Monday, April 19, 2010

Of Bread and Swollen Ankles and Tummy Aches...

Gluten is everywhere. It's the mother of all fillers, lurking where you'd least expect: soups, salad dressings, soy sauce, marinades, candy, soy milk, beer, energy bars, processed lunch meats, imitation seafood, frozen dinners, prescription drugs, vitamins -- not to mention nearly every starchy carbohydrate filling the aisles of your local Safeway. If they're not made with gluten, there's a good chance they were processed in the same facility, and thus are tainted with the offending protein. Avoiding it completely is next to impossible -- especially when eating out. ~Stomach Pain in a Slice of Bread: Gluten Is a Quiet Culprit

I did what I suspect many gluten-sensitive people have done before me. I cut gluten from my diet for over a month. During that time I did a pretty thorough detox and noticed my ankles slim down to almost unrecognizable proportions (for me). I also noticed that a chronic soreness in my left inside foot was gone. I rejoiced. Then, not too much longer after I finished the detox, I got an overwhelming craving for bread, especially the lovely sourdough whole grain bread that is made in a nearby local bakery. Then, like a being possessed, I also found myself sampling the marble cake at a recent potluck, an egg salad sandwich made on the cheapest of white breads at an organ concert intermission, etc. And, floompppp-- my ankles swelled up like Cinderella's pumpkin carriage.

So, I have enlisted other household members to help me avoid the bread and gluten binges... today I'm doing a bit of a rest with green smoothies but for tonight's supper our son is making a mushroom-kale enchillada using sprouted corn tortillas. Following is the recipe (caution to dairy sensitives: you may want to substitute for the cheese).

Gluten Free Mushroom-Kale Enchilladas

12 sprouted corn tortillas
1 1/2 cups monterey jack cheese, shredded (or substitute)
1 tablespoon extra virgin coconut oil
1 small onion, minced
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 lb mushrooms, chopped (any variety or mix)
1/4 cup fresh squeezed lime juice (or fresh squeezed lemon)
12 ounces fresh kale (or spinach), washed, drained and coarsely chopped
1/4 cup lime juice
3/4 cup water
Celtic Sea Salt to taste
1 tablespoon chicken bouillon granules or vegetable stock of your making
1 tablespoon garlic powder
1/2 cup cilantro, chopped, use the amount that suits your taste
1 cup sour cream (or your chosen substitute)


1~Filling: Heat coconut oil in a large wok or pan over medium heat and saute onions, garlic and mushrooms until soft and liquid has evaporated, about 5 to 7 minutes.
2~Remove half of the mushroom mixture and set aside, reserving for the sauce.
3~Add lime or lemon juice and cook for 2 minutes more.
4~Add kale/spinach and cook until kale is tender or spinach is wilted and cook until liquid has evaporated. Taste and add salt to taste IF NEEDED.
5~Sauce: In a small sauce pan combine water, juice, salt, bouillon and garlic powder. Stir to dissolve before adding reserved mushroom mixture, sour cream and cilantro. Reduce heat to simmer until sauce just begins to thicken.
6~Preheat oven to 350°F
7~Put tortillas on clean, pre-heated oven rack for a minute or so just to soften them.
8~Divide filling evenly among the warm tortillas, fill and roll and place them seam side down in a greased 9x13 pan.
9~Pour sauce over enchiladas, top with shredded cheese and bake 10-15 minutes- just until cheese is melted- browned if you like- and the entire dish has heated through.

Disclaimer:This blog reflects my own personal beliefs about the health benefits of being gluten-free. I am not a Medical or Health Care professional and any information or products contained in this blog are not meant to replace your responsibility to consult with the appropriate health care provider about your own circumstances and concerns.


  1. Hi Cynthia,
    Not sure if you are ready to bake your own bread but I wanted to let you know that I have developed gluten free sourdough recipes around my own food allergies.

    I have combined old fashioned sourdough techniques with gluten free seed and grain flours and have come up with excellent, delicious breads, muffins and pancakes.

    They are also free of dairy, eggs, soy, yeast, sweeteners, gums and baking powder. Very suitable for sensitive digestions.

    I have posted a free download of the starter recipe plus pancake recipe:

    This type of baking takes some time to understand and master so it will not be for everyone. With planning it doesn't have to be time consuming. For people able to take the time it's well worth it as the breads are tasty, easy to digest and have an extremely long shelf life! And you'll be able to eat sourdough without swelling up!

    My complete, and continually growing recipe book, Art of Gluten Free Sourdough Baking, is available in pdf and print form on my website,
    Good Luck and Eat Well!


  2. Sharon, I am thrilled about your offer here and am downloading your starter recipe plus taking a wander around your website... sounds like it is right down my alley! Thanks so much for commenting with the information and the links!

  3. Hi Cynthia,
    Thanks for checking out my starter download and thanks for looking at my website. Feel free to ask me any questions you might have about gluten free sourdough starter.


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