Gluten Free on a a Shoestring Bakes BreadAs many people know, a while back I developed an allergy to gluten. At first, it was ghastly. But time passed and I have found substitutes for almost everything. The two things I haven’t been really happy with are pizza dough and real bread. Sandwich bread is easy enough, and we’ve found that Jules GF pizza dough is delicious, but it takes a long time to make. (If you’re curious, I am working on a Pinterest board of GF pantry staples, things I’ve taste-tested and approved. If you have things I should add, I’d love to hear about that them!)

But real bread, despite all the things I tried, defeated me. Sure, I could get a pretty good one with eggs and milk and all kinds of things that, IMHO, don’t belong in bread. I could spend weeks or months (I kid you not, depending on what you see online) developing a starter from a minimum of five different types of flour. I love bread, but that wasn’t going to happen.

Then I bought Gluten-Free on a Shoestring Bakes Bread: (Biscuits, Bagels, Buns, and More). Now, I haven’t made anything from it yet–I’ll let you know how that goes as I try it. It all looks DELICIOUS. But the recipes call for an ingredient I’ve read about before but never been able to find: Expandex Modified Tapioca Starch. I’ve skipped plenty of recipes in my search for gluten free food because I couldn’t find Expandex. The places that had it online wanted WAY too much in shipping and no one had it locally.

However, in the resource section to the book and on her blog, Nicole recommends Montana’s Gifts of Nature. Their website is fairly tragic, to be brutally honest, and to contact them you have to call them. It was about 5:15 on Sunday night my time when I got to the resource section of the book, but Nicole said that one could call and leave a message and they’d call you back. So I called. And Larry answered.

And let me tell you something…that was a super conversation. It wasn’t anything particular that I can put my finger on. But he discussed everything with me from shelf life to shipping costs so I could make the best decision about how much I wanted. When I hung up, despite having had to call, I was really happy with the decision to choose them rather than one of the other two places I saw online that had the product in stock.

It occurs to me that there are very few companies I can say that about. If I had the time, I’d build them a proper website so their products could get the attention they deserve. For now, I’ll just say that if you’re looking for Expandex, it’s definitely worth making the call. And if you’re selling something, take a lesson from Larry and be as friendly as can be!