A good gluten-free bakery is like a unicorn, magical and special

First off, today is a pretty historic day. Today our fellow Celitariats, the non-celiac gluten welcome-to-the-club-meme-5538sensitive, have been verified as having a digestive issues from eating wheat! It’s a step in the right direction to get all of the right and privileges that celiac’s have (yeah I’m still trying to figure out what those are too.) But it’s a step towards recognized medical diagnosis and away from the “wheat-belly” it’s all in your head gluten intolerance. So, that’s good. The study was reported today on celiac.com, but the actual study was been published since July 25th.

So, what does this have to do with my post today, well it was brought to my attention from one of my favorite GF bakeries. They posted the study on Facebook this morning. It’s not their normal thing, usually it’s about their season menus, but this was something that they wanted to celebrate. So let’s celebrate them back a little.

There are a couple of big gluten free bakeries out there. We all know about them Udi’s is probably the biggest, but now they’re more of a gluten free food line than anything else. There’s a lot of bigger regional bakeries. Out here in the NW we have W.O.W. (Without Wheat) which is out of Kent, Washington and makes one amazing oatmeal cookie. You can usually find these two in the gluten free section of your grocery store. Then there’s the small neighborhood bakeries. These you can sometimes find in the bakery section or freezer section of your special grocery store or by driving to their home neighborhoods. The Seattle area has a slew of these. There’s Flying Apron, NuFlours, Coffee and a Specialty Bakery (which is downstairs in Pikes Place Market and worth the walk down all those stairs) and Wildflour (way over in Bellevue.) Large chunks of Seattle are covered with their own little neighborhood places. And then you  have the start-ups that are in your farmer’s markets. We found a really nice one at our local farmer’s market called Sugar and Spice, and they make amazing bread, including a cinnamon swirl bread that makes the best french toast.

The first one of these that I made my way into was Wildflour. They have an amazing flour

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This is kind of what it looked like!

mix (no they don’t sell it) that makes light fluffy bread and some of the best chocolate chip cookies that I’ve ever had (glutened or gluten free.) Walking into Wildflour was like walking into a Willy Wonka’s magic chocolate garden room. I could eat anything and everything. It’s not until you walk into a grocery store and realize exactly how much you can’t eat to understand what it’s like to take that freedom for granted. Walking into a dedicated gluten bakery takes all of that away. There you can eat everything! That bread on the shelf, you can eat that. Those cookies in the case, you can eat those too. I honestly think I spent way too much money on out first trip to the shop, but it was so worth it. We walked out with some of the best foccacia I’ve ever had and cookies that were amazing. It’s just a beautiful thing.

I had a similar feeling when we went to Coffee and Specality Bakery and got some bacon cinnamon rolls (they make the best cinnamon rolls) and spoke with the owners for 20 minutes about Seattle suburbs and got some free dinner rolls from them. Or when I met some girlfriends for coffee at Flying Apron and there was mac and cheese and beer and doughnuts! Oh my! It’s kind of great just being able to go in some place and eat EVERYTHING knowing that it was safe to try whatever I want. The best part is when your friends think that the gluten free option is better than the gluten option.

Yup, the food of our people is better than what you Gluticrats have. Sure you can eat gluten free, but until you know that it’s as good as or better than that glutened stuff, well that’s really special. I still have more to explore, but that’s part of the joy of being gluten free. There’s a whole new world of food to eat.

 

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You Can’t Always Eat What You Want…

…but if you try sometimes, you just might find, you eat what you need…pokemon-go-draft-33-photos-34

So like the rest of the world I have gotten into Pokemon Go. Unlike the rest of the world. I am not sore today because I was traipsing all round the world and back trying to catch ’em all. I spent all weekend cleaning my house to put in into the housing market. The housing market in Seattle is pretty booming right  now, and we want to get on the right side of it for once. So I’m totally sore from cleaning my house and making it literally picture perfect. Didn’t keep me from catching this little guy today at Ghostfish.

Gluten Free Pokemon

Gluten Free I choose you!

