Yeah… “good luck with that”, you say. Impossible? Well, almost. I was on the road last week. We travelled more than 1900 miles and really only had a couple of “gluten incidents” but…
I went prepared with my own food in coolers, which helped out a lot, but having to chose what to eat out on the way to our destination and back was really the biggest challenge. I did have access to grocery stores, and a kitchen (sort of) while we were there, so I was prepared, but I was winging it mostly to see what would happen. I will be even more prepared next time. I am building a travel kit of “portable kitchen” to take with me next time. Think camping. Think long-term camping.
Things to remember:
- Gluten free is only as good as you can make it…. meaning if that if the kitchen you have is also used by wheat users, then don’t use the counter. For anything. Put down a paper towel to prepare your food on. And prepare your food as seperately as possible.
- Don’t trust a cutting board that you can’t swear to it’s last use or when it was put through the dishwasher last. Take your own.
- Fresh fruit can be had at the store.
- Collenders are impossible to clean… meaning that if you rinse your newly purchased fresh fruit in a collender that was rinsed out after draining wheat pasta… you now have wheat on your fruit. Trust me on that one.
- Other hidden dangers: Handwashed dishes, cups, and bowls in the cupboard that are seemingly “clean”… also handwashed or just rinsed off knives used to prepare another food are not as clean as you might think. I just am so picky about a knife being used to cut up an apple that was only rinsed off after cutting up raw chicken. I am so picky.
Fixing meals in wasn’t difficult, I do that all the time, and actually -eating out wasn’t that hard- if I just stuck to “plain anything” and not on a bun, and asked for their allergen chart ahead of time. Several restaurant chains have these online, which is nice. So look at that before you leave home, so that when faced with the dilema of where to eat, you at least have a fighting chance of having anything to eat.
I ate way too much salad as a result of my “winging it plan” , and even though I like salad, I would have really preferred my lasagna that I had brought with me in the first place. My travelling kitchen is my next project.
Peanut butter and jelly bagels were my favorite thing last week (see post on bagels). Premixed and portioned out trail mix was also a lifesaver on the trip.