Gluten free Fish and Chips at the Snettisham Fish Bar, Norfolk

I thought it was about time I revisited the Snettisham Fish bar, A tiny chippy a short drive from me.

Image

A large poster on the door announces that the Fish bar is Coeliac and gluten intolerant friendly.  The owner is very knowledgeable too, we had a long chat while my fish and chips cooked about his visit to a trade show where he learnt about the need for separate equipment etc because of cross contamination he also showed me how he kept the gluten free batter mix separately from everything else.

The Gluten free Cod and chips was cooked in the chip fryer. Only used for frying chips.

Image

Not only can you have any choice of fish. You can also have scampi, prawns or sausages in the Glu-2-Go  batter.

I had chosen Cod and chips for my husband and I. The meal for two came to £10.40

Image

When I arrived home and unwrapped my Cod and chips it looked amazing, I really miss having the option to dive into a fish and chip shop at the seaside like everyone else. So when you find a chippy that is gluten free its very exciting.

Image

The chips were incredibly good, just what I had hoped for. Sadly something was not right with the batter this time, and instead of being lovely and crispy it was soft and just acted like a skin around the Cod. I was so disappointed as we have eaten from here once before and the batter had been beautifully crispy.

I will definitely pop by when I pass to let them know, and will give it another go soon.

Image

The Fish bar is in Alma road, Snettisham Norfolk . worth a visit when you are passing.

Hopefully the batter will be back to its crispy self soon!

Gluten and Dairy free, raspberry bakewell cake

I have been wanting to make a cake for a while using coconut oil and only a small amount of sugar. Lucy bee coconut oil kindly gave me one of there favourite recipes to try.

A raspberry bakewell cake which sounded delicious and was gluten and dairy free.

As soon as my coconut oil arrived from Natures health box I started baking.

IMG_7243

Image

I pre heated my fan oven to 160c and measured out my ingredients. Coconut oil, eggs, caster sugar, gluten free SR flour ( I use Doves ) ground almonds and flaked almonds and fresh raspberries.

Link to @lucybeecoconut and the Raspberry bakewell cake recipe here

Image

It was so simple I just had to combine all the ingredients and mix well.

Image

Make sure you melt the coconut oil before adding, I used the microwave about 20 seconds.

Image

When mixed well I spooned half the mixture into the bottom of my loose bottomed cake tin, then I added the raspberries and a final layer of cake mixture. Not easy , I had to use my fingers to spread it out as the mixture is very thick.

Image

Then I popped it in the hot oven for 50mins until golden brown.

Image

Using a loose bottom tin really helped, the cake came out with no problems.

Image

I added just a dusting of icing sugar on the top.

Image

I totalled up the cost of the cake, around £6.50. Not to bad considering the local free range eggs, fair trade organic raw coconut oil, and local raspberries

Organic raw Coconut oil is a good healthy oil, as opposed to things like vegetable oil and is much better for us. Hence why I wanted to start baking with it. I already use it in my Granola recipes and cook with it all the time. From scrambled eggs to roast sweet potato wedges which are delicious.

The Raspberry bakewell cake was a great success

Image

The cake rose far more than I expected and had quite a dense texture more like a pudding, we served ours with clotted cream but think it would work better with double cream or custard. The cake would serve between 8-10.

Image

Thanks @Lucybeecoconut for the recipe. Very delicious!

Gluten free Sponge cake at Holkham

Image

Today I decided to take a drive to Holkham Hall, thought it would be a great place to take the Dog for a walk.

Dogs need to be on lead at all times due the the many Deer in the parkland.

Image

My favourite place at Holkham is the Walled garden, so I decided to take a walk there. A golf buggy is also available to ferry you to the garden if you don’t fancy the walk.

Image

On the way you can see lots of happy pigs, sunbathing today!

Image

The Walled garden is currently being brought back to its former glory, already it looks amazing!

Image

Image

Image

Image

The vegetable garden was full of the most amazing veggies ready to be harvested.

