Crikey how hard is it to be gluten free and vegetarian? Well easy really if you are cooking some recipes that involve fresh ingredients but when I'm looking at veggie mince and sausages, well a lot of seem to contain wheat.
I'm not taking it too seriously I suppose, but I have fell out of love with meat. I don't seem to enjoy preparing it or eating it these days. I don't fair too well as a serious vegetarian as I don't like mushrooms or peppers so I am not onto a good start. There is still stuff left though and I am enjoying finding new things to eat.
I know the Quorn range has a lot of gluten free products but here again I stumble on a problem. I have eaten Quorn before and have been poorly sick so I am a bit reluctant to try it again. I'm not sure whether it has something I am allergic to or that it just doesn't agree with me. Maybe something is just telling me that this veggie thing not a good idea.
Luckily I do like a lot of other veggies so I might get through and all I'm looking for really is meat substitutes but I suppose it is a big debate as to why? If I am giving up meat why do I want something that looks like meat? It's because I really like a bolognese or a chilli so I would like a bit of mince. If anyone knows a gluten free one then please let me know.
I enjoyed a lovely vegetarian roast dinner last weekend which was basically a plate full of roast vegetables with a gluten free cauliflower cheese and gluten free gravy and it was so tasty, I didn't miss the meat at all. I will keep trying, after all if it's what I want to enjoy my food then I will work around it. Who knows I may even get used to mushrooms and peppers!
Thank you for reading today, as I've already mentioned, if you do have any recommendations for gluten free products I can eat then let me know in the comments. I will be back tomorrow for Pass the Remote but for now.......
I was glutened recently, my own fault as I just think I can cheat now and again. I think because I haven't had a formal diagnosis of Coeliac Disease or anything I think that I'll be fine but no. It's not until you do eat something with gluten that it usually comes with a whole lot of regret.
You see some think that us non diagnosed gluten free'ers are just fad dieting and it's just not real but I can tell you it is. Sometimes we get 'glutened' because we make a mistake or forget to check the labels, it's easily done but hey it's ok it's not going to kill us eh?
Well the effects can be really bad. I'm not going into too much detail but for me it means excessive wind, continuous trips to the loo for a number 2 and stomach cramps. It also makes me very drowsy, as if I've taken a light sedative - not good. For those that do have Coeliac Disease though it is quite serious. It is an autoimmune condition which means the body's immune system mistakes substances inside gluten products as a threat and attacks them, this can cause damage to the intestines disrupting the body's ability to absorb the nutrients from foods.
Serious stuff eh? For me I imagine I just have an intolerance but the symptoms are bad enough and I don't like it. These symptoms are the reason I gave up the gluten and have been living a nice 'happy tummy' life since so I know it was the right thing to do. I really need to have words with myself and tell myself I can't have that cake, that biscuit or pinch a bit of the kids pizza as I will have to face the consequences.
I hope that highlights a bit about why some of us are on a gluten free diet. It really isn't to try and lose weight, in fact some gluten free foods are not any less fattening than normal so it's no advantage to weight loss. It is necessary and vitally important. I have to learn to say NO!
Thanks for reading, catch me tomorrow for Autism Support Saturday - take care!!
I suppose we all want the usual things to make us happy, good health, a bit of money in our pockets, world peace would be nice and a life's supply of Galaxy Chocolate would make me very happy. What floats your boat though diet wise? When you are on a restricted diet what makes you want to punch your fists in the air and shout 'Yes' ??
I get excited when I see something in the supermarket in the 'free from' aisle which I've not been able to eat until now. It sits there with a glow around it and the angels start singing. A bit like when they brought out gluten free Hobnobs and Chocolate Hobnobs, that was a nice day.
I love it when I walk into a eatery place and they have gluten free food on the menu, I'm happy just to see that bread can be provided for me to have a toastie or a sandwich. I also like to see more than one choice in the cake department and decaf coffee and tea available.
