Gluten-Free Tips
While at Whole Foods last week, Lua picked up this very helpful brochure about which foods are free from gluten and which are not. I hope that you find it informative also.

Gluten-FREE foods
Amaranth
Beans and legumes
Buckwheat
Chestnuts
Corn (maize/polenta)
Millet
Nuts and seeds
Nut flours (e.g. almond flour)
Certified gluten-free oats
Quinoa
Rice
Starchy vegetables (e.g. sweet potatoes, yam, potatoes, squash, Jerusalem artichoke,carrots)
Sorghum flour (chickpea or gram flour)
Teff

Foods With Gluten
Many breakfast cereals (unless specifically stated “Gluten-Free”)
Baking items (baking powder, vanilla, etc)
Beer
Pasta
Processed meats (hot dogs, sausages, lunch meats, etc)
Processed vegetarian items (textured vegetable protein, veggie dogs, veggie lunch meats)
Breadcrumbs
Fried foods
Gravies and sauces
Malt
Tamari (although I found a wheat and gluten-free Tamari)
Soups
Soba noodles
Soy sauce
Spice mixes
Some dried fruits

THE BIG NO-NOS
Wheat
Semolina
Durum
Spelt
Triticale
Couscous
Bulgur
Kamut
Faro
Rye
Barley
Oats (unless certified gluten-free)
Seitan

As a novice gluten-free and dairy-free baker and cook, this section will continue to grow as I experiment and learn more about it myself. Right now my favorite resource for informations and recipes is Gluten-Free Goddess.

I became serious about keeping a gluten-free, dairy-free diet in January 2012 after moving to London, England after suffering from unexplained sinus pain and constant congestion. After ruling out seasonal allergies, I decided to experiment with my diet and quickly discovered a sensitivity to dairy. Many of my symptoms cleared one week after I omitted milk from my morning tea. I was stunned at how quickly my congestion cleared, then after I omitted gluten I found I had more energy and my body just felt better. I will be the first to admit that every couple of months I “test” this theory by indulging in something with gluten, like the beloved samosa at our favorite Indian restaurant. Or when we travel to France, I do indulge in pain au chocolate and freshly baked baguettes. A small bit of gluten every now and again is okay, but if I start eating gluten products regularly for more than one week, my symptoms re-occur.

So far, my favorite substitution for regular all-purpose wheat flour is a mixture of rice flour (2/3) and almond flour (1/3) – the cakes and muffins turn out lovely and moist. And I just discovered gram flour made from chickpeas for savory pies and toppings.

Dairy-Free Tips
Omitting dairy was the most challenging, my love affair with butter had to end. And let me tell you, I never thought I’d see the day. Thank God for coconut oil and coconut milk. These two fats have replaced the use of butter and cream in many of my recipes. They are delicious, nourishing, and extremely satisfying.