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02nd Dec 2015

Cooking for gluten-free guests this year? Here are 5 tips to remember

Katie Mythen-Lynch

Coeliac disease affects an estimated 46,000 people in Ireland. It’s triggered by gluten, a protein found in wheat, barley and rye, which is harmful to those affected and causes symptoms including abdominal pain, recurring mouth-ulcers, weight-loss, vomiting and diarrhoea. Festive, eh?

This means that Christmas Day cooks should be especially considerate if one of your guests is a sufferer. Luckily, planning a gluten-free meal has never been easier or more delicious.

Here are our Top Tips for a Gluten-Free Christmas:

  • Get Stuffed: Ensure you use gluten-free stuffing in your turkey. Eating around the gluten-containing stuffing will not suffice as meat will be cross-contaminated.
  • Little Ones: Remind family and friends that not all chocolate is gluten-free before they buy a treat for your coeliac child. There are some great selection boxes, chocolate coins and other items on the market which are suitable for coeliacs.
  • Turkey Buffet: Sharing is not always caring where a coeliac guest is concerned. For example, using the same butter knife for standard and GF bread could make your guest ill. Allow your guest to serve themselves at the buffet first to avoid cross contamination. Providing a separate dish for butter or dips is also a good idea.
  • Hidden Gluten: Gluten can be found in many store cupboard items such as sauces and salad dressings. The Coeliac Society provides a Food List to all members detailing gluten-free brands.
  • Recipe Swaps: For festive gluten-free recipes use cider instead of stout; gluten free breadcrumbs or flour; and butter instead of shredded suet.

Download The Christmas Survival Guide here.