A concerned reader has pointed out that asafoetida is not safe for children or pregnant women. See the comments below for more.
Giving up garlic and onion when you have fructose malabsorption is tough because they are in so many recipes. Some people can tolerate one or the other, but I know that if I even smell an onion, things can get ugly.
But you never have to settle for flavorless food again! Asafoetida powder mimics the taste of garlic and onion (personally I think it’s more like onion) when cooked. Beware of the smell in it’s raw form though: it didn’t get its nickname “Devil’s Dung” by accident. Make sure to store it in an airtight container, ’cause it really stinks.
Since it is such a strong spice (and quite expensive in its pure form), most places dilute it with a filler, so make sure you don’t get one mixed with something you can’t tolerate.
I got mine from My Spice Sage, which uses rice four and gum arabic.
Our good friend TinyTornado (below) has pointed out that My Spice Sage’s product now has white flour in it. Here is an organic version that has no added ingredients!
You really only need a very very small amount when cooking, otherwise it will overwhelm your dish.
Not only is this spice a safe alternative to garlic and onion, it actually helps your digestion and is used in many places to reduce flatulence. Bring on the Devil’s Dung!!!