Tuesday, November 25, 2008

FYI

I was asked to post these two items, so here they are:

"1. To those who have been able to eat McDonald's fries without incident (I am very sensitive and do not react) a gentle reminder to always question McDonald's on their fries, every time. ie. the fries at the McDonald's on Hwy 400, just south of Barrie (before Dunlop)on east side has recent change in policy - now fries fryer shares with hashbrowns (which are not safe).

2. Living Without Magazine now available in Toronto at World's Biggest Bookstore - $5.95 ($6.73 tax incl)

P.S. I have no financial interest in Living Without Magazine or World's Biggest Bookstore."

Friday, September 26, 2008

The Cookie Connection on the Danforth now has gluten free treats. It's on the north side between Broadview and Chester. They have a freezer full of Molly-B (crepes, perogies, mini-quiche, butter tarts) and a freezer full of O'Doughs bread and buns. Unthawed are some gluten-free blueberry and butter tarts. It was really nice to have a coffee and a treat in the same place. I had never tried Molly-B's stuff and it is really good if maybe even a little pricier that the usual stuff ($9.00 for 6 butter tarts) but worth it for the taste.

Wednesday, September 03, 2008

The Best Wheat and Gluten Free Restaurants in Toronto (from blogTO)

This article from blogTO is well worth reading. It lists 18 restaurants and cafes that are friendly to our diet. Thanks to Tim, the author of the post, for passing it along to me.

Monday, July 28, 2008

Judy's Magic Mixes

I just tried out the first of the packages of Judy's Magic Mixes I have acquired. I used the Morning Magic Pancakes & Waffles mix, opting for the pancakes. These were easy to make and tasted great. Granted, it has been so long since I have had wheat pancakes, I find it more and more difficult to ascertain how close the taste is to 'real' pancakes.

To the pancake mix, you add 2 eggs, 1 & 1/3 cups of water and 1/3 cup of vegetable oil. I added some applesauce, but that is not called for in the recipe. I have a few other mixes, and if they are as good as this one, I will certainly make sure to pick some more up.

The mixes are available at The Mercantile, which has moved to 297 Roncesvalles Avenue (formerly, 626 College Street).

Friday, July 18, 2008

Hi, me again, the celiac newbie.. I wrote to Webbers Naturals, who makes my Calcium with Vit. D supplement and this is the reply I got.. would you trust this and continue taking the supplement?

"

Thank you for your question. This supplement is made in our factory where gluten is used. However, we feel that the chance of cross-contamination is remote since we strictly follow the Natural Health Product Directorate’s (NHPD) Good Manufacturing Processes (GMP)."

How careful do I need to be?

p.s. thanks so much to whoever responded to my last message.. It REALLY helped!


Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Just about to relocate to Toronto from Germany (where I was diagnosed 2 years ago). It has been a real challenge shopping for GF food here and knowledge of cealiac disease is really limited which makes eating out a real challenge.

Reading this blog gives me hope that things could be easier in Canada. Just one question - where is the best place to by GF food? Do supermarkets stock it as a rule - or is it just health food shops (as here)? Any tips would be appreciated.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Hi,
I was just diagnosed with Celiac disease 2 weeks ago. I also am allergic to milk. But I read that lactose intolerance can be a symptom of celiac, so maybe I will be able to have dairy products when I become gluten free???!!

I am happy to find this blog and have found many useful things on it.
It scares me that I can read ingredients and think that something is gluten free, when it may not be.

Am I supposed to research every single product I eat by contacting manufacturers?
Does this mean I really should not eat at restaurants?
Is tofu safe?
Anyone with any insight would be very much appreciated!
Rita :)

Wednesday, June 25, 2008


I'm new in town and am amazed to have discovered so many GF options!

Yesterday I chose from several varieties of gluten free Sweets from the Earth cookies (the cashew ones were delicious) at TAN (the Alternative Network Cafe) on West Queen West near Ossington. They also have pecan caramel squares that are not only yummy, but organic and vegan, etc, etc. 

Then I trotted along the few blocks to the Gladstone and tucked into a slow roasted porchetta and green chutney sandwich in their Ballroom Cafe. 

The Kensington cafe in the market also has butter tarts. Mmmm....

Exploring this city tastes good!

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Howzit all?

I hope you're all well!

Does anyone know of any place that delivers gluten free food (& I'm vegitarian too)? My office orders dinner weekly and I am the one with the allergy so I have to pick the place. Oh the office I am currently freelancing in is in the King/Sherbourne area of Toronto.

