Gluten free at Eric’s Fish and Chips on the North Norfolk coast

Last weekend we were up on the Norfolk coast and as always the sun was shining. This gave us the perfect excuse to go and try out a newly opened Fish and Chip restaurant and take away in Thornham next to the lovely Drove Orchards.

IMG_6295

The restaurant is set next to the Drove orchards farm shop and fields of strawberry plants ready for the pick your own season and wild flowers, a gorgeous setting.

 

IMG_6305

 

IMG_6304

The restaurant and take away is a new venture from Head Chef Eric Snaith of Titchwell Manor just along the coast road at the pretty village of Titchwell . Eric had the idea to open a Fish and Chip restaurant, something that he felt was very much lacking from the North Norfolk coast and one that would  be a contrast from the fine dining and informal dining of the Hotel.

We decided to pop along for a very late lunch and received a very warm welcome from Manager Kayleigh Roe.  The restaurant itself has a contemporary retro feel with coloured tiles, retro light fittings and bright yellow tables.

 

IMG_6287

The restaurant felt very clean and bright and had a very cool feel with great music adding to the atmosphere.

 

IMG_6288

After studying the menu on a large retro style pin board I decided on the gluten free haddock and chips and my husband choose Cod and chips with mushy peas. I was very careful to explain that I had Coeliac disease and would require gluten free. Kayleigh was most helpful and reasurring and offered me either to have it cooked in beef dripping or rapeseed oil. She double checked with the Chef and the beef dripping was free from cross contamination so I choose that. I think if I have any comment is that I would prefer to see a dedicated fryer that was only ever used for gluten free products or chips. This would just help to avoid any cross contamination. This of course may already be the case. The gluten free batter is also yeast free.

 

IMG_6286

 

IMG_6290

The delicious fish and chips arrived to our table very promptly. My batter was much lighter in colour than my husbands gluten version ( I think mine looked the best ! )

IMG_6297

I have to say the mushy peas looked delicious and I wish I had ordered a portion too. I’m sure the majority of people, take eating fish and chips out very much for granted but when you are intolerant to gluten it is a very different experience. Fortunately more and more Chippy’s are getting on board and offering a safe gluten free version for Coeliacs and those who are gluten intolerant.

 

IMG_6298

Back to the amazing crispy light battered haddock! It was perfect, not overly greasy and in a beautifully crisp light batter with moist fresh haddock inside. The chips were also very good and plenty of them, I couldn’t finish all of mine. My husband enjoyed his cod, chips and mushy peas too and was even more thrilled that we had found another restaurant where I could eat at safely.

Fish and Chips costs £9.50 to eat in.

haddock & chips is £5.50 and cod and chips is £6.50 to takeaway

Both my sons and other halves have recently eaten at Eric’s Fish and chips and both ranked the meal very highly.

 

Eric's Fish & Chips takeaway menu

Eric’s Fish & Chips takeaway menu

It appears that I am not the only person that has enjoyed the gluten free Fish and Chips at Eric’s , here are just a couple of comments from the reviews online

“It was totes delicious, loved the gluten free batter”

“great gluten free fish and chips!!! will be back soon!”

 

IMG_6302

I am thrilled to have this new restaurant so close to our home and cannot wait to visit again very soon.

Follow

@EricsFandC – Twitter

EricsFishandChips – Facebook

ericsfishandchips.com

IMG_6289

find out more about  Drove orchard < here

My first visit to Honest Burger , Soho

The majority of people can eat out without any worries, but when you have a multitude of food intolerances and Coeliac disease, eating out is quite a different thing!

We were treating ourselves to a matinee in London which meant being in London for lunch. Twitter is a great source of information on free from and gluten free friendly restaurants and I had lots of good ideas. Hummus Bros being one of them, this will definitely be the next place to try as they can accommodate gluten free and other intolerances and dietary requirements.

 

IMG_5322

Matilda the musical  10/10 

 

Honest Burger has been on my list of must tries for a while and after tweeting Tom@honestburgers and checking about whether onion or garlic were used in the burgers, I was happy to give it a go. Being intolerant to onion and garlic is hugely annoying as it is hidden in most meals.

 

IMG_5319

As we were in Seven dials we chose to go to Honest Burger in Soho 4a Meard street. A little restaurant in a quiet street with outside seating for the hardy.

The waitress was very welcoming and found us a table for two, we were quickly given our drinks and had time to check over the menu and black board.

 

IMG_5318

I gave the waitress my card explaining all my food intolerances and highlighted the gluten intolerance. This card has become invaluable and also has my blog and twitter details on it.

The Waitress was most helpful and I chose a plain burger with cheddar cheese on salad instead of a bun. Gluten free burgers are available at a £1 extra charge sadly I am yeast intolerant and avoiding all grains so I gave this a miss. My husband chose a honest burger with the delicious looking brioche style bun ( not jealous at all ) both came with an order of rosemary chips.

