Life is sometimes capricious. With that naturalness that has made her famous, Paula Monreal, better known as Paufeel, tells how nine years ago she was diagnosed with gluten intolerance. To her, that her father had a flour factory and that he enjoyed it with the bread, the buns and the very juicy lasagna with her béchamel. “The world is falling on you because you can’t conceive of eating gluten-free. But since I had no choice and I already liked cooking, I dedicated myself to creating my own recipes.”

And not just for baking your own gluten-free bread. Soon many more arrived. Then came the pandemic and the craze for cooking at home. Paula had just finished a master’s degree in digital marketing and saw possibilities on the networks to make her way with delicious and simple recipes. Paufeel (@paufeel on Instagram) was born. Today he has almost two million followers and a mantra that he explains very clearly on his website: ‘What enters your mouth determines how long you live and your quality of life.’

Very elaborate cuisine is magnificent when we see it in the kitchens of great chefs. “I love that complexity when I dine at a restaurant, but at home I keep it simple. I propose recipes with few ingredients and easy to cook, but always with quality and healthy products,” she tells Lidia Torrent. And that is the key to its success: its overflowing ability to create delicious (and very photogenic) dishes with just four ingredients, one of those that are never lacking in good Mediterranean cuisine, such as tomatoes, potatoes, vegetables or cheese.

When you hear that ‘I don’t have time to cook’ or ‘healthy food barely has any flavor’ you think that you have to dare to innovate. That in the kitchen, anything goes, everything can be fixed and everything can be savored if the raw materials are good. As a good cook, Paula goes through life with all five senses pending to capture ideas to bring to the kitchen. “I dream about recipes. Some are my inventions, but others are sent to me by my followers. I even make reinterpretations of traditional dishes, like a stew,” she explains. Other times she takes it upon herself to cook with famous chefs. Then she comes home and thinks “what if I change this or that, I’m sure I’ll get something delicious.” And she is not wrong.

Gluten is a protein that provides elasticity to bread. It is also responsible for the juiciness of a lasagna with its bechamel. “When you take away gluten, cheese comes to give you joy because it provides those textures that remind us of the creaminess of béchamel. Not to mention the rich flavor it gives to any dish. I would tell you that there is no recipe that cheese does not improve. Today we are going to make a recipe with egg and potatoes that could go without cheese, but you add a slice of cheese and it becomes a delicacy,” he says.

Talking about cheese is opening up a huge range of possibilities to eat something different every day without headaches. “I love spreads in the morning on toast with jam. I also use them to make cheesecake. And what would gratins be without a good grated cheese! As for sliced ​​cheeses, my favorite is Havarti.”

Eating healthy doesn’t have to mean eating appetizing. In fact, it has to be appetizing, colorful, smell delicious and that you can’t resist sinking your teeth into. Faced with the lack of time during the week, Paufeel advocates batch cooking, that Anglo-Saxon term for dedicating a couple of hours a week to preparing meals for the next seven days. “I do it on Sundays and it gives me enough preparations for the whole week. I prepare something grilled, because I accompany it with some baked vegetables on Sunday and they are so delicious,” notes the influencer.

Their other tactic is to use basic recipes, but with a touch of imagination. The kind that you open the fridge, cut, season and prepare in ten minutes. One of its classics is a cross between scrambled egg with vegetables and cheese, and the traditional potato omelet. It has sliced ​​potatoes, a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil, arugula, a couple of slices of tomato and a slice of Havarti cheese. “When you are gluten intolerant you have no choice but to read the labels carefully to eat clean. You then discover that many products contain a lot of preservatives, flavor enhancers… Arla’s Havarti only has the four ingredients it should have: pasteurized milk, lactic ferments, rennet and salt,” he explains while turning his omelet with a mastery worthy of a professional.

Before enjoying your culinary creation, Lidia Torrent points out that to further round out the mindful eating experience, it is best to plate it on a pretty plate. And, of course, forget about your cell phone, focus on the present moment and, of course, use all five senses to enjoy each bite. Because eating delicious and healthy is always a great pleasure.