I wouldn't really call it catering as there are usually around 10-14 of us when we order.

Thanks in advance!

Creative nomad

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Pizza Pizza - GF now Chainwide

Press Release:

Gluten-free pizza makes its debut in Pizza Pizza traditional restaurants

Responding to the dietary needs and trends expressed by consumers, Pizza Pizza will now offer gluten-free pizza at all of its traditional restaurants. The wide-scale introduction of gluten-free pizza by Pizza Pizza follows the favorable results of a recent pilot test of the product in select GTA restaurants.

“The pilot results exceeded our expectations,” said Pizza Pizza’s Chief Marketing Officer, Pat Finelli. “One of our objectives in offering this menu option is to provide a dietary alternative for people that are unable to eat gluten products. The reaction we received from market testing was extremely positive, especially from those with celiac disease. Consumers that had been unable to enjoy pizza were thanking us for introducing this new menu offering and allowing them to enjoy pizza once again.”

Gluten intolerance, or celiac disease, affects an estimated 1 in 133 Canadians, according to Health Canada and the Canadian Celiac Association. It is an inherited immune disease in which the lining of the small intestine is damaged by gluten, a protein found in such grains as wheat, barley and rye. The only therapy for celiac disease is a gluten-free diet.

Pizza Pizza is the first major player in the quick-service restaurant industry to provide a gluten-free crust, which uses rice and potato-based flour as the main ingredient. By choosing the light and crispy rice-based dough – along with toppings from our gluten-free list – consumers can enjoy a delicious gluten-free meal made especially for them. Currently, Pizza Pizza’s gluten-free crusts are available in the 12-inch medium format, the company’s most popular pizza size.

In making the gluten-free crust, Pizza Pizza has implemented a series of procedures and controls to prevent product cross-contamination. Mr. Brian S. Payne, Director, Commissary and Supply Chain Management for Pizza Pizza, says it is no different than handling any other allergen. In addition to having specific utensils for the product, the company has sent all franchisees an updated training guide containing new product information, educational material about celiac disease, as well as cooking and sanitizing procedures.

The gluten-free crust is another in a series of health-conscious innovations by Pizza Pizza. In recent years, the cutting-edge company has introduced whole-wheat multigrain dough, a source of Omega 3’s and fiber, partly skimmed mozzarella cheese and sodium-reduced sauces and cheese to its menu offerings. Pizza Pizza was one of the first in the industry to remove industrially-added trans-fats from its entire menu.

“The introduction of this new gluten-free menu offering is a natural extension of our initiatives in striving to provide our customers with a variety of healthy options that respond to their individual needs,” said Finelli. “We know that a significant segment of the population is gluten sensitive or intolerant, and offering this new menu option is a way of bringing pizza back into their lives and routine.”

For a complete list of allergens and menu options at Pizza Pizza, please visit www.pizzapizza.ca.

Monday, June 09, 2008

Hello all.

I am a newly diagnosed celiac and am thrilled to have found this blog. I have already found such useful information here.

I was hoping folks could help me out with this question: Does anyone know of a particular pharmacy in Toronto where the pharmacist knows about celiac disease? I am aware that some medications can contain gluten, and yet the pharmacists I have spoken to so far, do not seem to know how to help me figure out whether or not a particular medication contains gluten.

Any suggestions or ideas would be appreciated!

Thanks.

Friday, June 06, 2008

GF soup to go-
For anyone that works near the eaton's centre downtown, at University and Dundas (south east side close to Wimpy's) there is a small sushi place called Sushi and Salad- Fresh To Go that serves gluten free soup (asparagus, carrot and ginger, and mushroom are a few i've had). The sushi selection isn't that great but they have a well equipped salad bar. The place is just for take out though since there are only 3 or 4 seats in the place. It's great for those days where you just dont feel life bringing your lunch and don't want New York fries from the food court

Sunday, May 04, 2008

Went to Naturally Yours (First Canadian Place Food Court) last week and enjoyed a gluten free mexican lasagna (excellent!) This establishment regularly offers GF entrees and stocks GF baked goods as well as being a health food store. Give them a try if you work in the downtown core. See www.naturallyyours.ca for their weekly menu - not all offerings are gluten free, but they label them at their take-out counter.

Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Silver Spoon, 390 Roncesvalles Avenue, Toronto, 416-516-8112, thesilverspoon@on.aibn.com

Several weeks ago, I enjoyed an amazing meal at the Silver Spoon on Roncesvalles Ave. Much of the menu appears to be naturally gluten-free, but the best part was that the entire staff was aware of gluten. After speaking with the maƮtre d', the very-knowledgeable waiter gave me specific recommendations, and there were plenty of options.

I opted for the La Ferme Oven Roasted Cornish Hen with Braised Lentils, Wild Boar Bacon, vegetable veloute, and red wine/beet reduction for $23 with a glass of '04 Australian Shiraz.

If you are heading out for an evening of fine dining, I highly recommend Silver Spoon.


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Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Hello:

I was diagnosed in October '07 with a biopsy. I went GF right after. From my research I believe I have "atypical Celiac", which I believe started after I was sick with mono in late 1989. (there is a great presentation on youtube, search: Celiac).

Maybe 5 weeks ago I noticed sharp, painful- tingling "electric" shocks in my feet. These pains last more than 15 seconds and I can have 5-6 or these tremors in a row. Yesterday I had 6-7 episodes throughout the day, the worst being at night. (I have had numbness since i had my first child in Oct 2007, and after his birth I could not walk properly due to pain in my legs and feet for about 4 months.) I also now have these pains in my hands.

I also found that my left arm is numb in the morning ( I have to move it with right hand sometimes). Today the pains are on my left side.

(I am also expecting my second child in October.)

Has anyone else experienced this? Has is been diagnosed and if so, how was it diagnosed? Does anyone know why I might be experiencing this now since I have been GF for months? Does anyone have a good GI DR (or healthcare professional) they could suggest who knows Celiac?

Best Lisa B

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

COOKIES!

I had the greatest experience this weekend. Checked out The Sweet Potato, which is newly opened in the junction. They have a lot of really great food, but most importantly, they have a rack of FRESH BAKED GF COOKIES that actually taste GREAT. I tried the chocolate chip, chocolate cookies, and pecan bars. The chocolate/nut ones are my favourite. The address is: 2995 Dundas Street WestToronto, ON M6P 1Z4 (416) 762-4848‎.
UPDATE: I went back and they've removed the gluten free bakery shelf. There are still lots of good GF products (including food for life rice wraps for $3.29), but no cookies :-(

Also, if anyone hasn't already tried the Gluten Free Pantry Chocolate Truffle brownie mix, it's a must. My non-GF friends actually liked these brownies BETTER than ghiradelli's or other "regular" brownies. The texture is amazing. Anyways, you can get the brownie mix for $3.99 at Fiesta Farms. Happy snacking!

Saturday, April 19, 2008

Gluten Free Goes Mainstream

The Toronto Star Living Reporter, Barbara Turnbull, wrote a feature story this week in the Toronto Star on celiacs and gluten free foods. Link: http://www.thestar.com/article/414749

The article mentioned the Montmartre bakery in Scarborough (105 Midwest Road 416-757-7771) where they bake bread, buns (those Gladstone Hotel buns) and pizza dough one day a week. (Maybe they can do a baguette?)

The Specialty Food Store at Sick Kids hosted a Gluten Free cooking class this morning at the Loblaws at Queen's Quay which I attended. The presenters were Heather Butt & Donna Washburn who are both Canadian cookbook authors (The Complete Gluten-Free Cookbook). They made a variety of GF items including carrot cake, chocolate chocolate-chip muffins, quinoa pilaf, flaxseed cookies and an ancient grain bread. All were absolutely delicious and didn't have any of that weird GF taste that so many commercial products have. I am now inspired again to bake more bread using their nutritious flours instead of the more convenient rice flour concoctions. If I hear of another GF cooking event, I will post it on this blog. Now, I had better go dust off that breadmaker.....and get out my GF chemistry set.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Detective Work

Have a history with a gluten free baguette that I hope someone can shed some light on.
Use to buy Gluten Free baguettes (small only 10 inches long from a place called power Foods in Kensington market for 60 cents, later raised to 75 cents (no I am not kidding). Owner of power foods said it was a french woman who made them for him. They were awesome, not quite ace bakery but the best damn gluten free bread I have ever tasted by a long shot. And they were baguettes to boot. I bought dozens of these the Power Foods (probably due to the cheap prices) went out of business and that was the end of the baguettes. I wanted to hire (seriously) a detective to find this woman. Alas no luck.

