Weaning off of gluten-rich foods started as an option for me. I was getting very sick every time I had normal bread or some kind of pasta, and I couldn’t put my finger in what was causing that until a former room mate warned me about the symptoms of “gluten intolerance”. She suggested I stopped eating bread and the food I normally ate for a week to see if there were any improvements in my condition. To my great surprise (and a bit of disappointment), taking out bread and regular dough from my diet caused a huge improvement in my health. For starters, I stopped feeling so tired all the time (initially, I thought it was phd-life-related). The horrible stomach pain I had every time I had bread also went away. I didn’t feel bloated or heavy all the time anymore.
So, I accepted that some gluten-rich foods were part of the cause.
I’ve never been tested for coeliac disease, but I can definitely tell that once I drastically reduced my bread and other gluten-rich foods intake, that my body went through a huge and positive transformation. Hence, it eventually became a habit for me.
Traditionally, bread is a staple food for Brazilians. Unlike here in NZ and in the USA (perhaps in the UK too?), Brazilians don’t have the habit of having cereal for breakfast. Muesli and corn flakes have been added to our morning eating habits recently, probably the influence of American TV shows and movies. But as a kid, I don’t recall having cereal for breakfast. Instead, we had bread with sliced cheese, butter/margarine, ham, salami (well, my family members did). Always with a cup of coffee with milk (your latte, I’d say – yes, we had coffee as kids, always a cup before going to school). Plus, fruit juice and fresh fruit too.
So, once having regular bread every day for me became a “no-no”, I opted to buy gluten-free bread or gluten-free cereal. But, geez, these products are expensive! Not to mention that they usually come smaller – as if coeliacs ate less! Definitely, not my money’s worth!
That’s when I decided to make my own bread.
Once I got used to their unfamiliar flavor, eating gluten-free products became as natural as eating regular bread, pasta and other doughy products once was.
Today, I’m posting a recipe of this rice flour flat bread that I make every other week (just because I like variety, so I choose different flours for different weeks depending on my mood).
It’s so easy and quick to make! Plus: yummy!
1 cup of rice flour
1 cup of warm water
1 free-range egg
Knead the ingredients until you get a uniform dough.
Roll small portions of the dough with your hands, place the ball in a hot frying pan with some butter/vegan spread on it.
Flatten the ball to a thickness that you wish.
Cook one side until it’s golden, then flip it. It usually takes about 2 minutes to cook both sides at medium heat.
Serve it hot with some Marmite or a spread of your choice.
*You can also put the remaining dough in the fridge for a few days. Just make sure you wrap it to keep it moist.
I gotta say that it took me a few tries to get used to the unique flavor of Marmite. I hear there’s the English marmite, an Australia version called Vegemite, and the Kiwi version “Marmite”.
Since Marmite is vegan and is rich in Vitamin B12 and many other nutrients, I also got into the habit of having it on my toasts and flat bread to supplement the nutrients I don’t get for not eating red meat.
I’d say, go for it and give Marmite a chance if you’re a vegan or a vegetarian! It’s a nutritious spread and you might surprise yourself by falling in love with it.
But if you’re not the daring type, and you’re not a vegan either, this rice flour flat bread goes perfectly with some scrambled eggs too.