Hoping to open a FODMAPS cafe one day with delicious food that people with intolerances, like me, can actually eat!

Posts tagged ‘garlic’

Happy new year!

Hello fellow low-FODMAPPERS!

Welcome to 2015. Hopefully it’s a year filled with happy, non-bloated tummies! One of my resolutions for the new year is to place more focus on this blog and expand my range of recipes for you to try out. There’s a couple that I have played around with a few times but haven’t yet uploaded here – but I’ll get onto that very soon.

However, to kick off the new year I wanted to get some input from you, my followers, in regards to what kind of recipes you are looking for. Are you after main meals to cook for your family and/or guests? Entrées, desserts, or snacks? I know that my sauce post has been particularly popular – would you like more sauce inspiration? Or is there anything else? Please comment below and let me know!

I’ve been on the low-FODMAPs diet for a while now and I’m lucky that I have family and friends who try to cater for me where possible. But if anyone you know is struggling, feel free to point them in the direction of this blog. Cooking without gluten, lactose, onion or garlic etc IS possible!

Speak soon,


Greek Chicken with Rice

Greek chicken with rice

Earlier in the week I was umming and ahhing about what we should have for dinner. I had defrosted some chicken breasts, but didn’t really feel like making a stir fry. So I checked out one of my ‘Love Food’ cookbooks and stumbled across this recipe. Of course, it included garlic and onion, so I made changes accordingly. The recipe also included olives and fetta cheese, which I didn’t add because my hubby hates olives and I didn’t want to risk my body’s reaction to the fetta!

– Serves 4

500g chicken breasts

200g long-grain rice

225g chicken stock

1 can chopped tomatoes

1/4 cup black olives, pitted and chopped

55g fetta cheese, crumbed (if you can handle fetta!)

2 cups mixed lettuce leaves

Italian herbs

Cayenne pepper

Vegetable oil


1. Remove the fat from the chicken and cut into smaller pieces. Heat the vegetable oil in a large frypan and add the chicken, in batches if necessary, and cook over medium heat. Turn occasionally and cook for 8-10 minutes or until golden. Using tongs, carefully transfer to a plate lined with a paper towel.

2. Pour the chicken stock, rice, tomatoes and herbs into a saucepan (that comes with a lid).

3. Add the chicken to the saucepan, pushing them down into the rice. Bring to the boil, then reduce heat, cover and simmer for 25-30 minutes or until the chicken is cooked through and tender.

4. Stir in the olives and fetta cheese.

5. Serve with mixed lettuce leaves. Enjoy!


No more Tummy Troubles!

Hey everyone,

I’ve been a bit slack with my blog and Twitter lately, but now that I’m noticing that the low-FODMAPs diet is becoming a world-wide phenomenon (the best thing since gluten free bread) I think it’s time to get back into it.

Since starting this diet back in July last year, I’m now feeling great! I was hoping that I would be able to go back to eating the way I used to, but have now acknowledged the fact that it may never happen. So on a daily basis, I am following the low-FODMAPs diet – testing my boundaries from time to time. But I still take Lacteeze tablets before consuming dairy – that’s one risk I’m a bit too scared to take!

The good news is, I can’t remember the last time my tummy was so trim and flat. I used to wake up with a flat stomach, but as soon as I had breakfast, the bloating would set in. Not to mention how my tummy looked before bed after a full day’s worth of food! But that doesn’t seem to happen anymore. My stomach looks the same at night as it does first thing in the morning.  It’s such a great feeling. It makes me realise that my efforts were worth it.

However, I still feel like a burden when eating out with friends or at family dinners. Everyone tries to cater for me, which is lovely, but I feel bad when my mother-in-law goes to the effort to make a whole other dish just for me because the recipe for the main dish contained onion and garlic. But if there’s one thing I’ve learnt, it’s that it is definitely possible to cook food without it! Hence, one of the reasons behind the FODMAPs Cafe and these recipes. So how’s the cafe going, you may ask? Well, while the cafe idea has become something of the distant future (due to me developing my current marketing communications career and thinking about starting a family over the next couple of years), it is still something I want to do. In the meantime, a cookbook is the way to go!

So what do I eat on a day-to-day basis? For breakfast I usually eat gluten free cornflakes with maple syrup and lactose-free milk, or gluten free toast with margarine, peanut butter and vegemite. (On two different slices, not mashed together!) However, I have found that I can tolerate wholemeal bread – just not for two days in a row. So it’s great that I have that option – just in case there’s no GF bread at the supermarket during my weekly shop.

For lunch I usually have a salad or sushi. Or leftovers from the night before. Where I currently work there are heaps of Korean, Japanese and Chinese restaurants and cafes, but unfortunately I’m too scared about my potential reactions. So if I’m unable to bring in my own lunch to work, its sushi or a salad from the sandwich shop. But I’m starting a new job in a few weeks at a university – so I’m hoping that the food options are slightly broader…

Dinner is the meal where the variety comes in. Might be steak and salad, spaghetti bolognaise, peanut satay stir fry or lamb chops. My husband has a great way of making lemon and tomato lamb chops. I’ll have to put the recipe up here sometime. But I’ve started to get bored of these foods, so think it’s time to start going through the cookbooks! I’m also willing to try your recipes, so please send them through.

