We have moved to www.thefriendlygourmand.com


The Friendly Gourmand - logo

Hi everyone! Firstly, thank you so much for your support and kind words over the last few years, it is part of what has made blogging here so enjoyable.

You might have heard, via Facebook, Instagram or Twitter, that I am moving this blog over to a new home. While Not From a Packet Mix will always mean a lot to me, this new name, The Friendly Gourmand, feels like a much better fit: it embraces my awesome surname, the fact that I cook “friendly” foods and also hints at my love of good quality, delicious, homemade fare.

This is just a quick note to say that I am now officially posting at The Friendly Gourmand. I will be sending out an email later today from the new blog, with a new recipe. I have copied the subscription list from this website over but, if you have not received an email from me (thefriendlygourmand@gmail.com) in 12 hours time (approx. 2 pm Melbourne, AUS time / 9 pm Seattle, USA time), please check your spam folder and then head over to the new website and sign up (the subscription block is currently along the right-hand side bar, towards the top).

The premise of the blog will remain the same, as the tagline suggests: good, low FODMAP and gluten free food. The recipes and resources that are here will be moved over; those that have been relocated will have a link to their new home, so you can always find your favourite recipes.

So, once again, thank you for all of your comments, likes and shares – they have meant a lot to me – and hopefully I will hear from you soon!

Much love,

Nataliya. Xx

Mock Apple and Blueberry Stuffed Crepes – Low FODMAP, Gluten Free & Dairy Free


You know when you buy ingredients for one thing but then end up making something else completely different? This was one of those times.

I’d bought some chokos (known as chayote squash in the US) to attempt a salad with them but Ev had other ideas and wanted a dessert, instead. Which, honestly, was fine by me, seeing as we were had already cooked enough for the week ahead. We were wanting something a little different to the mockapple crumble that I usually make, so after a bit of brainstorming, we decided on mock apple and blueberry stuffed crepes.

The crepes are easy to make once you get the wrist movement down (check out the video I linked), and the recipe can be switched from sweet to savoury with a teaspoon or two of sugar. They are so good that you’ll want them for breakfast every weekend! They take around 30 minutes to prepare and then you can cover them tightly with cling wrap and set them aside until you need to use them, which should preferably be the same day.

The mock apple and blueberry filling is subtly sweet and delicious. If you need a dessert that looks fancy but is straight forward to make, this is for you!


  1. Chokos are FODMAP friendly in 1/2 cup serves but become high in FOS in 1 cup serves, so do not over eat this if you are still on elimination.
  2. Blueberries are low FODMAP in 28 g/20 berry serves.
  3. Castor sugar is low FODMAP but, for those who wish to avoid as much fructose as possible, you can substitute glucose/dextrose powder for some or all of the sugar.
  4. Rosemary is a FODMAP friendly herb.
  5. Lemon zest is low FODMAP.
  6. Potato starch, being a starch, is low FODMAP.
  7. Lactose free dairy milk is low FODMAP but, for those who require a completely dairy free diet, you can easily sub your favourite LFM almond (etc) milk into this recipe.
  8. Gluten free flour blends can behave differently, depending on the ingredients used to create them. This crepe recipe uses the low FODMAP and gluten free plain flour blend I have on this website. If you use another blend, you may require more (or less) milk to achieve the correct consistency for the crepe batter.
  9. Xanthan gum is low FODMAP but can still be a gut irritant for some. You can leave it out of the crepe batter, just add the first two cups of milk and check the consistency before you add more, as the lack of xanthan gum will mean the batter needs less liquid.

Mock Apple and Blueberry Stuffed Crepes

Serves 6 FODMAPers (but I honestly think you could easily spread this two 12 serves, if you serve with a scoop of safe ice cream).