The great thing about a small restaurant with a limited but amazing menu is that the food arrives very quickly. Served in white enamel plates, a cool touch I thought. The burger is served medium unless you request otherwise and My burger sat on a bed of shredded lettuce and a good size piece of cheddar cheese melted on top topped off with a good size portion of rosemary chips which are also gluten free. When my meal arrived the waitress said “now this is one we’ve been super careful with!” Its very reassuring when staff take you seriously about intolerances both ladies that served us were very keen to make my visit a relaxed one. A lovely touch

 

IMG_5316

Now, the burger! its probably no surprise to discover that it tasted incredible, no exaggeration . Good quality beef cooked well and not messed with, perfect! A good amount of salad and very delicious chips. Tough as it was, I only ate a few as I am trying to avoid white potatoes. They were some of the best I’ve tasted, crispy small and with a lovely flavour.

My husband loved his burger and bun as was thrilled that Honest burger could now be added to our small ‘can eat‘ list of restaurants . Honest burger is already a big favourite with my grown up boys now we will be able to eat there together.

Our meal came to approximately £23  including water and a Honest pale ale

Thrilled to have a new safe restaurant to eat at, thank you Honest Burgers!

Restaurant locations –

Brixton

Soho

Camden

Portobello

Kings Cross

Oxford circus

Tooting

Liverpool street

Clapham

Follow on Twitter here > Tom  @honestburgers

I have returned to Honest Burger many times since writing this post and always had a delicious safe meal.

 

Happy Christmas from Fabulously Free From

I’m having one of those panic days before Christmas when I wonder if I have enough food to feed everyone over the next few festive days. This job is made all the more difficult as our home is 100% gluten free. In the last two days I have baked grain free mince pies, gluten free bagels, florentines and a cherry cake. All gluten free to feed twelve over Christmas.

IMG_4803IMG_4813

What a year it has been ! I was diagnosed with Crohns disease earlier this year and it has been a year of learning about healthy eating and finding out about special diets that help to keep inflammatory bowel disease at bay. This certainly has been my healthiest year in memory with far less ‘Bad days’ .

IMG_3271

Making the decision to have a gluten free home has made a huge difference to my life and now I rarely have glutening symptoms unless I eat out. I feel that I have far more energy and avoiding grains and cows milk seems to have played a big part in this. I have been following the Specific carbohydrate diet which has been a real learning curve. I don’t stick to it quite so carefully at the moment but once Christmas is over I will get back to eating as well as I can.

IMG_4005

It was lovely this year to make the short list for Free from Food Blogger and I was thrilled to come second. Many thanks to all who voted.

IMG_3860

Best wishes and many thanks to all my readers for your lovely comments and continued support in 2014.

Have a fabulous free from Christmas and a healthy 2015!

My gluten free dining experience in Dubai

 

On the 19th November we flew with Emirates to Dubai for a few days of sunshine and to go and watch the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix. The final race of the season.

DSC_0224

Opposite the pit lane and Red Bull garage

 

DSC_0297

We had been to Dubai earlier in the year so I was confident that I would be able to eat well with my selection of food intolerances. I had done quite a lot of  research on Twitter and Google and found a couple of places that I really wanted to eat at The Cycle Bistro which is Paleo and gluten free and Omnia Gourmet which offered a choice of gluten free desserts.

This time we stayed on The Palm Jumeirah at the Jumeirah Zabeel Saray

Zabeel Saray

Zabeel Saray

This worked out cheaper than staying at Jumeirah Mina A’Salam where we have stayed in the past ( also great for gluten free ). My husband emailed the Food and Beverage manager before we arrived to make him aware of my dietary needs. This was clearly written on the booking form of every restaurant that we booked. I also took my business cards which I handed to ever chef. This listed all my intolerances clearly.

Our view

Our view

Zabeel Saray is a gorgeous palace style hotel on The Jumeirah Palm with a selection of different styles of restaurants on site and many more on The Palm. Breakfasts are buffet style, no good for coeliacs due to the threat of cross contamination but at Jumeirah hotel group this isn’t a problem. The Hotels are happy to send out a Chef to speak to you and make your breakfast separately. Most days I ordered a omelette with either cheese or veggies with pork bacon.

DSC_0255

Boiled eggs are available from the buffet in their shells and fried eggs can be made by the Chef. I did have sliced fresh fruit from the buffet as it was on a stand alone table away from contamination.

IMG_4464

I didn’t trust the cheese table as the utensils were open to be used for other things. Cheese was available from the Chef. Don’t be afraid to ask as you are paying the same price as the other guests! Gluten free bread was available on request, I don’t eat this as I’m yeast intolerant so I cannot comment on its quality.

Lunches are available at most of the restaurants, once again I asked to speak to a Chef who would go over in person choices etc. There was a mistake once with a fruit vinegar dressing but I spotted it straight away and it was quickly sorted.

