Celebrate, Gluten Free now has a store!

Have you tried Celebrate, Gluten Free at the farmers across Edmonton in the past?  Ever want to have their goodies during in the week, inside, with comfortable places to eat?

The all gluten free cafe is located in the west end at 15213 Stony Plain Rd. and offers gluten free goodies like muffins, cinnamon buns and cookies with some comfort.

They still go to the St. Albert farmers market, along with their brick and mortar store and like any cafe, menu will always be changing.

Follow Celebrate, Gluten-Free on Facebook and Twitter to keep up to date on what is being freshly baked.

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A different kind of celebration

For anyone who has been reading this blog for awhile, you will know that I not only have Celiac disease but I also have Type 1 diabetes. Today marks a celebration of sorts for me that I felt the need to share with the blog world. I will warn you that this is not directly related to gluten free foods, gluten free living or gluten free anything specifically for that matter. Today marks a very different and special celebration for me....

On August 24, 1989 I was with my family in Winnipeg, celebrating my grandmothers 65th birthday and I was just not myself. I will spare you the details, but the end result was that I was diagnosed that day with Type 1 diabetes. Today marks 25 years (completed) of managing and living with type 1 diabetes for me!

Now to some this is not a reason to celebrate and to others I should be celebrating even more than I am. But to me, it is important to share with people that I (and my family and friends) have been through many experiences directly related to my diabetes and I am so very thankful for my family and friends who have been there with me every step of the way. 

I recall as if it was just yesterday that after finding out about my diagnosis, one of my oldest friends in the world, who at the time was living very far away, decided that because I couldn't eat Halloween candy she too was abstaining from eating Halloween candy. Now, when you're 11 years old this is really a huge deal. Only a true friend would give up their Halloween candy because they love me that much. Other friends & family (Including Abisaac), have been there when I have experienced low blood sugars.  These friends and family have helped me through the minor lows where they just grabbed me a simple glass of juice to major lows where they've had to call 911 and be at my side.  Even my old dog, Cookie, would even sense when my blood sugars where heading downwards and would stay by my side till someone noticed to help me out. 

Over the years, I've fought the misconceptions of having type-1 diabetes.  People have asked "It must be hard to travel with your diabetes and live away from home".  I have been able to travel abroad, I have lived away to attend University and then lived away long after that.  When I was first diagnosed, I even had sleepovers at friends houses, and started to manage diabetes on my own because I didn't want me parents coming over to the sleepover to make sure I take my insulin.

People have commented about having children "Are you allowed to have kids?" asked one nurse during my first pregnancy which surprised me the most.  With lots of diligence, exercise, and tight management of my diabetes, I have two beautiful children that are the joys of my life.

I remember everyday where I started on this diabetes related journey and just how far I have come.   I also know how much farther I still have to go.  

Thank you all for your support and appreciation for everything we do here at Gluten Free Edmonton.

Gluten Free finds at Sobey's

On a recent trip to Sobey's in the west end of Edmonton in an effort to fill my cart with foods that would help get me to the $75 mark in order to get the 75 bonus air miles (yes I am a sucker for these deals and try to cash in on them whenever possible). I was just shy of reaching my $75 and I didn't really want to purchase anything that wouldn't be used or wasn't actually needed or useful to our family just for the sake of getting the air miles. I like my air miles, but I do not like to throw money away or waste food. 

First I was in the gluten free section located near the front of this particular store. Beside the gluten free section is a small Kosher section (there's also Kosher meat located in the meat department in this store for those who didn't know this already. I was pleased to find that they had one of my old favorites Garden Lites in Broccoli & Cheese, The company also makes a variety of other products that are gluten free and kosher. They are all basically a single serving meal or addition to a meal. This one is my long time favorite. I hardly ever buy these types of things anymore, but as I said I needed to get those air miles, right. I think this item costs about $5 but I truly cannot remember. I enjoyed it for lunch that very same day, though I will share that my little one ate most of it and she loved it.

I was later walking through the bakery section, which you would think would not be where you would likely find a gluten free shopper. However, I was in search of the Our Compliments bread as I have not yet tried it. It seems that every time to go looking for it, they are always out. When I turned around I saw this new product on the shelf that caught my attention. I admit it mostly caught my attention because it was only $2.99. The product is called Broghies. I would describe these as puffed corn shaped similarly to a pita or shell. They are so light and filled with air. The company is a Canadian company and who doesn't like to support fellow Canadians? Right. This product does not say Gluten Free on the package and I know that the only ingredients listed are corn flour, masa (corn) and salt. These make a nice light snack and have a great crunch that makes them great when you are looking for just a little something to tide you over.

