Italian food leans heavily on popular carbs like pasta, pizza, and bread. For years, anyone who couldn’t eat gluten had to avoid these culinary pleasures. Cynthia Delia Coddington and Josephine Provenzano Hoppe, whose families hail from Puglia and Sicily, respectively, want to bring gluten-free eaters back to the (Italian) table with their new cookbook “Senza Glutine: Timeless Italian Dishes for the Gluten Free Palate.”
The authors have done their homework, locally and in Italy, to uncover high quality gluten-free brands for pastas and flours. Both women had their own diagnoses for gluten sensitivity (Coddington) and celiac disease (Hoppe) over 10 years ago. And both gave up eating pasta for many years because good tasting gluten-free products, easily accessible now, weren’t available back then. The authors list their favorite pasta brands, such as Farabella and Sanniti, and flours, including King Arthur Measure for Measure. (Sources for various products are included in the book.) “Italy is very gluten-free friendly these days with their high rates of gluten issues,” says Hoppe. Her research indicates that 10 percent of Italians have gluten intolerance or celiac disease. “There’s no problem finding good gluten-free pastas in Italy,” says Coddington.
Of course, there are many recipes in the book naturally free of gluten, including dozens of chicken, fish, and vegetable dishes. “We ate lots of vegetables growing up and they all tasted good,” says Coddington, noting the additions of simple flavorings, such as lemon, garlic, olive oil, tomatoes, and herbs. Some of Coddington’s favorite recipes in the book include caramelized tomatoes, linguine with cauliflower and onions, her grandmother Jessie Delia’s Italian wedding soup, and her other grandmother Angela Adessa’s flounder stuffed with spinach. For Hoppe, it’s potato croquettes, her Aunt Mary’s stuffed artichokes, baked clams Oreganata (with bread crumbs, lemon, and Romano cheese), and her mother Angie’s light chicken Francese with lemon and parsley.
For Coddington and Hoppe, both recently retired, “Senza Glutine” documents and shares their similar culinary histories and family dishes. Just as important, the cookbook is a collection of classic Italian recipes made gluten-free. The authors’ goal was to make the recipes indistinguishable from their gluten-containing counterparts. Now everyone can feast on all kinds of pastas and pizzas, ricotta cookies, and crunchy biscotti.
Available at Amazon ($40) and Wellesley Books, 82 Central St., Wellesley, 781-431-1160. For more information, check the website www.2lotsover.com.
Lisa Zwirn can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.