living in France

Hi gluten free friends,

I live in beautiful Normandy which I love but I have just found out that I need to follow a gluten free diet. Luckily a lot of the french Supermarkets now have section for health products including gluten free. Also some excellent health and Bio food shops.

What I need now is to have some tasty recipes to prepare and cook which are GF, not only for me but for the meals I cook for our guests ( we have a B&B which offers evening meals) which we have to sit and eat with them as that is what is expected of you here. So far I've done different salads for starter like smoked salmon or Mackerel pate.Then poss pork with cider and local cream, of chicken with apricots,anyone got some other ideas? I'm still coming to terms with having to translate the ingredients on items from french to English. I'm getting there.

Best wishes from Les Sabots.

12 Replies

  • I can't really offer you any tempting recipes because I have other food intolerances.

    One suggestion would be to market yourself as a gluten free establishment. When I first started having digestive issues I found that there was a lack of places catering for people like us.

    Coeliac UK has a magazine and they accept adverts.

  • Merci, thank you.


  • Coeliac UK also have a section on their website for recipes. Also the BBC website has currently got an extensive food and recipe area. The Internet is a great resource for things like this.

  • Thank you, merci


  • lots of meat and fish dishes are gf or easily changed.

    so I would concentrate your efforts on some lovely but simple veg dishes to serve with a main or on their own.

    you could also look at omelette/ frittata recipes which have loads of fresh seasonal veg and potatoes held together with egg. Colourful, nutritious and yummy.

    and there are lots of sites dedicated to gf and gf&DF food, as well as the usual recipe sites which offer gf too.

  • I noticed when in Normandy a week ago that Super U now stock fresh gluten-free pastry, so you could make quiches easily. Buckwheat flour (sarrasin or blé noir) and cornflour are gluten-free, so substitute these in recipes that require flour. Galettes (a favourite in Normandy) are normally made with 100% buckwheat flour (do check just in case!) and you can fill these with ham, eggs, salmon, mushrooms, goat's cheese - anything you like really. You could go to Amazon and buy a couple of gluten-free recipe books - Or browse the recipes posted on my gluten-free recipes Facebook page -

  • Thank you for your helpful post, .Unfortunately there isn't a Super U near to us,

    but Le Clerc at La Ferte Mace have just enlarged their range of GF goods.

    Good idea about GF books from Amazon, I'll put them on my Christmas list.

    See where we are on our web site.

  • Hi Sabots I use cornflour to make cheese sauces for cauliflower cheese and for coating meat before I fry it for stews etc. I am half Maltese and there is a baked rice dish which easy to. make and Gluten free . The recipe is on Google. I agree with Cocoa if you advertise as a gluten free establishment doing tasty food everyone can eat people like us will always book.

  • Be aware each person's diet is unique. When you advertise GF your guests will still question the ingredients as eater is unique.

    In Europe, have you found that they do not waste wheat flour in any foods other than pastries and bread.

    Some people react to cornflour and buckwheat.

    In UK, most caterers are now GF friendly. Although I did see a chef cooking the veg in same water as pasta. But he was South African in UK.

    Are they GF aware in France?

  • Hi there - we live between the UK and France and can appreciate the problems- I've started to buy the Sarassin flour from the supermarkets and so far have been OK with it though I do go for the one in a box so I can wipe the outside down before opening - it's buckwheat flour and is GF , my neighbour in France went to a bio shop and bought rice flour.

    Personally I experiment with all the old recipe's and just change the flour/ingredients to GF ones. Not one to buy ready made products as they seem contain so much fat and sugar. My biggest hassle is getting bread in France and I must admit to buying GF wraps in the UK and taking them over and freezing them (though thawing is an issue the new sweet potato ones you have to decant out of the wrapping to defrost between kitchen paper. But I do buy the French Schar products when I need to. There are also abundant types of nut flour you can use in cakes and there are a lot of French desserts that do not contain any flour at all.

    I agree with one of the comments you might consider to advertise as a gf establishment - it's getting easier in France but still a problem

  • Keep it fresh and clean- meat and veggies.

    Cooked pastry on the side rather than on top of pies. Pasta dishes seem to come out favourably when gf, just need to watch ingredients if using ready made sauces.That way you can do gf and normal to cater to both type of guest if you intend to advertise yourselves a gf friendly establishment.

    Lots of recipes on the net but also could look to getting a couple of books to fall back on. As you are probably aware many people once with coeliac/ gf seem to have other intolerences too so you could look at paleo and dairy free recipes.

  • If you can get to a Carrefour supermarket, they have a large selection of ready made foods, but best to stick to fresh and seasonal as much as possible.

    Perhaps have a look for recipes using buckwheat flour, which is used in various European countries, also chickpea flour which is used to make a pancake called 'socca'.

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