About Me

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My nemesis

So, I guess I should introduce myself. My name is Marley. I’m a Canadian teacher, living in Bangkok. I’ve been here for a whole year now and feel that I have a pretty good grasp on the city and southeast Asia in general.

However, I have met some challenges. Firstly, I have Celiac Disease and only found out about 14 months ago. Living in the UK at the time, doctors diagnosed me with IBS and maintained that diagnosis for 3 years! They kept telling me to eat more whole wheat!

Finally, sick and feeling completely defeated, I went to a dietitian who asked me if I had ever been tested for wheat allergies or Celiac Disease. Lo and behold, she was right! Newly diagnosed and feeling empowered, I was ready to start my gluten free adventure…. except I was moving to Bangkok in a month’s time!

Back home in Canada, my friends and family tell me that gluten free food is everywhere and plentiful. However, in Thailand, it is not so easy to come by, thus my new blog. I hope you will enjoy my suggestions, travel stories and recipes.

38 thoughts on “About Me

  1. Stuart says:

    Hello Marley.
    I recently found I’m gluten sensitive. I want to make my own bread (and perhaps some of your other recipes.)
    I don’t own a microwave,bread machine or an oven.
    Which of these 3 do you think would be a best all round buy?
    Thanks
    Stuart

  2. Marley says:

    Hi Stuart! I would recommend either an oven or a bread machine. Living in Bangkok, I personally don’t use a microwave. For popcorn, I make it the ol’ fashioned way on the stove.

    Many of the gluten free bread mixes you buy have instructions for oven and bread makers. Each appliance obviously has its own perks. For example, with a bread machine, you don’t have to kneed the dough yourself; you simply put in all the ingredients and leave it alone for two hours. I used to have one back in Canada and loved it. The higher end ones allow you to set it up so that it makes bread in the middle of the night and you wake up to a warm loaf.

    On the other hand, I bought a small convection oven from a friend. I use this for bread, muffins, cookies, roasting veg, and of course for pizza! It does require a bit more work, but I think you’d probably get more out of the oven!

  3. Nong says:

    Dear Marley,

    I am the owner of a food company in Bangkok and we export gluten free products. We have gluten free samples left from the shipments here and we don’t sell them in Thailand since Thai people are generally not gluten sensitive. I’d rather give them to you or other gluten sensitive people, than wasting them. Let me know how we can arrange it.

    Please contact me at : info@spicegardenfoods.com

    Nong.

    • Marley says:

      Hello Nong, that is a wonderful offer! I did send you an email the other day, but it came back ‘cannot deliver message.’ Do you have an alternative email or phone number I could contact you on? Thank you!

  4. Tarja says:

    Dear Marley
    Have you seen in any Bangkok Villa Market a gluten-free australian brand called “Yes You Can”..? I visited Phuket a few weeks ago and one of their Outlets had a lots of it, e.g. cake, bread and pancake mixes. Especially I am looking for their pizza crust mix. It was delicious, best I’ve tasted including my previous undiagnosed celiac free life! I live in Pattaya and Villa Market here is for some reason not able to deliver Yes You Can products. I’m ready to make the trip to BKK for the pizza crust 🙂
    BR, Tarja

    • Marley says:

      Hi Tarja,

      Unfortunately I have only been able to find Arrowhead Mills, Orgran and Bob’s Red Mills products here. I will keep a look out though!

  5. Tarja says:

    Hi Marley, thanks so much for replying. We have the brands you mentioned available also in Pattaya. I will keep following your blog in case of new products, restaurants and such.

    • Hi Tarja! Good news: today I found Yes You Can products at the Villa on Sukhumvit near Phrom Pong BTS! I bought the self raising flour and chocolate cake mix. Unfortunately they didn’t have any pizza crust mix, but they did have some savoury something mix and banana bread too.

  6. Mette says:

    Hi! I read in one for your posts that u did your eye lashes in Bangkok, eyelash extentions. I am gong to Bangkok tomorrow and was thinkng about doing The same! But is it safe to so it there, do I have to find some special salon where it is safe? Is The quality just as good at the smaller salons u find on The streets? I am on a really tight budged, and was planning to maybe endoulge myself a bit one day and fix both lashes, hair, nails, wax and so on 🙂 hope for an answere 🙂

    • Marley says:

      I just got mine done today! How funny! My friends and I use the Take Care chain. You can find them on Sukhumvit soi 19 on the left hand side and they also have a place on the third floor of Terminal 21. These are the 2 locations closest to me, but I know there are more locations in the city! They do a good mani/pedi too! (Prices start from 960thb for 40 lashes) http://www.takecarebeauty.com

  7. Tarja says:

    Hi Marley! Thanks for the update on Yes You Can products in Bangkok. I bought a couple of packs of the Savoury Cheese Snack mix and Banana bread mix while I was in Phuket. Haven’t tried the sancks thing yet. Banana bread mix turned out to be very sweet, it’s more like cake than bread, quite OK as cake though. Too bad they didn’t have the pizza crust, I remain waiting for good news on this from you one of these days 🙂

  8. Pearl says:

    Thank you Marley. It is a wonderful blog. I am Thai, live in Chiangmai, now trying to cut Gluten our of my diet since I have suffered from mild psoriasis for the past 10 years. My friend suggested me to “go gluten free” for a month or so to see if it make me feel better in my case. Good luck to you and hope you enjoy living in Thailand.