I am pleased to say that my shopping trip was a success, I found a few new gluten free items and of course I got my other groceries as well. Now, if only I can actually find that Our Compliments gluten free bread to try out...hmmm

An old favorite....Gluten Free Corn muffins

Have you ever looked in your cupboards and just hoped that something, anything would simply jump out and say "I'm healthy, choose me!" Well that is what happened to me this past week. I was feeling snacky (yes it's a made up word) and did not want anything that I could actually see in front of me when I stared into the fridge, freezer or even cupboard. So, instead of reaching for something wholly unhealthy and filled with calories, fat and sugar (yum) I chose to use up a box of muffin mix I had in the cupboard and had always been meaning to use. 

Enter in Heartland Gourmet Gluten Free cornbread mix (purchased at Winners).

Heartland Gourmet Gluten Free Cornbread mix
I decided to make this super easy mix into muffins and since I added a few things to jazz it up a bit, I was able to get not only 12 full sized muffins but also 12 mini muffins. I must say that those mini muffins make for a great after school/daycare snack for little ones! I added some fresh thyme, old cheddar cheese, a touch of garlic powder and a handful of frozen corn kernels tossed in at the last moment.

They freeze well and taste excellent, which reminds me I need to keep an eye out for this stuff the next time I am at Winners.

Red Robin has Gluten Free Buns and Gluten Free Beer!

We are always bouncing around with which burger joint to try out.  Everyone has its advantages and disadvantages.  Some have gluten free buns, some have bed of lettuces, or lettuce wraps, some have dedicated fryer for fries, and some do not.

When it come to Red Robin, they seem to have a few good things to take advantage of:
  1. They have a gluten free bun that is pretty good.  Amanda usually elects for the lettuce wrap, but the last time we went, she decided she wanted the gluten free bun.
  2. To my knowledge (but you should always ask every visit), they have a dedicated fryer for french fries.  This is probably because they are always being made since they are bottomless fries.
  3. During our last visit we noticed (and this is kind of the clincher at being one of the best options for adults to go), is that they have gluten free beer on their menu.
Not that we by any means drink beer (gluten free or not), but we know lots of people like a cold one.  They have two gluten free beers and a cider ready to order and marked off on their drink menu.

During our last visit (we went for a lunch time date), Amanda tried something different.  She not only had the gluten free bun instead of a lettuce wrap, but she went for a chicken burger that they had on special.  Mmmmm.

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Kinnikinnick Launches Gluten Free Soft Donut!

If you missed the 2015 Edmonton Celiac Association gluten free pancake breakfast, then you missed the world wide launch of Kinnikinnick's gluten free soft donut that will be on store shelves August 15, 2015.

You guys missed out if you didn't make it to the pancake breakfast, because these delicious donuts were coming out fresh by the tray full and seconds were welcomed!

So I had two, and almost three :-)  But I had to fight off temptation.

The try fulls of donuts were going fast at the gluten free pancake breakfast, and I know why.  They live up to their name, soft donuts (see packaging below)

Kinnikinnick's current donuts are also yummy, but more dense compared to these.  These donuts remind me of the fluffyness that Krispy Kremes had.  They don't have a full glaze,but they will come packed with a separate squeeze pack of glaze like their cinnamon buns.

So look for these on shelves, beginning August 15, 2015!

Gluten Free Campbell's Soup Mushroom Broth

More and more, main stream companies continue to make their products gluten free.  Or at least try to get most of their product lines gluten free.  You can now find this Mushroom Soup Broth by Campbell's marked as gluten free on grocery store shelves.

Do you have a favourite recipe you like to use with Mushroom broth?

Denny's has a gluten free English Muffin

Lately, we have been eating at Denny's a fair bit.  It seems to be a friendly place for a family to go for a breakfast.  There are not a ton of gluten free items available on the menu, but Amanda loved ordering an omelet with pan fried hash brown, or sometimes an egg skillet with sausage.

The last time we went, we found out that Denny's has added a gluten free English Muffin for 99 cents.

It just popped out on the menu for Amanda under the omelette section. Funny how the letters GF can appear to those who may be looking but to those who aren't it likely just goes completely unnoticed.