Evening meals were sensational the newly opened Rib Room was perfect for gluten free eating. Chef Anjan Kumar really went the extra mile at every meal. We visited here 3 times because we were looked after so well. I can recommend the grass fed steak. The Chef was happy to make me duck fat gluten free chips and on our last visit sent out some complimentary ones. The first evening we were there it was a special press night, as The Rib Room had only been open for a week.

 

IMG_4245

We also visited the Turkish restaurant, the Lebanese restaurant in the hotel and the Sultans lounge. There wasn’t a huge choice for me as I am intolerant to yeast, onion and garlic. But what I had was delicious including grilled sea bass, hullomi with grilled aubergine or cucumber and tomato , hummus and whole grilled prawns. Grilled chicken salad and lobster salad. Once again the Chef came out to go through the menu and help me decided what to choose.

DSC_0258

IMG_4431

The Cycle Bistro was somewhere I was very excited to visit. I had started to follow them on Twitter and Facebook and had been e-mailing the Chef. It is situated in Motor City an area of Dubai quite a drive from our hotel on The Palm. But worth the visit!

The Cycle bistro

The Cycle bistro

We went three times in a week. The paleo breakfasts were delicious and I felt very relaxed eating there.

DSC_0019

The staff were very friendly and we were made very welcome.

IMG_4260

 

 

DSC_0016

My breakfasts arrived with salad and avocado . Yummy scrambled eggs with smoked salmon or bacon and my husband chose the steak and eggs which looked incredible. Such a huge choice of food including grain free pancakes, smoothies etc. With the added benefit of being much cheaper than a Hotel breakfast.

DSC_0199

DSC_0196

Chef Chris Zerbe the brains behind this venture was friendly and very helpful, making sure I had a grain free packed lunch for both days that we attended the Grand Prix in Abu Dhabi. My top tip- is to pack a soft cool bag and ice packs and ask your hotel to freeze them daily. Our hotel was happy to do this ensuring my lunch stayed cold on our journey. Try the sweet potato fries they are delicious any time of the day!

My packed lunch was an amazing grilled chicken grain free wrap with avocado and a side salad of mixed leaves and tomatoes.

IMG_4379

We also took some of Chef Chris’s paleo bars which were delicious and filling. This was the perfect lunch  to have at what was a very ‘gluten filled’ Grand Prix circuit.

DSC_0020

We went with a package with Red Bull as they had the best price package for the 4 days + garage tour and meet and greet with drivers in the Paddock club.

 

DSC_0122

Wedged between our two Abu Dhabi Grand Prix days was Saturday. We booked in advance to eat at Omnia Gourmet a restaurant at the fishing harbour Dubai , glad of the app on our phone we made our way in our hire car to the other end of Dubai a 45min trip. We were shown to an outside table looking out at the harbour.

DSC_0182

I’m sure the view of the harbour looks particularly beautiful in the day. Our waiter was very helpful and immediately offered to bring out the chef. Chef Curtis was from Leeds, England and went through the menu suggesting  how he could make me a meal avoiding all my intolerances . The menu contained a great deal of onion and garlic. Our starters were stunning Chef made me a starter portion of zucchini Linguini  with avocado pesto and cashew nuts it was a stunning starter. My husband was also blown away by his tuna nicoise salad the best he had ever had!

DSC_0173

 

DSC_0174

 

For my main course Chef Curtis invented a special meal for me of Sea bream with an array of tiny vegetables. Beautifully presented and tasted great.

DSC_0175

I knew desserts were going to be fab from all the instagram pictures I had seen from back in the UK. We agreed we should share three desserts ( well we had come along way! ) Paleo Love a chocolate, cashew and pistachio slice which was dairy and gluten free. Orange and Almond cake which was gluten free and a slice of  Pecan pie. Coffee and tea is also available with dairy free options I choose Coffee with almond milk.

DSC_0186

The desserts were so good we took two gluten free chocolate brownies back to the hotel for our packed lunches the next day.

Omnia Gourmet

Omnia Gourmet

The staff were all very friendly. The head waiter was Daniel who deserves a special mention as does Chef Curtis who went the extra mile to make our meals real show stoppers. More restaurants are in the pipeline including a fine dining restaurant and a burger restaurant. The head Chef Silvena Rowe was not at the restaurant on the night we visited which was a great shame, as I would loved to have met her. Maybe next time!

DSC_0185

I wish these two restaurants were in my local town in the UK I would eat there all the time!

The Abu Dhabi Grand Prix was something I will never forget and watching Lewis Hamilton win the championship made it extra special. We saw Jenson Button up close as our seats were directly behind position 6 on the grid looking on to the pit wall. We watched as he shock hands with the entire team before the race got underway, which seemed to show that he didn’t expect to be back next year, A great shame!

