Gluten in potato

Was out for afternoon tea, asked about the leek and potato soul and was told whilst no gluten free ingredients they had been told on their course that when being blitzed potatoes release a "natural gluten". So they were wary of saying it's gluten free. In the old days I used to make mashed potatoes by blitzing them with a hand blender so I know what she means but gluten that harms us?

17 Replies

  • Hi ailsamary

    Potatoes ARE gluten-free! The only reason they wouldn't be depends what they contaminated them with in the soup (ie stock cubes etc).

    I think it is probably a case of someone's poor understanding of the training they were given. They also might be confusing gluten with potato starch?

    Always be wary of eating anything when out; unless the person serving is confident it is gluten free. My motto: If in doubt, don't!

  • To be fair they had been told this on the allergy course and normally they are very good but yeah that's what I thought just needed to check

  • Potatoes are like lumps of sugar. High on the GI scale. So, I'd have them sparingly. However I'm fairly confident they don't have gluten in.

  • Potatoes are gluten free.

    Unfortunately not everyone on catering knows what they are talking about.

    It reminds me when I went out for a family meal and was quizzing the waiter on wether the chips were fried in oil free from contamination. He came back from the kitchen and told me that other things with gluten were cooked in the oil but I didn't have to worry as their fryers 'killed' the gluten. We left at that point.

    It just highlights how important it is that we educate ourselves and ask questions.

  • There is to much scaremongering where gluten can be found, being a coeliac one learns where it can be found and even learn what their own tolerance is. Apart from a dodgy kitchen eating natural foods that have no gluten content are harmless to coeliac's and if this is being taught to potential chef's coeliac uk should be informed and they should advise in the interest of all coeliac's

  • Yes I might do that, this place are small, always cook their own food, and this is what she had picked up on an allergy training course

  • I have not yey found a gf potato n leek soup think they thicken it with flour! Unless ingredients fresh leave well alone methinks!

  • No need to thicken it with flour as the starch from the potato will thicken it, as will any cream they add

  • Very true Tassie but having seen some chefs in action would not trust them nor would order at some garden centres as they buy dried soup in commercial quantities.

  • of course ..there could be gluten in the stock they use. I don't trust restaurants at all ...hence why I don't eat out

  • Oh dear! That would make me inclined to go elsewhere as such a fundamental lack of understanding would make me fear their food handling and cross contamination.

    I had a waiter in a "good" London hotel last week try to tell me that their sausages and breakfast toast were definitely 100% gluten free but that I should avoid the scrambled eggs! He thought gluten was in milk! In fairness to him he was struggling to understand, but hotels should train staff with poor language skills to fetch a more fluent colleague.

    The catering manager tried to sort things out and promised to train the staff but I doubt it will be any good. Why? She said "well obviously the baked beans are all right for you". The only "obvious" thing at this juncture was that I gave her a 2 minute lesson on GF and demanded to read the catering container labels myself as although her speech fluency was good it became clear she was very slow at reading English.

    Needless to say if I ever stay there again I will be heading straight for the chef. I would say to anyone don't be shy about telling the waiting staff (politely) that you are not confident with their explanation and that as you will be VERY ILL if they're wrong, you insist on talking straight to the kitchen.

  • The language barrier has a lot to answer to. At an Indian restaurant the waiter thought I was asking for free food..:/ I had asked what was gluten free on the menu, and he said ' you have to pay for your food' as if I needed any more reason to be made to feel uncomfortable.. :(

  • When I eat out I never ever use the term "gluten Free" I prefer to ask for menu' s that do not include wheat and then decide what might just contain the legal derivatives. Wheat is the common thickening ingredient used and most nationalities understand it. I find "Gluten Free" to be misleading for Coeliac's like myself.

  • I must try that - but I have to say, I've been pleasantly surprised by the number of places that do understand the issue. Possibly the most impressive was where the waiter insisted on checking with the chef ("it should be okay, but I'll check") and came back very apologetic explaining that there were no gluten-containing ingredients but it had been made near gluten-containing food so he'd recommend I didn't have it. If I was going to go again, they advised giving them a ring and they' 'look after' me. That seemed pretty trustworthy to me - and I can imagine going back - praying that the staff don't change!

  • Yeah the lady in this establishment was actually being over cautious as well. She knew the was nothing containing gluten in the soup. But with what she had been told on her course she was being very cautious

  • Problem is if we don't try and eat out then the hotels/restaurants will assume there is no call for our food to be so carefully prepared, makes it difficult :(

  • I find the phrase 'explosively ill' gets me through to the chef - I let them assume it may be immediate! Was once assured a meal would be gluten free because 'there's no eggs in any of this'. I have one place I dare eat (other than my home), everywhere else local has glutened me!

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