Most days are not pretty picture recipe perfect meals. Most days are stumbling out of bed, trying to not be late to work and still feed myself. Most days are getting home exhausted and not feeling like doing anything, but needing to load the dish washer because there are no clean plates in the house and needing to do the laundry because I have nothing to wear to work the next day. Most days I scrounge for left overs or something that I can just microwave.
The problem with having a debilitating condition related to food is that when I am freakin exhausted (often because of contaminated food), I just want something quick and easy and I’m so tired I can be careless and make mistakes.
So I’ve worked hard to find quick solutions to the I-need-sustenance-right-now-or-I-am-going-to-hurt-somebody-(probably-myself)-problem.
I said I’ve worked hard to find them. I didn’t say I’ve found them.
Today I had a Lara bar for breakfast. A coconut one. This is not filling, but its quick and can tide me over if I also have a few cups of tea.
Thus far I have not had any problems with Lara bars, although it looks like they were bought by General Mills, so I am a bit worried. Of course the ingredients aren’t inherently gluten, and they are very simple and seem to be “whole” foods. The fewer the ingredients the better, since this reduces the chance of them being contaminated prior to arriving at the factory (statistically). And whole foods are the best – aka not processed at all or very little. The Lara bar website says they have “manufacturing controls in place to ensure that there are no cross-contact concerns”, which actually concerns me a LOT. If they used dedicated machines, they would say so. If it was a dedicated facility, they would say so. What they do introduces major possibilities of human error and the “good enough factor”. The problem with companies is that they are for profit, and they will do as little as possible to impact maximum profit. They test for “Gliadin gluten”, but quite frankly random testing does NOT ensure the entire batch is safe, particularly if they aren’t using dedicated machines or facilities! And besides, I recently heard that there are something like 400+ gluten proteins besides gliadin (all of which can make me sick).
Hmmmm, maybe Lara bars are out.
Know where I can buy my own dates and nuts any one?
For lunch, I had left over nasu miso (eggplant in miso sauce). Now its a bit of a risk since I don’t know how the miso is made, but its pretty freakin unlikely that gluten would be introduced in its manufacture (unless its a miso with wheat in it, then I avoid that brand). I also made my own Japanese pickles out of nappa cabbage and cucumber and salt. Only took about 10 minutes, while I was making the miso soup. I boiled dried kombu (a thick seaweed) and shiitake mushrooms, removed the kombu, then added tofu, white miso and reconstituted wakame (a thin delicate seaweed). It was very washoku (I’ll post about that later).
I’d be proud of myself, but I waited waaaaay too long to eat and had a bit of a headache and was so cranky I yelled at my cat. Ooops.
For dinner, I had baked tempeh strips, dipped in Emeril’s Bayou Blast (made myself with all McCormick guaranteed gluten free spices) and Annie’s gluten free ketchup.
Yes, really. I’m not kidding. That was dinner.
I also made kick ass split pea soup, but it wasn’t ready anywhere near dinner time. I’ll eat it tomorrow. It’ll get better for stewing, right?
Although I am tempted to feel like a bit of a culinary failure, I got through the day without getting glutenized and quite frankly that is pretty damn good.