During our meet and greet with Red Bull we met Christian Horner, Jean Eric Verne and the ever smiley Daniel Ricciardo. We were able to look down on to the pits from the paddock club and watch the Sky team in action on practice day ( Friday )

IMG_4374

For winter sun and delicious gluten free and free from food I can thoroughly recommend Dubai. A beautiful 28c during the day cooling down in the evenings from about 5.30pm .

IMG_4449

 

Follow Omnia Gourmet on Instagram 

Follow The Cycle Bistro Twitter here

 

Blog post from the archives Gluten free Dining in Dubai January 2014 click here 

 

 

Pure Taste a new Paleo and gluten free restaurant in London

  • Unfortunately this restaurant has now closed 

Yesterday marked the beginning of an exciting new restaurant in London. A Paleolithic restaurant that is 100 % gluten free . The brain child of this exciting project is Holly Redman a nutritional therapist and chef  who started her dream with a pop up restaurant in Sussex . Due to its success Holly decided to take the brave step of searching for a property in London near good transport links where she could bring this paleo fine dining experience to more people. Many of us have been watching with great interest and excitement about this venture, so much so that we invested in her Kickstarter appeal and as part of that we were offered a launch meal for two when the restaurant opened.

 

IMG_4473

Well that day finally came yesterday when the doors of Pure Taste opened to the Kickstarter backers for the very first time. A party to celebrate this exciting project coming to reality for Holly and her team.

IMG_4484

Now they say location, location , location and this restaurant is really in the perfect position on Westbourne Grove. Amongst restaurants and some lovely shops an easy walk from Notting hill gate tube station.

A small ( from the outside ) restaurant opening up to a large dining area further back and a bar and then further seating downstairs. The large window looks through to smart lighting and small tables and beautiful art work and Pure Taste lettering on the wall as you enter.

 

IMG_4514

For our evening the room was arranged with two oblong tables and one circular one making for a social  dining experience. My guest for the evening was my dear friend Liz who kindly joined me, as my husband was away on business. Liz is following a low carb high fat diet and avoids gluten and strives to eat healthily avoiding refined sugar too, making her the perfect plus one.

 

IMG_4480

We were offered a glass of bubbly and chose seats near to the live music that would accompany our evening. A duo of spanish guitar and singer followed by a lady with a beautiful voice on guitar.

We were first served a canapé at the table. I had chosen the pumpkin falafel with tahini and lemon dressing. It was full of flavour and I could definitely of eaten quite a few of these! Liz opted for the canapé quail scotch egg which she said was delicious.

 

pumpkin seed falafel

pumpkin seed falafel

 

canapè quails egg

canapè quails egg

Next a pre starter an individual beetroot ‘raviloi’ with tarragon cashew cheese, yellow pepper sauce and pistachios served on a tiny plate. Again the flavours were sensational We had actually forgotten what was in this dish so we asked our waiter if he could go through the ingredients. Something I think is a nice touch at a fine dining restaurant.

 

beetroot ravioli

beetroot ravioli

For my starter I chose the pan fried wood pigeon breast with roasted beetroot, walnut and watercress. Probably something I wouldn’t normally chose on a menu but very glad I did. well presented and seasoned a lovely dish.

 

IMG_4490

Liz chose the chicken liver and bacon terrine, with rosemary plantain crackers and seasonal leaves. I have to say I was a wee bit jealous of this stunning starter. Unfortunately it contained chives and I wasn’t sure how I would react with them so avoided. I did however ask it I could try a rosemary plantain cracker and generously a tray of them came straight out to our table. Liz loved her starter, possibly her favourite course I think served with a glass of red wine it did look good!

 

IMG_4503

My main course I had pre ordered the oven roasted Loch Duart salmon with orange and coriander cauliflower pilaf. Mine came without the onion and garlic, I instead had an extra burst of fresh herbs, I added a little extra pink himalayan salt and pepper to mine which I felt it needed but otherwise the salmon was cooked to perfection and it was a very pretty plate of food. Liz chose the canon of venison, brussels sprouts with bacon and boulangère jerusalem artichokes and a red wine jus. This looked very good and I hear tasted very good too.

 

Salmon

Loch Duart Salmon

 

venison

canon of venison

For pre dessert everyone was given a small shot glass of mulled wine sorbet, there was mixed opinion on our table but Liz enjoyed her and said it was like Christmas in a glass. Sadly due to the wine content I could try the sorbet.

IMG_4510

For a while I was forgotten but eventually some delicious marshmallows covered in toasted almonds were brought out for me, which I was able to share with my guest. I wasn’t blown away by the taste of these but the texture was very good  and to have a different type of treat was nice, although I would have preferred a sorbet.

