Celebrating Chinese New Year 4

Of all the ‘food celebrations’ I find Chinese New Year one of the easiest to ‘do’ dairy and gluten free. Traditional Chinese cookery is dairy free by nature. And until relatively recently gluten containing grains were scarcely found or used – as rice and rice noodles are the main staples.

The one key ingredient you do need to buy ‘free from’ is soy sauce. Due to the manufacturing process this is not a naturally gluten free product – but tamari soy is. Kikkoman make one that is relatively easy to get hold of. I get it from Ocado but I have seen it in Sainsbury’s (Free From section) along with a couple of other brands.

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Eating dairy free, gluten free – naturally 5

I recently read that the UK ‘free from’ foods market is now estimated to be worth close to £250 billion! It is claimed that much of it is driven by lifestyle choices – and not just by people who have to follow a restricted diet because of allergy or GI diseases and conditions. In the four years since Zac’s diet became dairy free and then gluten free, I have visited pretty much every supermarket I have ever passed just in the hope of finding some new foods that might be of interest and suitable. All of the major supermarkets have a range of free from foods, all of them seem to think it is justifiable to charge on average two to three times what you would pay for normal food, so it is little wonder that this market is so valuable. However, if you are forced to shop ‘free from’ out of necessity, then you do start to resent the lack of choice and the feeling of being ripped off. This remains one of my key motivations for writing this blog – finding ways around this. More…