Just a quick one today.
I have had a visit from Environmental Health to sign me off for another three years to create and sell cakes and bakes from my kitchen…not that I ever do!
I have also had a visit from our chimney sweep, to sweep the chimney and talk food.
He was a chef for 30 years before being a chimney sweep.
I learnt that adding egg white to a stock before heating the bones, gives you a clear stock, something I would never have known!
Must go and make stock.
Basically that means that I have run out of time for much else today.
But I do have time to quickly tell you that I have been contacting various freefrom companies to ask for details of the rice they use in their products.
I haven’t got as far with this as I would have liked.
Instead I have been busy creating recipes that do not contain rice or rice flour.
I have perfected a flour mix for bread and pastry, but haven’t quite got around to writing down the recipes I made using it.
UPDATE 2016: I have now developed and brought to market my unique rice-free, wholegrain gluten free flour blend. You can buy it here.
Anyway, one company I have contacted particularly impressed me with their response.
That company is Innovative Solutions, a small company whose flour I often get on prescription since it is pure flour without any added ‘extras’!
The response they gave me is as follows:
“Many of you will have seen reports this week concerning levels of arsenic in food, in particular in rice and rice products.
Arsenic is a naturally occuring metal in the earth’s crust and therefore organic arsenic is present in most foods and the water we consume and always has been.
Current research suggests that excessive levels of inorganic arsenic become present in rice which is grown in certain countries and where the use of particular pesticides is commonplace.
These pesticides are the source of the arsenic residue and are absorbed by the rice plants through the water.
Currently there is no legislation in place governing arsenic levels in foods, however, there are guidelines issued by the EU and also recommendations from the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations.
According to the FAO levels of arsenic in rice should not exceed 200 ppb (0.2mg/kg).
We can reassure all our customers that our rice products are not only tested for arsenic, but they also come in well below the threshold as set down by the FAO.
Furthermore, the rice we supply is not grown in regions known to use problem pesticides, and we will continue to source our products responsibly as we have always done.
More information can be found on the FAO website by following this link and we would like to again reassure customers that we will continue to monitor and quality check every product that we sell to ensure it meets the highest possible standards.
If you do have more questions on this subject please email us direct at [email protected]”
Very comprehensive I think, and pretty reassuring too, apart from not mentioning how much arsenic is in their products.
Far more comprehensive than certain other companies who have actually just ignored me…I will name no names, but I am pretty cross.
Anyway, as I mentioned, until companies start to make changes to their products I will be avoiding rice as far as possible.
Look out for lots of new recipes here that do not contain rice flour.
They will actually be far more nutritionally enhanced because I shall be using teff, quinoa and nut flours instead.
But don’t worry.
I aim to create recipes using flours that are available on prescription for those of you who are coeliac to try and keep costs down for us all.
What if any changes are you making to try and lessen the amount of rice and rice products you eat?
Or are you making no changes at all?
I’d love to hear your views…