 

IMG_4511

Dessert always for me anyway is a disappointment when eating out as usually only offered a fruit platter and occasionally a fruit sorbet. Gluten free puddings in restaurants are almost non existent . But Not here! There was a choice of Chocolate tart with cacao nibs and goji berries and caramelised banana ice cream and dark chocolate lattice all dairy and gluten free of course. It doesn’t get much better than that. Also Clementine and almond cake warm winter fruit salad and vanilla cashew nut ice cream. Again gluten and dairy free. Both desserts were well presented, I opted for the chocolate tart and so we could try both Liz chose the cake. Neither of us were disappointed . Both preferring our own choice and both agreeing that the size of the portion was just too big for a fine dining experience. Seams a strange thing to say I mean who doesn’t want a large slice of chocolate tart ! It just was not balanced with the rest of the meal. Notwithstanding this the desserts were delicious and possibly one the best dessert I have eaten in a restaurant since being gluten free.

 

chocolate tart

chocolate tart

 

clementine and almond cake

clementine and almond cake

The meal finished with a plate of petit fours to share, little squares of hazelnut chocolate fudge and wait for it! Maple glazed donuts, yes really tiny bite sized treats which were delicious. If only I hadn’t eaten all that chocolate tart I may of had room for more than one. These were served with coffee or tea dairy free milk of course.

 

petit fours

petit fours

The evening was a great success, I’m sure a real learning experience for the waiting staff . I look forward to booking up again in a few months when the restaurant has been open for a while .

The menu I hear will constantly change ever couple of months with seasonal choices and new creations from Holly I’m sure.

A big thank you especially to Sharon who made us both feel very welcome and made sure my food intolerance’s were past on to Holly.

Congratulation Holly on making your dream a reality the food was delicious and inventive and I look forward to future visits to your Paleo fine dining restaurant. Thank you for the extra effort you went to with my meal it was much appreciated.

IMG_4514

If you live in London or can come down for a visit why not book up to eat at Pure Taste restaurant and see and taste for yourself this exciting and delicious food.

Pure Taste can be found at 115 Westbourne Grove London W24UP

You can book a table now here> Pure Taste < Open from 3rd December

Follow on Facebook 

and Twitter

and Instagram

The restaurant caters for Low FODMAP, Paleo, gluten free, dairy free, vegetarian, vegan, grain free, low carb etc

A fine dining experience for everyone!

> Menu <

Visit Website here Puretasterestaurant.com

 

 

I was not paid to do this review and was there as a Kickstarter backer,

photographs taken on camera phones by myself and Liz

 

Nominated for Free From Blogger 2014

I’m thrilled to have been nominated for Best Free From Blogger 2014. I have been shortlisted with 7 other bloggers.

 

IMG_4005

If you like what you read and enjoy the free from recipes and reviews. Please vote before the end of today  31st October . Many thanks to you all for your continued support.

There are also lots of great gluten free and free from products, restaurants etc to vote for. Do please have a look!

Helen

Fabulously Free From

 

click below

foodsyoucan.com Free From #FFPeopleschoiceAwards 2014

A Big Thank you to everyone who voted for me, I’m thrilled to say that I came 2nd.

Here is a list of all the Winners and runners up for 2014

Free from awards Peoples choice awards

 

Worthing’s newly opened gluten free Café and Bakery

Yesterday I drove down to the Sussex coastal town of Worthing. It was a beautiful warm sunny day for the 1st day of October, making it a very pleasant drive. Ably assisted by my Sat Nav , I located the cafe easily and parked just down the road in a small car park.

IMG_3599

The Sussex bread company cafe and bakery are on a busy road next to shops and language schools. It is also opposite Worthing Museum which helps to locate this new venture.

IMG_3581

Sussex bread company cafe and bakery opened its doors on Saturday, so this was only the morning of day 4! I was greeted warmly by Jane one of the owners and after a quick look around I was offered the table by the window to enjoy my freshly made coffee. Dairy alternatives are available lactose free milk or almond milk etc.

IMG_3580

Along with my coffee I decided on a savoury cheese and tomato muffin.

IMG_3584

This can be served cold or warm. I chose to have mine cold and it was delicious,  But next time I think I would have it warmed up.

IMG_3582

IMG_3585

The cafe and bakery is set in a really quirky building with lovely lighting and considering it has only been open a few days it is certainly really starting to come together. Its wooden floors and small wooden cafe tables and wire crates and flour bags give it a rustic feel . I also noticed how clean the cafe was, and although not a huge selection of food how well it was displayed. Bearing in mind this is the first week of opening, I imagine more choices will gradually be added.

IMG_3578

There was a good selection of quiches which can be taken away or eaten in with a green salad and coleslaw. Filled Firle Focaccia looked very inciting . Displayed on the stand were gluten free custard tarts, brioche and savoury muffins. Freshly made cheese straws were also on offer, they did look very delicious.

IMG_3579

Along with Anzac biscuits and chocolate meringues. I would love to see a second choice of biscuit maybe that doesn’t contain gluten free oats. Something I try and avoid. I think I could have been very easily tempted with a gluten free chocolate cookie or similar.

