Why do Americans use buckwheat so weirdly
What is gluten free?
Glutens are proteins that are contained in cereals. These types of grain include: wheat, spelled and green spelled, emmer, einkorn, barley, oats, rye, kamut and wild rice. Gluten is also called glue (protein), because the gluten is responsible for the binding during baking. Gluten can bind water very well and once it has become damp, gluten acquires an elastic, plastic consistency (almost like rubber). Since wheat contains the highest quality and most gluten, wheat is also the ideal baking cereal, as the excellent baking properties are mainly due to the gluten.
Now, however, the gluten are suspected of being responsible for allergies such as neurodermatitis, skin diseases, headaches and even authism. Many children and adults suffer from celiac disease, a gluten intolerance in which gluten attacks the intestine and can permanently damage it.
Anyone suffering from celiac disease must follow a lifelong gluten-free diet; people with allergies to wheat gluten can benefit from a gluten-free diet over a longer period of time. Specifically, this means that you must not eat foods that contain gluten.
"Grains" that do not contain gluten are rice, corn, buckwheat, millet, quinoa, amaranth; normal flour is also replaced by soy, chestnut, carob or tapioca flour.
How do you eat gluten-free?
If you are a little flexible and enjoy trying out new recipes, a gluten-free diet is not that difficult. First you have to be clear about what gluten contains in order to avoid or replace these products. Ordinary bread, pasta, pastries are the first things that come to mind. Many finished products contain wheat, but as a vegan you usually do without it. Muesli and cereals contain cereals that contain gluten, but there are also varieties that only consist of corn, rice, etc.
It is frightening to find out what else can contain gluten: seitan (pure gluten), vegan sausages and wheat meat products, spice mixes, soy sauce, baking powder, granulated broth, instant cocoa, ice cream, medicines, beer, whiskey, cognac ... The more you study this subject, the more you will find out!
Of course you do without all these things and look for alternatives, many recipes are pretty gluten-free, especially potato, rice and vegetable dishes. Instead of bread you eat rice cakes or try to get gluten-free bread, which is quite expensive and difficult, especially if the bread is also supposed to be vegan. You hardly have a chance with cake!
But there are gluten-free flour mixes, pasta made from corn or millet flour and there are also many groups on the Internet that exchange gluten-free recipes.
My personal experiences
Three months ago, my dermatologist diagnosed me with an allergy to wheat, wheat gluten, and barley. This could be the cause of my dandruff, which I have suffered from since childhood. I got an allergy pass and some information about gluten, which foods are allowed and which are forbidden.
My first thought was: Oh, I can do that with the left, it's just the wheat that I should leave out. On the other hand, the doctor gave me the tip to eat completely gluten-free for a few weeks, as this would be the quickest way to have an effect on a wheat allergy.
My plan now was to live gluten-free for at least three months and wait for a reaction from my body. I went home and rummaged through my pantry, all products with gluten-containing substances were taken out of service, and I gave these to my mother. Then I looked in my cookbooks for recipes that are gluten-free.
Information is always good too, so I browsed the internet for everything to do with gluten-free, wheat allergies and celiac disease. In the German-speaking countries you can find a lot about gluten-free nutrition, also a lot about vegan nutrition, but vegan and gluten-free was almost impossible to find. After a few detours I found the Yahoogroup vegan-and-gluten-free, the forum on www.zoeliakie-net.de was also very interesting.
Supplied with recipes and tips, I went shopping, as a vegan you are already well versed in reading the list of ingredients, so I had no problems buying products that really did not contain gluten. In the health food store I found baking mixes for bread (from Wertz), noodles made from millet and corn and various other little things. Unfortunately, the prices of these products are very high, as a poor student I was mostly left with no such things. * sigh * Nevertheless, I bought a baking mix and my mother gave me millet and corn noodles.
Of course, I had to test these noodles right away: the corn noodles were okay, in terms of color and taste they could hardly be distinguished from wheat noodles, and the consistency was okay. The millet noodles were a disaster, I can only advise against that. When cooked, they crumbled into tiny pieces and then clumped together, making them impossible to mix with sauce. In terms of taste, too, they were anything but a revelation.
Next I tested the baking mix: One half of the dough was made into a small bread, the other half I topped with plums. The fruit cake was delicious, but the bread was very compact and gritty, the taste was ok, but not great. In no way can such a bread be compared with the usual bread, rather with the American corn bread.
I survived the first few weeks quite well, I mostly ate vegetables and potatoes, cooked a lot of Indian dishes, which are mostly vegan and gluten-free by themselves. Often there was also rice and Asian vegetable dishes with tofu. It struck me that I was really eating a huge amount of potatoes. There was also a lot of salad, fruit and raw vegetables, for breakfast (I'm used to muesli or toasted bread) there was muesli made from millet, rice and buckwheat flakes or the good old corn flakes with soy milk or rice waffles with sweet or savory spreads.
