Freedom From Fretting About Gluten
More than a year ago, I declared independence from gluten, in an effort to improve joint health and address other health concerns. Along with lots of other new habits, my Year of Living Glutenlessly has helped me feel better. I have no plans to return to eating wheat or rye breads, oatmeal, and wheat-based pasta. For one thing, most of what I like to eat grows in our garden or on nearby farms, and is not grain-based in the first place. Tomato-feta salads, roast chicken, pickled beets, homemade yogurt, fresh peaches, wilted salads, cucumber salads, slaws, spoonbread: these are examples of recent mild obsessions that have no gluten and never will.
Then there is dessert. My approach to dessert is to have some, but not often. I adore sharing desserts in restaurants with about four other people. I offer an Independence Day gold feathery firework display to the persons who invented the three bite approach and the multi-spoon/fork system of dessert sharing.
Yet not all desserts work for sharing when one eats no gluten. Cakes, anything with crusts or crumb toppings, cookies -- no, thank you. Fortunately I like the leche flan/crème brûlée/mousse/lemon sorbet side of dessert menus, most of the time. I will admit, though, that I have wished for three bites of someone's tiramisu.
That wish came true yesterday, when I discovered that the inimitable confectioner Marianne Swintosky of Viburnum Valley Farm Confections has added gluten-free tiramisu (along with a standard version) to the growing line of sweets she brings to the Saturday Lexington Farmers Market. Marianne's selection of exceptionally fine pastries and chocolate truffles -- which are always gluten-free, of course -- varies weekly, but recently I have noticed gluten-free carrot cake and almond cookies are often available.
I can vouch for the deliciousness of the gluten-free versions of both the tiramisu and the almond cookies. Find some friends and extra forks, invoke the three bite rule, and enjoy with some Caffe Marco freshly roasted coffee or one of Chef Jacob Graves's homemade fruit coolers. Enjoy one more taste of freedom.
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