Image

Image

After an enjoyable walk around the garden we headed back to Holkham cafe

Image

I was pleased to see a choice of gluten free goodies available. Brownies and cake slices from Honeybuns Bakery and Large slices of cake from Sponge. I  decided on a pot of tea and a huge slice of Apple crumble Sponge cake and a tiny carton of Rodda’s clotted cream very indulgent ! But essential for research purposes. Not being able to resist I bought a slice of Honeybuns bakery Almond moon. I’m saving this for a picnic later this week.

I was pleased to see a long line of freshly filled Dog bowls outside the cafe. Much appreciated by my four legged friend.

Image

Image

The Sponge cake was very delicious, if a little over sweet. Love the combination of apple and cinnamon, great texture too. think you would be hard pushed to tell the difference between this and a regular gluten filled sponge cake. The clotted cream went brilliantly with the cake, felt like I was having a cream tea. Pleased I could buy the cream separately from scones.

Image

The staff were helpful and friendly and informed me that they also served soup which was gluten free and usually dairy free too.

Will definitely try the soup next time I visit.

After over 2hrs in the sunshine I headed back along the coast with one very tired Dog.

Find more information on Holkham Hall here www.holkham.co.uk

For more information on  Sponge gluten free cakes Perfect for occasional treats.

Isabel’s naturally free from dough balls

Image

Thought i’d treat myself to some gluten free dough balls for lunch, So very easy to make. Easy to follow.

ImageJust added an egg, water and some good quality olive oil.

ImageI made 19 balls and popped them in a hot oven. 20 mins later

ImageImage

Perfect for sharing or keeping all to yourself.

isabel’s naturally free from

gluten free cake at Back to the Garden

ImageToday I decided to explore a little more of Norfolk, I had heard via Twitter about a Farm shop and restaurant near Holt.

Back to the Garden is in Letheringsett North Norfolk on the Fakenham road. Very easy to find.

Image

ImageThe Barn Cafe and Restaurant were very nice, set in a renovated threshing barn.

I loved the photographs on the walls, the restaurant felt very new. As well as the beautiful barn the restaurant and cafe also has a lovely garden where you can eat alfresco. A lovely sun trap too.

ImageI was excited to see what choices there would be for Coeliacs and gluten intolerant customers. I was pleased to see two choices of cakes. A orange and almond polenta cake and a lemon cake. I chose the lemon cake and a English breakfast tea. I would have preferred a caffeine free tea or camomile tea but neither was available. I wished I’d had more time to have a meal but will definitely return with the family to try it very soon.

ImageThe lemon gluten free cake was absolutely delicious and had a sharp lemon and sugary taste. A lovely treat!

I was pleased to see that the gluten free cakes were covered with glass display lids and that my waitress used a new separate knife to cut my cake slice.

Image

Next to the Barn restaurant is the amazing Farm shop possibly the best farm shop I have seen. Great to see so much local produce, organic vegetables, organic meat including gluten free sausages and beef burgers made on site by the farm shop’s butchers, who had good knowledge of cross contamination. There is also a Deli well stocked with wines and cheese. Brays cottage famous Pork pies and fresh bread for gluten eaters , and gluten free Muffins and cakes from Wow muffins, definitely worth trying.

Image

Image

ImageI will be returning to this farm shop and restaurant very soon. Definitely worth the drive!

 

 

 

 

gluten free four grain pancake mix from Hale and Hearty

Image

Today I thought I would give this mix a try. The pancake mix is from Hale and Hearty I found it very easy to make.

ImageJust add an egg, milk and oil, I used coconut oil.

Image

Image

Whisk into a smooth batter.

Image

 

pour into oiled frying pan, cooked until golden brown on both sides.

Image

I served mine with blueberries and a little maple syrup. The pancakes make a good alternative for breakfast. They can be savoury or sweet and are very filling.

 

Review of Honeybuns Bakery new Gorgeous gluten free cake mix

Image

Honeybuns Bakery kindly sent me their new cake mix to review. I love the packaging, the tube has a lovely 50’s feel to it. Right up my street!

Opening up the tube I found inside the bags of mixture and a sheet of cake ideas and baking tips, again very well presented.

Image

 

I was a little concern by the amount of ingredients in the tube, it didn’t really look enough but I was keen to see if I would be proved wrong. To the flour mix you need to add your own butter or dairy free choice and 2 eggs.

