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Nutritionally Speaking

Good-Tasting Adaptations Offer Alternatives for Allergy Sufferers

July 14, 1988|TONI TIPTON

A little while back, a reader with an absorption problem requested wheat-free, gluten-free recipes that would be "edible," she said. Her trouble, it seems, was finding good-tasting recipes that would not cause her an allergic reaction. "I have yet to find a good corn-bread recipe, without wheat flour, perhaps using alternative gluten-free flours," she said.

After some research, I discovered two such cookbooks in our library, "Wheatless Cooking (including gluten-free recipes)," by Lynette Coffey (Ten Speed Press: 1984) and "The Egg-Free, Milk-Free, Wheat-Free Cookbook," by Becky Hamrick and S. L. Wiesenfeld, MD, (Harper & Row: 1982.) Since both of these recipe collections have publication dates that are a few years old, I have included a few of the recipes they contain for other allergy-sufferers who might be interested in this subject.

Many Types of Allergies

Because there are so many types of allergies--some individuals are food-sensitive, suffering from reactions to single food groups such as milk, eggs, wheat, citrus fruits, chocolate or cola, legumes, corn, fish and shellfish and some spices, while others may suffer from contact or inhalation allergies--the recipes that follow will be specifically geared toward wheat-free dieters.

This group of individuals includes those who must avoid foods with any trace of wheat--even those whose ingredient labels don't specify wheat or its by-products as components such as: coffee substitutes, malted milk, ice creams, canned meat dishes such as stews and chilis, luncheon meat or sausages in which wheat may be used as filler, salad dressings thickened with flour and bouillon cubes--as well as those that are wheat products outright.

FOR THE RECORD - Los Angeles Times Thursday July 28, 1988 Home Edition Food Part 8 Page 22 Column 3 Food Desk 1 inches; 34 words Type of Material: Correction
Note: The description of the recipes in the July 14 Nutritionally Speaking column erroneously termed the recipes safe for those on "gluten-free" diets. But, the recipes given were for those on wheat-free diets and should not be confused.

In addition to the recipes in both books, there are some suggestions for using alternatives such as buckwheat and soy-based flours and other products. The Hamrick-Wiesenfeld book includes a glossary of terms that stand in for wheat or its by-products on food packages, plus some combinations of other flours and other thickeners that can replace wheat.

Remember that when you're cooking with flours made from rice, potatoes, rye or other ingredients, adjustments should be made in baking temperature and time, proportion of baking powder and choice of liquid. Also, the texture of the finished product may vary.


1 cup corn meal

1/3 cup soy flour

1/4 cup oats

3 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/4 cup non-fat dry milk powder

1 cup milk

1 egg

Grease 8x4-inch loaf pan. Combine corn meal, soy flour, oats, baking powder and salt. Add dry milk to milk and stir into dry ingredients along with egg. Mix until smooth. Pour into prepared pan and bake at 375 degrees 30 minutes. Makes 1 loaf.


1 cup buckwheat flour

1 cup corn meal

1 3/4 cups milk

1 egg

Combine flour and corn meal. Add half of milk and egg, stirring until smooth. Beat well, then stir in remaining milk. Pour desired amount onto hot oiled or buttered griddle and fry on 1 side, then flip over and fry other side. Serve hot and buttered, with desired topping. Makes 6 pancakes.


1/2 cup buckwheat flour

4 teaspoons oil

2 tablespoons water

Combine flour, oil and water and stir to form stiff dough. Knead 10 minutes. Place dough on oiled tray and roll as thinly as possible. Slice into fine strips, then boil in salted water with 2 remaining teaspoons oil 3 minutes. Drain and serve with desired topping. Makes 1 to 2 servings.


1 cup rye flour

1 1/2 cups rice flour

2/3 cup soy flour


3 teaspoons baking powder

1 cup milk

7 tablespoons oil

Sift flours, salt to taste and baking powder into large bowl. Add milk and oil and mix well. Knead until smooth, about 10 minutes. Roll out onto oiled pizza trays and top with desired toppings. Bake 10 minutes at 350 degrees, than 10 minutes at 400 degrees. Serve hot or freeze and reheat when needed. Makes 2 (11-inch) crusts.


1 cup barley flour

1/2 cup soy flour

1/2 cup rye flour

4 ounces butter

2 eggs


Sift flours together in large bowl. Rub butter into flour mixture using fingers. Beat eggs together, add to flour with salt to taste and mix to firm dough. Knead lightly and use in recipes such as savory pies, quiche, sweet pies and tarts. Makes 1 (9-inch) crust.


1 cup unsifted rye flour

1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder

1/4 teaspoon salt

3 tablespoons shortening

3 to 4 tablespoons water

Grease baking sheet. Sift together rye flour, baking powder and salt. Cut in shortening until mixture resembles coarse cornmeal. Stir water until mixture forms thick but pliable dough. Turn onto lightly rye-floured board and roll about 1/2-inch thick. Cut with 2-inch biscuit cutter and bake 12 to 15 minutes at 450 degrees. Makes 6 biscuits.


1 1/2 tablespoons potato starch

1/4 teaspoon dry mustard

1/2 teaspoon salt

2 teaspoons sugar

1/4 cup cold water

3/4 cup boiling water

2 tablespoons lemon juice

1 tablespoon vinegar

1/2 cup oil


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