Gluten free Venezuelan pancakes

Gluten free sign at the Venezuelan pancakes stall

Gluten free sign at the Venezuelan pancakes stall

Are you familiar with Venezuelan food? I wasn’t at all when I found these guys in the Boiler House Food Hall at the Truman Brewery.

Gluten free Venezuelan pancake stall

Gluten free Venezuelan pancake stall

I was in there just looking for some veg and rice when these guys caught my eye with my favourite words ‘gluten free’. They do cornbread in large pancake and smaller Scotch pancake type styles with various fillings. Of course I went for the large pancake style.

Gluten free Venezuelan pancakes

Gluten free Venezuelan pancakes

I had my pancake with shredded chicken, black beans, salad and plantain. The pancake has a sweet taste from the corn. It’s quite light and not too difficult to cut one handed with a plastic fork which is handy for standing in the market.

Gluten free Venezuelan corn pancake

I tell myself I’ll try the smaller Scotch pancake style next time but I probably won’t as my belly is definitely bigger than my eyes.

The Boiler House Food Hall is open every Saturday and Sunday.
www.boilerhouse-foodhall.co.uk

The Old Truman Brewery
152 Brick Lane, E1 6RU London

Gluten Free Living in Shrewsbury

Gluten Free Living in Shrewsbury

Gluten Free Living in Shrewsbury

Do you even bother looking for food in old style market halls? Usually they’re old fashioned affairs that haven’t changed in decades. You can buy meat from the butchers, elbow patches from the sewing shop and tucked in the corner there’ll be a greasy spoon.

That’s what I was expecting when I visited the market hall at Shrewsbury. What I found was very different. Yes the market has many traditional stalls but it also has an art gallery, seafood bar, cruelty free cosmetics store, a funky cafe and (wait for it) a gluten free shop. Yes an entire shop dedicated to gluten free products. Unfortunately, as you can see, it was closed on the day I visited.

According to their website the owner of Gluten Free Living started the shop to provide more choices for coeliacs like her daughter. The shop covers all the basic everyday items as well as cakes and treats. They stock lots of mixes from bread to Yorkshire pudding and pakoras and a wide range of frozen foods from ready meals to pork sausages, pies and cheesecakes. They also have a selection of homemade cakes everyday.

From what I could see through the bars Gluten Free Living is well worth a visit and I’ll definitely be stopping in next time I’m in the area. For you lucky people who live in Shropshire you can also take advantage of their delivery service.

Visit them online at www.glutenfreelivingshrewsbury.co.uk

If you’ve visited Gluten Free Living I’d love to know what you thought of it.

Gluten free fish and chip Tuesday’s in Brockley, London

Gluten free fish and chips from Brockleys Rock

Gluten free fish and chips from Brockleys Rock

Last Tuesday I tried gluten free fish and chips from Brockley’s Rock.

I had a massive battered cod with chips and mushy peas. You can compare and contrast the gluten free with a regular fish and chips in the pictures. The gluten free version was a bit paler but apart from that they looked the same.

Brockley's Rock regular fish and chips (not gluten free)

Brockley's Rock regular fish and chips (not gluten free)

The verdict: it was okay. However I must qualify that by saying I never really fancy fish and chips on a weekday but understandably Brockley’s Rock only does gluten free on a Tuesday. It’s all the years of conditioning as a child that have made think of it more as a weekend treat. Also I remember what real batter tastes like. For me gluten free batter just isn’t the same, it’s too light and you don’t get that gooey uncooked bit between the crispy shell and the fish. That being said I’m going to try it again when I’m more in the mood. Interestingly though I discovered Brockley’s Rock do grilled fish and chips so that could well become my usual.

Keep up to date with Brockley’s Rock at www.brockleysrock.co.uk

 

Eating out – gluten free lunch in Oxford

Mortons polenta cake

Mortons polenta cake

Gluten free lunch seems to be more difficult to get hold of than dinner. I think that’s because us Brits rely a lot on sandwiches, pasties and pies. I usually stick to jacket potatoes but it does get a little boring. When I found a gluten free sandwich at Morton’s in Oxford I snapped it up.

