For the Love of Sandwiches


I have Celiac Disease, and my favorite food is sandwiches. Yep, I just put those two out there in the same sentence. How is this possible, you may wonder?
It all started as a teenager, when I made the decision to become a vegetarian. With a meat-eating family, I was often reduced to side dishes for my meals. I found that a quick, filling alternative for me was a cheese sandwich, in which I realized I could add many items to. Vegetables, dressings, spices, and even the types of cheese could be substituted out and switched around. With this ability, a “simple” cheese sandwich could constantly evolve and hold different tastes that held my interest. I ate tuna as well, as I never cut seafood from my diet.
I worked at Subway during this time, and later as well, so I became aware of many other options for a sandwich. In addition, I could switch out rolls and add sauces that weren’t available at home. I could eat a sandwich every day I was working and still wouldn’t get tired of it, since I was constantly changing the combination of ingredients.
In 2008, I was diagnosed with Celiac Disease. My last “normal” meal consisted of McDonald’s fish fillets before heading to the doctor’s appointment that would confirm it all. I can safely say that the worst part of learning about the disease was the realization that I would never have a regular sandwich again. Gluten free bread had a strange cardboard texture that did not taste at all like the bread that I was used to. I even gave up vegetarianism, as it was so difficult to find gluten free food as it was.
My life became a constant search for the perfect gluten free foods, as the entire process of my disease was a trial and error to find the most edible items. Gluten free foods aren’t cheap, either. A loaf of bread runs $5-$6, and it was disheartening when I bought a loaf that tasted terrible. But, I missed my sandwiches.
Today, I have found a couple of types of bread that are the closest to their gluten counterparts as possible. The Grainless Baker and Rudi’s make the two types that I like, and I have found that I am able to make sandwiches again. Granted, the bread is expensive and does not last long at all. The loaves are small and are gone once our family has one meal of sandwiches. And, the bread is sometimes difficult to find. But, I can’t imagine life without my favorite food choice. Do you have a food you can’t live without? What is it?


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