Tuesday, April 17, 2012


For a gluten-free celiac, immigrant neighborhoods, such as Little Senegal along 116th Street in Manhattan, can be a source of items such as these, which are almost impossible to find in mainstream groceries:
Last Sunday, a trip to the 1840s home of writer Edgar Allen Poe in the Fordham area of the Bronx led me to an African grocery across the street and what I found there will be a welcome addition to my gluten-free pantry.

When I was growing up in the Bronx, the ethnic makeup throughout this New York borough did not include many, if any, recent African immigrants. That is no longer the case, and as with most immigrant neighborhoods in the city, the new traditions, culinary or otherwise, are part of what makes New York City great. For the price of a subway ride, you can feel you've circled the globe!
The packed little Medina Grocery on East Kingsbridge Road near East 194th Street, is where I found this box of attieke, or tapioca couscous, found widely in Cote d'Ivoire. It is made from fermented and grated cassava root. I haven't tried it yet, but it seems easy enough to prepare. I'm always looking for different gluten-free textures and tastes for my vegetarian meals. Here are links to cuscous recipes I'm considering trying/adapting:

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