The humdrum rut we can find ourselves in with everyday family cooking is challenging enough. Magazines flood the check-out counters at grocery stores for that very reason. Online recipe websites are soaring in popularity and we still fight for something delightfully compelling to fit the tastes at our tables.
Recently due to a chronic illness my doctor suggested my aunt to switch to a gluten-free diet. I´d seen a wide variety of premade foods available and did not anticipate it being so difficult. When I heard gluten-free I thought only of bread and crackers for the most part. Easy enough; I’d just grab a loaf of gluten-free bread for her when she came to visit. Wow, was I in shock when I began to read the ingredients to many of the items already stocked in my cupboard.
My aunt not being a nutritionist or baking master asked me to find out more about gluten, I thought it would be useful to share on here exactly what gluten is. Firstly, chemistry 101 tells us that the culprit of our misery is naturally found in wheat, spelt and other grains. It is a natural binding compound which allows the grains upon rising to develop more elasticity and therefore be more flexible to work with. Gluten literally mean “Glue” in Latin.
Many chronic diseases such as Celiac´s, Crohn’s and diabetes recommend a gluten-free diet for a healthier daily life. Avoiding sources of gluten is not an easy task; the most well-known host being wheat. However, rye, barley and malt by-products as well as brewer’s yeast is as venomous. It is best to read the list of ingredients on every label of prefabricated food products.
It is time consuming and frustrating to learn to cook all over again however rest assured New Zealand has some of the toughest labeling laws in the world and resources to provide support for those switching to a gluten-free lifestyle.
It is also important to find some tasty recipes to try.
As it becomes more and more common of a dietetic dilemma for families across the globe, more and more resources to choose from become available.
Well known magazines and cookbooks loaded with tasty ideas for a wide range of some of your favourite New Zealand dishes.
Recipes are plentiful and despite the seemingly inconvenience in time you will learn to navigate around your new exclusive culinary world with ease.