Finding out that you have any allergy or intolerance can be a difficult process. When Bubbles moved, to Malaysia, gluten-free just meant you were fussy. One doctor told her she couldn’t possibly be a celiac as she was too mentally normal and wanted to re-test her. (Note: You can’t get tested for celiac if you are already gluten free so check the various tests available if you do suspect you have issues before eliminating it from your diet.) Malaysia has been difficult, but Bubbles is slowly getting the hang of living gluten-free here, with the help of a few chefs, doctors and lists on Evernote and her IPhone.
Unfortunately, Daisy discovered her gluten intolerance a few weeks after moving to Kuala Lumpur from New York City—the Mecca of gluten-free gluttony! Daisy remembers seeing the gluten-free cafes and bakeries on her walks home from work and the *GF notations on just about every menu there. Ahhhh…. How ironic life can be.
In most places in Kuala Lumpur, Daisy met with a puzzled looks when asking about gluten-free food. It bothers most waiters and chefs when she asked very specific questions about the ingredients in her food and the method of cooking employed. While supermarkets now stock basic pantry items but food labelling is not always accurate (Bubbles noticed Organic Barley with a Gluten Free label on a few supermarket shelves).
Changes are happening as awareness increases through people like Bubbles and Daisy asking questions and sharing information.
They discovered restaurants willing to make that extra effort, finally learnt that not all tequila is gluten-free and that sadly, local chocolate is not an option. Daisy and Bubbles plan to do whatever they can to: a) prevent you from getting glutened in Kuala Lumpur, b) make a dining out or eating in experience a tad easier for you, and c) share with you their blueprint—their general ideas and principles—for how to survive this allergy unconscious city and region of the world (which you can also adapt for other allergies or food restrictions).
Peace + Kiss Kiss,
Daisy & Bubbles