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Going Gluten-FreeFebruary 2, 2011

Craving Favorite Foods

Are you craving a long-lost special dish that's off limits because of your special dietary needs? If you were shipwrecked on an island and could pick only one dish to have gluten free or allergen free, what would it be? I asked food editor Beth Hillson, a celiac, to select her one most-favorite-ever food in the world--and it really got her going!

My top choice would be a thin-crusted, brick-oven pizza with chicken and lemon garlic. Or maybe I'd delve into fistfuls of Mississippi Mud Pie.

Or perhaps I’d ask for a chewy bagel, a real croissant or cinnamon bun with icing.

Grandma’s babka sounds good, too. Just thinking about Grandma and her babka brings back vivid memories. Sinking my teeth into a piece of that sweet yeast bread and exploring a vein of cinnamon and sugar with my tongue—mmm! I can almost taste it.

Some days, I crave a pan of lasagna with homemade sauce oozing over the sides of the pan. In the fall, I wish my mother could make one of her double-crusted apple pies or that I could buy a peach pie at a local bakery--succulent peaches nested between layers of lard-induced flaky pastry. 

Getting Beth to reminisce turned into some serious food lust. Her desert island sounds more like "dessert" island. Fortunately, many of Beth's favorite items are readily available--and just as delicious--in gluten-free, allergy-friendly versions. (We've got them on LivingWithout.com.) We're working on refashioning even more favorite recipes and plan to publish them in upcoming issues of the magazine and also post them on our website. 

What's on your list of most-craved foods? What would you want to eat on your desert island? Share your dream larder with us--and we'll get cooking!

Comments (27)

I've found using Red Mill's general baking flour after putting it thro the blender, works very well for my famous brownie recipe. Otherwise the flours can be kind of gritty in the recipes. I'd like to find the Better Batter flour. I'm in AZ. I really miss onion rings. And I miss making enchiladas with Macayo's canned enchilada sauce which has flour. It is nice to know you're not alone in this frustration.

Sharon G.

Posted by: sharon b | February 27, 2011 11:13 PM    Report this comment

Any of you donut cravers tried the donut recipe on Living Without's website? It was developed at the Culinary Institute of America.

Posted by: LW Moderator | February 9, 2011 1:18 PM    Report this comment

Sour cream twists and donuts - any type of donuts. I would like to taste bignets sometime. I am sensitive to wheat and corn, so I have to make all breads, etc at home.

Posted by: Peg | February 8, 2011 9:58 PM    Report this comment

Really miss holiday type goodies. Honey balls? any good recipes out there? French crullers? Norwegian Christmas bread? Maybe someday! When eating out there is a big disconnect as far as appetizers and desserts. NO CHOICES and yet they adverise GF! Any suggestions would be so appreciated.

Posted by: Ellen M | February 6, 2011 12:09 PM    Report this comment

I can agree in part with just about everyone ! But I would really love to go to dinner with my husband and not have the first words out of my mouth be "do you have a GF menu ?" I have learned to carry my own GF Soy Sauce and most restaurants will prepare Asian foods without soy sauce. I have even convinced some to carry GF soy sauce...WOW ! Fresh baked bread that doesn't turn to dust or a brick would be devine. Turtlelover

Posted by: Lynn W | February 5, 2011 9:44 AM    Report this comment

I was just on the Betty Crocker web site and they have an amazing amount of GF recipes, several of which I have tried. The best one is the Banana cupcakes with Brown butter icing--definitely company good. Everyone in my family loves them even though they are gluten free!

Kate S

Posted by: Kathleen S | February 4, 2011 6:35 PM    Report this comment

for Gwyn --Subway HAS come out with a GF roll, but is testing it in Texas right now. Maybe if we blast them with requests for it they will put it out everywhere! Kate S

Posted by: Kathleen S | February 4, 2011 6:31 PM    Report this comment

I was diagnosed with Celiac Diesease-Zero tollerence!! If Subway is in early stadges of making a Gluten Free bread for us celiac's HOW are they going to safe measure cross contamination??? Those of us who have zero tollerance brings BIG concern. Will they have to beable to keep the toppings uncontaminated. How will they do that??? I appreciate the fact that Subway is trying to help celiac's but cross contamination is hugh.

Posted by: Unknown | February 4, 2011 6:19 PM    Report this comment

Subway is testing GF bread in Tylor Tx and one other town in Texas. Truimp Dining was the company telling us that. I too would like to be able to go to Subway for a Ft. Long sandwich. Yeh!! I would like chocolate....yummy chocolate anyway you could prepare it without dairy or gluten. Carob is a fine substitue but all I can find that fits the bill is powder.

Posted by: JOYCE C | February 4, 2011 5:42 PM    Report this comment

Just FYI, I have recently become a huge fan of Katz Gluten-Free. Their products are awesome and not really heavy. Last week, I wanted a grilled cheese sandwich and made one with their Challah bread. It was so awesome and light like "normal" bread and so yummy I made a second one immediately. They have a variety of products and their website is: www.katzglutenfree.com. They currently have a special: 15% off your order and free shipping with an order $30 or more. AWESOME STUFF. Thanks Katz for your awesome work!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Posted by: Tillie H | February 4, 2011 12:27 PM    Report this comment

To Gwen L, Subway is test marketing GF bread in I think, Texas someplace. I can't remember where I read it, but the article said to go to your local Subway and mention to the manager how you would love if they would carry GF bread. If there is demand, then they will, hopefully provide! Now that I think about it, I think I read it in Living Without!