Mock Apple and Blueberry Filling

  • 1 tbsp. of your favourite butter replacement (or butter, if you can tolerate)
  • 250 g/3 cups fresh choko (chayote squash, approx. 3 large), peeled and diced into 1 cm cubes
  • 150 g/1 cup blueberries
  • 1 cup castor sugar or dextrose (or a mixture of both)
  • 1 tsp. fresh rosemary, minced
  • 1 tsp. fresh lemon zest
  • 2 tsp. potato starch

Get the filling going before you start on your crepes, as the chokos take time to soften and, as I learnt when experimenting with the mockapple crumble, if you don’t poach or saute them beforehand, you’ll have a crunchy crumble.

Peel and dice the chokos into 1 cm cubes, then place them in a medium-sized saucepan. Add in the blueberries, sugar (or dextrose), minced rosemary and lemon zest saute them over a medium heat.

Once the chokos are soft (should take about twenty minutes), remove some of the pan liquid into a small ramekin and mix through the potato starch until smooth, before adding the mixture back into the sauce pan.

Gluten Free/Low FODMAP Crepes

  • 1 large (free range) egg
  • 2 cups gluten free/LFM flour blend
  • 3 cups lactose or dairy free milk
  • 2 tsp. sugar (optional)
  • 1/2 tsp. xanthan gum (optional)
  • 1 pinch salt
  • 1 tsp. and 2 tbsp. olive oil

While the filling is simmering away on the stove, add the flour, xanthan gum, salt and optional sugar into a large bowl (with high sides) and stir together. Crack the egg on top and then add the milk (you might need more for a different flour blend) and one teaspoon of olive oil, then combine thoroughly. I find a stick blender is great for this, it lets you get a silky smooth consistency for your crepe batter.

Pour the two tablespoons of olive oil into your fry pan or crepe pan (the lower the sides the better but it doesn’t matter if you don’t have one – we don’t) and seal the base so that the crepes won’t stick. If you have a non-stick pan, this does not matter for you. Reduce the heat to medium and pour off excess oil into a ramekin.

Use a soup ladle to transfer approx. 1/2 cup portions into the pan at a time and swirl the wrist holding the pan to spread the mixture evenly. Cook over a low heat for approximately 2 minutes (until the edges have hardened and the underside has turned a light golden brown), then flip and cook for a further minute. Between crepes, use a folded paper napkin dipped in the oil you poured off to wipe down the pan.

Stack finished crepes on a plate.

Check out my Instagram video to see how we cook the crepes.


Line a rectangular baking tray with baking paper. Spread the mixture in a line down the middle of six to eight crepes (does not have to be done all at once). Fold one side over the top of the line of filling, then gently flip the crepe over to complete the roll. Line the completed crepes up in the baking tray.

Cover the tray with foil. Recover the unused crepes (if any) with cling wrap and have them with sliced banana and cinnamon etc. Yum!



When you are ready to bake these beauties, simply pre-heat your oven to 180 C/350 F and, when the oven has come to temperature, bake them for 30 minutes.

Remove the tray from the oven.



  • Icing sugar or dextrose
  • Slivered almonds
  • Your choice of lactose free ice cream, whipped cream or double cream (if you can tolerate dairy) or a dairy free sub like coconut cream, or a LFM vegan cream cheese.



Vegetable Bouillon Powder – Low FODMAP, Gluten Free & Vegan

Vegan Bouillon Powder - Low FODMAP and Gluten Free

A few months ago I posted these delicious instant noodle cups, which are perfect for work or school lunches (for teens, not so much little kids). They’re like an adult version of two minute noodles, I love them.

Anyway, here’s the recipe for the vegetable broth powder in a separate post. I know it’s listed in the noodle cup recipe but, for the sake of those who search for just low FODMAP bouillon and not the complete cup of noodles, I’ll post it separately so they can find it too.

This bouillon powder is vegan, doesn’t contain anything that’s too difficult to find in the supermarket and adds so much FODMAP friendly flavour to any meal, be it a pasta sauce, a soup or simply enhancing a vegetable stock. It keeps for a good 6 months when stored in an airtight container in a cool, dark place.

