Gluten Free Is For Me…

So, I’ve sat with the information that I have been officially diagnosed with celiac sprue disease for a bit over a week now.  While I knew I had an issue with gluten I guess I hoped that the test would come back something other than positive.  And, initially, it did.

On the first trip back to my GI doctor after having drawn 1 million vials of blood, the lab forgot/did not do the main genetic test. <sigh>

On the second trip back, the lab’s results on the genetic test was negative.  With my abnormal transglutaminase test result late last year, the anecdotal information that was consistent with the traditional misdiagnosis of celiac (IBS, belly issues, itchy rash, anemic beyond belief, malnourished diagnosis years ago…) my doctor was baffled as to the negative genetic test.




I asked for a second lab test done at a different lab and the doctor wanted to see the backup documentation to the genetic test already done.  All of the percentages were not sent to the doctor; just the lab’s assessment and interpretation.  Needless to say, when my doctor saw the actual lab test results and the levels the genetic test was NOT negative.  It was clearly positive therefore celiac sprue cannot be ruled out.

So, days before my birthday it was confirmed that my various nutty symptoms including losing my sense of smell were all associated and related to having celiac disease.




I am so not the picture of celiac disease.  First off, I am of Caribbean-American (read: Black) descent.  Celiac sprue is prevalent in Mediterranean and Celtic cultures.  So, now a deep search into my heredity is warranted.

Right now, I have no words.  This is not a life-threatening condition but it is considered an autoimmune issue so my children must get tested.  Until I know for sure, regular birthday cakes, grilled cheese sandwiches, biscuits and the like will not even be introduced to her.  I’d love to be able to say that in the 13 months since I’ve been gluten-free I learned how to make a tasty loaf of bread in my Breville bread maker.  And, that I can make a killer gluten-free cheesecake — I can’t.  I’ve been too scared and unsure of which flours to use and in what precise proportions.

Gluten-free baking is different from any other type of baking I’ve ever done.  And here’s the true rub — I owned and ran my own bakery for about 8 years.  Yup.  I’m a TOTAL gluten head.  Dunkin’ Donuts was my favorite place in the whole wide world, second only to every delicious smelling bakery I’ve ever passed.  I used to eat dessert at every meal.  When I was a vegan I made VITAL WHEAT GLUTEN RIBS from scratch!  I LOVED wheat/gluten.  I made the bestest fluffy biscuits using my Grandmother’s recipe.

So, now that I have to leave that stuff alone…what do I do?  I just gave away my cake decorating paraphernalia just yesterday.  Why ice cakes when I can’t bake them?

I’m sure that this is some sort of grieving process/withdrawal reaction but it feels very final.  I guess things will start looking up when I can make a tasty gluten-free cake that does not look like my sad  lavender flower birthday cake.


Cut GF Cake


2 thoughts on “Gluten Free Is For Me…

  1. Hi Rochelle,

    Thanks for stopping by. I am afraid I have to say that you a mistake with your cake decoration accessories. I hope you can get them back, because you will need them. It is not an exaggeration to say that gluten free cakes actually taste better, particularly if some or all the flour is replaced by almond or other nut meal. They are healthier, too. I rarely use butter in my cakes, because almonds have 55% fat in it. These cakes are always moist, keep for a long time (that is, if they survive) and traditional icing is naturally gluten free, but always read the label. If it is possible to make cake grain, nut, sugar and dairy free, gluten free option is I would say, mainstream now. So, welcome to coeliac family and don’t give up food you like, simply change it and make it better. My husband is not coeliac, but it was his idea to go “gluten free household” after managing our toaster became too much for him. If given a choice now, he always goes for my gluten free everything.
    All the best for making the transition. There are many of us and we enjoy our food and cakes!


  2. Hi Irena,

    Thanks for commenting! I’ve tried my hand at from-scratch multiple flour GF recipes and I was sorely disappointed in the product. I guess my palate is still in transition and I am seeking the light fluffy texture/crumb of the cakes I used to bake. I will try some of your recipes and see if I can find what I am seeking in the GF world. But it’s super expensive to play around with these flours and other ingredients only to greatly dislike the finished product and throw it away uneaten.

    Was it like this for you in your 1st year of going gluten free?


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