These people in restaurants who provide gluten free or dairy free options just don't know how they make our lives easier, I mean just by swapping the bread for us - it's the simple things. Knowledge is impressive too as there is nothing like going somewhere and they don't look vacant but totally 'get it'. We drink goats milk in our house because a few years ago we discovered cows milk seem to make my son a bit wheezy, never completely sure whether the milk was the problem but he felt better after the swap and we've stuck with it ever since. I prefer it to honest, it's supposed to be a lot easier to digest, bit harder on the old wallet but isn't everything that comes with a special diet?
When buying some goats milk the other day the girl on the checkout of our local Co-op suddenly said how she loved goats milk and how it was so much better, her boyfriend didn't agree but she loved it. I felt I had a kindred spirit who understood the milk from the goat. I could of talked to her all day, it's just nice when you find people with the same things in common - like milk. There we go again I'm so easily pleased. No complicated conversations for me, my head would boggle. I don't want to put the world to rights all of the time, sometimes I just need to know there is a community of goats milk lovers.
I like to think positive and not to think of blank looks when people say gluten free? What's that? I try not to think of the lonely piece of chocolate brownie sitting in a cafe because someone lacks the imagination to bake something else or source a different product. I try not to think of the places I can't eat any dinner or take advantage of fast food. It's not really any bother, although I'd love a big Maccy D's sometimes, I might take my own cob in so I can at least have a cheeseburger.
I've made the choice and I feel better for it and I've also got to know where to eat and who does awesome cake. Maybe you could tell me what makes you happy on your diets. Is there enough out there? Do you think products could be cheaper? Would you also like a McDonalds?, Maybe we could club together and charge in with our gluten free buns, demanding equality. Oh I feel a movie coming on! Leave a comment anyway.
Thanks for reading today, please do feel free to pop back tomorrow where I offer some information and support around Autism on Autism Support Saturday, until then, take care of yourselves.
I went to a seminar yesterday with my friend who's birthday it was, so we sneaked these lovely treats in. I didn't want to breach any health and safety rules by lighting any candles but I did take a knife to cut the cakes so I probably broke numerous rules there.
It is great to be able to have a vast choice of cakes for parties and celebrations now, these were from Asda's Free From range and ideal for a small get together or would suit a buffet. There are larger celebration cakes with themes and iced up to the roof, something that would match a showstopper on Bake Off and although there are still not as many as the 'non free from' range the choice is getting better.
At one time it was so difficult to buy a birthday cake from the supermarket which was gluten free or dairy free. I remember having to make them because it was the only way I was going to get cake. I do like baking but don't always have the time so it is convenient to buy one off the shelf. By the time you add up the cost all the ingredients you may as well buy one.
These were nice loaf cakes and can definitely recommend them so well done Asda. I tend to thank anyone who makes cakes as they just make my life complete. I just wish they didn't contain calories. There is also a good selection of cakes online. You can order personalised gluten free cake for someone special and have it delivered, imagine that!! Cake delivered to you door. The Heavenly Cake Company are just one company who supply this service and they can be found at:
So all is not lost you can have you cake and eat it, you can celebrate your birthdays, wedding, christenings and anniversaries all gluten free or dairy free with a big cake or just a small one. Yum Yum.
Thank you for reading today, hope I've not made you too hungry, I have made myself very hungry by writing this.....got a cuppa but what no cake!!
You all take care now and come back tomorrow for Autism Support Saturday.
At this time of year as the season changes and it starts to get a bit chilly we need a bit of a treat and some comfort food. The nights are starting to draw in now and the only thing to do is get comfy with a brew and a little snack.
On a gluten free diet I crave the things that other people are eating, I just want to be the same, it's as if you feel your missing out in some way. I bought these two classics that my kids like to eat too but now I have my own, (ha ha evil laugh - yes MY own treats kids)!! I love the teacakes with their marshmallow top and biscuit bottom covered in chocolate, they go really well with a nice mug of tea.....yummy!! There are six in the box, well for now and Tesco's have them for £2.