Don’t forget, if you’d like to receive new recipes via email, you can sign up at the top right of this page. Facebook is very unreliable, it only shares my posts with about 10% of my “likers” because I don’t pay to promote them. That just makes life difficult for everyone. But hey, that’s Facebook these days.


  1. Nutritional yeast is FODMAP friendly, as yeast is not a FODMAP. Yeast intolerances do exist, however, so if you have one then this recipe is not for you.
  2. Castor sugar and dextrose are both low FODMAP.
  3. Green leek powder is low FODMAP, the serving size depends on the weight difference after desiccation. For example, I normally reduce the weight by 50%, so instead of 28 g being the safe serving size, it is now 14 g.
  4. Rosemary, thyme, parsley, pepper flakes, sage, black pepper, paprika, coriander seed, cumin, ginger and turmeric are all low FODMAP in the small amount you’d consume in 1 tsp. of this powder blend.
  5. The herbs and spices can, however, be higher in food chemicals such as salicylates and histamine. These are not FODMAPs but it is important to keep in mind if you have any additional intolerances.

Vegetable Bouillon Powder

Serving size: 1 tsp makes 1 cup of stock when mixed with boiling water.

  • 1/2 cup nutritional yeast
  • 2 tbsp. kosher salt
  • 2 tsp. dextrose or castor sugar
  • 1 1/2 tbsp. green leek powder
  • 1 tsp. dried thyme
  • 1 tsp. dried rosemary
  • 1 tsp. dried parsley
  • 1 tsp. red pepper flakes
  • 3/4 tsp. dried sage
  • 1/2 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 tsp. paprika (smoked is best but normal is fine)
  • 1/2 tsp. ground coriander seed
  • 1/4 tsp. ground cumin
  • 1/4 tsp. ground ginger
  • 1/4 tsp. ground turmeric

Measure all the ingredients into the bowl of your food processor and then blitz for 30 seconds to turn the chunky ingredients (sage, nutritional yeast, pepper flakes) into a fine powder.

Put into an airtight jar and store in a cool dark place for up to 6 months – make sure you label and date the container. When you wish to use it, dissolve 1 tsp. of bouillon powder in 1 cup of boiling water, or add it in separately to dishes, such as stews, to enhance the flavour.



Maple Blueberry Bread and Butter Pudding – Low FODMAP & Lactose Free with a Gluten Free option

Maple Blueberry Bread and Butter Pudding - Low FODMAP, Lactose Free and Gluten Free

A month ago I flew down to San Francisco to meet my parents and play tourist for a few days before coming back up to Seattle. In addition to meeting up with a friend at the market near Pier 1 (Mariposa gluten free bread and cheese/olive platter at a wine bar, and I saw artichoke flowers for the first time – a perfect afternoon), we also paid a visit to the Boudin Bakery. If you haven’t heard of it, the Boudin Bakery boasts the original San Francisco sourdough, making bread from a starter that dates back to 1849. Apparently, the unique strains of wild yeast in San Francisco put a tangy twist on their traditional French sourdough, with a delicious result.

Now, I know that the evidence is solid that only spelt sourdough is considered low FODMAP but, as everyone who has followed this diet or dealt with fructose malabsorption for any length of time can attest – we are all different. I have had spelt sourdoughs trigger a fruct mal reaction in safe servings, but I have so far been 100% fine with rye (normal and sourdough bread), which is considered high in fructans. Wheat sourdough also makes me ill but the last time we were in San Francisco I was brave (or completely stupid) and decided to try some Boudin wheat sourdough. And I was fine. *Happy dance.*

So this time when we visited, I decided I wanted to take a loaf (or two) home. The only problem was, we don’t eat that much bread, even when it’s completely low FODMAP/gluten free, and the novelty teddy bear loaf was going stale. I hate waste – and LOVE bread and butter pudding – so the solution to the aging bread problem was obvious.

But first, all grown ups must play with their food… I don’t make the rules.



