Following a gluten free diet can lead to some serious creativity in the kitchen. Knowing what you can and can’t eat will help awareness when food shopping and help you to identify potential danger zones when eating out.
However creating fantastic tasting food combinations in the comfort of your home is just as important, So here are a few yummy ideas to keep those taste buds titillated and your stomach equally full and satisfied.
- Chop and toss large chunks of sweet potato in cumin and chilli , then oven bake them with pieces of lemon and garlic for chunky chips which will turn crispy but remain fluffy. Whizz up some homemade tzaiki and dip to your hearts content.
- Heat the oven to 140C/120C fan/gas 1. Then thinly slice apples through the core, carefully use a mandolin for this or else carefully slice with a sharp knife. Place the slices on a baking tray that is lined with parchment and bake for 40 minutes. Let them cool until they turn crisp. They make perfect crisps for dipping. You could also choose other alternatives such as beetroot, butternut squash, parsnips and carrot. Vegetables are nutritious and very tasty.
- Cut halloumi into sticks and stretch a rasher of pancetta around each one. Cut them in half so they are pigs in blankets size. Give each one a good seasoning with black pepper and then sprinkle some chopped chives or herb of your choice on top. Heat the oven to 200C/fan 180C/gas 6 and bake until the pancetta has browned and started to go slightly crisp, this should take about 10-12 minutes. Serve as a snack.
- Slice mango, melon and feta into chunks and place on separate plates. Scatter poppy seeds over each plate making sure they stick to the fruit and cheese. Then assemble skewers with cubes from each plate. These can be made into tasty kebabs and arranged on a platter, squeeze a little lemon or lime to give them an extra tangy flavour and then cover and chill for about 15 minutes before serving.
These are just a few ideas for snacks or party food that are appealing to everyone whether you are a coeliac or not. They are delicious, adaptable and easy to make, and all of these ingredients are made from fridge or store cupboard essentials.
Just remember the following point as being aware will help manage your diet and maintain a healthy lifestyle.
- Investigate local supermarkets, they are great these days and have dedicated aisles to gluten free products including all the ingredients you will need to bake bread, cakes, biscuits and other favourite snacks and essentials.
- Avoiding gluten means side-stepping anything that contains wheat, rye and barley. Some people need to avoid oats as well but anything that has these grains will cause an intolerance and sickness. The main problem foods are bread. Pasta, cereals, pastry, cakes, biscuits, pizza and crackers. Gluten can also be found in soups, sauces, stock cubes, gravy, ready meals, and processed foods such as sausages. Although healthy substitutes are all available.
By Harry Price
Harry Price is a freelance writer from the south coast. He spends his spare time cooking, painting, running and rockclimbing.