If youíre following a gluten-free diet, you already know what I discovered for the first time in Gluten-Free on a Shoestring: gluten-free packaged foods are outrageously expensive. Author Nicole Hunn felt she had little choice but to pay the price in order to provide satisfying meals for her son with celiac disease as well as the rest of her family.
But the products werenít so tasty. ďI remember this one particular bread,Ē writes Hunn, ďthat could be cured of that dense, gluten-free sponginess by toasting it. The only problem was that you had to eat it within momentsÖ [or] the bread would spring back to its pretoasted, spongy form.Ē
Frustration led to experimentation, and bit by bit, recipe by recipe, Hunn taught herself how to convert favorite dishes to gluten-free versions that cost less and taste better than the packaged ones. She points out in her introduction that these are traditional, easy comfort foods, not alien concoctions that no one wants to eat anyway.
Starting off with simple tips for those just tackling this lifestyle, Hunn even explains what to buy and where to get it, including online sources for those of us who donít live near a major supermarket. While she provides some background and cooking tips, most of the book is devoted to recipes, such as
Itís not ALL about the bread, though. Iím newly addicted to Hunnís Polenta Pizza, as well as to the Noodle Kugel that sounded dreadful but turned out to be totally yummy.
- Savory Pasty Crust (save more than 50% by making it yourself from scratch)
- Woton Wrappers
- French Pastry Dough
- Cheese Crackers
- Ricotta Pancakes
- Coffee Cake
Gluten-Free on a Shoestring opens up a whole new world for people with this particular diet restriction and does so with a writing style that is both assured and accessible. Those of us who donít have a medical diagnosis requiring diet changes can benefit from the book, as well. Thereís no question that most of us in the U.S. are stuffing ourselves with all sorts of not-quite-food, and that is usually because we lean toward what is familiar. Pizza, for instance. French bread. Cake. Cookies.
In addition to offering an excellent resource for those who must go gluten-free, Hunnís book gives everyone a map toward healthier eating without giving up those delicious foods we love.