Why I started the cook book project.
June 2018, I attended the Canadian Celiac Association national conference. I was awestruck by the amount of people in attendance seeking solutions on what to eat. People wanted to know what to cook for themselves or for their children who had been recently diagnosed with celiac. If you had never heard of celiac before diagnosis, it is certainly a shock. It is an overwhelming life change that many people face alone.
I want everyone to know that once you wrap your head around what gluten-free really means you realize there is still so much you can eat and enjoy.
My celiac diagnosis propelled me into a healthier life style. However this is a huge misconception, that eating gluten-free automatically means your healthy. This misinformation is driving force behind the people who eat gfree to be trendy. If you stick to processed foods many are devoid of nutrients and highly processed so this is not reflective of a healthy diet. For me I clung to whole foods, foods without ingredients until I could understand label reading. My diagnosis propelled me into a healthier life starting with label reading.
As a celiac you must read the label EVERY SINGLE TIME before you consume a product.
A product can be gluten-free when you eat it one time. If the producer changes a recipe, supplier of an ingredient based on availability the item could no longer be safe for consumption. I had never truly looked at a label before. When you say read the labels most people take a glance at the calories, sugar, fiber, sodium, not those long names for ingredients we cant pronounce. With celiac you have to research the origin of each ingredient to determine if it is derived from wheat, barley, rye or oats. When you actually first start looking at a label that way you realize there are many names for ingredients that are added to our food. When I started to google these additives and reading about the origin I also started to eliminate these things from my diet.
In Canada gluten is a top allergen and MUST be declared on the label
in plain language and can not be hidden within another name. Vendors will often have a “May contain statement” if it is produced in a facility that uses the suspect ingredients.
The random misinformed things people say when the hear you eat gluten-free.
OMG I feel so sorry for you like what do you eat salad.
Me – I can eat most everything i just have to prepare is a different way.
Oh so your vegan don’t worry that has no meat in it
Me – I am not vegan I do have lactose intolerance, which many celiac also experience lactose intolerance and avoid dairy
You can’t eat that it has “(vegetables, potato, rice, corn, meat, dairy) ” in it.
Me- well I personally can eat iot i just cant have anything with Wheat Baeley or Rye.
I have a ‘insert 3 times removed acquaintance here’ who is gf but they are only a little celiac and still eats gluten.
Me – I am celiac so there is no varying degree you can actually have no symptoms at all and still cause severe damage to the lining of your stomach that can lead to complications such as cancer. I personally am at risk for lymphoma, many people have other related conditions. It is only managed by strict 100% GF diet FOR LIFE.
THE IDEA – To help people transition to a gluten-free life.
To be comforted knowing that not matter their skills in the kitchen. No matter their culinary preferences a diverse community must eat gluten-free and we do so enjoying all of the gluten favorites we once loved. Just reinvented WITHOUT GLUTEN! If we can support each other, share these life hacks and make the transition to a gluten-free life easier. We can help our community heal quicker and live their best gluten-free life.
I invite you to contribute a recipe to add to the collection!
Is there a go to recipe that helped you in the beginning of your gluten-free journey. Do you remember the items you missed the most? What did you make to replace those old favorites. Don’t be shy send in your go-to meals, snacks, treats.
All you need to do is submit a recipe to help people in our community transition to a GF life.
We will compile, edit and photograph your recipe. All of the food prepar4ed is offer3ed to food r4escure and food programs who have clients that require gluten-free to provide access to safe food and eliminate food waste.
The Book will be offered in print and a digital version which will include a hyperlinked directory. It will be available for sale through online channels and at events where Gfreewifey food drives and fundraiser are held to provide access to safe food.
* Project Update *
Over 60 people from across the country have submitted a recipe for this issue. A diverse collection of favorites from of all skill sets. Some are beginner home cooks, others young celiacs taking action in the kitchen, seasoned chefs, supportive family members of people who eat gluten-free, veteran gfree peeps sharing hacks they have mastered over the years.
Current sponsors of the #GFREEWIFEYFOODBANK Community Cook Book
Nudl Artisan Pasta – Providing all pasta for the project
Nudle based in KW area with weekly deliveries along the 401 corridor, Miton, Georgetown, Mississauga and GTA (401 to DVP down to Lakeshore)
Davis Family Farm – Providing honey and cooking oil
OTB Meats – Providing all meat
Healthful Communications – Sponsored the cost of 1 recipe.