Dessert is usually a cup of black English Breakfast tea (or I treat myself with one of my various fancy herbal teas) with 2 gluten free biscuits or a small bowl of my 98% lactose free ice-cream with a couple of spoons of raspberry sorbet. Or I have some dark chocolate – or milk chocolate if I’m up for it!

In terms of snacks, corn is my staple. I’m actually surprised that I’m not ‘corned’ out by now! I munch on corn chips and popcorn in addition to grapes, strawberries and lately, blueberries. I’ve also found that I can tolerate ‘Activia’ yoghurt – I know of two other lactose intolerant people who can tolerate it, so give it a go and see if it works for you. I also eat some nuts and dried fruit, but have to keep the dried fruit to a minimum due to my fructose intolerances.

Well, I think that’s it from me for now. For those just starting the low-FODMAPs diet, hang in there. It really does get easier and it’s worth it in the end. I’ve actually become ‘regular’ for once in my life – it’s just annoying that my stomach has picked the time that I should be leaving for work!

Speak soon,


Nearly finished this diet…or have I?

So this week I re-introduced cabbage. Oh how delightful! Ate the delicious cabbage with some gluten free soy sauce and worcestershire sauce on Thursday night. It tasted quite nice going down, but three days later I’m still recovering from it. I was meant to re-introduce it 2-3 times this week, but after my reaction from one day, I don’t think that’s necessary. I’ve been so very bloated…

The next and last step on my FODMAPS elimination diet is to give gluten a go. I’m hoping it goes smoothly because I would love to have burgers and wraps again when eating out. And move beyond the somewhat boring salads and steaks I’ve been forced to eat instead.

While on this diet, I’ve discovered that I’ve reacted to most things – apart from the Poloyol food groups (apricot, cauliflower etc). This is obviously very annoying because it means I will basically need to continue on this diet for a bit longer, if not indefinitely. Over the last few weeks, I’ve attempted to have small doses of lactose and been okay. But I if I attempt to eat ‘naughty’ foods two days in a row, even if it’s a small dose, I’ve found that I often react.

I’m seeing my dietician again this week and I know she will help me as much as possible. Apparently she can handle eating yoghurt everyday now and she has the same intolerances as me. I look forward to taking control again. And not constantly checking food labels. And not constantly saying no to onion and garlic. And not being the ‘difficult’ dinner guest.

In the meantime, I’ll keep sipping on my lemon and ginger tea and putting up with my inconvenient intolerances!

The inspiration behind the FODMAPS cafe

Being on the low-FODMAPS diet can be a struggle – especially when eating out.

Sure, more and more restaurants are catering for those who are gluten-free, but they are still throwing onion and garlic into everything. And GF desserts still contain large amounts of dairy, meaning that those who are also lactose-intolerant are unable to indulge after their meal. So basically I’ve found myself resorting to a simple steak and salad (with some sneaky fries, because it seems that I don’t react to them) and being one of those difficult customers that places a  million requests with my order – ‘What does that come with?’ ‘Is it cream or tomato based?’ ‘Please ensure there’s no onion or garlic.’ ‘Just balsamic vinegar please’ ‘No, no gravy…no sauce…just plain. Thank you.’ I once even pre-ordered my meal a few days before a Hen’s Night dinner at an Italian restaurant, knowing that it would be far too difficult to shout my difficult order over a noisy table.

But the idea to open a cafe that catered for people with a range of food intolerances came to me the other week as the result of a few factors.

Firstly, a colleague of mine was talking about his multiple career endeavours over the years; which included opening a dog grooming salon (with no previous experience) and a restaurant, which he ran for 8 years. When we asked him why he had had so many career changes, he simply said “Well, I’ll never wonder ‘what if’, will I?” I thought that was a very fair response. My husband and I have talked about starting our own business, but we’ve never agreed upon an idea that really inspired us. So it’s definitely something that has been on my to-do list – and I’m not the type to like the ‘what if’ or ‘if only’ scenario.

The other thing that happened was my craving for a stir fry. I’m now unable to purchase stir fry sauces because practically every single jar contains onion or garlic on some level. So I googled some GF recipes – as a starting point. Upon finding a peanut satay recipe, I swapped the garlic and onion for cayenne pepper and the honey for maple syrup, making it a FODMAPS friendly meal. The result? An absolutely delicious meal! It made me think – if only cafes and restaurants could do this!!!

So the idea sparked from there. Wouldn’t it be awesome to open a cafe where people like me could dine and safely know that no sneaky onion or garlic, fructose or lactose would appear in my meal? I could source a whole bunch of recipes, adapting them where necessary, and put together a menu. Putting my idea on Facebook, many friends with intolerances or coelic’s disease said that I had their support!

I know there is much to do before opening the doors to my cafe, but I’m feeling extremely inspired and it just feels right. 🙂 I’ve now established this blog and a new Twitter account to get ideas from people and make this dream a reality one day.

Wish me luck!! 🙂

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