1 1/2 years later the same baguettes popped up at the Big carrot, instant joy and weekly drives to the carrot to buy the... darkness. The Carrot discontinued them, no not because they were not selling (even for 1.69) but because of an idiotic policy that had them demanding the maker to list if ingredients were genetically modified. Apaerntly she did not like getting harrassed and would not comply.

My view is if it is GM or even unknown if it is GM put that info on the bin and let me decide.
I explained to the carrot that this product was the most difficult thing to find and make in their entire store and that a warning was sufficient but no luck.

Bottom line, does anybody have anymore info on this person or have the baguettes popped up somewhere else?????? I have asked fore contact info but Carrot would not provide??

Monday, April 14, 2008

GF menu at Riz Restaurant
Imagine my surprise when I went to one of my favourite Pan-Asian/Thai restaurants - Riz on Bayview - and they had a HUGE gluten-free menu right on the table!!! I was so excited! Everyone needs to go there to show support for developing a GF menu ... and the bonus is: the food is yummy!!
Candace

Riz Pan-Asian Restaurant
1677 Bayview Avenue
416-487-8388

Monday, March 24, 2008

Gluten-free Pizza Pizza

Here is an updated press release from Pizza Pizza regarding its gluten-free pilot project.

IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
Foodservice Trade / Food Editors
PIZZA PIZZA INTRODUCES GLUTEN-FREE CRUSTS
Toronto, March 12, 2008 ― Canadians who suffer from an allergic intolerance to wheat or gluten will find it easier to enjoy a freshly made pizza. Pizza Pizza, a regular innovator in the QSR segment of the foodservice industry, has announced a pilot project to offer a gluten-free dough recipe in some 50 Greater Toronto Area restaurant locations.

Pizza Pizza is the first of the major players to bring out the gluten-free dough, which uses rice and potato-based flour as the main ingredient. The gluten-free offering adds to Pizza Pizza’s existing dough options, which features classic and multigrain whole-wheat dough recipes. Consumers can also choose from among Pizza Pizza’s numerous toppings - the vast majority of which are also gluten free - to make their favourite traditional and gourmet pizzas. The company has received positive feedback from preliminary sampling and hopes to proceed with a chain-wide roll-out in the near future.

“Our product development team have been working on the gluten-free recipe for some time, and we are extremely pleased to be able to provide a healthy, nutritious new menu offering that responds to a need expressed by a growing number of consumers and their families,” said Pat Finelli, chief marketing officer for Pizza Pizza. “The introduction of our gluten-free crust will allow people who have an allergic response or an intolerance to wheat or gluten to enjoy our pizza while respecting their dietary regime.”

Gluten intolerance, or celiac disease, affects an estimated 1 in 133 Canadians. It is an inherited autoimmune disease in which the lining of the small intestine is damaged by gluten, a protein found in such grains as wheat, barley and rye. The only therapy for celiac disease is a gluten-free diet. People with irritable bowel syndrome or autism can also have intolerance or allergic responses to gluten.

In addition to being made from rice and potato-based flour, Pizza Pizza’s gluten-free shells are par-baked and require no dusting flour, thereby avoiding cross-contamination with gluten-based products. Store staff has been specially trained to understand the importance of cross contamination as a food safety matter.The vast majority of the sauces available at Pizza Pizza are also gluten-free. Initially, Pizza Pizza’s gluten-free crusts are only available in the 12-inch medium format, the company’s most popular pizza size, for an additional price of $3.25.

The gluten-free crust is another in a series of health-conscious innovations by Pizza Pizza. In recent years, the industry leader has introduced whole-wheat multigrain dough, eliminated industrially-added trans fats from its entire menu, and improved the nutritional makeup of its cheese and sauces. For a complete list of allergens and menu options at Pizza Pizza, please visit http://www.pizzapizza.ca/.
-30-
For information or comment:

Kristen Luszka
416-341-9929 Ext 228
Kristen@torchiacom.com

Daniel Torchia
416-341-9929 Ext 223
Cell: 416-275-2151
daniel@torchiacom.com

Friday, March 14, 2008

Hi Everyone,

Just a quick note that I recently had two really great GF experiences:

1. Tinto, on Roncesvalles - they have GF carrot cake and chocolate cake. I tried the carrot cake (twice) and it is delicious!!! The staff has ingredient lists (and utensil lists) for each offering on the menu and they are happy to pull those from their handy binder, so you can ensure that food is safe.

2. Shanghai Cowgirl, on Queen West. While they don't have a GF menu, my server had a room mate with Celiac disease and was able to work through the menu with me. I had the shanghai noodles which were great and I was very surprised that they were GF and worked for me.

