Wheat free food has a bit of a reputation for being boring and difficult to prepare. So if you ever find yourself in the situation where you need to cook for someone who follows a gluten or wheat free diet I’ve captured some ideas to ensure you make something that all of your guests will enjoy.
You can still rustle up a decent platter even for wheat free guests!
Many of my family and friends gatherings start off with a good cheese platter. You don’t have to adapt much to ensure it is gluten or wheat free as most cheese and dips will be safe. Choose simple cheese without fancy flavourings (such as brie, blue vein, cheddar or camembert), and dips based with avocado, chickpeas, capsicum or nuts. Include some fresh copped veg (carrot, celery, capsicum, cucumber) and gluten free crackers.
Note: A lot of crackers are gluten free but not wheat free. The wholegrain sakatas from the supermarket are good for a wheat free choice as they are made from wholegrain rice and chia seeds and do not contain any tricky ingredients such as flavouring enhancers that can contain wheat. Steer clear of crackers with additional flavourings to be on the safe side.
The main attraction
1. Good old roast – Include plenty of roast potato, pumpkin, beetroot, carrot, peas, cauliflower. You can roast up any meat, just skip the gravy. If making a white sauce, just purchase gluten free flour (can be found at any supermarket).
2. Steak and veg – Get creative and serve a nice cut of meat with a fresh kale, avocado, roasted pumpkin, walnut and feta salad. Toss together with olive oil, salt and pepper.
Baked fish is a tasty and cost effective wheat free option
3. Fish – Steam or bake a basa fillet, serve with mash potato and veg for a nice winter warmer. Alternative sides include quinoa, buckwheat or rice. Any green veg goes great with fish – try steaming or lightly frying asparagus, broccoli or boc choy in coconut oil.
4. Risotto – A great filling option to feed a crowd. Check out my easy 30 minute risotto recipe here.
5. Spaghetti bolognaise – Make your sauce with diced tinned tomatoes, tomato paste, fresh chilli, mushrooms and zucchini or carrot if you wish. Serve atop of gluten free pasta with some grated tasty or parmesan cheese. Heinz have a delicious range made from lupin flour, you can find this at Coles.
6. Indian – Indian food is my fave as the dishes are generally low in sugar as well as being wheat free. You could do Rogan Josh, Vindaloo, or Massaman. If you don’t have the time to make an Indian spice mix from scratch, pretty much all jars of paste at the supermarket are made from natural ingredients (ginger, garlic, onion, chilli, coriander) and can easily turn into a wonderful creation by adding either cream, natural yoghurt or diced tomatoes.
7. Baked potatoes – Too easy! Simply bake spuds (sweet potato is very yum), create a big mix of homemade coleslaw (cabbage, grated carrot, chopped celery – hold the mayo). Serve with onions and bacon if you wish with a dollop of sour cream and tasty cheese to add some creaminess to the coleslaw.
Don’t forget dessert
Bulla ice cream – One of the only supermarket ice creams I’ve come across that is made from maize (corn) rather than wheat
Fresh fruit salad – Serve with creamy natural yoghurt and a sprinkle of roasted almonds
Coconut cream mousse – Whisk together 1 tin coconut cream, 2 tablespoons raw cacao powder, ¼ cup rice malt syrup (found in health foods section at supermarkets), ¼ cup chia seeds. Divide between 4 ramekins(or tea cups!) and place in fridge for approx. 3 hours. Serve with raspberries on top – delicious!
One tip to remember is don’t get bogged down looking for products that claim to be ‘gluten free’ at the supermarket, but rather choose meal options that are naturally gluten and wheat free because they contain natural and unprocessed ingredients. If you choose simple meat and veg, you can’t go wrong!