Thursday, 15 September 2011

Phase 3 - Try Some Gluten Free Grains

In an earlier post I suggested eliminating gluten from your diet, and letting your body get used to that for a few weeks, and then start introducing gluten free grains. These are major dietary changes and I think it is best to take it slow.

The first two grains I am suggesting you try are quinoa and buckwheat. Before I was introduced to the gluten free world I had never heard of quinoa (pronounced keen-wah) and I thought buckwheat was something only hippies ate. Now they are two staples in our household and I am loving them! They're very versatile and easy to digest. And if you have recently gone gluten free you probably want to be eating foods that are easy to digest.

You can usually find quinoa and buckwheat in the health food section of your grocery store. Natural food stores sell them too. Make sure the brand you buy is gluten free.

I usually buy Eden Organic Quinoa or GoGo Quinoa. Bob's Red Mill produces gluten free quinoa as well. If you go with Bob's Red Mill make sure you look carefully for the gluten free symbol. Many of their products come in gluten free versions and non-gluten free versions. You can use quinoa in place of rice or couscous in your recipes, or make a delicious quinoa salad (I will be posting my favorite quinoa salad recipe soon). Quinoa is a very healthful grain, high in fiber and iron among other nutrients.

When it comes to buckwheat you can buy buckwheat groats and make a hot cereal out of them (I have never tried this), or you can buy buckwheat flour and use it in place of regular gluten flour. In most recipes you can't substitute gluten flour with straight buckwheat flour - you would normally need a combination of starches and flours. However, I've been making some delicious buckwheat pancakes lately and buckwheat flour is the only special ingredient you need. I have been using Cuisine Soleil Buckwheat Flour but Bob's Red Mill makes it as well (again, look for that gluten free symbol just to make sure). I'll be sure to post my recipe for buckwheat pancakes soon too!

Also, see my other posts:

Phase 1 - Start Eating
Phase 2 - Remove the Obvious Gluten
Phase 4 - Eliminating Cross Contamination in the Kitchen
Phase 5 - Removing Other Hidden Sources of Gluten
Phase 6 - Scour the Stores and Start Baking!

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