Slimming World syns (each) = 5.5
The other treat is Jaffa Cakes, who doesn't love a jaffa cake? The little piece of loveliness that we can never decide if it's a biscuit or a cake. It's kind of both isn't it with a jelly top and sponge bottom covered in dark chocolate but I suppose the debate will go on forever. If it's a cake though why are they in the biscuit aisle? mmmm something to ponder on while eating the whole box. You need not feel guilty either if you accidentally do eat the whole lot as they are only 45 calories each. Not bad eh? These little beauties are also in Tesco and available at the bargain price of £1 for a pack of 12.
Slimming World syns (each) = 2
There you go you see you can have something chocolatey and not necessarily blow the diet too much. The thing is sticking to just one, it's very hard to not want another and another but that depends on your willpower and mine is not that good. I will think twice now I've worked the syn value out. They are both very similar to the original gluteny products, I'd say the jaffas are a bit tiny in comparison but hey I'd rather just be able to eat one and enjoy rather than have that poorly feeling. Both these products are gluten free, wheat free and suitable for vegetarians.
Give them a go a see what you think. For now though thank you for reading and I will be back tomorrow for Autism Support Saturday.
What a great name for a pudding company.......just brilliant! I feel as though I should go and hang out with the university students and wait to be asked what I'm studying just so that I can say 'Pudology' - it's the science of puddings, didn't ya know?
These are delicious puds, they are gluten free, dairy free and suitable for vegans. Now when you first look at them, like me you may think they are very small. It depends on how you like your pudding, yep I'm a bit of a pudding lover so I did wonder where the rest of this pudding was. When you try them though, oh wow, you then realise that it's not the size of pudding that's important it's the quality. These are very rich and so decadent that you don't need a lot or have to rush eating them. You need to take your time like some supermodel on a pudding advert. Go for a bit of 'slo mo' and take in the beautiful chocolatey taste.
I purchased these chocolate beauties and the Orange Chocolate Puds which are also part of the curriculum in Pudology. Other subjects included are:
Mango and Passionfruit Coconut Yogurt
and a Natural Pudology Yogurt
I found these in Sainsbury's but for more information on the range and stockists take a look at their website at:
For me it is lovely to be able to buy a nice dessert which is gluten free and just enjoy chocolate heaven without having to worry. If you feel the need you can pop some ice cream with it or as I did, pop one of these puds on a meringue nest with some satsuma segments on and it was super!
However you eat them I'm sure you won't be disappointed. Go for your degree in Pudology and work your way through all of the flavours. The best qualification on offer I think......Enjoy!
Thank you for stopping by, please come back for my Autism Support Saturday tomorrow but for now.......
I do talk about it quite a bit, the fact there is limited choice for gluten free food at some tearooms and cafes. Some are better than others but what about a place which was totally gluten free, would it work? I'm feeling a bit passionate about this subject at the moment because I do visit a lot of places for refreshments and just get a little disappointed when the only thing on offer is a chocolate brownie. I think it shows a lack of imagination but then it is difficult if you are trying to cater for everyone.
It's so lovely to see all the cakes laid out but torture when you realise you can't eat any of them. My dream would be to walk into a place and the situation reversed, so all the cakes would be gluten free and maybe just offer one choice of 'fully leaded' as I call it. the thing is that anyone can eat gluten free, it's not anything awful, it's edible and tasty but us gluten free'ers can't eat anything when we go into an 'all round' establishment especially if you're diagnosed with coeliac's disease.
There is a lovely Gluten Free Cafe in Norwich that pops up on my google a lot and it's just stunning and exactly what we need more of. Take a look at their website at norfolkglutenfree.co.uk
Beautiful eh? I would just feel like I was in heaven and probably struggle to leave. It's like walking into a food paradise for me and just to have all that choice and even pick up a few products while there would be amazing.
