Saturday, May 5, 2012

New to GF DF?

When you are new to a GF DF diet, it is easy to get into the habit of trying to simulate the diet you had before you were ill. This can be very expensive because GF baked goods are always more expensive than their glutened counterparts (whether homemade or bought) and disappointing because you will never achieve quite the same textures in cooking (pure gluten very closely resembles the elasticity of chewing gum....ew!). Also, you were ill, so you need super healthy foods to help heal you.  If you are coeliac (rather than gluten intolerant) it will take time (sometimes up to 2 years) before you will be able to absorb normal amounts of nutrients from your foods, so even more reason to eat healthy nutrient-packed foods.

Let bread, cakes, pastries and biscuits be your sometimes but not everyday foods. Embrace all the natural healthy foods that you can eat.  Rethink breakfast.  This will make your new GF DF life easier. Consider what people in other countries eat who aren't so dependent on gluten for every meal. In Japan, for example, they eat fish and rice with miso soup for breakfast. Rethink lunch. Invest in a food thermos instead of always relying on sandwiches for lunch (you will get fed up of even the nicest GF breads in time anyway).

Here's a list of dinners you can cook with little or no adaptations to make them gf.
Altho make sure to use throughly "decontaminated" kitchen worktop and utensils if you share your kitchen with gluten eaters! Steer clear of bread boards as they harbour gluten and wooden ones are hard to clean properly.


  • Fish pie (make white sauce with gf flour.  I use gf stock and a little soya milk)
  • Cottage/Shepherds pie (use gf stock cubes. thicken sauce with corn/potato flour if necessary)
  • Tacos, guacamole, gf nachos
  • bacon-wrapped chicken
  • gf Pasta+vegan pesto
  • gf lasagne (use GF stock cubes, gf pasta sheets)
  • gf macaroni "cheese" (see my recipe)
  • spicy pork meatballs (see traclements recipe) with rice
  • smoked salmon salad
  • chicken wings - bake, rubbed in oil, paprika, coriander, salt and pepper.
  • potato wedges - cut each potato into 6 lengthwise wedges. Rub in oil and season. Bake, standing on skins so they dont stick, in a hot oven for 30 mins.
  • kedgeree
  • risotto (gf stock)
  • stir fry+ gf rice noodles (or gf spaghetti)
  • casserole with potatoes/quinoa/rice
  • jambalaya
  • gf spaghetti carbonara
  • gf sausages + mash (freeze leftover gravy from a roast to use with this)
  • sweet and sour pork/chicken with rice or rice noodles (see my sauce recipe)
  • crispy duck and home-made gf hoisin with rice pancakes
  • Sushi (use GF soy sauce and buy pure wasabi powder)
  • fish baked in foil with olives, tomatoes and lemon slices+new potatoes
  • gf pizza
  • Steak and chips (lots of the mccains ones are gf)
  • Crustless Quiche aka Fritata
  • gf spag bolognese
  • homemade burgers + rice
  • lamb kofkas and rice salad
  • curry (any can be GF if you make spice blends yourself.  replace ghee with DF marg) + onion bhajis (make these with gf chickpea flour) + gf poppadoms
  • Morrocan Tagine + rice
  • Chicken Caesar salad (with bacon and avocado - make a garlic sauce by watering down some mayo and add garlic and herbs. Make Crutons using up any old GF bread)
  • Smoked haddock Chowder (chicken/fish stock, sweetcorn, herbs, potatoes)
  • Sticky Chicken thighs/drumsticks - baste with honey, gf soy and tommyk!
  • Pea soup (gf stock)
  • Bacon wrapped white fish with salad and new potatoes
  • Stuffed peppers/marrows (with quinoa or rice + veg or mince)
  • Gingery pork stir fry
  • Roast dinner.  Use GF stock cubes and the meat juices to make gravy.  thicken with corn flour or potato flour mixed with a little water.  Some supermarkets sell GF stuffing mixes.
  • Bbq ribs (see my sauce recipe)
  • English breakfast (gf sausages, mccains hashbrowns or birdseye waffles)