Six years ago it was discovered that I, like so many others, have Celiacs. This means that I have to avoid anything that contains wheat, barley or rye or risk the reactions that come along with ingesting it. For me that included diarrhea, stomach pains, painful joints, brain fog, tiredness and never feeling well, even on good days. Those are just the normal issues I dealt with on a everyday basis. By the time I went looking for help the symptom list was even longer and included chest pain and itchy skin to name a few.
Long story short, after many doctor appointments we figured it out. I went gluten free and never looked back. Its been 6 years and I am healthy, happy and thankfully not suffering with any of the issues I had before. Ya, I mess it up at times and I have been ridiculed more then once because of it. Once someone even went as far as to mix flour into our gluten free noodle dish in an attempt to “prove” i didn’t have an issue. No, not kidding. That was a full week of misery and they never done it again after seeing the results. I almost had to be ran to the ER for dehydration issues…. and still, I am firmly gluten free.
I am always looking for ways to improve our gluten free life so I was combing the web looking for new recipes, ideas and products when I came across an article that said those with Celiacs were eating real sourdough bread, without any problems, even their blood work came back clean….honestly, I brushed it off as “fake” news but forgot to close out the web browser that night. The husband found it in the morning when he got home from work and started to dig deeper. Not only did he read the article I had found, but he found more articles and research papers on the subject from different sources across the globe. It really did start to look like a possibility although I was still skeptical.
The basic rule is it has to be “real” sourdough that has been fermented with natural yeasts that are floating all around us. Not only does this process make the bread taste incredible but this process breaks down the gluten into something far more easily digested, making it safe for those stuck on a gluten free diet.
If you have a great bakery near you that practices old world bread making that is a great option but for the rest of us it means mixing up our own.
We decided to try it. If it failed I would just deal with the misery for a few days. A scary thought but its early spring and to cold and wet to do much so being down for a few days wouldn’t be the end of the world here.
We created our own starter from flour, water, and a package of natural yeast we ordered from amazon ( You can skip this but we wanted to get it started a bit faster. Link is below )
and waited as it fermented. Feeding as needed until it smelled sour and was clearly active then baked a loaf of bread using it.
The result ????
Well…..I am on my third loaf of sourdough bread and loving it. I have had no issues with diarrhea, my joints don’t hurt, my feet don’t hurt, I can concentrate and think just fine and I’m not a tired wreck of a person who doesn’t want to do anything. In fact, I feel so great even after eating slice after slice that I have been spring cleaning this week. The husband is totally amazed at the results and he’s loving having freshed baked bread in the house.
Best of all, it tastes better then gluten free even if I am using a new starter ( sourdough starter is like wine, the older it is the better ), making things like sandwiches and toast more enjoyable, I can use it to make things like pancakes, waffles, or crepes, left overs are being turned into croûtons and bread crumbs making cooking amazingly delicious and far more predictable ( No seriously !! Fried chicken has never tasted so good and the breadcrumbs work wonders in meatloaf and meatballs. ) , and its cheaper then buying gluten free alternatives and healthier for both of us.
Am I saying this will work for everyone ?? I’m not qualified, what I can tell you though is that it really has worked beautifully for us and a real bread is a dream come true after so many years dried crumbly gluten free stuff that I have already vowed to never go back .
And trust me, almost anyone can bake a loaf of bread. I’m a cook, not a baker and its still amazingly delicious.