Our Favourite Gluten-free Products for Coeliac Awareness Week
It’s Coeliac Awareness Week so, in honour of the occasion we’ve set our resident coeliac, Yasmin Godfrey, the mission of finding the best gluten-free products on the market…
What is Coeliac Disease?
If I’ve been asked this once, I’ve been asked this a thousand times, so before you ask, no it’s not an intolerance and no it’s not an allergy. Coeliac disease affects only 1% of the population and causes the body to have an autoimmune reaction to gluten.
It may sound like a load of scientific gobbledygook, but an autoimmune disease is where the body’s white blood cells attack the healthy tissue. This can cause many complications from the more common symptoms; nausea, vomiting and bloating, to the more serious; osteoporosis, fertility issues, iron deficiency, depression and nerve problems.
Following a strict gluten-free diet is the only way to avert the symptoms sadly, and while the thought of never placing a gluten-filled sugary doughnut or a doorstep of sourdough slathered in salted butter to my lips ever again brings me great sadness, it’s not all doom and gloom. I’ve compiled a list of the best gluten-free products on the market to help you embrace what’s great about being gluten-free...
Crumbly, stodgy and heavy are three words that come to mind when I think about gluten-free bread, but this one defies the odds. With a crisp, golden crust and soft centre, the mix makes enough to bake two loaves which you can create without the need for a loaf tin.
Quick and easy to cook, this pasta is a great, gluten-free equivalent to cous cous. I combine the cooked pasta with chopped parsley, mint, cucumber and tomato and dress with a squeeze of lemon and a little oil for a delicious tabbouleh.
3. Fry’s Gluten-free Quinoa & Brown Rice Burger, £2.99, ocado.com
Barbecue season is here(-ish) and i’m ready to chuck veggie burgers on the barbie. These ones are held together using quinoa and brown rice and flavoured with fresh rosemary, sage and marjoram – they’re great topped with a slice of mature Cheddar and peppery rocket.
4. Celia Dark Gluten-free Lager, £2.49, ocado.com
This malty, flavoursome dark lager has hints of coffee with a yeasty punch. It’s a great alternative if you’re missing the dark, porter-style beers you used to drink pre-coeliac – plus, it’s suitable for vegans, too.
5. Perkier Goji & Cranberry Quinoa Bar Multipack, £2, morrisons.com
Most snack bars contain oats, which are a bit of a grey area for those following a gluten-free diet due to cross-contamination issues in harvesting. Dates, cranberries, goji berries and seeds are combined with quinoa to create these tasty bars, so no problems here! Empty my bag at any given time and you’ll find one of these for on-the-go snacking.
If, like me, you’re a keen baker and your diagnosis has played havoc with your hobby, then try Doves Farm flours, which can be substituted one for one in any of your cake recipes. I’ve yet to be disappointed and my #CakeFriday creations never miss a beat in the office.
Many people are unaware that soy sauce contains gluten but I’ve found Japanese tamari, which tastes almost identical, works a treat. This one’s a store-cupboard essential so I no longer have to miss the seasoning in Thai curries.