Up until then I didn't really have any problems, I definitely got full and felt very fit. The first problems arose when my lectures started again: What do I eat in the cafeteria ?! The only thing left was the salad counter, but more or less the same salad every day - not with me! I usually take sandwiches with me, but gluten-free bread is not easy to buy. So I wanted to try baking again.
I tried to bake buckwheat bread, the recipe called for a mixture of buckwheat and rice flour, luckily I have a grain mill that was used very often during this time. The bread dough looked very strange, the buckwheat gave the dough a grayish color, and the dough was very runny. I put the pan in the oven anyway, unfortunately the bread did not open - which is not possible because the gluten are responsible for the fluffy baked goods. After the bread had cooled down, I cut a slice, and I had serious problems because the bread was very, very compact. It actually smelled quite good and looked somewhat appetizing. Tucked under a thick layer of margarine, I took a bite of it. The first impression was: * URGS * Despite the greasy layer of fat it almost got stuck in my throat, it was really very, very compact. But the taste was - good, took some getting used to, but there should also be people who like buckwheat. ;-) I'm definitely not one of them! Nevertheless, I have devoured most of this breadstone. ;-)
Now I was put off trying further baking for a while. But even if the normal food is so good, at some point you will feel the need for sweet pastries. After some experimentation, I finally found a very tasty version of the English crumbles. A short time later, when I was invited to dinner, I brought a delicious cake (apple layer cake) with me, which everyone present enjoyed very much. The trick was: don't use buckwheat flour! Use a lot of cornstarch and rice flour. Don't be stingy with baking powder and always spread the dough flat and combine it with fruit. So I managed to relieve my cravings for sweet pastries quite well.
But there was still the problem of what to do if you have to eat while on the move (at work / school / university or in restaurants). Rice waffles with a spread are not very suitable, they soften very quickly. Bread actually falls flat too. I usually took a bowl of salad (with legumes or potatoes) with me, lots of fruit and rice cakes to nibble on. In restaurants it is really very difficult, except for a salad or a plate of vegetables there is unfortunately not much left! Fortunately, there is also a large plate of french fries ...
After living gluten-free for three months, I'm now trying to eat halfway normal vegan again. It's not too difficult to live gluten-free, but when you're on the go, it's pretty hard to find something to eat. Nevertheless, I found it to be a kind of challenge that I was able to master quite well: In these three months I didn't eat any gluten other than a space bar, some soy sauce (I couldn't find any without wheat) and a pack of dominoes. Of course, it takes a huge portion of willpower to walk past a baker, not to eat pizza or pasta. But you get used to it, and very quickly.
Unfortunately, other people very quickly refer to you as completely insane, because vegan alone is not enough! ;-) Many imagine it to be so complicated that they think they must starve to death, which is not true.
It is more true that you can eat a huge amount of vegetables and fruits and potatoes without gaining weight. I managed to eat so much every day that I almost burst and still lost 4 kg!
What was really difficult for me was not eating noodles and space bars, but the latter only when my boyfriend ate them in front of my nose. ;-) Since I don't eat a lot of bread and cake, I was spared from hunger for these products.
But if you ask me now whether the whole action also helped against the dandruff, I unfortunately cannot answer that. It has gotten better, but this could also be due to testing various shampoos. That's why I want to eat normally again to find out whether the dandruff is really related to the wheat allergy.
In summary, I can now say that one should not despair if one suffers from a wheat allergy or celiacia. There are so many delicious recipes to try and with a little flexibility and a pinch of thick-headedness, life without gluten is easy to master. The recipes in my database are all labeled as to whether they are gluten-free or not, at the beginning you should try these, which are definitely gluten-free, if you know what gluten can be found in and how you can replace it try the recipes that I have classified as gluten-free. Even if I don't have to eat gluten-free, I will still keep an eye out for gluten-free recipes, especially baking recipes.
Where can I find gluten-free products?
Gluten-free bread, pasta and baking mixes can be found in every health food store and in health food stores. I was amazed by the organic corn spaghetti from Schniter and the baking mix for bread and cakes from Werz. There is a lot of information and ordering options on the Internet, but I haven't tried the latter.Of course, you can also find gluten-free products in every supermarket, i.e. fresh fruit, vegetables, etc. Rice cakes are also available in almost every supermarket. As always, it is important to read the list of ingredients.
In order to be able to orientate yourself a little better, this symbol was developed by the Deutsche ZÃ¶liakie-Gesellschaft e.V.
Products with this symbol are guaranteed gluten-free.
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