I'm having one of those 'build it and they will come' moments. if you have seen the film 'Field of Dreams' you will know what that means. Kevin Costner gets messages from baseball legends who have passed away and they tell him to build a baseball field on his property and then they will come and play. Brilliant film, everyone thinks he's mad and it will be too much, it will all lead to ruin and financial suicide but he builds it and they do in fact come, and so do people from miles and miles to see this magical game of baseball.
So that's how I feel about a tea shop that is totally gluten free, some products dairy free and vegan too but I'd be interested what you think. Leave a comment as it would be interesting to see if it would work. Please someone build it and I will come along, definitely!!
For now though I'll keep doing a bit of research which obviously involves eating cake and drinking tea but someone has to do it. Thank you to all those lovely people in cafe's around the country who do bring us some wonderful choices and fantastic food because there are those who do push the boat out big style and I can tell you we do appreciate it.
Thanks for reading today. Like Arnie 'I'll Be Back' tomorrow for Autism Support Saturday so join me then.
I love soup and now we are going into Autumn I feel I may make some more homemade soup but I started off experimenting with a Sweet Potato and Chilli Soup. You will have seen this recipe if you read my other blog
www.multicookingmum.wordpress.com but it is gluten free and good for Slimming World followers too so I thought I would share it here.
My other blog features my experiences with a multi cooker so this soup is made with this but you don't have to have a multi cooker, just a saucepan will do to simmer the ingredients until cooked.
It was very tangy and spicy as I may have added quite a bit of chilli but then I like spicy, you may have to play around with your chilli as everyone prefers a different level so add a little at a time and keep tasting until you get to your personal preference.
Anyway I hope you enjoy......
3 sweet potatoes
2 small onions
Salt and pepper
1 tbsp tomato puree
1 tsp garlic puree
1 tsp chilli puree
2 vegetable stock cubes made up with 2 pints of water
1 tsp paprika
Fry light spray or cooking oil
Peel and chop the potatoes and onions
Put all the ingredients into the multi cooker bowl and select the SOUP programme
Select cooking time to 30 minutes
Heat a large saucepan with some of the fry light spray or oil, put all ingredients in, stir together and leave to simmer for 30 minutes
Check and taste it is to your liking.
liquidise for a smooth textured soup
and serve with some gluten free toast or bread.
It's so easy to make soup and great for us gluten free people as we know exactly what ingredients are in there. A lot of the tinned and fresh soups in the shops contain wheat as sometimes flour is used as a thickener so always read the labels if buying from a supermarket. If you want to make a thicker soup cornflour can be used to keep it gluten free.
Give it a try and see what you think, I'm off to make another batch as it's so filling and may well pop some in the freezer ready for a chilly day.
Thanks for reading, please feel free to leave me a comment and tell me what you think. Join me again tomorrow for Autism Support Saturday but for now take care.
It's a grey area in the gluten free/coeliac world where vinegar is concerned. I've noticed just recently that I struggle with malt vinegar which I'm surprised by as I don't consider myself to be that sensitive to a lot of foods but I seem to have experienced symptoms after using it and I have used it quite a bit, I love vinegar.
Coeliac UK state that malt vinegar is safe to use as the amount of gluten found in barley is massively reduced by the fermentation process used to make the vinegar therefore making it safe. They also say that because we only use malt vinegar in very small amounts that this also allows us to chuck it freely on our chips without worrying.
In the US though it's a different story and yes I know a lot of their food regulations are completely different to ours but they say a big NO to malt vinegar and that because it has malt, this contains barley and that has gluten rendering it not safe to use. Confusing eh?
Some people manage to use malt vinegar with no problems and I think for those with an intolerance that's fine but for those with Coeliac Disease, more care is needed to avoid anything with gluten in.
So what can we do?
