Since being diagnosed with the coeliac condition I have created my only little benchmark of judging great eateries. It’s not if they are posh or have a massive extensive menu (although I love it when there are plenty of gluten free options) it’s simply if I can have chips with my meal!! So often I have spotted nice juicy steaks or meals on the menu that only hit the mark when accompanied with chips, unfortunately to be advised I cannot have them as the chips are fried with gluten containing foods. I do always appreciate eateries honesty in letting me know that they will not be safe but cannot help feeling a bit deflated when its chips I am fancying and with a simple adjustment in the kitchen of adding an extra fryer it would be possible!
The sheer joy is apparent to all around when I do get the green light to order chips when eating out. So please, my request to all food establishments is to install a little separate fryer that can be used solely to fry chips that coeliacs can tuck into safely…we will truly love you for it!
*Even when separate fryers are used please do be super safe and still check that the chips they are frying for you are also gluten free as if they aren’t fresh potato, they can have a gluten containing coating.
Due to the fact it can be a bit hit and miss when and where I will be able to tuck into chips when I’m out I tend to make up for my “chip allowance” when I’m at home! I don’t have a chip pan so I either tend to do chips with a little veg oil in the oven or very often buy the *frozen oven chips as they are the perfect accompaniment to make up a meal or to have as a quick snack. Can’t beat a handful of hot chips on a freshly buttered Juvela gluten free white roll…it really does hit the mark when I’m peckish!
If like me, you love a bit of vinegar sprinkled on you chips thought it may be handy for you have a peep at a couple of little extracts below from the Coeliac UK website about barley malt as it can be a confusing subject. Although as I’m sure you will be aware barley is not gluten free and should be avoided It explains why malt vinegar is safe within your gluten free diet.
Can I eat barley malt vinegar?
Barley malt vinegar is made using a fermentation process. This means that the amount of barley, and therefore gluten, in the product is extremely small and is well below a level which is safe for people with coeliac disease. In addition, barley malt vinegar is usually only eaten in small amounts, for example, drained pickled vegetables, sauces with a meal or on chips.
Balsamic, cider, sherry, spirit, white wine and red wine vinegar are not made from barley and can also be included in your gluten free diet.
Can I eat barley malt extract?
Coeliac UK advice is this – This extract is widely used in a food as a flavour enhancer. It depends on the quantity used as to whether or not it can be included in a gluten-free diet. If a product is labelled gluten-free and contains barley malt extract, the product will contain no more than 20 ppm gluten and can be included in a gluten-free diet. (If you’re unsure, leave it out until you’ve checked with Coeliac UK).
Looking for the information about malt vinegar on Coeliac UK prompted me to add the following link as it may answer more of your gluten free queries.
*There are some frozen chips in the supermarket that are marked up gluten free however lots of frozen chips are naturally gluten free but you do just have to check the ingredients and allergen box to ensure they are. Generally, they will just list potatoes and sunflower oil which is all good!!
Wishing you a lovely bank holiday weekend!!