Morton’s is a little chain of made to order sandwich shops in Oxford. At their cafe in New Inn Hall Street they’ve been trialling gluten free sandwiches. All of their fillings are available on a gluten free bread giving you a wide choice. The bread is decent too, I think it might be Genius bread (it looks and tastes like it to me). They do breakfast their too so you could have yourself a wheat free bacon butty to start the day.

For afters there’s also polenta cake which seems to have become a popular gluten free option although I find it a bit dull. I think it could be seriously improved with some buttercream but then most things could.

You can follow Mortons on Twitter @MortonsofOxford

In search of fresh wheat and gluten free at Brockley Market

Brockley Market

Brockley Market

Farmers markets are a mixed bag when it comes to wheat free and gluten free foods. Often there’s lots of delicious food to tempt your taste buds but not a lot that’s compatible with a wheat or gluten free diet. When I first arrived at Brockley Market I thought that might be the case but I was wrong. In amongst the burgers, real ham sandwiches and veggies (edible but too healthy to be alluring) I found a few gems.

Gluten free Victoria sponge from the Free From Bakehouse

Gluten free Victoria sponge from the Free From Bakehouse

The first stall that caught my eye was The Free From Bakehouse (FFB). I’ve wolfed a few treats from FFB before at Borough Market. They do lots of sweet treats as well as savoury tarts and muffins. As well as being gluten and wheat free they also have options for dairy free, sugar free and egg free diets. You may have seen the photo I posted of the empty wrapper from a red velvet cake. I’d scoffed the cake before I’d even thought about blogging. Well this time was no exception.

While I was there I chomped a mouth sized mini tiramisu cupcake (sorry no photos) and bought slices of Victoria sponge cake to take home. The tiramisu was good but not as good as the red velvet but I’m not a great coffee lover. I also found the Victoria sponge a little disappointing despite it being light and moist. That was down to the fact I hadn’t noticed it had sugar on top when I bought it and I have an aversion to sugar sprinkled on cake (icing sugar being the exception). As my boyfriend pointed out (afterwards) I should have just cut the top off the cake.  He doesn’t have an aversion to crunchy sugar bits and thought it was yummy. Great praise indeed as he’s a wheat eater.

Wheat free multi grain loaf

Wheat free multi grain loaf

My next discovery was a bread stall with not one but multiple wheat free options: sourdough rye, spelt and wheat free multi grain. I didn’t notice any gluten free options but that could be because my eyes were on the intriguing looking President’s rye loaf with figs and barley.

I tried the wheat free multi grain which to me tasted like the old Terence Stamp bread (weirdly the loaf had ‘stamp’ stamped on the side). It wasn’t really my cup of tea but my boyfriend liked it. However I found the President’s loaf much more successful. It looks like a malt loaf but is more like bread with a sprinkling of dried fruit. It tasted healthy and fruity at the same time. I liked it with butter and next time I might try it as a sandwich, maybe with a sweet/savoury filling like coronation chicken.

Wheat free Presidents loaf

Wheat free Presidents loaf

On the same row as the bread stall I came across The Honest Carrot, an organic, vegetarian and vegan stall selling falafel and veggie balls. Both the falafel and some of the veggie balls are gluten free so I tried both.

Wheat and Gluten free veggie balls by The Honest Carrot

Gluten free veggie balls by The Honest Carrot

I went for the beetroot variety of veggie ball which includes potato, carrot, apple and gluten free cornflakes. (Don’t worry you can’t taste the cornflakes.) I took them home and heated them up in the oven and had them for lunch with a dollop of humous. I felt all healthy as I was eating it as I was getting a good chunk of my five a day. The falafel were also tasty and I’ll definitely have them again.

If you live outside of London there’s no need to miss out as The Honest Carrot has online ordering. Online they also have gluten free carrot burgers and gluten free flowerpot bread with sun-dried tomatoes which I’ll be trying out soon.

It was a good morning’s hall with more left to investigate next time.

Keep up to date with Brockley Market on their website www.brockleymarket.com

Healthy Gluten Free Treats at Spitalfields Market

Looking for healthy, raw, organic (and tasty) wheat and gluten free food in London? Then Rainforest Creations ticks all your boxes.

I found this food gem at Spitalfields Market, London. It’s a colourful stall that’s tasty on the eye as well as the palate. The menu includes the Rainforest Box – your choice of salads from a range including Tropical Coleslaw, Caribbean Sunrise, Angel Kale & Avocado and Red Quinoa. There are egg free and flour free Caribbean and Spinach flans too. Almost everything is wheat free and gluten free apart form the roti wrap.

