There will be no shortage of delicious aromas and fabulous flavours when the doors open for the Gluten Free Food Expo on Saturday.

The only Gluten Free Expo in Queensland, the two day event includes displays, celebrity chef cooking demonstrations. and speakers including dietitian and nutritionist Dr Sue Shepherd, authors Kim McCosker and Debra Maloney.

It’s a chance for thousands of gluten-free eaters to taste test products not always easily available in their local shops.  With one in 70 Australians living with coeliac disease and many more with gluten intolerance, community interest is high.

Amongst the 50 food producers showing their wares will be coeliac Bianca Shugg, who blogs at yum.glutenfree.

Here Bianca explains her gluten free cooking style.

How did you become interested in cooking gluten free?

Gratefully, I have always been a foodie so when I was diagnosed with coeliac disease a few months after the birth of my second daughter, it was quite natural for me to get into the kitchen and started experimenting.

What do most people not understand about gluten free?

The differences between gluten intolerance and coeliac disease. People need to understand that gluten intolerance is a discomfort to gluten (most likely presenting as gastro-like symptoms) and that coeliac disease is actually a life-long condition that comes with it a set of very strict rules around not eating gluten. There are actually quite serious health implications to people with coeliac disease if the gluten-free diet is not adhered to.

Is there one ingredient you’d really like to use but can’t because it’s not gluten free?

Barley. I really enjoyed using barley in soups and I miss it dearly.

What pleases you most about cooking gluten free?

The variety. Being gluten free has opened up a huge new world of ingredients for me. I am using flours I never knew existed and recipes I never would have looked at before my diagnosis. Cooking has become more experiential, interesting and (importantly) enjoyable. I am so much happier and healthier in my world without gluten.

The Gluten Free Food Expo presented annually by Coeliac Queensland is open from Friday May 23 (1-7pm) and Saturday May 24 (9am‐3pm) at Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre, South Brisbane.

Here’s Bianca’s recipe for Brazilian cheese puffs, Roast Beef and Horseradish and Baked CoConut & Lime Cheese Cake (pictured above).

Brazilian Cheese Puffs, Roast Beef and Horseradish

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 cup olive oil
  • 1 cup milk
  • 350g tapioca flour (arrowroot)
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup parmesan cheese, grated
  • 300g eye fillet, cooked to medium rare (or sliced from deli)
  • 4 teaspoons horseradish mince
  • 4 tablespoons sour cream Red capsicum roasted and peeled or a jar of marinated capsicum

Put olive oil, milk, tapioca flour, salt and parmesan cheese in a food processer and whizz until it is like a thick milk.
Pour into oiled muffin trays (you can use a variety of sizes and shapes). Cook for 15 minutes (depending on size of tray) or until golden brown on 180oC. These puffs are great but best used the same day, as they stale quickly.
Cook beef to medium rare. Set aside to cool and, once cooled, slice nice and thinly.
For the horseradish cream combine both the horseradish and sour cream and stir until smooth. Slice red capsicum into long strips.
To serve, cut down the centre of the puff, opening it up slightly. Add a slice of beef, a small spoonful of horseradish cream and a slice of capsicum.
Serves 4 +

Baked CoConut & Lime CheeseCake

Ingredients

  • Base 300g Leda arrowroot Biscuits
  • 70g Melted Butter or Coconut Oil
  • CheeseCake
  • 400mls Coconut Milk
  • 675g Cream cheese (or toffutti)
  • Zest, Juice and Pulp of 1 Lime
  • 70g Caster sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • Toppings
  • 120g CoYo Coconut yoghurt
  • 1 punnet of Blueberries handful of shaved roasted coconut Lime Zest

Preheat oven to 180 degrees. In a food processor combine the biscuits and melted butter or oil, until combined. then pour mixture into a lined round tin and press down firmly. Place tin in refrigerator while preparing the cheesecake mixture.
Place in a clean food processor or blender add the milk, toffutti, lime sugar and eggs. Mix until well combined. Pour into the tin and place in a preheated oven for 50mins.
Once finished turn off the oven and open the door, but leave the cheesecake in there to slowly cool for 10mins.
then remove and let cool on the bench. Once cool place in the refrigerator until needed.
To serve smooth the top of the cheesecake with coconut yoghurt. then place the blueberries, coconut and lime zest on top.