I think everyone knew what I would be craving when I got home, and despite how tired I was from the travelling and long day after, I was still utterly determined to get to Coles and bake myself a roast … Continue reading →
Despite the fact they are targeted at children, I am of the belief that there is no age where you are meant to stop having an advent calendar. I mean, who wants to grow out of an excuse for a … Continue reading →
It would be an understatement to say that living gluten-free in Hong Kong has been a huge challenge, and it would also be a lie to say I have succeeded 100% of the time. Where in most parts of the … Continue reading →
Yesterday me and a new CUHK friend Rochelle spent the day at Hong Kong Disneyland. When I booked my flight I got a free land voucher for 2 two-day passes so we had to do it! We went with low … Continue reading →
This weekend I have been exploring the amazing little town of Yangshuo, near Guilin in China. It is a very friendly little town with lots of really cool things to do. We have wandered through caves, had a mud bath, hikes mountains and biked around small villages. And that’s just the day activities! The food is insanely good and there is lots of cute shops and cool bars to wander through at night! The best thing for me though is that Chinese locals who want to learn English volunteer at the hostel we stayed. As such, you get a free guide to do all the activities which – and for coeliacs – a free guide to ensure what you are eating is gluten-free! Today’s treat was specially made gluten-free, the names of which I couldn’t really understand but they were great:
These were probably my favourite! I am pretty sure it was Taro covered in sticky rice, but you can never be sure! Q (our guide) ensured me I could eat them though!
Here’s what the other treats were:
The first is a “pumpkin biscuit”, again made with sticky rice, and the second is sticky potato inside sticky rice… So many carbs I am sure it was terrible for you, but it was gluten-free so I’m not complaining!
Coming to Yangshuo has been amazing and when I am back in Hong Kong and have my computer I promise to write all about it! If your going to Asia or looking for a holiday – check it out!!
I don’t know about the gluten-free pasta’s you may have tried, but the vast majority I have attempted to eat have been really underwhelming. Most look more like Clag Paste (that stuff you use in craft as a kid and were told NOT to eat..) then pasta and tasted either like cardboard or glue. Yet by some weird coincidence, when I am finding myself strapped for any other options, the one gluten-free pasta I pick up from a store is actually really delicious. Or maybe its just that my body was so excited to have some proper gluten-free food, who knows? I am hoping that its the former. I felt even better about eating it knowing it was made from brown rice and certified as gluten-free. The brand is Canadian so I am not 100% sure in which countries or where you will find it, but google it and when you are shopping, keep an eye out for this packet:
To make it a wholesome and delicious meal I added a tin of tuna and topped with some Barilla olive pasta sauce. Some would think I am strange for coming to Hong Kong and using Australian pasta sauce, but for now, I am sticking to what I know! Add a little cheese and you are set to go!
Heres a not so flattering photo of my meal. Turns out that before I embarked on cooking the pasta, I should have checked to see if we had bowls in the dorm kitchen! Alas, as I sat and ate pasta from the pot, I had a sense of utter accomplishment and relief in that even in a completely foreign country where they speak a language I do not, I can still get by completely gluten-free.
So my skin is changing colour, my eyes are different and I am uber lethargic. Gluten-free in Hong Kong clearly hasn’t been working. So after skyping my mother and getting a lecture about it, I figured I would go sort myself out.
So this place is like a palace for me. There is, of course, much more glutinous food but they have lots of gluten-free stuff too! Pretty much they have food from all over the world and reprint the ingredients into English. They also have certified gluten-free stuff! They even go as far as having cake mixes!
It’s expensive, as is most gluten-free stuff. But well worth it as you can know for certain that you are not going to be eating gluten. I bought all this:
There was so much more I wanted to buy but the kitchen here is so limited so I am going to have to work on that first! That and we share a communal fridge and thing which I have been warned is often stolen from by others. I am not flushed with enough funds to feed everyone gluten-free goodies!