If anyone remembers my double post a while back about gluten free beer, Ghostfish is my favorite. My sister in law is in town for a long weekend and we invited her out for a beer and some pizza while she was here. She’s a total beer person and we wanted to share Ghostfish with her. As we sat down they mentioned that, in the month since we had last been there, they now have a full kitchen. Now they serve more than just pizza and sandwiches now there’s a full menu including fried foods.

Anyone who has ever tried to order gluten free in a restaurant knows the danger of fried foods. If your french fries go in the same fryer as the chicken nuggets, well you’re SOL and should probably just stick with the salad. It’s kind of part and parcel of the life. The best part of someone who is part of the Celitariat starting a business to fill a void in our lives (like the guys at Ghostfish) they thing about the things that we miss. You don’t see a lot of dedicated gluten free pho places, mostly because pho is naturally gluten free (and if it’s not you’re doing it wrong) but there’s a lot of gluten free bakeries. The bakeries fill the void in the community, because someone has to bake the bread. Ghostfish has filled yet another void in my life, and that is the void of fried food! Beer and fried food, gawd a gluten free gastro pub is amazing.

So tonight, for the first time in more than a year, I had tempura. I can make teriyaki and katsu and even ramen at home. But I love Japanese food, and one of my favorite thing is tempura. That light fluffy better over sweet potatoes  or broccoli or onions…oh I can’t really thing of those things without want to eat it all. And that batter is full of gluten. Even if it wasn’t, tempura is fried in the same oil at the panko breaded katsu or the goyza. Gluten, gluten, and more gluten. So no tempura for me. Well until tonight.

It was kind of amazing. It literally could have been the worst tempura ever (and it wasn’t) and I would still think it was amazing just because I could eat it. I might have mentioned before that I really want someone to fry food to me and bring it to my table, and tonight I had that moment, but it was more that that. This was something that I haven’t had and had been craving, and there’s really no substitute for it.

For a lot of food, I can find a substitution, but there’s some that you really can’t substitute. For me, it was tempura (until tonight.) Well, tempura and couscous and eggs benedict. So one out of 3 solved isn’t half bad. Before tonight I thought that I could survive without these food because, well, it’s just nothing is work feeling sick,  but now I feel like we just need patients and people in the community with ingenuity.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I have to clean up some cat fur and catch some more pokemon. I can’t let the other trainers get ahead of me!

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Life is Still Nummy

I am a terrible blogger. I promised a second post last week, but then life got it in the way, like it does. I will try and do 2 posts this week. I only have a 2 day work week this week, so I should have time.

My husband likes to say that the point in time that he understood that I was doing okay with living gluten free was the day that I turned to him and said, “Life is still nummy.” It kind of holds a lot of things. There’s hope in the statement. There’s also throwing off the stigma of gluten free food. You don’t need to go any further than the late John Pinette’s routine to see exactly what those are. There’s also a sense of normalcy to it, like a turning point of sorts.

Before my diagnosis, I thought that John Pinette bit was hilarious. I hadn’t really tried gluten free bread. We would laugh in the store at all of these things that we thought should be gluten free, because why would you have gluten in corn chips (I’m looking at you Doritos)? And cosmetics, because why would there be gluten in hand soap or lotion or shampoo (really why is it there?) It seemed like these were all stupid things, but little did I know that I would need to understand it before too long.

So, “Life is still nummy” it just my phrase that encompasses all of that. It’s my little gift of hope. A slight reprieve from speaking about all of the hidden gluten in things.

Nummy 2 What you might not be able to see on whatever tiny screen we’re using, is that within those words is a list of everything that I could think of that is gluten free, naturally gluten free. Like cars are naturally gluten free, if there is gluten in the car, someone put it there. Here is the text of that list, if you are interested:

Rice, Quinoa, Amaranth, Teff, Sorguhm, Almonds, Coconut, Tapicoa, Hemp, Corn, Buckwheat, Arrowroot, Oats, Apples, Apricots, Asparagus, Artichoke , Avocado, Bananas, Beans, Berries, Broccoli, Brussels  Sprouts, Cabbage, Carrots, Cauliflower, Celery, Cherries, Collard Greens, Cucumber, Dates, Eggplant, Endive, Escarole, Fennel, Figs, Garlic, Gooseberries, Grapefruit, Grapes, Green Beans, Green Onions, Greens, Guava, Hominy, Jicama, Kale, Kiwi, Kumquat, Leeks, Lemons, Lettuce, Limes, Lychee, Mandarin Oranges, Mangoes, Mulberries, Mushrooms, Nectarines, Okra, Onions, Oranges, Papayas, Parsnips, Passion Fruit, Peaches, Pears, Peas, Peppers, Persimmons, Pineapples, Plantains, Plums, Pomegranate, Potatoes, Prunes, Pumpkin, Quince, Radicchio, Radishes, Raisins, Raspberries, Rhubarb, Rutabaga, Shallots, Snow Peas, Spinach, Sprouts, Squash, String Beans, Sweet Potatoes, Tangelos, Tangerines, Tomatillo, Tomato, Turnip, Watermelon, Zucchini, Dancing, Birdwatching, Board Games, Coloring, Netflix and Chill, Yarn, Cheese, Quilting, Macramé, Ice Skating, Going to Museums, LEGOS!, Comic books, Magic, Metalworking, Music, Origami, Painting, Pottery, Jigsaw Puzzles, Leather Working, Books, Sewing, Scrapbooking, Singing, Playing an Instrument, Drawing, Video Games, Table Tennis, The Internet, Wood Carving, Yoga, Yoyos, Writing, Ham Radio Operating, Archery, The Aquarium, Astrology, Astronomy, Backgammon, Baseball,  Going to the beach, Beading, Beatboxing, Basketball, Base jumping, Bicycling, Going to the gym, Calligraphy, Canoeing, Chess, Cloud watching, Coin collecting, Darts, Dominoes, Falconry, Football, Fishing, Geocaching, Go Karting, Clothes shopping, Ghost Hunting, Cosplay, Gymnastics, Juggling, Flying a kite, Lacrosse, Martial Arts, Meditation, Paintball, Paper Mache, Parkour, Pole Dancing, Puppetry, Rafting, Going for a run, Skateboarding, Skydiving, Snorkeling, Long conversations, Spelunking, Stamp collecting, Ultimate Frisbee, Zumba ,Blanket forts, Lazy Sundays, Long drives, Flowers, Art, Going to concerts, Afternoon naps, Cats, Dogs, Birds, Snakes, Gerbils, Guinea Pigs, Hedgehogs, Horses, Goldfish, Cows, Pigs, Old Movies, Going to a play, Grumpy Cat, The Muppets, Comedians, Bubble Baths, Cellphone Games, Fencing, Warm socks, Coffee shops, Soda pop, Wine, Rum, Good vodka, Hard Cider, Disney Princesses, Internet memes, Anime, Hiking, Horseback riding, Cross stich, Parkour, Model trains, Christmas trees, Stargazing, Lazy Sunday mornings, Freshly washed sheets, Magic, Summer vacations, Intertubing, Sunbathing, Getting a massage, Concerts, Photography, Thrift Shopping, Antiquing, Trainspotting, People watching, Ice Cream, Snow Cones, Facebook, Twitter, Seflies, Watching the Sunset, Water skiing, Making a snowman, Nature walks, Mushrooming, Bugs, The Funny Pages, Magazines, Bears, Sheep Herding,  Rodeos, Gardening, Long baths, Role Playing, LARPing, Cleaning house, Taking a class, Scuba Diving, Coffee, Tea, Hot cocoa with marshmallows, Roller skating, Ice Skating, Skateboarding, Sleeping in, Volunteering, Tacos, New care smell, Summer breezes, Scented candles, Petrichor, Sidewalk chalk, Finger Painting, Looking at family pictures, Jigsaw puzzles, Camp fires,  Popcorn…

That’s pretty much all I could think of, if there is something on the list that I missed, put it in the comment section. I’ll take everything that we put there an make another image in the near future, of our entire list. Personally, I look at everything in that list, and while I don’t like all of it, it does make me feel good that there are that many things in the world that are naturally gluten free. It’s so much larger than the list gluten list.