Gluten free mango and banana cake by Rainforest Creations

Mango and banana cake by Rainforest Creations

Even the sweets and cakes are gluten free friendly, healthy and tasty. So tasty I keep setting out to try the savoury food and getting pumpkin and coconut squares (delicious as an afternoon snack) and mango & banana cake instead. I think it’s because I can’t believe fruit, nuts and vegetables could taste so good.

Another brilliant thing about Rainforest Creations is that they list all their ingredients on their website so there’s no question marks about what you’re eating. They even tell you approximately how long your goodies will stay good to eat after you’ve bought them. And they do catering! Can you imagine an event where you could eat the whole menu?

If you’d like to try Rainforest Creations for yourself you can catch them here -

Hammersmith, Lyric Square, Kings Street, London W6 – Thursdays 9am – 3pm
Chelsea Market, Duke of York Square, Kings Road, London SW3 – Saturdays 9am – 3pm
Old SpitalFields Market, London E1 – Sunday 9am – 5pm

www.rainforestcreations.co.uk

Gluten Free Red Velvet Cup Cakes at Borough Market

Borough Market Red Velvet Cupcake

Borough Market Gluten Free Red Velvet Cupcake

There’s a wheat and gluten free stall at London’s famous Borough Market that blows my mind. It’s full of tempting cakes and sweet treats. I have been known to visit it two days in a row (which to my embarrassment was noticed by the stall holder).

Above are the remains of a red velvet cupcake I bought there. I’ve never had wheaty red velvet cake so I can’t compare. All I know is the gluten free red velvet cake was so fantastic I’d scoffed the lot before I even thought about taking a picture. One day I’ll show a bit of restraint and take some picks of the actual cake (maybe, I’m not promising).

Gluten Free Chocolate Cookies

Doves Farm Cocoa Crunch Cookies

Doves Farm Cocoa Crunch Cookies

 

I thought I’d hit the jackpot when I found these in Wholefoods London. A wheat and gluten free, fair trade chocolate biscuit is a rare thing indeed. I was disappointed. Turns out these biscuits suffer from the same affliction as many other wheat and gluten free biscuits, they’re dry. You can improve them with a bit of added moisture. So if you’re going to give them a go you’ll want to have a cup of tea close by for dunking.

Why We Still Need To Share Our Wheat And Gluten Free Finds

When I stopped blogging back in [insert cough] it looked like things were getting a lot better. Genius bread had arrived along with a new dawn of products that didn’t taste hideous. My local Italian had even started serving gluten free pasta and I could buy a wheat free sandwich from my local sandwich bar. I thought my gluten and wheat free blogging days were over.

Things haven’t developed as fast as I’d hoped. The high street chains dabbled in wheat free sandwiches for a while but went on to abandon them. (Probably due to poor sales as funnily enough people who don’t eat wheat bread don’t spontaneously look in the sandwich section.) My local sandwich bar abandoned spelt bread (probably due to the ‘wheat eaters’ not knowing what it meant). And Oatibix disappeared (it’s back now but it doesn’t taste the same).Even in the places that do offer gluten free choices you often need to know the secret handshake to get a hold of the gluten free menu. (It does get tiresome having to ask all the time.) And lets face it some of the gluten and wheat free products out there are still pants. So I’m back to share with you my gluten and wheat free finds. If you have any yourselves please do spill.

 

Gluten Free Goujons

Gluten and Wheat Free Chicken Goujons

Gluten and Wheat Free Chicken Goujons

Easy recipe for making gluten and wheat free goujons at home.

When I’m feeling down in the dumps my boyfriend treats me to his special home made wheat free, gluten free chicken goujons. They’re really easy to make, although I pretend I don’t know how :-)

Dip pieces of raw chicken into egg and then into wheat free, gluten free flour or bread mix then shallow fry it in oil until golden brown. Bread mix works really well as it has a good flavour. Try a bread mix with seeds in it for added crunch.  If you have flour left over at the end mix it with the egg that’s left to make a dough. Then fry the dough to make a bread ball. I like mine served with guacamole.

You could try other meats and fish too.

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