  9. Monique says:

    Marley,
    I’m currently researching and planning an extended backpacking stay in Thailand. I’m also graduating this year with a degree in English Rhetoric and Global Culture and I would love to hear about how you ended up living and teaching in Thailand, as that is my dream!

  10. There is the importer for Orgran, yes you can and products from Brazilean company Yoki in Sukhumvit 19 called Maisin du vin. You can order also pastas, Doug mixes etc per box or per piece. Buying there now for 3 yrs already! maisonduvins1994.com/

    Also at tea shops from Mandarin oriental you can order fresh glutenfree bread with 24 hr delivery

    • Marley says:

      Woah! That’s pretty exciting! My birthday is coming up – will have to forward this to some of my friends. Great find, thanks!

  11. Hi Marley, Thanks for the great information. We are featuring GF Thailand in our next Celiac newsletter and I would love to include a link to your blog. Give us a shout if you are ever in Singapore!

    • Marley says:

      Thanks for following Karen, Singapore is certainly on my list. However, my list is constantly growing and I have no idea when I will get down there!

  12. Hi,
    I am travelling to Thailand for Honeymoon for 3 weeks so going all over but looking for restaurants/places to eat that you recommend. Any tips? Bangkok? Koh Samui. Koh Lak, Koh Phangan, Koh Tao? My Wife is allergic to them so want to ensure she can eat properly while we are away.
    I am also soon starting my own GF and DF site so will revisit you when its up and running and add your link to my site!
    Thanks
    Shiv

  13. Hi, thought you might be interested in following. Pura Organic Foods on Phuket now distributes a range of gluten free products. All products are made in a gluten free bakery environment, the breads are pre-sliced, all products are frozen and are good for several month. The bakery is run by a lady who herself is Caeliac. Absolutely no cross contamination from regular wheat products. All delicious, finally glutenfree with a taste!
    Have a look at the products:
    http://puraorganic.org/product-category/glutenfree/
    We do ship to anywhere in Thailand
    Martin

  14. libbywalkup says:

    Hello! I’ve vaguely begun considering moving to Thailand and am GF. So, so so so glad your blog exists in case this idea ever comes to fruition. I get anxious navigating gluten in other languages, but if I have an idea of what I’m asking for I think I will be more confident! Is there like some expat gluten free group there? I feel like there should be. Y’all could meet up in a different city every month and try a restaurant together, complain about gluten mishaps and rave about finds. 😀

    Cheers.

    • Marley says:

      Well thanks for checking it out! Most Thais still don’t understand food allergies here – so eating food from street vendors is pretty much a NO, but you can find some restaurants that will accommodate you!

      I wish there was a meet-up group but alas, there isn’t. While the gluten free community is growing, people tend to stick to the places they know – which is why I created this blog. I realised I wasn’t alone and the only gluten free Thailand info I could find was from people who had visited, not actually lived here. I do meet up with people – locals and tourists, so drop me a line if you are planning a visit!

  15. Tate says:

    Hello Marley,
    I’m writing from Australia at SalDoce Fine Foods. We share the same passion for you on the importance of finding healthy gluten free products. We have expanded into Thailand and were hoping to give you more details. Our contact information is: intern1@saldoce.com.au
    We’d love to hear from you.
    Cheers!

  16. Hi Marley, I was diagnosed with coeliac a couple of years ago and now am on a gluten free diet. It was very difficult at the beginning and people thought it was funny how come a Thai can be this. Now I cook a lot for myself. Sometimes I am too lazy to cook and I want to eat out at a safe place. Have been in search of gluten free products in Bangkok and just found your blog today. You make my life much easier by now and very happy to know that I am not alone :’) THANK YOU!

  17. Urasa Chittamvanich says:

    Hi Marley,

    I’m a mother of four-year-old girl who’s been found allergic to wheat/gluten since she was 6 month old. There’s a big community of food allergy kids in Thailand and we have a long listed of bakery/restaurants that serve top 8 free. I have to say it’s becoming a lot easier now where you can find Organ product easily at MaxValue Supermarket, Villa, Gourmet market, Foodland, etc. Another place worth checking is Lemon Farm, though less branches that the others but they do have pretty interesting GF products. Have you try Theera on sukhumvit? It’s the restaurant/bakery with GF food&sweets also. There are also many page/website that cater top 8 free imported products. Let me know if you want me to listed it out for you.

    Best,
    Nat

  18. Claire says:

    Marley, I’ve just begun the process of starting a support group for people with celiac disease in Bangkok. Would you be interested in joining? Your travels and experience would be really helpful! Please look for “bangkok celiacs” group on Facebook. I’ve just started, but hopefully we can have an introductory meeting soon. Thanks!

  19. Dirk says:

    I’m moving to Bangkok in the very near future. This is a great resource for those of us who can’t eat gluten! Thanks for taking the time to put this together!

  20. tonymobily says:

    Hi there,

    I am the father of a caeliac 5yo. We are running out of our stash of gluten free bread and cereal. We are in Phuket. Any hints of where we can get gluten free bread, possibly packaged, around here?

    Ta!

    Merc.

    • Marley says:

      Check the Villa Supermarkets… they should have crackers, cookies and some other snacks. As for pre-made bread, I know a couple high-end hotels that make their own. But Villa should have some mixes on their shelves. –> http://www.villamarket.com

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