Anyway, if anyone is in HK and not anywhere near a sushi bar. Like, for example, living on campus, I cannot recommend City’super more. Go check it out :)
Not too long after I was diagnosed someone said to me ‘Oh you’re a Glutard’. I gave them what could only be described as ‘huh?’ or ‘what are YOU on about?’. They swiftly added, ‘Its a nickname for people with Coeliac disease’. I wasn’t 100% sure at the time whether it was an insult or an endearing term so decided I would take it and twist it into something fun and friendly.
One who does not possess the enzymes necessary to digest gluten, a main ingredient in wheat products. One who is “glutarded” must only eat gluten-free foods, such as water, tofu, and air.
“Hey, do you want some pasta for dinner?”
“No, sorry, I’m a glutard.”
“…what does that mean?”
“It means… I’m glutarded.”
So they don’t have everything included but at least they recognise that we can’t eat wheat which is a good start! I have started to use it a little myself, and you will find it in at least one or two of my posts so far.
For anyone who wants to embrace the term, you can do as little as using it, or go as far as getting the t-shirt or the mug (from the Urban Dictionary link above)! Get involved, cause ‘Yo, I’m a Glutard!’
Opening Note: Sadly, due to the fact I am newly in Hong Kong, I will be restricted in photos of recipes for a while as I cannot remake the dishes and photograph them before posting. Whilst my dorm does have a little kitchen, it doesn’t come supplied with anything, so I will need to go shopping and stock it up before I can get back to cooking and photographing delicious gluten-free recipes! However, luckily I have a few of my staples stored either in my head or on the computer which I can continue to share in the mean time – I’d hate to leave you all hanging!
Today’s recipe is another great one for anyone with a slow cooker. It can also be done on the stove much quicker, but I find the slow cooker makes it so much tenderer and tastier!
800 g boneless, skinless chicken breasts
400ml tinned coconut cream
1 tin of baby corn
1 carrot, sliced
1 red capsicum, sliced
A handful of green beans
Coriander leaves to garnish
Sliced red chilli to garnish
Red Curry Paste (you can buy this pre-made if you’d like, just check its GF!):
1 red onion
10 g galangal, sliced
2 garlic cloves, chopped
1 tsp chilli powder
2 corriander roots, washed
1 tsp shrimp paste
3 tbsp peanuts, toasted
To make the red curry paste, place all the paste ingredients in a food processor and blend until smooth. Alternatively, pound the ingredients using a mortar and pestle to form a smooth paste.
Trim the chicken of any fat, then chop into 2cm pieces and put in a large bowl. Add the red curry paste and mix well to coat the chicken in the paste.
Put the chicken in the slow cooker. Cook on high for 2 hours, then add the coconut cream and vegetables and cook for a further 1 hour. Ladle the curry into large serving bowls and garnish with the coriander leaves and chilli.
Serve with Jasmine Rice.
p.s. In case you were too distraught about no photos, here’s one of the ladies market in Mong Kok today!
Last night CUHK hosted a welcome banquet for all the exchange students. 11 courses of preset food. Sounds amazing? Well that wasn’t quite the outcome…
Despite the fact the school knew of my allergy it didn’t seem to translate to the restaurant and they constantly put questionable things on my plate. I tried to put the gluteny-looking stuff to the side but on the small plates it was all just being contaminated and I knew the night wasn’t going to end well. Whilst it had occurred to me to say no, I had been told that to not offend you should say yes and then just leave it, so that’s what I did. Yet even then, only so much can be on your plate before you have to eat some of it. Some of the dishes were delicious, some cute, and some just plain weird looking!
A particularly worrying item on the menu was ‘marshmallow rabbit’. We read this and got quite fearful of what we were going to have to eat. This is what came:
A cute rabbit shaped marshmallow. We breathed a sigh of relief and gobbled the laser-eyed treats!
Despite all my attempts, I found my plans to head out swiftly ending and instead retreated back to college, my bed and the bathroom.