The fantastic thing is that the cafe and bakery are 100% gluten free No need for food to be covered or segregated to avoid gluten contamination. You can eat everything! I liked the fact that no big deal is made of the fact that everything is gluten free. It does mention it on the flyer by saying With love, not gluten. This hopefully will give Sussex bread company more of a chance of breaking into the cafe market.

 

IMG_3575

The bakery has been up and running awhile in Worthing serving the south east coast with fresh homemade gluten free bread. It has now moved to the premises here at the cafe meaning fresh artisan bread available every day except when the cafe is closed on a Sundays.

Hove organic flax and sunflower loaf an everyday seeded loaf,

Shoreham white Cob

and Firle Focaccia.

The Brighton is a mediterranean loaf available in two sizes but not available when I was there.

All named after places along the Sussex coast.

All these loaves can be ordered online from sussexbreadcompany  <click on the link 

So even if you are not within driving distance you can still sample this artisan gluten free bread.

As I am not able to have yeast I asked a number of gluten and gluten free friends and family to taste test the breads I had brought back.

The Firle Focaccia went down well “good flavour”  “lovely warm”  one thought it was ” a little dry and crumbly”  But a newly diagnosed gluten intolerant friend thought it was  “fragrant and aromatic with a nice consistency ”

IMG_3617

 

The Focaccia contains buckwheat,tapioca and rice flour. Free range eggs, olive oil, milk, psyllium husk, yeast, sugar, salt and rosemary.

IMG_3619

I hear it was very good with a good olive oil and balsamic vinegar!

This loaf was £3.90

The Shoreham Cob loaf had some good reviews too.

IMG_3609

“A good crunchy crust and toasts very nicely”

“the bread holds together well so its good for breakfast with peanut butter etc”  ” not too crumbly”

“preferred this toasted”   “had rather an odd smell, but tasted good with crispy crust ”

The Cob contains buckwheat, tapioca and rice flours , psyllium husks,olive oil, xanthum gum, yeast, sugar,salt, and vit c.

This loaf cost £3.20

IMG_3625

One of my reviewers made this yummy looking open salmon sandwich using the gluten free Cob loaf.

I froze the leftover bread in slices for easy use in the future. The bread doesn’t contain lots of additives so is best eaten straightaway or frozen. The Focaccia is best warmed with a sprinkle of water. I wrapped it in tin foil to avoid it drying out.

When I next pop down I hope to buy the Hove and the Brighton for family and friends to try.

 

IMG_3592

The cafe and bakery had a steady flow of people through the door while I was there. A great start

IMG_3595

 

If you are local to the Sussex area or holidaying on the Sussex coast do make a bee line for this cafe and bakery on Chapel road opposite Worthing Museum and just down the road from Connaught Theatre and cinema.

IMG_3596

Do spread the word to fellow Coeliacs, gluten intolerant family and friends or simply those who love a good cup of coffee and some good quality artisan bread and tasty treats.

In the short term remember to take cash as the till is not up and running yet.

IMG_3589

I look forward to visiting again in a few months to see how things have progressed . All the very best Sussex bread company in your new venture.

Follow on twitter @sussexbreadco

Facebook sussex bread company

Website   sussexbreadcompany.com < click here to take you to the website

IMG_3588

 

I was not paid to do this review and bought my own gluten free goodies to eat in and take home.

 

Winner of 2014 World Bread Award #glutenfree for their Bracklesham Brioche burger buns 

 

Sussex bread company online –

Bracklesham Brioche Buns 

IMG_9258

This month ( December 2015 ) I ordered 12 Bracklesham brioche buns for my nephews birthday party . They arrived on time , but one of the bags had split in transit. I think the bags need to be thicker. On lifting them out of the box I noticed how heavy they felt. The open bag didn’t seem to have had any adverse effect on the 6 rolls they were lovely and fresh.

Sadly once opened the Bracklesham Brioche buns were not the light brioche style rolls I was expecting. I still served them at the gluten free party of 12 adults, to go with pulled pork . They did not prove popular and were described as heavy , dense , crumbly and more like an english muffin and definitely not a brioche. I’m sorry to say I won’t be ordering them again. They were not cheap at £9 for 6

IMG_9274

Some family took the leftover buns home and used them like crumpets/english muffins toasting them and adding cheese. They said they were much better eaten like this.

Gluten free at Côte Restaurants

On Saturday we ate out for the first time in ages, sadly I had been glutened so often in the last year, I had almost given up on going out to eat.

We decided to re visit a restaurant that we had eaten at twice before with no problems. Côte Restaurants are all over the UK . We chose to visit the Blackheath restaurant, in a perfect location looking onto the heath and church. Nathan the manager was quick to welcome us. I explained I was gluten free and he immediately returned with a gluten free menu. This was new as I hadn’t been offered this before, good to see! especially as there was a good choice for me, including a selection of puddings.

