It's official - after a rather slow start to the year, this month has been the busiest month ever. I spent the first weekend away at a friend's wedding; then travelled to London for a gluten free event in Morrison's; organised a week of exciting competitions for Coeliac Awareness Week; met some of my fitness idols at BodyPower UK in Birmingham; got sick with the worst cold I've had in years; and discovered LOADS of new gluten free products and recipes. Plus lots of exciting new things in the pipeline which I can't tell you yet - oh, and it was my birthday.
So just a few things going on - and to cram it all in here's a bumper round up of my favourite gluten free discoveries this May - make sure you try all of these out!
Gluten free at The Grosvenor Hotel, Stockbridge
Our lovely friends got married at the beginning of the month and I have to say their chosen venue, The Grosvenor Hotel in Stockbridge, was not only beautiful but also catered amazingly for coeliacs! They made sure I had gluten free bread with my smoked salmon starter, made me peppercorn sauce to go with my roast beef and - MASSIVE brownie points here - gave me extra gluten free cheesecake for dessert! Thoroughly impressed!
Gluten free burgers from Heck Foods at BodyPower
I have been a massive fan of Heck's sausages for ages now and this month reviewed their top-class new veggie range too, but when I went to BodyPower Expo I was delighted to see they were selling their Chicken Italia burgers - with gluten free buns! We joined the very long queue and I can say the wait was definitely worth it, they were delicious!
Gluten free at Leon, Kings Cross
Every time I go to Kings Cross I stop at Leon - and for good reason. It's like a healthy fast food outlet where everything is clearly labelled gluten free, and it's delicious. So good, in fact, that when I went to London during Coeliac Awareness Week for Morrisons' special free from event, I stopped their twice. The first time I had a pot of grilled chicken (literally the best chicken ever, fact) and the second time I had chicken meatballs with brown rice - and more chicken!!
Gluten free chicken kievs from Schar
After attending the Morrisons' free from event I went to check out my local store - and was delighted to find these Schar chicken kievs. I am a huge fan of a good kiev (see my homemade kiev recipe here) and so decided to give these a go.
I found them in the frozen aisle along with a whole host of other goodies! They were so simple to cook and had a great flavour - I'll definitely grab a few more packs for when I can't be bothered to cook!
New gluten free celebration cakes from Sainsbury's
I popped into Sainsbury's to do my weekly shop yesterday and came across their brand new Deliciously Free From range. I think this has been a LONG time in the making to be honest and I hope to do a post on their new additions soon.
What I found most pleasing was the great range of celebration cakes! Just because you're coeliac, does not mean you love baking, and these would be great for birthdays, parties, any sort of celebration! Plus they are dairy free, wheat free and nut free too!
Gluten free Chinese from Han Court, Fremington
It was the mother-in-law's birthday this month and as a treat we got a Chinese take-away from Han Court in Fremington, Barnstaple. Han Court are really good when it comes to gluten free - which generally is hard to come by as soy sauce contains wheat flour and is used in most dishes!
I do find they tend to just not use the soy sauce for gluten free, so I use Tamari and add my own after. I had chicken and cashew nuts, egg fried rice and salt and chilli ribs - delicious!
Lunch at Tea on the Green, Westward Ho!
Tea on the Green is one of my favourite gluten free places ever! They do SO many gluten free cakes as well as gluten free sandwiches too. Steve surprised me by taking me here on my birthday and we spent a lovely few hours in a very sunny Westward Ho!
I had an iced latte, a huge bacon and brie sandwich and even took away a slice of Reeses Pieces gluten free chocolate brownie for later because I am going through a bit of a peanut butter obsession.
If you're ever in North Devon you absolutely have to go here - gluten free or not! (All of the cakes below labelled in green are gluten free, and that's not half of them, to give you an idea how awesome they are there!)
Gluten free wraps at Taunton Deane services
I always think of service stations as being coeliac-hostile environments. At least, the ones I have always been to tend to be filled with Krispy Kreme stands and sandwich fridges and not a lot else. If you're lucky there will be a Waitrose or M&S where you can possibly, maybe find something to eat.
That's why the sign above at Taunton Deane services made me, in my slightly hungover, post-wedding state, so very happy. One gluten free barbecue pulled pork wrap (and a very large, extra-shot iced Costa coffee) later and I was feeling much better!
Protein Pow! cooking mixes
I have followed Protein Pow for absolutely ages and was so excited when Anna contacted me to ask if she could send me her new cooking mixes. I have been experimenting loads with them (that's for another blog post - coming soon!) but wanted to give them a mention as I absolutely love them! Whether you want to make protein bars, pancakes or truffles they are epic - and they are suitable for coeliacs (the pea protein one is dairy free/vegan too!)
Gluten free red lentil soup from Tideford Organics
I love Tideford because a) their soups are gluten free, b) they taste epic and c) they're from Devon. When they sent me some soups to try the red lentil with chilli and apricot was probably the one I thought I'd like least - I mean apricot, in soup? But oh my god, it was so good.
This really was an amazing flavour - spicy yet every so slightly sweet, I cannot recommend this soup enough! Now the weather is hotting up it doesn't seem like soup weather but if we get a rain day grab a bowl of this and it will make you feel better in no time!
Exciting June ahead!
I think that is about it for this month's round up - there have been so many amazing products I've tried and I'll be blogging about some of them over the coming weeks. June is looking to be a bit quieter for now but who knows what the next month will bring - I just hope the sun continues!
What have been your favourite gluten free discoveries this month? I'd love to hear them, comment below and share them!