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Gluten intolerance: So nibble Christmas cookies without hesitation
When Christmas treats lure during Advent and the festive season, people with celiac disease find it particularly difficult. Because the majority of the pastries are prepared with flour and that's exactly what people with gluten intolerance should avoid to prevent health problems. Experts explain how those affected can still snack on Christmas cookies without hesitation.
Strict avoidance of gluten
According to health experts, about one to two percent of the German population suffer from gluten intolerance (celiac disease). Affected people must strictly follow their diet, as eating gluten-containing foods causes inflammation of the small intestine. This can result in symptoms such as abdominal pain, diarrhea and nausea. Especially now in the advent season it is often difficult for people with celiac disease to resist temptations such as speculoos and gingerbread. However, the pastries are usually prepared with flour that contains gluten in the glue protein. Experts explain how those affected can still nibble on Christmas cookies without hesitation.
With a few tips, it also tastes gluten-free
Those who bake at home can determine the ingredients for Christmas pastries themselves, writes the Federal Center for Nutrition (BZfE).
As the German Celiac Society explains, it also tastes gluten-free with a few tricks. First of all, it is important to keep the gluten-free ingredients strictly separate. Even the smallest amounts of gluten can cause symptoms in those affected.
This means that work surfaces, baking molds and mixers must also be free from residues of gluten-containing foods.
Gluten-free flours, such as those made from millet, potatoes, chestnut or buckwheat, react differently than conventional wheat flours.
You need more liquid and a thickening agent like guar gum, psyllium husk or locust bean gum to make the dough smooth and elastic.
In addition, gluten-free pastries dry out faster. However, this can be prevented by adding a grated apple or a grated carrot, some curd cheese or an additional egg.
Because gluten-free dough is very sticky, it is best processed with a food processor; or you put on disposable gloves.
It can also help to put the dough in the fridge for about an hour. To roll it out, it is best placed between two layers of baking paper.
The experts point out that gluten can also be hidden in finished spice mixes, baking powder, vanilla sugar and vanilla aroma. Pure Christmas spices, however, are harmless.
Bake without milk and eggs
According to the BZfE, allergy sufferers must also be careful in the run-up to Christmas. In most cases, incompatible foods can be easily replaced.
For example, if you are allergic to hazelnuts and peanuts, add almonds, oatmeal, grated coconut or amaranth to the dough.
Many cookies also taste without milk. A soy, oat or rice drink is one of the milk alternatives.
And you can also bake without eggs. For example, a mixture of two tablespoons of water, one tablespoon of vegetable oil and half a teaspoon of baking soda is suitable as an egg set. (ad)