  1. Spelt sourdough bread is low FODMAP in 2 slice servings. The “souring” or fermentation process that occurs thanks to the naturally occurring yeast in the starter requires a longer rise time, which means much of the fructans are pre-digested for us and so no longer cause a problem.
  2. Gluten free does NOT mean low FODMAP, gluten is a protein and FODMAPs are specifically fermentable carbs. However, most of the gluten containing grains are high in fructans, so fructose malabsorbers are nominally gluten free, as well. If you need to eat gluten free as well as low FODMAP, then make sure you use gluten free bread, not spelt or any other form of wheat sourdough.
  3. Butter is very low in lactose but it can be substituted for a dairy free/lactose free alternative if need be.
  4. Milk/cream are high in lactose but you can easily use lactose or dairy free milk or cream of your choice. If you can tolerate coconut cream, it lends a delicious flavour to the dish.
  5. Eggs are low FODMAP but can still cause issues in some for non-FODMAP reasons.
  6. Maple syrup is sucrose-based, so low FODMAP. Read more here.
  7. Blueberries are a low FODMAP fruit.

Maple Blueberry Bread and Butter Pudding

Serves 10-12.

  • About 10-12 slices of old bread (just slightly stale, not mouldy!)
  • Butter (or dairy free equivalent) to spread on bread and grease dish
  • 3/4 cup blueberries
  • 2 cups milk, LF/DF if required
  • 2 cups cream, LF/DF if required
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup dextrose powder, or 1/3 cup castor sugar
  • 1/3 cup pure maple syrup
  • 1/4 cup icing sugar, to coat

Preheat your oven to 165 C/325 F.

Grease your baking dish (I used a 10″ diameter casserole dish) and spread the bread slices with butter. Arrange them in the dish and layer with the blueberries.

Whisk the milk, cream, eggs, dextrose (or castor sugar) and maple syrup together until smooth and pour over the bread. Press the bread down a little to partially submerge it. You could press it down all the way but I like the tops to get crispy, otherwise it’s just mush.

Bake for 45-60 minutes, until the tops are golden brown and the filling has set but still jiggles.

Let it cool, then dust with icing sugar and serve with a good vanilla ice cream (lactose free if required) and some extra blueberries.

Enjoy! Xx

IMG_9345 IMG_9351

Pecan Pie – Fructose Friendly

Hey guys! I promise I will have a new post up for you in a couple of weeks but, for now, in honour of my parents staying with us, here’s my Dad’s favourite dessert ever. A pecan pie.

Simple, quick (after the pastry is made) and delicious, this is a real crowd pleaser. I never have any left over. I will make it again soon and update the photos, I swear!

Cheers guys and happy fructose friendly Friday!

Nat xo.

Not From A Packet Mix

Firstly, sorry for not posting over the last couple of weeks. I was in Australia minus my laptop so my photos and recipes weren’t accessible… plus I was having WAY too much fun with my family and friends. This particular recipe, however, I printed out and took with me; I had promised my dad a pecan pie and he wasn’t going to let me forget it.


Dad loves pecan pies so much that every Australia Day weekend (when we were growing up) that we stayed in Bright for the Audax Alpine Classic bike ride, we had to come home via Beechworth to go to the Beechworth Bakery. Dad would stock up on about 20 of their medium sized pies and freeze them to last through the year. He is the ultimate champion at making food last. I think that’s where my sister and I get it from, because every Easter…

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Travel Series – Flying with Fructose Malabsorption

Hey guys! I’m sorry I missed Fructose Friendly Friday yesterday but I was busy flying down to San Francisco to see my parents for the first time since December.

Here is a relevant post reblogged from last year, I still follow these guidelines to travel without issue.

Follow me on Instagram @notfromapacketmix (www.instagram.com/notfromapacketmix) for San Francisco based low FODMAP eats while I’m here and have a great weekend!

Cheers, Nat. Xx

Not From A Packet Mix


I’m not a huge fan of flying. I’m not scared of it but I don’t find it enjoyable, either; long hours (15 hours between Melbourne and LAX) in cramped seating, recirculated air, mostly unsuitable foods and the bathrooms, if you can call them that, all add up to me not having a good time. I stress about connections until we make them and about whether our luggage will make it when we do.

