I’ve been gluten-free since 2005 when I was diagnosed with celiac disease. My first thought when I heard I’d have to follow a gluten-free diet was, “what would I eat?” Gluten was a staple for me. Back then I maintained the gluten-rich diet of a broke graduate student. My pantry was stocked with Pop-tarts, Nutri-grain bars, Ramen noodles, and assorted cookies and crackers.
It was actually the week of final exams when my doctor confirmed for me that I had celiac disease. So in addition to cramming for statistics, research methods and environmental epidemiology exams, I was also trying to cram into my head the overwhelmingly long list of ingredients that were now off-limits: wheat, durum, semolina, farina, bulgur, barley, malt, modified food starch and more.
My first gluten-free meal was rice pasta with marinara sauce straight from a jar. It was basically a two-ingredient meal, but it had taken me over an hour to wander the aisles of the grocery store and come up with something suitable for dinner that I was sure was also gluten-free. Although I overcooked the pasta and turned it into mush, for the first time in years, my stomach didn’t hurt that night.
Since 2005, I finished grad school, traveled across the country and across the pond to London, had a baby, and moved three times, from Connecticut to North Carolina and last year to Baltimore, Maryland, all of it gluten-free.
I now make a mean pasta Bolognese and never overcook my noodles.
I’m excited to be a part of this blog and the community of gluten-free and gluten-friendly folks in the Baltimore area.