Image

 

Image

I chose a Sirloin steak and frites with salad garnish as did my fellow diners. I cannot recommend the frites enough, they are really Very good, and cooked in a separate fryer.

Image

The food arrived quickly and my medium steak was perfect as were the frites. Sadly due to needing to make a quick get away to the theatre we couldn’t stay for a creme caramel. Maybe next time!

Image

Côte restaurants

My most recent visit to Côte Brasserie in London

My most recent visit to Côte Brasserie in London

* Côte restaurant and Brasserie is now my Go To place to eat gluten free. Since writing this blog post I have been many times .

Find your nearest Côte here

Côte restaurant now has a gluten free menu in all restaurants

My gluten free holiday experience in Thailand

We decided to treat ourselves to a winter sun holiday, As always I was slightly nervous about eating away from the safety of my own kitchen, due to having Coeliac disease and being extremely intolerant to even the tiniest amount of gluten . Additionally I am intolerant to yeast ( vinegar, wine, soy etc ) and onions. The thought of some winter sun was enough to persuade me.

DSC_0291

Mr S booked to stay at W Retreat hotel in Koh Samui I left it up to him to chose a hotel and location in Thailand. I looked forward to it all being a surprise, I wasn’t so much surprised as shocked when we arrived at 10pm at the hotel. Dark, flashing lights and loud music greeted us after a 6hr flight. I thought we had arrived at a night club. where had Mr S booked!

IMG_9579

IMG_9555

Sometimes its not good to make judgments immediately, especially after a long flight. The hotel looked very different in the day light, modern, trendy and very cool. Not what I was expecting from a Thailand hotel, but the longer we were there the more we both loved it.

DSC_0355

Our room was on the very highest level of the hotel complex, up a steep hill with 180 degree view of the coastline. Just amazing!

DSC_0262

DSC_0123

A quick phone call and a friendly member of staff driving a golf buggy would appear to take you to and from your room to the beach, bar etc or you could brave the hills and many stair cases on foot. Not a hotel for someone with mobility issues of any kind, as there are not lifts to ever floor of the hotel.

DSC_0202

IMG_9564

The bar area is situated on the top floor of the main hotel building, a DJ plays every evening here and the area takes on a club feel.

IMG_9553

IMG_9583

The next level down is the main restaurant The kitchen table. This is where we went for breakfast everyday, you can chose between a buffet breakfast with as you can imagine everything you could possibly want for breakfast from a very british bacon and eggs to Asian food. We chose to eat a la cart which works out cheaper if you are only eating omelettes bacon etc and fruit or yoghurt, with tea or coffee. I had some delicious breakfasts at W, very thankful I can eat eggs.

IMG_9528

Lunch and evening meals are also available at this restaurant which has a open balcony ,if you chose to eat alfresco. A good choice of European and Thai food is on offer. I was able to enjoy steak, fish, prawns etc with delicious vegetables with mash or rice. There were many things I couldn’t have, chips, deep fried food etc But I was very happy to have the selection of gluten free food. I would loved to have seen just one gluten free pudding!

DSC_0337

DSC_0166

The hotel has a food and drink Insider Sea Torres who is responsible for making sure your dining experience at the hotel is everything you hoped for. She made it her job to make sure she understood all of my intolerances and worked with the chefs and restaurant staff to make sure they understood my requirements. This made me feel very relaxed at meal times, something that rarely happens even in UK restaurants. Sea suggested we might like to do a cookery course with the chef.

DSC_0158

This turned out to be a great learning experience for both Chef Pepsi and ourselves. We made a ‘ free from’ thai green curry, chilli beef salad, coconut and chicken soup and sweet and sour prawns.

DSC_0150

During our stay at the hotel, Chef Pepsi invented a ‘free from’ Pad Thai and Thai veggie curry it was very nice to eat Thai food without worrying about becoming unwell.

IMG_9625

The hotel complex also had an infinity pool with sunbeds and bar.

DSC_0301

On a lower floor was the spa and gym. We enjoyed a couple of Thai massages and I also had a facial and manicure. Not cheap but, but similar to prices at home. Cheaper Thai massages were available on the beach at Chaweng just a short taxi ride away.

IMG_9730

The beach area was very quiet, and was made up of coarse sand containing crushed shells and coral in the sand. Chaweng beach a short drive away in the hotel shuttle bus has very fine sand but very busy.

DSC_0174

Towards the end of our stay we used the bar on the beach for lunch, unfortunately no gluten free food is available from the grill, but food can be ordered from the kitchen table which takes about 1/2 hr. I was able to enjoy some amazing salads.

DSC_0241

The food from at the restaurants was always very good, I can definitely recommend it as a place to eat safely with food intolerances. I suggest emailing ahead as we did.

