Saturday, August 15, 2009

Gluten-Free Recipes: Yeah, They're Out There

"Gluten-Free Recipes"

"Gluten-Free Recipes by Category. Please submit your favorite gluten free recipe here by registering as an author on our site. Your recipes will appear here and help thousands of other people with celiac disease. Note that many of the ingredients used in these recipes can be purchased in our store.

"Gluten-Free Bread Recipes
"Gluten-Free Dessert Recipes: Pastries, Cakes, Cookies, etc.
"Gluten-Free Flour Mixes
"Gluten-Free Kids Recipes
"Gluten-Free Muffin Recipes...."

The writing of this page, and the recipes, isn't going to replace Shakespeare's sonnets as exemplars of English writing. But, who cares?

For someone looking for some sort of variety in what they eat, and avoid food that contains gluten, this could be a valuable resource.

I won't say it will make preparing these foods easy. It's getting better in America, but finding some of the ingredients may be a trifle challenging.


Gluten is "a protein substance that remains when starch is removed from cereal grains; gives cohesiveness to dough" (Princeton's WordNet)

I've read articles and the odd book or two whose authors seem convinced that meat is poisonous, and that just about everything except a few rare foods with complicated names (usually Asian) are really okay for people to eat. I don't take them all that seriously.

And, aside from monosodium glutimate (MSG) making my head feel like someone is using a dull can opener on the inside of my skull, I don't have trouble with food - apart from tending to eat too much. Steak and potatoes, by preference. And corn, peas, broccoli, apples, orange. Oh, great: now I'm hungry.

Back to food and human beings

It isn't too much of a stretch to call human beings opportunistic omnivores. You might say that we're almost the opposite of creatures like koalas, that die if one specific type of food isn't available.

We're beginning to learn a bit more detail about foods, and how we react to them. Like cow's milk and wheat. My ancestors came, as far back as we've got records, from northwestern Europe, and I look it. That particular sample of humanity is one of the few where much of the population can drink cow's milk without problems.1

Except for several members of my family.

None of which has much to do with gluten.

Okay: gluten is protein that's in wheat. It's good for you. If you can digest it.

Gluten is found in other cereal grains, too, including:
  • Oats
    • I know: not exactly
      • What, you want this post to get longer?!
  • Wheat
  • Rye
I like the taste of all three - and, happily, I'm able to metabolize them. Some members of my family can't.

If you don't know about Celiac Disease: be glad of it. It's "a disorder in children and adults; inability to tolerate wheat protein (gluten); symptoms include foul-smelling diarrhea and emaciation; often accompanied by lactose intolerance" (Princeton's WordNet)

People who can't tolerate gluten aren't trying to be difficult: they've got a metabolism that's a bit off the 50th percentile.

If this sounds sort of familiar, you're spot-on. I blogged about gluten-free eating before.
1 "Lactose Intolerance Linked To Ancestral Environment"
ScienceDaily (June 2, 2005)

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