and more soy flour.

Also did some reading online and discovered that one in 133 people has a gluten/wheat allergy. So if you're feeling miserable, have lots of bloating, sniffles, red/watery eyes, gas, stomach pain after eating (and a zillion other ailments) you might consider eliminating wheat/gluten from your diet - at least the most obvious ones like pasta and bread though wheat's in hundreds of products we consume.

Another thing mentioned was that sometimes the allergy can take a long time to produce symptoms. That's probably why I was able to get by for so long. It's been at least 15 years since I was told I had the allergy. So I did what I usually do; adopt part of the solution! If the symptoms subsided I was "okay" but not great. If they flared up all I had to do was look at what I'd been eating. Over time though, the condition escalated to the point where I was having real difficulty breathing and that was scary. In fact, a few times it felt as though I was drowning because the flem filled my lungs and nasal passage so quickly. Gross, I know, but maybe my description will help someone. Though I must say, I am not a doctor and, as a fellow sufferer told me at the co-op yesterday, "There are as many reactions to a wheat/gluten allergy as there are people." I believe her because when she described hers I thought, "How strange! I've never felt that way."

Well, I'm off to get some firewood brought in. Then I think I'll hunt for some more 1/2 gallong jars to store my "new" foods in.

Hope you're all staying warm. It's 10 degrees here and snowing - again. And dear Mayberry, if it were 43 degrees here I'd be sunbathing!

Later, Treesong


HermitJim said...

Treesong...I am feeling almost guilty about NOT having an ailment like this as I sit here baking things like fresh bread and cake.

I am glad though tht you are feeling better after changing some of the diet! That's a good thing...

Have a good day...and keep the ole chin up.

Mayberry said...

Congrats on number 100, and here's to hundreds more! I'll second hermitjim's sentiments, glad you are feelin' better.

HermitJim said...

Hey Treesong...if you want the recipe for no knead bread, here it is.

3 cups all-purpose or bread flour, more for dusting
¼ teaspoon instant yeast
1¼ teaspoons salt
Cornmeal or wheat bran as needed.

1. In a large bowl combine flour, yeast and salt. Add 1 5/8 cups water, and stir until blended; dough will be shaggy and sticky. Cover bowl with plastic wrap. Let dough rest at least 12 hours, preferably about 18, at warm room temperature, about 70 degrees.

2. Dough is ready when its surface is dotted with bubbles. Lightly flour a work surface and place dough on it; sprinkle it with a little more flour and fold it over on itself once or twice. Cover loosely with plastic wrap and let rest about 15 minutes.

3. Using just enough flour to keep dough from sticking to work surface or to your fingers, gently and quickly shape dough into a ball. Generously coat a cotton towel (not terry cloth) with flour, wheat bran or cornmeal; put dough seam side down on towel and dust with more flour, bran or cornmeal. Cover with another cotton towel and let rise for about 2 hours. When it is ready, dough will be more than double in size and will not readily spring back when poked with a finger.

4. At least a half-hour before dough is ready, heat oven to 450 degrees. Put a 6- to 8-quart heavy covered pot (cast iron, enamel, Pyrex or ceramic) in oven as it heats. When dough is ready, carefully remove pot from oven. Slide your hand under towel and turn dough over into pot, seam side up; it may look like a mess, but that is O.K. Shake pan once or twice if dough is unevenly distributed; it will straighten out as it bakes. Cover with lid and bake 30 minutes, then remove lid and bake another 15 to 30 minutes, until loaf is beautifully browned. Cool on a rack.

Cygnus MacLlyr said...

100 posts... Like you, don't know if my writing is aught but clutter, but it's part of who i am, so... I love the outlet.
Sorry to hear about the gluten allergy; hope hermit's recipe turns out wonderfully the GF method!
Best wishes...