Image

 

You mix the two packets together in a large bowl, The flour combination of ground almonds, sorghum flour and golden ground flaxseed make for a very different texture  and appearance. I was getting more and more intrigued at how this cake would taste.

You then add the eggs and melted butter.

Image

Once mixed together it should form a batter. This is then poured or spooned into two greased 7″ cake tins. Unfortunately I only had 8″ tins so knew it would spread out more than intended. Although I would have thought an 8″ tin was more the norm! Considering the cost £4.99 not including butter or eggs , I think I would expect a larger size cake. But thats just my opinion. Image

The Dog waits patiently in front of the oven hoping to get some cake later. She didn’t!

Image

Sadly it was inevitable that my cake would be a little thin due to using the larger tin, I chose a traditional jam and butter cream filling, with a dusting of icing on the top. In retrospect I would use a less sweet filling next time. Possibly lemon curd as the cake itself is very sweet. Brown sugar is the first ingredient in the list coming higher than the three types of flour. 

Image

 

The finished cake!

Image

 

The sponge cake had a nice texture with a caramelised flavour. The cake colour is also different from your average cake mix or homemade sponge. Using ground almonds, sorghum and ground flaxseed sets this cake in a more luxury class. Making it a real treat cake for special occasions.

Image

 

I served this cake last night to my family, 6 of us. There was plenty to go around, The family liked the cake but commented that it was quite sweet, probably not helped by the filling I had added. They are also used to a much lower sugar cake that I make myself.

The cake had easy to follow instructions and for a store cupboard special treat it would work well. I think it would make a great gift too for a Coeliac or gluten intolerant friend.

Check out all the other delicious ready made gluten free sweet treats here from Honeybuns bakery

 

A visit to Wiveton Hall Cafe in a thunderstorm

On Friday I took a drive out to Wiveton Hall, a farm and gluten free friendly cafe. Situated on the North Norfolk coast road between Blakeney and Cley.

Unfortunately I seemed to follow a thunderstorm along the coast. The heavens opened and the sky lit up with flashes of lightning, but nothing was going to stop me getting to the gluten free cake!

Image

Wiveton hall is very much a working farm with pick your own. The farm also has a perfectly placed cafe with distant views out to the sea. Perfect on a dry day! The tables are surrounded by strawberry plants and raspberry bushes and guinea fowl wandering around. Pretty perfect!

Image

I particularly love the brightly coloured benches and tables inside and out. An idea I have pinched for my own garden.

ImageFortunately there is some cosy undercover seating with heaters, and a beautiful cafe inside.

As I taken the Dog I sat in the covered area outside.

Image

Firstly I popped inside to have a look at the huge array of cakes. , The cafe often I think, has a choice of gluten free cakes, today they only had one gluten free cake. But it was a chocolate and almond cake which looked divine! I checked with a member of staff if the cake had its own serving knife, which it did. He then went on to tell me that his Mum was also Coeliac which was reassuring to know he was aware of cross contamination. He went on to say that many Coeliacs ate at the cafe. Good to know!

Image

My Cake and Camomile tea arrived quickly and I wasn’t disappointed. A rich deep chocolatey pudding type cake, absolutely scrummy. Would have been even nicer with a dollop of thick cream.

The crockery is all Emma Bridgewater, a lovely touch. Not a cheap choice, but added to the overall appeal of the cafe.

Image

Check out there website here for more information wivetonhall.co.uk

The farm also has a good range of plants and I treated myself to some Sea Lavender for my garden.

Image

Even in a thunderstorm Wiveton Hall is a great place to visit. I hear the Tapas nights are very good. Booking is advisable for All meals, as this is a popular venue.

Sandringham Flower Show and gluten free picnic.

Today was my first visit to the Sandringham flower show in the grounds of the Queens ‘holiday home’ in Norfolk.

Knowing there would be very little that I would be able to eat there, I baked a loaf of Sukrin sunflower and pumpkin seed bread, which is gluten and yeast free.

Image

The bread slices beautifully and is very like a good seeded regular loaf. I would say almost better than regular gluten filled bread. Sadly just more expensive!

I made some yummy egg sandwiches and cheese and tomato ones, A real treat when you never normally eat bread.

