"Wraps," by Barber, Corpening, & Narlock
Prior to my gluten free days, I had a little cookbook I loved, which was titled, simply, "Wraps." It


Wrapping Things Up

"Wraps," by Barber, Corpening, & Narlock
Prior to my gluten free days, I had a little cookbook I loved, which was titled, simply, "Wraps." It was full of beautiful pictures of wraps filled with relatively nutritious, easily transported meals with cheesy names like the Rodeo Round-Up, the Fertility Special, and the Huevos Wrapcheros.

Unfortunately, when the Gluten-Free Reign of Terror began, I discovered that one of its chief tortures would be the dietary imposition of these things known as "rice tortillas." Fact: rice tortillas have all the endearing and satisfying features of a piece of cardboard. Only, with greater inclination to fuse together while in the packaging, and completely fall apart when once they reach the outside world. So the "Wraps" cookbook got sadly shuffled to the back of the bookshelf and forgotten. Until recently.

I've tried a few different rice tortillas, and found none I like. Corn tortillas are much to small to turn into wraps of any sort, and also fall to pieces under the slightest strain. So I wasn't very hopeful when I picked up a package of Sonoma's gluten free Ivory Teff Wraps from Whole Foods. I've been pleasantly surprised with the re-introduction of things like burritos and wraps back into my diet.

Teff is a tiny, North African grain probably best known for its use in the cuisine of Ethiopia. While there is some small controversy over whether or not it is technically gluten free, it is officially considered to meet the standards for a gluten free diet, and doesn't seem to cause problems for the gluten free people who eat it. It is high in protein, calcium, and particularly iron, and can be eaten as a cooked grain or ground and used as flour.

Sonoma's Ivory Teff Tortillas have the resilience most gluten free tortillas lack: they can be bent without breaking and filled with food without tearing. In fact, if warmed prior to use, they behave very similarly to flour tortillas. They're available at several markets locally (including Whole Foods, PCC, and the Ballard Market), but you might have to look for them. They'll typically be found either refrigerated with the specialty tortillas, or frozen with the gluten free breads.

Coming back around to the renewed usefulness of the "Wraps" book, though, I'd like to close with a word on Being Allergic and using cookbooks. A lot of us get pressured into thinking that we need special cookbooks to meet special dietary needs, and while special books can be both fun and useful... in my opinion, cookbooks are really at their best when they are providing idea outlines, not when they are dictating step-by-step. To inspire you to look through your old cookbooks in new ways: here is one of my formerly-favorite recipes from Barber, Corpening, and Narlock's "Wraps," re-worked for an excessively high maintenance diet (mine).


¼ cup peanut butter almond butter

Two 10- or 11-inch flour tortillas warmed teff tortillas

½ cups sliced banana (1/4 inch thick slices)

1 cup granola a gluten free granola alternative or chopped nuts

¼ cup vanilla yogurt coconut milk yogurt

2 teaspoons honey

The almond butter gets spread directly on the warmed tortilla, and all the rest of the ingredients, after being mixed in a bowl, are added on top.

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