I was thrilled to see an article in The Huffington Post telling me where to find gluten free ingredients…and was sorely disappointed when I realized that article is, essentially, a giant advertisement for Amazon. While there’s a time and a place for ordering from Amazon, I find the inflation and providers a bit ridiculous sometimes. I refuse to pay the (current price as of writing this on October 10th, 2014) $7.34 for King Arthur Gluten Free Chocolate Cake Mix through Amazon. I do not need cake mix that badly. Even though I want it. Cake = one of my many loves. I’m only kind of kidding.
Anyway, before this blog post turns into a passionate rant about how much I love dessert….
Here are some items that I’ve found are tricky to find, and some suggestions on how to nab them in the wild:
1. Tapioca flour
This is a tricky one — Stop and Shop in New Paltz carries several brands of Bob’s Red Mill Gluten Free Flour, but not tapioca flour — a common flour in gluten free baking. You’ll have to go to Earthgoods (Main St) or New Paltz Health and Nutrition (catty-corner to Stop & Shop.)
2. Gluten free pasta that doesn’t cost $$$
I’m a college student at SUNY New Paltz. Spaghetti + marinara is kind of the cliche go-to dinner for me — but I need it on the cheap! What’s a money-scrimping, dollar-hoarding college student to do when the fancier gluten free pasta (Jovial, for instance) is too much for my budget?
This one’s not too hard — you just need to look in different places. Stop and Shop carries Barilla gluten free pasta — but stocked with their regular pasta. I never peruse the regular pasta aisle, so when I found this, I was pretty stoked. If you want to go even cheaper, ShopRite carries their store brand gluten free pasta (corn-based), and it’s just as tasty. And cheap. (This is also stocked with their regular pasta — if they don’t have it in stock, ask to speak to their nutritionist (most ShopRites have one!) to order food specifically for food allergies. Your mileage may vary — I’ve had experience with this in my hometown of Staten Island, although I have not met with the staff of the ShopRite in New Paltz.
3. Wide, rice noodles
I am obsessed with Thai food and while I could use thin rice noodles (Stop and Shop; New Paltz Health and Nutrition), I’m a purist. I needed to find the wide, thick noodles to make “Drunken Noodles with Chicken” from one of my new favorite cookbooks, “The How Can It Be Gluten-Free Cookbook.”I recommend the “Wide Rice Stick Noodle, 16 oz pack” found here from importfood.com. After soaking, the 3/8th inch noodles expand to about 1/2 inch, according to the directions. Ground shipping is (currently) $6.85 for oone pack and $8.85 for six packs…I’d say go for six and make pad thai for days.
If you’re feeling extra ambitious, you can make your own noodles using white rice flour and tapioca flour using this recipe.
There you have it! If you have any tips or comments on your personal hard-to-find gluten free goods and where to get them, please comment — we’d love to share them.
Cheers and happy gluten free cooking!