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We’re Here. We’re Gluten-Free. Get Used to It.

Dear Kay,
What a fine piece of planning for you to be out of town during all the hootenanny. I know you must be crushed to miss out on all the fun protesting going on in New York. I would have written sooner but I’ve been too busy trying to figure out what I want to protest. The good news is that I think I’ve found it:
riceloaf.jpg
I’ve formed a nonprofit organization called Citizens for a Wheat-Free-Gluten-Free-Dairy-Free-Cholesterol-Free-Sodium-Free-Brown-Rice-Loaf-Free Country.
Julia Child is spinning in her grave at the idea of this stuff. Julia Child could not apply enough butter in the world to make this taste like bread. Julia Child would say that if you are on a wheat-free, gluten-free diet, eat rice. Whatever contorted act of chemistry resulted in this loaf should not be encouraged.
I want to point out some features of this Brown Rice Loaf:
1. An expiration date of 5/12/05. No bread product should have a shelf life of nine months unless it is included in a bomb shelter provision box.
2. The inclusion of a packet labeled “Oxygen Absorber” which resembles those silica packets they put in with your camera so it doesn’t get moldy or something.
3. A sour smell kind of like . . . old bad bread.
4. A pasty mouth feel that stays with you long after you take a bite.
5. It’s *New and Improved*. And yes, it is kosher.
Hubbo brought this home. It goes right on the shelf beside his other experiments: the chocolate-free brownies, the Nova episode about string theory, and the Burt Bacharach songbook.
Love,
Ann
PS My favorite protest poster so far is one with a picture of a smiling Bush with the legend “Darm Fine Leader.”

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15 Comments

15 Comments

  1. That ehhh, ‘bread-like substance’ is not going anywhee near my tastebuds ever. While I fully understand the dietary troubles of someone with gluten intolerance or lactose intolerance, there is such a thing as culinary overkill. Here in Denmark the ‘fat-free’ rage inspired by Anne Larsen (who nearly rose to be the Danish ‘Martha Stewart’) took similar excesses. One item: you take your low-fat roast, prepare it, then take it to the sink and wash off all the adhering fat that may have come out under the faucet with hot water……

  2. Yummy…. I’m trying for enthusiasm but I just can’t do it. In fact I think I’d rather watch the string theory episode than make myself a nice slice of brown rice toast!
    As for Thomas’ low fat roast… I’m speechless.

  3. I was a healthfood shop kid – we ate brown food. (mum worked in the local healthfood shop).
    My abiding healthfoody memory was of Mum having baked what looked like the yummiest, most luscious looking chocolate victoria sponge complete with dark chocolate buttercream.
    It turned out to be carob, not chocolate (not too bad) but the biggest disappointment was the icing (frosting) – not buttercream but carob &yogurt with a smidge of icing sugar. Not at all sweet – sour-ish in fact.
    But Mum did try to give us healthy alternatives to the junk we wanted! – trouble is I can see myself doing exactly the same! – no Sunny D for my kid…
    Jo
    xxx

  4. Long time reader, first time poster…
    As someone with a gluten allergy, I completely agress with your assessment of that “bread”. It’s all crap, and those with such an allergy generally either (1) don’t eat bread at all, (2) attempt to make an equally disgusting alternative at home, or (3) cheat.
    Although the selection of gluten-free food alternatives continues to grow, the industry has yet to develop anything that can mimic the texture of bread. Instead, they have produced a number of different types of cardboard.

  5. Thank you! I swear, if I have to hear one more person pontificate about how they are “allergic to carbs” I will scream. (And that includes my husband, who, although I love him dearly, is testing my patience sorely with his new no pasta-no risotto lifestyle.)
    At least there’s always Felted Tweed. By the way, after reviewing this fall’s fashion offerings, I have concluded that those who were smart enough to knit Elfin last year are now sitting pretty with the “in” jacket, whereas I (who started her and then got distracted after ten inches) had better dust off that WIP and get going!

  6. Thomas, with Danish bread at your disposal, you’d better not be eating any of that rice stuff! Ann, I have a loaf of something like that in my fridge, and I would have to say that doing without is better than the fake alternative. Yeccch! Yes, at least there’s Felted Tweed, which I was ogling in the yarn store yesterday in a multitude of yummy colors.

  7. I am very deeply disturbed by the words “New and Improved”. It begs the question “How bad was it before?”

  8. i have gluten allergy, here in the UK you have to pay really stupid prices , as in overpriced, for things i wont call it food , things that resemble the taste and texture of papier mache, average price for a loaf of gluten free bread here is $6.00!!

  9. Hey! I’ve watched that string theory documentary three times now! Tell your hubbie he is not alone…

  10. I have a friend with a severe gluten allergy. She swears that she makes gluten free bread that tastes good. I know she makes good chocolate cookies. My husband tasted one and remarked, “It’s like she took out the gluten and replaced it with chocolate.” They’re just this side of a chocolate bar.

  11. chocolate free brownies…what’s the point?

  12. Ann–
    I had a friend (who unfortunately died an untimely death from ovarian cancer) who always found a nonconfrontational way to get rid of the wierd things her husband a) either had as a bachelor and wanted to continue keeping; or) brought home. Take the v. ugly vase that he insisted on keeping in their marital home. She “accidentally” dropped it while cleaing (btw, she had a cleaning lady) cause it to shatter into a million pieces. My advice on this bread is to “accidentally” drop it down the trash disposal in the sink, if you have one, or in the grill while you are cooking up some barbecue! And, when you are finished, call up Zingermans and get the real stuff delivered.
    One last thing…the stick bug thingie is a bit creepy. Why cant bugs just look like bugs so that we can all just know when to say “EEEK” and then step on them?

  13. Hi Kay,
    I live in a Celiac household. That stuff you pictured is awful. I do make good bread though. It’s mostly out of potato flour.
    For those who are sick of people with “carb allergies” believe me, we’d LOVE to be faking it, we’d LOVE to be able to eat in restaurants without worrying about getting horribly sick, we’d LOVE to be able to buy ready-made food that doesn’t taste like cardboard. It’s one of those, until you’ve walked a mile… things.
    Heather

  14. I’ve been Coeliac (UK spelling) all my life and have never tasted ‘real’ bread. For the past 30 years I have been trying to find something that approximates it, but so far all I’ve ended up with is vacuum-packed chemical dust! But that’s what you get when you make bread with no ‘glue’ in it!
    Ah well. At least I can eat chocolate :)

  15. I don’t think “carb-allergic” and cellaic are referring to the same things. Right now it’s all the rage for some people to say they are allergic to carbs when really they mean that they get addicted to them and the carbs then make them overweight–i think those are the folks the poster was referring to–not people with actual wheat or gluten allergies.