Posted by: Leslie S | February 4, 2011 11:54 AM    Report this comment

I have been gluten-free for 11 years and really missed our family stollen. This year it came out perfectly made with Jules flour and following direction for Challah bread. It is a shaped like a crescent roll with a date- nut filling. There have been so many advances recently. When I started , I just hoped to find a decent pizza and brownie recipe to make at home. This year I ordered take-out GF pizza at a local restaurant and it was delivered! I'm still looking for a great bun and onion rings.

Posted by: Pamela E | February 4, 2011 8:15 AM    Report this comment

I do miss certain foods like pizza and just having a sandwich from time to time, but, what I miss most is being able to share foods with my boyfriend when we do go out to eat at restaurants. We would always be sure to get different meals when we went out so we could try each others. Not anymore - always have to be sure mine is prepared for my gluten free needs.

Posted by: Karen B | February 4, 2011 4:00 AM    Report this comment

I crave good San Francisco sourdough French bread! The more sour the better! I miss the chewy crunchy texture of the crust! I've been GF for 1 year 9 months! And I miss going out for Chinese food...soy sauce is used everywhere!

Posted by: JG W | February 3, 2011 8:20 PM    Report this comment

My mother's super flaky pie crusts and baking powder biscuits are sorely missed. Not to mention extra crispy fried chicken.

Posted by: Mary Ann W | February 3, 2011 5:18 PM    Report this comment

I miss cheeseburgers and cheesecake! GF/CF cheeseburgers are just not the same, and I can't find a gluten/cane sugar free graham cracker or a CF cream cheese substitute to make my own cheesecake. Between my husband and I we are allergic to: gluten, casein, cane sugar, almonds, eggs and sesame. Finding things we can both have, ready made from the store, is an exercise in frustration.

Posted by: JENNIFER S | February 3, 2011 2:44 PM    Report this comment

Krispy Kreme glazed donuts.

Posted by: JoAnn Hogenson H | February 3, 2011 2:41 PM    Report this comment

Being allergic to gluten, dairy & corn I miss so many things, but the biggest thing I miss is eating at a restaurant without fear of repercussions. What I would give to go on a romantic dinner date with my husband and focus on him and not what is in my food.

Posted by: KarenWW | February 3, 2011 2:39 PM    Report this comment

Thank you soooo much Linda L about the Better Batter GF flour for the chicken and dumplings. That is what I have missed the most this winter. My mother-in-law made the best using the chicken broth and just flour to make her extrodinary dumplings. What company makes the flour and where have you purchased it? I am in Texas. Thanking you in advance...Cil

Posted by: Cil C | February 3, 2011 2:02 PM    Report this comment

A sfogiatelle (cheese and flaky pastry) one of the few things I can't make gluten, dairy and egg free!!!! Waaaa!

Posted by: lonedoggy | February 3, 2011 1:37 PM    Report this comment

I do burgers with gluten free English muffins, several of my favorite burger joints in NYC serve burgers on English Muffins, if the muffins are thin I don't even cut them in half, I use two. I put the on the griddle or a panini machine with a little oil on them. I use soy cheddar, I find the bought-grated melts better. And I make onion rings using a tempura batter which is rice flour, egg and water.

Posted by: ELaine Good | February 3, 2011 1:16 PM    Report this comment

Concerning Chere H's comments about dumplings, I use a GF flour called Better Batter, and have made dumplings that are almost exactly like I made before with regular flour. This flour has worked well in everything I have tried it for so far. Maybe you want to give it a try. Good Luck.

Posted by: LINDA L | February 3, 2011 10:21 AM    Report this comment

I crave Fresh Cinnamen Rolls, Fresh Homemade bread that stays fresh for several days, warm rolls with my dinners and just the Joy and Pleasure of Eating out without limits and fears I'd be glutened. A Subway would be heaven to my tastebuds.

Posted by: Gwyn L | February 3, 2011 9:39 AM    Report this comment

I crave Fresh Cinnamen Rolls, Fresh Homemade bread that stays fresh for several days, warm rolls with my dinners and just the Joy and Pleasure of Eating out without limits and fears I'd be glutened. A Subway would be heaven to my tastebuds.

Posted by: Gwyn L | February 3, 2011 9:39 AM    Report this comment

I have somehow managed to get by without the breads and rolls for the 2 years I have been gluten free but I have an incredibly decadent bread pudding that I would love to make gluten free. I will gladly share my recipe with anyone that thinks they can come up with a comparable GF version. Bonnie C.

Posted by: Bonnie C | February 3, 2011 9:36 AM    Report this comment

I'm with unknown on the cheeseburger. After 5+ years on the GF diet, I have to say that a juicy cheeseburger on a toasted soft bun is the one thing I miss the most. The next thing is homemade chicken and dumplings. GF dumplings, while good, are just not the same as my aunt's rolled out dumplings.

Posted by: Chere H | February 3, 2011 8:59 AM    Report this comment

I crave a fresh off the grill, thick, juicy cheeseburger loaded with toppings (lettuce, tomato, pickles, onion, mayo, ketchup, mustard...) on an over-sized roll that has been grilled and lightly buttered so it is crisp but the inside is soft and moist with a basket of crispy fried onion rings that are salty and so crunchy that when you take a bite the coating flakes off.

I do the burger without the bun or I try gf breads and I have made onion rings at home using gf coatings but it just isn't the same. I go to dinner with friends and watch them indulge and it makes me want it even more. Some days I almost convince myself to "go for it" but so far, so good.

Posted by: Suann R | February 3, 2011 8:46 AM    Report this comment

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