If you read my post on the foods I don’t miss since going gluten-free, you may be asking yourself the obvious question: Doesn’t she miss anything?
Well, yes, I do. And though I no longer bargain with myself about cheating (will it be once a year? Once every 2 years? Only for this or that special event?) I still remember a few lost loves. How do they compare to your list?
Entenmann’s Devil’s Fudge Crumb Donuts
These were my favorite breakfast in my second “real” job. Dense and chewy, with a crumble-topped glaze that was almost as good as the donut itself, they were a regular habit, like coffee for many of my colleagues. Talk about a hard habit to break!
Nothing out there comes close. They were discontinued for a while and that made it easier, but apparently you can buy them again. No, I won’t tell you where – I don’t want to know.
Photo By EGiniger1 - Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=44787362
Like many of us, I miss a good bagel. Dense and chewy, bagels are the perfect breakfast food, with just a schmear of scallion cream cheese and some lox. Even the best gluten-free bagels aren’t quite the same, though the ones from Udi’s are pretty good when toasted. Good enough to support cream cheese, at least.
But a bialy is something different. A New York thing, a bialy is sort of like a bagel, except the texture is different and the hole doesn’t go all the way through. It stops in the middle, and the little circle that creates is filled with sweet onion. Apparently the official difference is that bialys have only 4 ingredients while bagels can have more, and bialys are baked rather than boiled. Who knew?
Bialys are heavenly, especially with cream cheese and belly lox. I mean, if you’re going to do it, do it right! But I have never even heard of a gluten-free bialy, let alone seen or tasted one. How I wish…
Deep Dish Pizza
Thin, New York-style crust is available in many places, not just New York. And the best ones are in Rome, which really isn’t very far from where I live now. But Chicago-style deep dish? That’s a tough one. I used to go into Unos and order one with extra cheese and pepperoni and just be in heaven. They claim to have invented it, after all.
But there was also a place called the Nine’s where I went to college – sadly it’s gone – that also made amazing deep-dish pizza. Paired with a pitcher of beer, my friends and I spent many college nights solving the world’s problems as we worked our way through those chewy, sauce-and-cheese-laden slices.
Deep dish gluten-free pizzas are so heavy that I can't move for days. I have yet to find one with the right chew that a "real" deep dish pizza has. If you know of one, please tell me about it in the comments!
Sigh. Another slice of youth gone by.
Gluten-free life goes on
Image copyright Marne Platt
Yes, I miss my old loves. Hunting down a safe, filling, and tasty breakfast, especially in an airport, can be a real pain the butt when you can’t just grab a bagel at Starbucks.
Not much to be done for it, though, but move on. Pizza is pretty widely available (or you can go to Rome and taste this one), and some of the thin gluten-free pizza crusts can be quite good. I bake great gluten-free donuts, when I make the time, and I make my own delicious cakes and cookies as you can discover on this site. If I haven’t yet mastered a real bialy equivalent, well, at least I can get gluten-free bagels from time to time.
In the bigger picture, I can find or create a long list of delicious foods that hit all my sweet spots. If the worst thing that this disease takes away from me is a donut, a pizza and bialy, I can manage.