Thursday, August 21, 2008

Living in a Mixed Household

We're not all gluten free at our house. The kids are. I am trying to limit my gluten during pregnancy. SuperDad? Well, he's fully glutenized.

How do we keep things separated? I think there's always room for improvement in this area, and some people have found that for their healing and health, the whole house needs to go gluten-free, but we've been okay with doing this:

  • Anything that touches gluten gets washed in hot, soapy water.
  • GF foods are stored separately - snacks have their own shelf, flours have their own drawer in the fridge (we refridgerate flours, as a friend had suggested, but I don't know that we need to?), other GF staples (rice, quinoa, lentils, chickpeas) are stored in their own section of the pantry.
  • I use metal bowls for gluten baking and plastic for GF baking. Just to keep things straight in my head.
  • I generally make the GF version of things smaller, because our gluten freelings are smaller. So, when I make a regular cake, I'll make GF cupcakes. If I bake regular bread, I make mini-loaves of GF bread. This just makes it easier because the GF version is immediately identifiable.
  • Separate butter and peanut butter containers so that there isn't any double-dipping of the knife. Squeezables would work well, but we don't especially like them, they're usually the fakey icky kinds.
  • Separate toasters.
  • LOTS of hand-washing.

There's probably more, but that's what I'm thinking about right now. Would love to hear what you do!

7 comments:

zdoodlebub said...

separate toasters. huh. something I would never have thought of but is so obvious once I read it.

Stefan, Sarah and Lukka said...

Here's a question GFF, How do you think your kids "got" celiac? My doctor said mine was probably "silent" celiac until stress-induced sytmpoms brought it on and a biopsy tested positive...I've also heard it can be genetic, but since your kids had it from birth, and neither of you have it--what is another way people can get it? Thoes are the only two ways I've ever heard.
Sarah

Meli n Pat said...

I know this sounds silly, but when my hubby was diagnosed, I put star stickers on things he could have. In the 'fridge, that was an easy signal of his salad dressing vs. mine (since I'm not too GF!). It helped him to quickly identify what was o.k. and what was not. I don't have baking items anymore that are not GF, but it does help with chips, ice cream, and leftovers in plastic dishes. He's getting better, but still jokes that he can't do any grocery shopping since they don't put the stars on anything!
We also separate toasters. I also spoon out PB, butter, jelly, etc., to eliminate any double dipping into the jars. I make his first so if there's extra, I can spread it onto my sandwich.
I also have pantry shelves that are specific. The gluten-free shelf is getting more frequently filled, and my gluten area seems to be dwindling. Maybe someday I too, will end up GF by default!
Hope the stars help!

Li loves David said...

I'm the celiac in the house, hubby isn't. I'm also the household's head chef. We tried the "separate but equal" thing for a few months after I went gluten free. I wouldn't cook with gluten, but my hubby still had things like cereal, tortillas and bread. After the 5th (or so) poisoning through cross-contamination, I put my foot down and said no more! Now the only gluten he's allowed to bring in the house is beer, because it's easily contained. It caused some tension at first, but I reminded him he was literally killing me, and I've found substitutes for almost everything he used to eat. He eventually realized a healthly wife is a happy wife. :)

Amnesty said...

We have 5 people and 5 different diets in our house. Pain in the behind. I try to prepare meals to the most common denominator. And we are 95% soy free, since my soy allergic kid isn't old enough to understand not to steal food, and my husband can't remember which kid can have which foods. The only soy we have is Boca burgers that DH makes for Rory when they barbecue at night, after Daisy goes to bed. DH bbqs steak. :P I think I might have to ban the burgers too though, after coming downstairs this morning to find Rory's leftovers still sitting on the table. Luckily I found it before Daisy did.
But, there is very little protein that ALL of us can eat. DH eats meat. The rest of us don't. Daisy can't have soy or most other legumes. I can't have eggs because of mu nursing baby's reactions. Rory and DH can only have very limited dairy due to lactose intolerance.
Oddly enough, in this allergy filled house, peanut butter is about the only protein ALL of us can eat safely! LOL

Jamie said...

You can get those little squeeze bottles (like the refillable mustard and ketchup ones) and keep PB and Jelly in them. Then there is no contamination. This works well for jelly because for some reason peeps in this house have a hard time keeping their knives out of the jelly jars! PB is easier because I store them in separate cupboards.

We have a GF snack drawer, Baking cupboard where I store all the flours + mixing utensils. We use glass baking dishes because they are non-porous, wash well and then through the dishwasher. Always rinsed again prior to use. We have another cupboard where all the GF cereals, pastas, rice cakes, etc... live and a separate shelf in the fridge.

We do not refrigerate flours and have experienced no problems. Just keep them in tightly sealed GLASS jars in a dark cupboard.

Since we are too cheap to go buy another $8 toaster, I simply toast bread & waffles in the oven. Eventually I will get another toaster!

Cheers!
Jamie

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