I was accompanied by my Mum and we headed off early to avoid the crowds. Parking was easy and free. We were directed to one of Sandringhams large fields. Making sure we made note of where abouts we were parked we set off for the small gardens.

ImageSew and Sow was a small garden by Emily Louisa Smith

Image

Fancy a stroll? by Tamara Bridge

Image

Modern tranquility by Fakenham garden centre Landscape and design.

Image

Art, Cities and Landscape BY Sarah Moore, Borough council of Kings Lynn.

We moved on to the Large show gardens, fortunately the sun was still shining and the crowds had not  built up.

Image

Love every drop by John Farley

To raise awareness of how important water is.

Image

A large Gunnera plant was used as a centre piece next to the fountain which hit the leaves before disappearing into the gravel.

Image

Rural Norfolk by Linda and Ralph Nichols

Depicting a disused lime kiln and work shed.

ImageCretaceous garden by Hall landscaping and design.

Featuring a Sarcosuchus better known as a Super Croc!

Image

A story garden by Jonny Baker.

Inspired by stories from Beatrix Potter.

My favourite of the large gardens.

Image

We stopped off at the Horticultural talks marquee for a demonstration by Hunstanton’s very own Florist Nicholas Godfrey-Cole from Scent with love

Image

Image

A very interesting demonstration with lots of tips and ideas for budding flower arrangers.

Outside the rain had started, just in time for Prince Charles and The Duchess of Cornwall to make there entrance.

Image

Sadly umbrellas and Royal canopy obscuring our view.

Image

Image

A surprisingly small display of vegetables and fruit. Reminiscent of a local garden show.

By midday we were desperate for our lunch but every food marquee was packed with people sheltering from the rain. We decided to make our way back the the talks marquee, sadly to late to see the next demo by Scent with Love but nice and early for a talk on growing organic vegetables. A great spot for lunch when its raining outside!

Good old British weather!

The sandwiches were delicious and very welcome after a busy morning. So glad we had brought a picnic as very little else available even for gluten eaters and difficulty getting to the stalls. Mainly due to people camping out in the food marquee’s to avoid the rain.

Image

Image

After visiting a large floral marquee we headed back to the car with a few new beautiful plants to remember our day.

Tips to avoid cross contamination from gluten

Newly diagnosed with Coeliac disease or sensitive to gluten? I have put together a few tips for staying gluten free.

Use separate area if possible for preparation in your kitchen, use easily identified chopping board. preferably not wooden. Glass or plastic work well as they can be cleaned easily.

Image

Have your own labelled butter dish to avoid contamination from gluten covered knives. It is advisable to have separate jams and spreads as it is hard to keep these free from gluten crumbs. Squeezable jams and honey work well.

Wipe surfaces well before baking and cooking and make sure cloth hasn’t been used to wipe up gluten crumbs, flour etc .

Make sure utensils are thoroughly cleaned before preparing a gluten free meal.

Always keep gluten free food stuffs in separate cupboard to gluten containing foods especially flour. If using wooden spoons they need to be clearly marked gluten free and only used in GF cooking and baking as gluten can lurk in the wood. If possible have your own colander to drain gluten free pasta as the families colander/ sieve can have hidden gluten lurking in the holes even after using a dishwasher.

Treat yourself to your very own toaster clearly labeled and away from gluten toaster to avoid crumbs.

Image

Make sure family grill is clean before using for gluten free food. Gluten lurks every where!

Wash hands thoroughly after feeding pets, most pet foods contain gluten.

There are Pet foods  available now that are gluten free.

Fridge doors can be a gluten trap, wipe down regularly.

Do not serve gluten free food and gluten containing food on the same plate e.g cakes. bread rolls

Best not to share a drink with someone if they are eating gluten, have heard of a case of friends sharing a water bottle causing her to be glutened.

Check with restaurants that they use a separate fryer to cook deep fried food like chips as oil will be contaminated with tiny amounts of gluten.

Always good to encourage family members to ‘clear as they go’ and not leave dirty plates possibly containing gluten on the work surface for you to clear up.

Wash hands regularly and change tea towels and cloths often.

If these simple precautions are taken, living and eating with gluten eaters doesn’t need to be a problem.

Any other tips? let me know