Well I've decided to go with white wine vinegar, I bought the red wine one for cooking with. The level of alcohol in these vinegars is very low so there's no worry of getting inebriated on your vinegar. If it's distilled vinegar that's fine, rice vinegar, cider vinegar are all fine as they are derived from fruit or non gluten produce. It all seems to depend on the starting ingredient and the process used to produce it. If you are worried I would stay clear of any vinegars that contain wheat, barley or rye, it is a case of checking the labels, we get so used to that but you'd be surprised how many food products do contain gluten that maybe you thought didn't.
Phew all that on vinegar eh? I just thought I would bring it up as it is a question that comes up a lot and does cause confusion and after realising it was making me feel a bit uncomfortable I thought it was important. The bottom line is with a gluten free diet, if you're not sure then don't eat it. It's better to be safe and leave it out rather than suffer the consequences as they can be very uncomfortable.
I have noticed a difference since switching from malt vinegar but would be interested to know if anyone else has had an issue with it so leave me a comment. I suppose if you lightly sprinkle it over you chips you probably won't notice but like I said before I do tend to pour it over by the bucket load. I'm now thinking I may be pickled on the inside. Oh that's another thing, just watch pickled products too, check the ingredients, if it is a problem, try producing homemade pickles. I've not been eating too many pickled food just lately which is another sign as when I think of them I'm a bit put off. I have never eaten pickled eggs in my life, always thought that was bizarre to pickle an egg, are they nice? Am I missing out on something? I'm sure someone will let me know.
So hope that helps a little, thank you so much for reading. I will be back tomorrow with Autism Support Saturday so join me then.
Take care for now.......
I was so happy here and as the name suggests, very cosy at The Cosy Club in Derby. The surroundings were amazing, fabulously decorated venue and plenty of space. They had separate menus for different tastes and needs! I was in some kind of Free From Heavenly place. There is a good little mix when us girls get together (no not that little mix), one of us is gluten free, one vegan and one, well how shall we describe her? A non free from foodie?
It was just great to have our own menus. I wanted to show mine off and show it to the world, saying 'look at me, I have my own menu, to myself, MINE!! I felt sorry for the girl who wanted to take our order as we were so wrapped up in the excitement of menu proudness we were then spoilt for choice and took ages to decide. Well you can take your time when you have a choice. Great selection of food and the menus are available to view online, I will pop the link on at the end of this post and you can also view the venue, it really is beautiful.
After another millennium had passed I opted for a classic burger and upgraded my fries to sweet potato fries. That got me thinking, do sweet potatoes have a better status over conventional potatoes? Are they more important? Special in some way? I don't know but I had them anyway. Everything tasted sensational. A burger with a gluten free cob, YES!!! Great tasting sweet potato fries and a lovely coleslaw on the side. I also went for the extra slice of cheese on my burger, I know.......pushed the boat out in big style.
Get a look at that dessert though eh? A warm gluten free chocolate brownie with vanilla ice cream and yes it tasted as good as it looked. I accompanied it with a latte coffee including a dash of Bailey's too, talk about a treat. I then wondered on the Monday morning why I hadn't lost any weight that week. I looked at the scales in dismay, thinking about how many miles I'd walked with the new Fitbit. I felt as though I had walked to China and back and with no result and then I remembered that I had overloaded the calories slightly for which I am not going to feel any guilt. Not one bit!
So can I recommend the Cosy Club? Oh yes and I think you should try it if you haven't already. It's the kind of place you could throw on a vintage style dress and dance like you have won Strictly but that's just my fantasy. I was just dressed in my cropped jeans and t shirt, no dancing took place, only in my head obviously. The staff are so friendly, very patient and if you have a restricted diet I am sure you will find something to please. They are situated at Royal Building, Victoria St, Derby DE1 1ES and the website is:
they also have a Facebook page at:
Take a look and see what you think. I would advise to book as it can get busy which doesn't surprise me. Thank you for reading today. Please join me again tomorrow as I will be having a little chat about Autism on Autism Support Saturday.
Take care for now........