IMG_9562

The signature restaurant at W Koh Samui is Namu a Japanese restaurant, located near the beach. We had 3 meals here and I was able to sample japanese food for the first time. The Sashima was very good. The Chef was very helpful and with the help of Sea , they suggested dishes I might like to try.

IMG_9653

The staff at W Retreat hotel were very friendly, many of the staff greeted us by name. I think I has become rather infamous! due to the food intolerances. But genuinely the Insiders and other members of staff really made our holiday in Koh Samui.

DSC_0229

A view of Chaweng beach

DSC_0227

High tide at Chaweng beach

The weather during our stay was mixed, the first few days were cloudy and windy but warm, gradually this improved and the final 6 days were sunny and warm with a more gentle breeze.

I took a business /intolerance card with me explaining all my food intolerances which seemed to be a great help to the restaurant staff. They stuck one up in both restaurants for my entire stay. English was spoken well by most of the Hotel staff so I had no need of a Food intolerance translation sheet on this holiday.

IMG_9615

W Retreat Koh Samui is part of Starwood Hotel group

Happy holidays!

‘free from’ Thai cookery course at W Retreat Koh Samui

Staying in Thailand we thought it would be the perfect opportunity to learn to make some Thai dishes. W Retreat Hotels Koh Samui offers a two hour cooking experience with the Chef at The Kitchen table. Having multiple food intolerances, gluten, yeast and onion made me assume that a cookery course would be impossible for me. But with the guidance of the Food and Drink Insider, Sea Torres and Chef Pepsi a selection of dishes were suggested that sounded amazing. A chicken and coconut milk soup, chilli beef salad, sweet and sour prawns and a thai green beef curry. I couldn’t wait!

We arrived at 1pm ready to begin our course, we received a warm welcome from Sea and we were introduced to Chef Pepsi. Aprons, hats and blue gloves were provided, we looked ready for action.

DSC_0132

Firstly Chef Pepsi demonstrated the Thai green beef curry. A dish which I used to make before I knew I was intolerant to yeast and onions.

DSC_0155

To have the chance to learn from Chef to make an equally delicious tasting curry was really exciting. He had put thought into how he could create the dish so that we could both enjoy it.

Firstly he used a pestle and mortar to crush fresh lemongrass, green chilli,garlic clove, galangal ( a little like ginger but more peppery ) fresh coriander, cumin seeds, black pepper and shrimp paste ( It is fermented but didn’t seem to cause me any problems ) mashed anchovy fillets, I think would work as an alternative.

DSC_0154

He heated a deep frying pan and added 2-3 tbsp of vegetable oil. I would suggest using melted coconut oil as it is a much healthier alternative. He added the green curry paste stir briefly to release the fragrance,  beef strips were stir fried briefly before adding the coconut milk which was then simmered and bite sized cubes of egg plant and green pepper were added. He also added salt and palm sugar simmered the curry for about 8 minutes. Chef tasted the curry to check if it needed extra salt or sugar. We tasted the curry too, it was delicious. I couldn’t wait to make my own!

He served the thai curry in a bowl and garnished with fresh basil and slices of red chilli.

DSC_0143

Then it was our turn, we chose to have individual pans Mr S loves a competition . We were both very proud of our finished Thai green beef curry.

Chef Pepsi also demonstrated the soup, salad and sweet and sour prawns. We thoroughly enjoyed having a go at each of the dishes. Mr S’s sweet and sour prawns was a triumph. Unfortunately a yeast free version of this dish is tricky so my version left a little to be desired. I could not add the ketchup or sweet chilli sauce sadly which left me with tomato puree and lime juice. This dish still needs some work!

DSC_0151

Mine is the bowl on the right sadly.

The beef salad was nice and simple to make, as was the chicken, mushroom and coconut milk soup. I just had to leave out the mushrooms.

DSC_0159

The salad was delicious but very spicy so we were thankful for the soup.

DSC_0156

After making the dishes we sat down to eat our lovely Thai meal. A very interesting and fun couple of hours. We both look forward to recreating the dishes back in the UK.

DSC_0146

A big thank you to Pepsi for taking on the challenge of ‘free from’ Thai cooking. I think we all learnt something new that afternoon! If you are visiting W Retreat Hotels in Koh Samui and have food intolerances you can feel confident that Chef Pepsi and Sea will work with you to make your holiday dining experience a stress free one.

DSC_0158

Maybe you will challenge Chef Pepsi to come up with some more ‘free from’ dishes?

Taking part in the cookery lesson is a good way to get to know the Chefs you learn new dishes and they in turn learn more about your food intolerances, which will help during the rest of your stay. For example. today for lunch Pepsi kindly made me a gluten free, onion free, yeast free Pad Thai a new experience for him! an amazing treat for me.

Definitely worth emailing the hotel before you arrived to inform them of your dietary needs.

Follow them on twitter @wkohsamu