Having coeliac disease means I have to say “no” to a lot of things. Occasionally this makes me just a little despondent. Take the following two examples:
I am sitting at work, mid-afternoon on a Thursday with a couple more hours to get through. It’s raining outside and there’s a pervasive heaviness in the air. I’m sleepy and listless. I walk into the main admin office to do some photocopying and at that very moment, a colleague unveils a cake with a proud flourish. It’s a lemon sponge, topped (according to the box) with “a rich lemon buttercream”. The collective mood of the office shoots upwards. Everyone flocks around the cake, cooing and smiling appreciatively as though it’s a newborn baby. Oh it’s lovely, they cry as they tuck in. Do you want some? Oh really? It has gluten in it? Oh dear. That’s a shame.
I am shopping with Paul and we enter the M&S food aisles. Suddenly we are hit by a heavenly fragrance wafting from the bakery. It’s something like essence of croissant, blended with elixir of toasted teacake and distillation of freshly baked baguette, with, perhaps, a judicious drop of buttered brioche. I stand and inhale. Paul looks sternly at me and says, in his best Douglas-from-the-IT-crowd voice: “It’s not for you!”
To survive these sad moments of deprivation, the best strategy is to focus on things I can have rather than things I can’t. So I’m now seeking out a different indulgence each week, to bring a little sunshine into the gluten free gloom.
I’m also doing extensive research into gluten free “bread” (and yes, those inverted commas are intentional and deserved) but I’ll save that for another post. For now, here are my top three gluten free treats:
- Green and Black’s milk chocolate with Anglesey sea salt. I used to enjoy a Kit-Kat or Mint Club with my after-dinner cup of tea. Now I have a few lines of this. Well, that’s if there’s any left in the cupboard. It melts in the mouth at just the right speed, the little grains of salt adding a piquant burst. Yum.
- Tescos finest white chocolate and cranberry cookies. These are just the thing for the mid-afternoon workplace lull. Big chunks of white chocolate mixed with the sharpness of cranberry. They don’t really taste “free from”.
- Lazy Day Belgian Dark Chocolate Tiffin… Morsels of chocolatey-truffley-biscuity-crunchiness, studded with sultanas. Rich and sweet: perfect with a cup of tea, but quite melty so needs to be kept in the fridge.
If you happen to know a thing or two about gluten free treats, let me know what I should be trying next 🙂