For those of you who have read my ‘Food Intolerance and The Stone Age Diet‘ post, you will know that I am currently following a stone age diet and have some special dietary restrictions due to a number of intolerances. For those of you who haven’t read the post, the short story is that there are a LOT of foods that I just cant eat! As a result I am having to rediscover foods and finding new ways to enjoy the things that I can eat. Now this probably makes it sound a breeze, but let me tell you, its NOT! its hard and at times can be very testing! Now don’t get me wrong, it hasn’t broken me, Oh no, I’m made of stronger stuff than that, so I’m viewing it as a challenge!
When I left my specialists practice a few weeks ago, with a boxful of supplements and a handful of paperwork I can honestly say I was actually really positive and saw it as my embarkment on a new journey. It was the next day, when I was going through my kitchen cupboards that I realised the extent of the task! Literally everything I had that was in a bottle or packet contained one or more of the ingredients that I just couldn’t have. Even ‘plain’ ingredients like meat had stuff added to them such as wheat or dairy!?? I couldn’t believe how many foods had these ‘hidden nasties’. After resisting the urge to throw myself on the floor and cry, it dawned on me that I was lucky enough not to be allergic to any of these things. Just imagine the stress, not to mention the hassle a person has if they cant have an ingredient because of a serious, even life threatening response to consuming just a tiny amount of an ingredient!! It was an enlightening moment that gave me the mental slap I needed to pull myself together! With a shake of my curly bonce and a new wave of strength, I tided up my cupboards then set about finding recipes that I could adapt to suit my needs.
My first port of call after this was to go to my specialists webpage and print off a PDF that had a total of 82 recipes all geared towards the stone age diet and for those with fermenting gut. After removing any recipes that were not suitable for fermenting gut, I selected the ones which sounded the tastiest, shopped for all the ingredients online then waited for my delivery.
Now it was when I came to make the first recipe I felt a new wave of positivity surge through my veins. As I started chucking things in the pan, chopping up vegetables and adding spices, I realised that I didn’t look at the recipe book once! I have cooked many things in the past and added extra ingredients, tweaking things here and there, so it seemed to come naturally to me. I think that my initial response was that I was freaked out, worried even, that I would add something I couldn’t have, so when i had the ingredients out in front of me, it gave me the confidence to go it alone. I had already adapted the recipe (changing the prawns to chicken) and added extra vegetables that I checked were on my ‘yes’ list. So when I completed my first dish (Chicken Curry), i have to say that it really did taste delicious. The only bump back to reality was that I couldn’t have it with rice (but my husband did) so I served mine on its own. I didn’t want to push my luck, I wanted to wait until I had experimented a bit more with the sides/ accompaniments before putting things that I wouldn’t normally serve together.
Since then I’ve remade the chicken curry dish and have began making up extra sauce, freezing it so that I always have a ‘ready meal’ for the days I’m struggling. Ive also discovered substitutes such as lettuce leaves as ‘wraps’ instead of sandwiches/ tortillas, shredded cabbage instead of noodles and liquidising stuff to help thicken sauces without making them runny. So, it looks like theres hope for me yet and my love of cooking hasn’t been destroyed.
Have you got an intolerance or allergy or do you know someone who has? Or If you have any tips or substitutes that I haven’t mentioned above then please, PLEASE comment. If you think that your tips are silly or small, DONT! because some of the smallest tips could turn out to be the greatest tips that will help me (and others) to get through the challenge of a special diet. I would love to hear what you think, so go on, make a comment and share your thoughts…..