So for an extra 99 cents, of course Amanda tried the gluten free English Muffin.  A few things to think about.  The muffin would share a toaster if you asked for it to be toasted.  Amanda asked for it toasted, without thinking to ask about cross contamination precautions.  So be sure to ask for it to NOT be toasted.

The English Muffin also looks to be corn based.  I know a lot of people always ask if something contains corn.  We forgot to ask who makes the English Muffin, but they get their supply of regular bread from McGavin's, who does carry gluten free products from other people at their open bakeries. Amanda thinks that the GF english muffin looks similar to the one from Glutino, but we are not entirely certain.

Amanda really enjoyed the English muffin.  She just scraped the muffin as much as she could in hopes of wiping off contamination and now we know for next time, you need to and can ask for it NOT to be toasted as there is a shared toaster being used.

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Taste of Edmonton Gluten Free Options 2015

Taste of Edmonton is just around the corner.  Starting July 16 to July 25, once again you can have gluten free friendly meal choices.

Amanda and I have gone several times over the past years and have been able to enjoy some delicious dishes.

So how do you see what is Celiac friendly?  Visit the Taste of Edmonton menu and click celiac friendly on the filters to the right.  Also look for the Celiac friendly symbol as seen above on the menu.

There does not seem to be as many options yet listed on the website, but as chefs review their menu, hopefully they will indicate more gluten free items. So what are some of the gluten free friendly items listed?
Some tips when attending Taste of Edmonton:
  • I know this may sound inconvenient, but go during off hours.  When things are hopping busy, you are most likely to come across a hectic kitchen that may cross contaminate
  • Ask Ask Ask.  The chefs may not be at their booth, so just keep on asking questions about the food until you get an answer you are comfortable with.
  • Ask Ask Ask more.  Going during off hours when there are less people, you might have a better opportunity to ask the food prep staff to use fresh utensils to serve food to avoid cross contamination.
East safe and have fun! 

Wild Orchid Bistro and their gluten free options - Canmore, AB

We always love it when our readers write in a review for us.  Here is a guest blog post by Cassie from a visit she had to Wild Orchid Bistro in Canmore

If nothing else, I would have given this place 5 stars due to the fact that the menu is 100% Gluten Free. As a celiac, this is basically impossible to find so it was a major treat to know that ANYTHING I ordered was going to be safe to eat.

We started with the Scallop Tempura which was pretty good. Maybe not worth the $12 however keeping in mind that I never get to eat that stuff, I wasn't too picky to pay the higher price. For someone like my husband, without food allergies, this was a little steep for what you get. It was cooked nicely though!For the main, we ordered 4 different rolls. (*Keep in mind they did not offer RAW fish sushi)

  1. Crunchy Salmon Roll - Odd texture with the crunchiness but surprisingly delicious! The salmon is slightly cooked but honestly, I think that made it better, bringing out the flavour. Really loved this one - very fusion!!  ;)
  2. Caterpillar Roll - Very yummy roll with a mild flavour. Especially loved the fresh avocado covering the rolls. 
  3. Atlantic Lobster Roll - If I had to rate between the other rolls, this was probably my least favorite (however still good) due to the cold shredded veggies with the lobster. Flavours didn't combine good enough to make a fantastic flavour though. 
  4. Dynamite Roll - LOVED this one. I can almost never eat Tempura but this tasted sooo good and even my husband (again, no food allergies) felt this tasted like something 'normal' and really like it. Flavours were really nice!

For dessert, I ordered the Coconut Creme Brulee, which I was elated to order because it was also Dairy Free! It tasted really good but I will say that I was a little disappointed because they didn't have the crunchy sugar top (which to me, is a MUST with creme brulee). It was mostly like pudding with some toasted coconut on top. Still tasted good, but not for $8 honestly. Presentation was very well done but price was too steep.

Husband ordered Sticky Toffee Pudding which was good too. For 'health conscious' people, this was great as the menu even says something about being less sweet and a healthier option. I mean, it's still a cake dessert with syrup and ice cream but I think it's just made with 'less sugar' than normal.

Atmosphere was nice, server was good. I would say it was a win for me as a Celiac. Just keep in mind, it is a little more pricey and it is a FUSION restaurant so it's not the classic raw fish sushi type of place.

Only 4 stars due to the price and minor taste dislikes.

I'd recommend giving it a try!