So just how sad is the above picture?
On the left is a “normal” dessert. A chocolate cake with vanilla frosting. Healthy? On Planet Fat perhaps. But still, looks disgustingly amazing.
On the right is my gluten-free dessert. Mmmmmmmmmmmmmmm.
I’m not complaining mind you. But let me ask you a question. If you did not have celiac disease, which dessert would you opt for?
And this, in essence, is the problem with gluten free food.
In most situations, gluten-free food pales in comparison to “normal” food (and it’s twice as expensive…a post for another day.) And even when it doesn’t pale in comparison, it is assumed by those without celiac disease that it does.
So I’ll set up the situation for you. I was invited to a small party two nights ago. The gracious host sent the Dude’s wife a text message (pictured to the right) before the party so I knew I’d be taken care of. Note: if you are ever hosting a party and want to make a celiac feel comfortable, this is exactly the way to do it. No need to make a big announcement at the party. No need to draw attention to me. Just quietly let me know what I can and cannot eat and I will be eternally grateful.
Dinner was awesome and I was able to enjoy my two favorite food items: sushi and vodka (not necessarily in that order.)
When dessert time rolled around, our host presented me with my own special dessert (again…much appreciated.) It was a four-pack of the above-pictured brownies. Being the generous guy that I am, I was more than happy to share my dessert with my friends.
But finding someone without celiac disease to even try a gluten-free dessert is an exercise in futility.
That sad, lonely brownie just sat there, unwanted by the masses. The question is why.
Does gluten free food have some kind of astigmatism attached to it? Do people equate “gluten-free” with “taste-free”?
In all fairness, the gluten free brownie did sorta suck. And I certainly don’t blame anyone for not wanting to…ummm…experiment with my brownie. But this is just one instance. If given the choice between normal food and gluten-free food, 99% of the people without celiac disease opt for normal.
What does it all mean? The food manufacturers need to do a better job of making gluten free foods that are comparable in taste AND in price. And their marketing departments need to get out there and tell the public “Hey, gluten free foods don’t suck.”
Oh, and by the way, the brownie story had a happy ending.
“It’s chocolate and it has an umbrella in it?? Ok, I’ll eat it.” (ssshhh…just don’t tell her it’s gluten free.)