It seems like awareness about Celiac Disease and gluten intolerance is rapidly on the rise, and that’s a good thing! There are more GF products, recipes, and blogs than ever before. But it got me thinking that Kelli and I ought to share our own personal food philosophy with you. Gluten-free can mean many things to many people these days. But what does it mean to us? What sets No Gluten, No Problem apart from the other blogs? What makes our food philosophy unique or special or different? (Or just what is our food philosophy anyway, so you know where we’re coming from!)
It’s obviously gluten-free. But beyond that, it can be summed up in three short parts: our philosophy marries the ethics of Michael Pollan’s The Omnivore’s Dilemma, the cooking attitudes of our grandparents, and our love for diverse ethnic cuisines. Allow me to explain.
Pollan’s The Omnivore’s Dilemma articulated an ethic of eating we already held, but it did so elegantly, and with a compellingness that deepened our own conviction. We think that food (gluten-free or not) should be fresh (produce that’s in season), local (preferably from the farmer’s market), organic (when possible) and humane (in the case of eggs and meat and dairy). Simple as that.
We also think that food should be made and enjoyed with the attitudes of our grandparents. For one, the food should be made from scratch. You find this less and less these days, with all the prepared and processed foods for sale in the supermarket. One of the wonderful side benefits of going on a gluten-free diet has been how healthful the eating truly is. Lots of fresh fruits and vegetables, whole meats and fish, corn, rice and potatoes. By and large, it involves shopping the periphery of the grocery store, and abandoning the aisles where all the “evil” processed foods lurk. But as GF goes more mainstream, more and more GF processed food products are coming to market, and more and more products already on the market are earning their certified-GF status. This isn’t necessarily a good thing, because a GF diet of processed food isn’t much better than a “regular” diet of processed food. So, like I said earlier, we make our food from scratch, like Grandma used to do. (Cooking and eating like grandma also means that food should be social, and often enjoyed with a glass of wine!)
Lastly, we believe that eating gluten-free should be a diverse and flavorful experience; one influenced by the world’s many cultures and cuisines. Kelli and I have Sicilian, Belgian, Polish and English heritage in our blood. Add to that our background as native New Yorkers, where we were exposed to the many multicultural influences of the American Melting Pot. Finally, round that out with our love for world travel, and you have a recipe for gluten-free goodness. Our meals at home regularly span the globe, from American comfort food to Belgian roasts, from Italian to Spanish, Mexican to Caribbean, and Japanese to Thai.
There, in a nutshell (and perhaps then some), you have our own food philosophy. This is how we like to eat gluten-free. It’s a rewarding and flavorful way to eat, and we hope it inspires you as much as it has us.