Friday, September 18, 2015

Fibro Fridays ~ The Challenges of Going Gluten Free


After I posted last week about falling off the gluten free wagon, there were some questions brought up about how to go gluten free with other family members who are already picky eaters. This is a challenge here in our house as well, so I'm going to try and answer to the best of my ability and give examples of how I eat gluten free while making sure the Witchling eats the things she's used to eating and without having a huge fight about it at the same time.

To be honest, there are times when I cook two completely different meals. But, in most cases, I am able to substitute gluten free items for the things that the rest of the family is eating. For example, on Wednesday night this week, I fixed Fajaitas. Using lean beef sliced into strips and sauteing that with red and green bell peppers and onions. I used granulated garlic, sea salt, fresh ground black pepper, cumin and a tiny bit of cayenne pepper. Where the biggest change came about was the tortillas used. Tanya and the Witchling used the normal flour tortillas and I substituted gluten free corn tortillas for mine. I will admit they do taste different, but honestly, I mostly prefer white corn tortillas to flour anyway, so it's really not that much of a change for me.

So far the biggest challenges I've found is making sure the processed foods I buy are gluten free. Like catsup, soy sauce and a couple of the seasoning packages I like. I have found recipes to make my own seasonings and keep here at the house, those are always hit and miss, trying this ingredient or adding something to the formula. It's all about reading the labels in EVERYTHING you buy, and then some of those things can't be guaranteed to be gluten free because the company processes food with gluten, which can cause a cross contamination.

Because the picky eater in this house is a single four-year-old (I've even gotten Jimmy, my meat and potato guy, to eat differently as long as I don't overwhelm him, LOL), making two meals really isn't that much of a problem. When I fix something I know she is going to refuse to eat, I'll make french fries to go along with the meat portion of her meal. She also refuses to eat most vegetables, so I try to keep a few ears of corn on the cob in the fridge or freezer for her. I also try to keep chicken tenders on hand since that is her absolutely favorite meal. I did figure out how to get her to eat the ones I make from chicken breast instead of the frozen ones, and I've discovered gluten free baking mix (like Bisquick) which makes an excellent breading for things to be fried or baked.

My method is hit and miss, and unless you are serious about or HAVE to remove gluten from your diet, it is NOT an easy way to do things. I have found a TON of recipes on Pinterest and if you are interested in following my Gluten Free Recipe board, you can find it here. There are about 60 recipes on that board and I add to it on a daily basis. So far, everything I've found and then tried has been a big success. My greatest challenge is finding gluten-free sweets that don't taste like cardboard. Yes, there are a number of recipes for sweets on that board, I haven't tried any of them ...yet.