Christine’s Puddings

untitledIf you’re a regular reader of my blog you will know that I recently bought some more products from the amazing Christine of Christine’s Puddings when I saw her at the Coeliac UK Birmingham Group Food Fair.

I’d been meaning to write a review of her products after first trying them at the Bath Food Fair last year, but never got round to it, so I was determined to write one this time!

If you’ve not heard of Christine’s Puddings before, here’s a little bit more about the brand:

Christine’s Puddings was established in 2007 by Christine Willis. Being a Coeliac for nearly 40 years, I knew how hard it was to find good gluten-free proper puddings, so I decided to market the Christmas Pudding that I had been making for my family.

My range now includes several delicious gluten, wheat and dairy free products including great tasting pastry.

“My goal is to make interesting and tasty products that everyone can enjoy… and, by the way – everything is gluten-free!” Continue reading

Coeliac UK Birmingham Group – Gluten Free Food Fair

gluten-free-food-fairAfter missing out on this year’s Allergy Show, myself and @carriesquair decided to go to the Coeliac UK Birmingham Group Food Fair which was held yesterday in Sutton Coldfield.

One of the main reasons for going was that there was going to be gluten free fish and chips, but we also thought it would be great to see some of our Twitter friends and some amazing gluten free brands!

We arrived at the venue not long after the doors had opened and there was a massive queue outside! This was obviously going to be one very busy food fair! Continue reading

BMI Regional In-Flight Snacks

Back in May I flew to Aberdeen for work and wasn’t aware until on the flight that BMI Regional offer complimentary snacks and drinks. As I hadn’t advised beforehand that I was a coeliac I assumed that I wouldn’t be able to have anything, but figured it wouldn’t hurt to ask.

To my surprise the cabin crew said they’d check to see if they had a spare gluten free box. A gluten free box?! Ooh how exciting!

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DSC04386I was delighted when a few minutes later, once everyone else had been served, I was given a BMI Regional branded ‘New Well-Being Box, The Good Life’. The front of the box stated ‘say hello to our selection of tasty nut, gluten and milk free bites, chosen from the best of British – enjoy’. Wow – multiple allergies covered in one box, how impressive!

Until you open it…. Continue reading

Newburn Bakehouse – Dairy Free Seeded Wraps

newburn logoNewburn Bakehouse contacted me a few weeks ago to ask if I’d be interested in trying an exciting new product and of course I jumped at the chance!

DSC04334I had no idea what the product was until it arrived in the post and it turned out to be a new and improved version of their seeded wraps. As well as now coming in packs of 4 rather than 3, they are now also dairy free. :)

I first reviewed this product last year (you can read the review here) and I regularly use the wraps as pizza bases, but would I notice a substantial difference between the old version and the new dairy free version?

In short, no! Continue reading

Gluten Free Baking & Living – Free to Try ‘At Home’ Course

logoHaving spent the past few days painting our living room, I felt like the urge to do something a bit more relaxing last night.

Having started to accumulate a few gluten free recipes, I decided to have a go at Gluten Free Baking & Living’s Cheese Scones recipe, which is free to download from their website.

If you don’t know much about Gluten Free Baking & Living, here’s their story:

Deborah and I have always shared a great joy in growing and cooking great things for each other to eat. Food and eating is so much more than just fuel, it can bring joy, delight, comfort, warmth, health. The wrong food, we are now realising to our cost, brings serious ill health. Above all, food and sharing it is about fun, love and caring for each other, your family and friends. Continue reading

Sweet Mandarin, Manchester

logoA lot has been mentioned on social media about the Sweet Mandarin restaurant in Manchester and when I had some spare time whilst in Manchester for work last month, I couldn’t resist organising a meal out with my some of my colleagues.

I already knew a little bit about Sweet Mandarin and their products as I’m a big fan of their sweet and sour sauce!

If you don’t know much about Sweet Mandarin’s recent history, here’s some information for you taken from their website:

It was a family trip to Hong Kong that made us talk about going into business together, and even though we had taken separate paths professionally – I’m a lawyer, Lisa a financier and Janet an engineer;  it was always with a notion that we’d use that chance to learn skills we could use for our restaurant and sauce business.

We were sitting around the kitchen table in my parents’ house with Lisa cracking jokes about the old times in the takeaway, when it struck us that, well, we were ready.  There was nothing stopping us from getting our dreams underway. Continue reading

Pitcher & Piano, Bristol

logoWhen I left my old job last year, I decided to have my leaving drinks at Pitcher & Piano, which is located along Bristol’s waterfront.

Unfortunately this outing was subsequently the result of a negative review on this blog, due to their poor understanding of gluten free in relation to their own menu.

As a result, I hadn’t been back to Pitcher & Piano for food since then, however when Rich left his job a couple of weeks ago, he too had his leaving drinks there.

The restaurant is located in a great location in Bristol and it’s often a very popular and busy area, especially on Friday and Saturday nights so it always seems a good starting point for an evening out.

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Having had a look at their menu online, things seemed to have improved a lot in terms of their gluten free offerings, including the option of a gluten free baguette which is not something that you normally see in restaurants, so I thought it was only fair to give them a second chance. Continue reading

Frankie & Benny’s – Gluten Free Menu

logo-2Prior to my diagnosis with coeliac disease, one of my favourite restaurants was Frankie & Benny’s. I always looked forward to going there and I would always have the Goat’s Cheese & Onion Garlic Bread as a starter – oh how I miss having that! :(

If you’re not familiar with this chain, here’s some information about them, taken from their website:

Rumour has it that Frankie Giuliani was 10 years old when, with his Mamma and Poppa, he left Sicily and landed at Ellis Island, New York in 1924.

They moved in with relatives in ‘Little Italy’, a predominantly Italian neighbourhood. Poppa soon found work, but from the home country he’d brought a little money and a lot of ambition. It was no surprise then, when the family opened a restaurant within a year, everybody helping with the building and the cooking in equal measure.

Each of them had a favourite dish to contribute, but it was Mamma’s home-style cooking that was the base from which the business prospered. Frankie went to the nearby High School and became lifetime friends with Benny, already a third generation American.

In 1953 Poppa retired and Frankie and Benny took over the business, combining the best of popular American food with traditional Italian dishes. The rest, as they say, is history… Continue reading

Genius Gluten Free Chicken & Gravy Pies

genius-logoI first saw the Genius Chicken & Gravy Pies advertised a while ago, but it’s only been in the past few months that my local ASDA has had them in stock in their frozen Free From section.

At the same time as buying these I also bought some of the Genius puff and shortcrust pastries, but I haven’t had the opportunity to try these yet. However, if these pies are anything to go by, the pastry will be great!

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Continue reading

Amy’s Kitchen Rice Macaroni & Cheese

header_homeI first really became aware of Amy’s Kitchen at last year’s The Allergy & Free From Show and I have to admit that even since then I’ve still be quite slow to try their products. :(

That all changed recently when I tried one of their Rice Mac & Cheese microwave meals…. Before I go into my review, let’s find out a little more about the brand.

Amy’s Kitchen is a family business… with every member of the family taking part. The company was started in 1987, when Amy was born. Her mom and dad, Rachel and Andy Berliner, carefully nurtured the company as well as the child, paying constant attention to every aspect of its day to day activities and providing the vision that has made Amy’s so successful. Continue reading