We have had enough mishaps with changed departure gates, delayed planes and missing luggage (LAX is a disorganised hellhole) that Ev and I have become very adept at travelling light. The last time we went home to Australia, we got everything we needed for two weeks, including things for other people, in two carry on bags… and by “carry on” I mean the real carry on bags, not the giant suitcases that American based airlines let people take…

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The FODMAP content of spelt. Is spelt low FODMAP?

A thorough write-up on spelt flour. It’s a common misconception (and one that I fell prey to at the start of 2014) that spelt flour is low FODMAP.

As the Two Dietitians explain, it is lower in fructans than wheat but only proper sourdough is truly low FODMAP in 2-3 slice servings. Read their entire post for the complete details.

Low FODMAP Protein Walks into a Bar – Be NICE, Love Your Guts


While the name of this blog clearly implies that most of what I eat isn’t from a packet, I’m also realistic (and human). I’m not always going to have homemade low FODMAP travel-appropriate snacks on hand, so having a box of these in the pantry for such emergencies would be super handy – you all know how hard it is to search the gluten free snacks at the store, only to put each one back as you go: “No, there’s agave; nope, honey; damn it, there’s chicory fibre. FINE, rice cakes it is. Blergh.”

So, when I saw a link to the first low FODMAP protein bar to be available in the US (and not too far behind Australia’s FODMAP Friendly logo launch, either!), it’s safe to say I was quite excited. I was also lucky enough to be chosen to sample it and let you guys know what I think!


Well, here you go. I opened the sample sized packet (think fun-sized, the actual bar will be bigger: 50 g/1.8 oz and 211 calories) and…

  • I had a sniff – Mmmmm, peanuts. With visible chocolate chips. A good start.
  • I had a bite – Peanuts again! With a subtle sweetness (just sweet enough, not sugar headache inducing) and then pockets of chocolate. I had another bite (how could I not?); the texture is like a fudgey cookie dough. This keeps getting better. It’s actually sort of like the accidental grain free peanut butter cookie turned bliss ball that I am working on. Ev likes those, so I’m sure he’d like these, as well. I didn’t share, though. It was too good (and small) for that.
  • I thought it over – I like the cookie dough texture, it makes it seem fudge-like and I felt like I was indulging in something quite decadent.  I also really appreciate that it’s not overly sweet, so thanks, guys, for showing some restraint on that point. The serving size I got was enough for a mid afternoon snack (I had it at about 2 pm and didn’t get hungry again until 5.30 pm ish).


The ingredients list will keep most people happy, too. It’s unfortunately not nut free but it is certified organic, gluten free, soy free, corn free and dairy free. Of course, it’s also FODMAP friendly but certification for that doesn’t exist (yet) in the USA. From Nicer Food’s most recent email to subscribers, it sounds like Monash University will be launching a FODMAP friendly certification program in the US in the near future and Nicer Foods is already lining up to participate. If you aren’t yet well versed in what FODMAPs actually are, read this.

In addition to sending me the sample bar, Jesse and Kate (the founders of Nicer Foods) also kindly answered some questions for me:

  1. When did you first hear about the low FODMAP diet?
    Kate Watson RD, one half of Nicer Foods, first heard about FODMAPs several years ago from her gastroenterologist.  (She’s struggled with IBS for 20 years, and has had several bouts with SIBO.)  That said, when she looked into the diet, it just seemed too restrictive and complicated at the time.  (The fact that a registered dietitian came away with this impression tells you what a challenging diet FODMAPs is, and why it was so important to us to make it easier for people!)  She didn’t start following the diet until last year, when an especially painful IBS flare-up interfered with our honeymoon in Mexico – you can hear more about that story in our Kickstarter video if you like.
  2. Why did you decide to create a low FODMAP protein bar and what made you choose a peanut butter and chocolate flavour? Great choice, by the way!
    Thanks! We were both very frustrated with cooking from scratch for nearly every meal.  The lack of FODMAP friendly snacks or easy to prepare foods on the market was apparent and made travel challenging.   Also, Kate was burned out of working in clinical healthcare, while Jesse was recently laid off, so both of us were looking for business ideas that would actually make a difference in people’s lives, and yet at the same time, be actually viable.

