by Janelle Holden
I think the last time I was in a Chinese restaurant was five years ago.
I think. I can still taste the sweet and sour chicken, Mu Shu pork, and fried rice. I remember the crunch of the fortune cookie and scooping the leftovers out for lunch. Oh, the leftovers. Those were good times.
But, I digress.
I initially gave up going to Chinese restaurants because of a severe allergic reaction to peanuts and the possibility that someone’s Kung Pao chicken would cross-contaminate my Mu Shu pork. And then, when I went gluten-free, the only Asian restaurants I frequented were sushi bars.
You can be gluten-free and still enjoy Asian flavors
Many Asian restaurants use gluten as a prime ingredient. Whether it’s soy sauce fermented with wheat, or barley miso, or the wheat paste used to thicken hoisin sauce, gluten seems omnipresent.
So, I can’t tell you how excited I was to get Laura B. Russell’s cookbook, The Gluten-Free Asian Kitchen and discover that I could make many traditional Asian dishes at home, or find gluten-free sauces or seasonings that would satisfy my taste for all things Asian and still keep me healthy.
Plus, I’m just a sucker for a cookbook that has loads of beautiful photos of the recipes, offers great new resources, and is well-written and laid out. In fact, I am so glad I didn’t buy the e-book version of Laura’s cookbook because it’s just beautiful to look at. Her recipes include gluten-free takes on Asian classics such as Crispy Spring Rolls, Gingery Pork Pot Stickers, Korean Green Onion Pancakes, Soba Noodles with Stir-Fried Shiitake Mushrooms, Salt and Pepper Squid, and Pork Tonkatsu. She also added a “Sips and Sweets” section with cocktails and simple desserts. Love.
An interview with Laura
Last week I had the great pleasure of having a private interview with Laura where she explored her own personal gluten-free journey with me and more insights on writing the book. The interview includes great tips about how to follow your body’s wisdom, find great gluten-free Asian ingredients, and make food taste good again.
Laura’s food credentials are extensive. She is the “Gluten Freedom” columnist for the Oregonian and contributes articles and recipes to many magazines as well, including Prevention, Living Without, Easy Eats, NW Palate, and Portland’s MIX magazine. She is the former associate editor of Food & Wine’s cookbook division.
I highly recommend her blog, “Notes from a Gluten-Free Kitchen” where you can find recipes and a great guide for going gluten-free as well.
But, to start, please take a listen to our interview by clicking on the play button below or downloading it here. I’m really excited to share it with you.
Janelle Holden is a coach, mentor, and guide to people who are gluten-free and struggling with their lives and bodies. To learn more about working with her, click here to schedule a complimentary Get Acquainted Call.