Maybe you’re on a Gluten free diet and you are thinking that you are being diligent about watching what you eat and then you get Glutened. Unfortunately, this happens to may Celiacs and Gluten intolerant folk. Why? In many cases it’s hidden Gluten. You think you’ve gotten your Gluten finding to ninja-like skills and then there it is. Recently, my daughters found it was added to green tea. Who are the repeat offenders? Salad dressing, soy sauce, chips, soups, candy, medication, ice cream. Gluten, gluten everywhere.
First of all what does contain Gluten.
- Varieties and derivatives of wheat such as:
- KAMUT® khorasan wheat
- einkorn wheat
- Malt in various forms including: malted barley flour, malted milk or milkshakes, malt extract, malt syrup, malt flavoring, malt vinegar
- Brewer’s Yeast
- Wheat Starch that has not been processed to remove the presence of gluten to below 20ppm and adhere to the FDA Labeling Law*
About three years ago I noticed Farro popping up on menus. So, I “googled” it. Then I asked my waiter. “What is Farro” and I’ll be honest I don’t remember what he said but it wasn’t wheat. Ugh!
How about Gluten free pasta in restaurants? If you’re scratching your head at this one, allow me to explain. Efficiency is pretty important in the restaurant industry, so things like boiling water can be reused to cook multiple orders of pasta. I’m sure you see where I’m going with this. Similar to frying French fries in the same oil as onion rings (onion rings are coated in wheat flour) it’s very important to the wait staff and thus the chef that they cannot cook your gluten free pasta in water being used to cook normal pasta. They must use a freshly cleaned pot with clean water. This is one reason I do not eat pasta at most Italian restaurants.
Sushi – you must be careful to ask. Why? You might know to avoid soy sauce (yes, I know… here it is again!) at the table as well as anything labeled as tempura (which means it was battered with wheat flour/egg mixture and then fried). But what you might not realize is that some restaurants add soy sauce or a cheap grain-based vinegar (that contains gluten) to their sushi rice as it cooks. Imitation crab is also not gluten free.
Two apps I recommend to help you find hidden Gluten are – Shopwell & Now Find Gluten Free. Shopwell even has a scanner that lets you scan labels in the grocery store to find hidden Gluten. This is how I learned that my grocery store brand tomato sauce was thickened with Gluten but the name brand was not.