    Why PB & Chocolate?  Mainly because it’s superior in every way to every other flavor in existence.  More seriously though, peanut butter is one of the few nut butters that’s FODMAPs approved by Monash up to two tbsp, and it’s a nice hearty choice for when you need a snack that’s actually going to stick with you. The bittersweet dairy-free chocolate chips add texture and a nice flavor contrast that complements the peanut butter, and completes the illusion that you are actually eating some sort of cookie dough.

  3. What made you choose these particular ingredients? Aside from them being low FODMAP, of course.
    Well, PB & chocolate I’ve already explained.  Rice protein protein is the other major source of protein in the bar, along with quinoa flakes — Neither have much flavor on their own, the quinoa gives the bar some body and a nice chewy texture.  We wanted to use rice protein specifically because it is easily digested and is vegan for those who can’t or don’t do dairy at all.
  4. What do each of you bring to the table? So to speak. 🙂
    Kate is an RD with IBS who has had specialized training on the FODMAPs diet with 2 of the top FODMAP dietitians in our country.  She’s not only well informed on the diet, she lives it every day, so she’s a pretty obvious choice to design and implement a product like this.  Jesse is a jack of all trades: He’s a software developer, web designer, published author, and has experience in management, entrepreneurship, and business.  And in a small business where much of our business will be done online, all of those things end up being pretty useful.
  5. When do you expect these bars to be commercially available and where? Do you have plans to expand to the rest of the US and perhaps internationally?
    If all goes well, we plan to be shipping throughout the US before the end of the year.  That said, we’re not willing to compromise on quality, and we want to take the time necessary to get this right.  The best way to find out when we’ll ship is to visit http://fodmapbar.com and sign up for a notification.  We also hope to get them into stores, but can’t say where just yet.  And yes, our vision for the future includes international plans!
  6. Do you hope to release new flavours and products if (and when) this bar is a success?
    Absolutely. We already have two other bar flavors in development, and another low FODMAP product in a different category. We’re extremely excited 🙂
  7. Any tips for those following a low FODMAP diet?
    It’s best to consult a dietitian who is experienced with this diet to help navigate the various phases of it, so that you can ensure you’re getting proper nutrition.

    FODMAPs is not a “forever” diet (there is a reintroduction phase), and that’s important because the goal is for people to eventually bring back in as many FODMAPs as they are able to tolerate and get as much variety in their diet as possible.  FODMAPs has been called a “learning diet” because it helps people learn their individual sensitivities so they don’t have to avoid all FODMAPs forever.  Also, your tolerance to FODMAPs may change over time, so if you fail a “challenge” to a groups of FODMAPs, try it again later.

    It’s important to stick as closely as possible to the diet during challenge and elimination phases so you can get a clear sense of what foods are triggers for you. Planning ahead and having appropriate low FODMAPs foods available when you will be traveling, while at work or school is an important part of that.  And that is part of the challenge with the diet as well.With that said, it’s our hope that our bars will make a great tool for people on the low FODMAPs diet, as well as for people with celiac, food sensitivities, allergies, and sensitive digestive systems in general.

Finally, here are the details:
  • Company – Nicer Foods; a brand new, family owned company from right here in Washington State.
  • Phone – +1 877 248 2995
  • Email – questions@fodmapbar.com
  • Have a look at their official website.
  • Like Nicer Foods on Facebook.
  • Follow Nicer Foods on Twitter.
  • Check out Nicer Foods’ Kickstarter campaign (and score some free bars and other goodies, if you choose to back them).
  • Last but not least, here’s their Google Plus profile.

Disclaimer: Please note that while I did receive a free sample of the NICE bar, I was not under any obligation to give a review that I didn’t truly believe. These opinions are my own – and this bar is nom-worthy.