TGIG - Thank God It's Gluten
Curiousity satisfied. No more gluten-free anything for me ever again.
Perhaps I should've started with a search on gluten in Wikipedia. I found this out from the site only this morning:
Basically, gluten = chewy. Macaroni without gluten = macaroni without chewy (alright, chewiness) = not very good macaroni.
Gluten is an amorphous ergastic protein found combined with starch in the endosperm of some cereals, notably wheat, rye, and barley. It constitutes about 80% of the proteins contained in wheat, and is composed of the proteins gliadin and glutenin. Gluten is responsible for the elasticity of kneaded dough, which allows it
to be leavened, as well as the "chewiness" of baked products like bagels.
It looked pretty weird out of the box already, being an odd shade of chalky plaster white. The macaroni also had a strange tendency of sticking to each other while cooking. And finally, upon taste testing, it was bizarrely crumbly after the first or second chew, with the dry texture of half-cooked rice. The cheese sauce was pretty decent though in a luminous orange crappy cheese sauce kinda way.
So now, for the first time in my life, I know what gluten's about and am extremely grateful to be able to digest it (fingers crossed things don't change!). And, of course, filled with respect for all the people who are gluten intolerant yet make planning and eating fabulous gluten-free meals look so effortless.
Since the uninspiring macaroni didn't warrant any photo time, thought I'd end off by sharing a pic of my latest little treasure - macarons from Le Chocolat de H in Tokyo courtesy of Nicky's recent trip there. The beautiful assortment contained chocolate macarons with a variety of fillings - chocolate, coffee, caramel, vanilla, pistachio and framboise, with delightfully sticky, smooshy centers.
Needless to say, my macaron cravings, rather than being satiated, have now been whipped up into a frenzy that I reckon can only be addressed by a trip to Tokyo or Paris NOWNOWNOWNOWNOW.
Except that's not happening any time soon.
I guess I should still be grateful about the gluten though.