We’ve been in getting-outta-Dodge mode for the past few days. Sadly, the car hasn’t – it’s in the shop with a pooched clutch. And so while we pine by the phone for the (completely awesome) mechanics to call and let us know we’re free to go get the H. out of this snow, I’ve been diligently plowing through the perishables in the fridge. There were lots of bits of cheese, and this not eating wheat thing combined with neverending snow has been causing me to Jones for starchy things big time. Like a big ol’ pot of baked mac & cheese.
Also – Pat from Winnipeg was kind enough to email me with some wheat-free pasta advice, suggesting Mrs. Leeper’s corn pasta (she has no affiliation), which I promptly went out and bought a bag of.
A lot of you have been emailing and tweeting wheat-free advice – thanks! – and some have been asking why the h. I would want to do such a thing. I tend to agree. I’ll spare you the details of my symptoms, besides the brain fog, which my dad is convinced has more to do with lack of sleep than my morning bagel, but it’s just to see if I react when I do eat some. And to wean myself off, because whether it’s bread and baked goods or sugar or fat, the more I eat the more I want. The less you feed your cravings the weaker they get. And cravings, I think, are more difficult to resist than hunger.
Yes, it’s harder than I thought. It has made me more conscious of what I eat, and the fog has cleared somewhat, although I didn’t get the boost of energy I thought I would. (On days when I’ve been subsisting on bread I tend to feel like I’m tied to a piano.) And the foggy brain part can’t be all gone, because the other day I tried to put W’s jacket on while he insisted that HE DIDN’T HAVE A SHIRT ON YET. I’m not doing it in an attempt to lose weight, although I admit I did allow myself to get my hopes up a teeny bit, having heard from a bazillion or so people over the years that when you give up wheat, you drop pounds like crazy! Like that! (Finger snap!) And I figured that just by default of having NOT PICKED AT ANY (any!) of the delicious crumbs on our blueberry big crumb cake we made at class last Wednesday, nor any of the three (THREE!) batches of warm scones with cheese, olives, berries (not all together) – nor anything (freshly baked Raincoast Crisps topped with shaved Asiago! Freshly made samosas, using Naheed’s mom’s recipe!) at my Saturday class, or waffles Sunday morning, or pulled pork on soft brioche rolls for dinner, that it might count for something.
And so the other day I went to the gym after work, and hopped on the right and proper medical scale, and wow, check it out!! I GAINED SIX POUNDS. Awesome.
My plan is to stick it out a little longer for scientific purposes, make sure my gut is no longer used to massive influxes of it and then have a crispy cod club whenever we manage to make it to Tofino, and see how strongly it protests. Mwaa haa haa. I’m really hoping nothing happens and I can just go back to having a bagel already.
But back to the pasta. I’ve been eating my share of rice and oats and granola, but still craving something to fill that void that bread left when I sent it packing. While it is a pretty shade of corn yellow, I might not have been able to detect that it wasn’t wheat had I not bought it myself. It’s a little lighter (really! I assumed corn pasta might be a bit heavier, like corn bread) and softer than wheat macaroni, without being mushy. It’s like it was made for mac & cheese.
As I’ve been channeling my inner gluten-free girl, I deferred to her mac & cheese expertise. I’ve always made it the same way – with pasta and a cheese sauce started with a roux – rice flour is a perfectly effective thickener, but she had a version made with cottage cheese, and I had ricotta in the fridge. So I added the container to the drained pasta in the pot, along with shredded bits of Parmesan, cheddars and gruyere, mixed it up, then topped it with two slices of grainy bread blitzed with a bit more Parmesan and a drizzle of olive oil.
(Yes – it was regular wheat bread – you could use gluten-free bread of course. Instead, after baking (at 350F until bubbly) I opted to carefully dissect mine, scooping gingerly from the bottom of the pot and avoiding the crumbs. Yum.)
It’s well after dinnertime now. Sounds like they didn’t finish the car again. Boo. Maybe tomorrow.
March 23 2011 06:53 pm | pasta