A few weeks ago, Tones and I went to the “Free From” Show.
Why did we go? Because we wanted to have a look to see what was available in the health food industry in UK. I used to be well into this stuff in Oz because it’s really easy to find and most Asian food has no wheat or dairy anyway. In Europe everything is wheat and dairy.. if you don’t eat bread or cream, there’s something wrong with you!
So when I first arrived here in 2005, I wondered what people who had an allergy to wheat would eat…. I was hugely intolerant to processed sugar and eating wheat always made me bloat.
It seemed the basic diet of people here was exactly the opposite of what I could eat!! The result? I got the “Heathrow Injection” – the “unexplainable” weight gain that most antipodeans get when they arrive to live in London. How big was this injection??? Well… I went from weighing 46kg to become 53kg over a period of 6 years – not bad eh? Gained a little over 1kg per year (that’s a lot on a short person.. and I’m short!). My usual double chin grew to triple so there was no gap between my chin and my chest.
Here’s my explanation for the “unexplainable” it’s simple – diet and alcohol. I’m sure it was all the bread, pasta, sugar and cream that was causing so much fat around my tummy (+ all the michelin star restaurants and lots of alcohol for others). I LOVE bread, brioche, croissants, pasta, scones and jam and so many other things that involve my 3 nemesis: wheat, dairy and sugar. For the most part, I couldn’t find any suitable replacements so, I just ate them and faced the consequences.
But there comes a time when enough is enough and we figured if there was anywhere to find it, it would be at the Free From Show 🙂
Believe it or not, there are TONNES of people with intolerances and allergies, so much so that it’s becoming more well known here in the UK and FINALLY all the supermarkets have started to stock their own Free-From ranges.
There’s also this misnomer that if you eat wheat free, dairy free and sugar free, you pretty much end up eating cardboard (aka rice cakes). WELL…. check out what I made and it was DELICIOUS!!!
It’s effectively a peanut butter, honey and banana toasted sandwich using all FREE FROM ingredients:
Bread: Free From Gluten and Free From Wheat (made with mostly rice flour)
Peanut Butter: Replaced with “Free Nut Butter” (made with toasted sunflower seeds)
Banana – no need to replace – this is one of the best fruits you could eat and tastes sweeter when cooked / warmed up!
Honey – natural sweetener that’s NOT processed sugar and comes in so many different flavours (depending on region and flower)!! whoot!
Butter for frying – replaced with Olive Oil
Construct the sandwich by spreading Free Nut Butter on one piece of bread, then adding slices of banana and topping with honey. Close the sandwich, brush Olive oil on the outside of both pieces of sandwich bread and fry in pan until golden (and the whole sandwich is stuck together because the warmed up insides form a yummy gooey glue) – ENJOY!
I made this for our breakfast but it’s prefect for an afternoon or mid morning snack! YUM!
If you don’t have any allergies, you can still make it with “normal” stuff 🙂 but try it with the free from stuff and I actually think it tastes better and is lighter (ie you feel full and satisfied without feeling heavy). A cold glass of rice milk with this is perfect!
Also we tried one sandwich with honey and one with maple syrup. Honey is MUCH better as it makes the filling just that little bit thicker and sweeter.
Give it a go and let us know what you think!