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Anyone know where I can get gluten-free grits?

From what I know you can't even buy grits in Canada (my girlfriend introduced them to me, and surprise surprise I like 'em). When we go to the states we usually pick some up, but I checked on a few websites and it looks like their grits aren't safe. Anyone have any ideas? I checked Bob's Red Mill but they only have millet grits which I've tried, and they just weren't the same.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Pizza Pizza: Gluten-free Pilot

Well, this looks like good news, but the their communications company has confuses glucose with gluten, as you will see in the press release. I think that was a editing error because it happened only once:

PIZZA PIZZA INTRODUCES GLUTEN-FREE CRUSTS

Toronto, March 12,
2008 ― Canadians who suffer from an allergic intolerance to wheat or gluten will find it easier to enjoy a freshly made pizza. Pizza Pizza, a regular innovator in the QSR segment of the foodservice industry, has announced a pilot project to offer a gluten-free dough recipe in some 50 Greater Toronto Area restaurant locations.

Pizza Pizza is the first of the major players to bring out the gluten-free dough, which uses rice and potato-based flour as the main ingredient. The gluten-free offering adds to Pizza Pizza’s existing dough options, which features classic and multigrain whole-wheat dough recipes. Consumers can also choose from among Pizza Pizza’s numerous toppings - the vast majority of which are also gluten free - to make their favourite traditional and gourmet pizzas. The company has received positive feedback from preliminary sampling and hopes to proceed with a chain-wide roll-out in the near future.

“Our product development team have been working on the gluten-free recipe for some time, and we are extremely pleased to be able to provide a healthy, nutritious new menu offering that responds to a need expressed by a growing number of consumers and their families,” said Pat Finelli, chief marketing officer for Pizza Pizza. “The introduction of our gluten-free crust will allow people who have an allergic response or an intolerance to wheat or gluten to enjoy our pizza while respecting their dietary regime.”

Glucose [sic] intolerance, or celiac disease, affects an estimated 1 in 133 Canadians. It is an inherited immune disease in which the lining of the small intestine is damaged by gluten, a protein found in such grains as wheat, barley and rye. The only therapy for celiac disease is a gluten-free diet. People with irritable bowel syndrome or autism can also have intolerance or allergic responses to gluten.

In addition to being made from rice and potato-based flour, Pizza Pizza’s gluten-free shells are par-baked and require no dusting flour, thereby avoiding cross-contamination with gluten-based products. The vast majority of the sauces available at Pizza Pizza are also gluten-free. Initially, Pizza Pizza’s gluten-free crusts are only available in the 12-inch medium format, the company’s most popular pizza size, for an additional price of $3.25.

The gluten-free crust is another in a series of health-conscious innovations by Pizza Pizza. In recent years, the industry leader has introduced whole-wheat multigrain dough, eliminated industrially-added trans fats from its entire menu, and improved the nutritional makeup of its cheese and sauces. For a complete list of allergens and menu options at Pizza Pizza, please visit http://www.pizzapizza.ca/.

-30-

For
information or comment:

Kristen Luszka
416-341-9929 Ext 228
Kristen@torchiacom.com

Daniel Torchia
416-341-9929 Ext 223
Cell: 416-275-2151
daniel@torchiacom.com

Sunday, February 24, 2008

Gladstone Hotel

Two people have recently told me that the Gladstone Hotel has gluten-free bread available. It says so plainly on the menu. The menu also notes that the hotel also serves fair trade, organic, and locally produced ingredients, if available.

1214 Queen Street West
Toronto, ON M6J 1L6
416.531.4635

Sunday, January 27, 2008

If ever in the Prince Edward County area (near Picton), there is an amazing bakery/market/restaurant called Schroeder's at the corner of hwy 61 and county road 1. They have freezers full of g-f goodies, including my favourites - donut holes, butter tarts, and fruit pies. They also make great hamburger/sandwich buns. If you're a pickle lover, they have g-f pickles, relishes and other similar things. There are also g-f sausages made by a local mennonite (I think) farmer which are very good. All of the baking is done by the owner, and although they also make non-g-f baked goods, one or two days a week are set aside when they only make g-f goods. I've been going there for years and have never had an adverse reaction, so I don't think cross-contamination is a concern. Unfortunately, they do not take orders and ship their products, so you have to shop in person in their little spot in the middle of the countryside.