Saturday, December 26, 2009
Happy Gluten-Free Holidays!
Wednesday, December 16, 2009
I was excited to try out the new Gluten-Free Menu at Bertucci’s now that they’ve joined the Gluten Free Restaurant Awareness Program (GFRAP) , but unfortunately this visit was very disappointing. It took over 5 minutes for our server to come over to take our drink order (on a very slow night), and then when I placed my order (GF Balsamic Chx) the chicken came out VERY burnt on the bottom, that I had to cut the bottom part off to eat it. This is not the part that worries me, although it added to my annoyance by the time this next part happened.
My meal came out with asparagus, not green beans as the menu stated. So when I inquired to the waiter, he said that they were out of green beans. So I asked for another GF vegetable instead, which he offered broccoli. When the broccoli came out, I ate a piece, and it tasted and smelled like pasta, so I called the waiter back over, and asked how the broccoli was prepared- if it was steamed or cooked in a water that is also used to cook pasta in. When he told me that it is cooked in pasta water I was extremely upset- because of course that makes the broccoli NO LONGER GLUTEN-FREE! I immediately asked to speak to a manager. When the manager came over, he was hardly apologetic and said "this GF is new to us", not even a "I am sorry that you will become ill from this". I hardly complain at restaurants, and this time was mainly doing so to help EDUCATE the staff about how to properly prepare gluten-free meals- and I do love the fact that Bertucci’s, a chain restaurant, is working with GFRAP and is now offering a GF menu, but felt I had to comment on the lack of response to this from the staff. I have gotten "mistakes" before, but the wait staff/managers ALWAYS are extremely apologetic and try to rectify it immediately, which did not happen at the Westbury Bertucci’s location. (Even when I mentioned that I write a LI blog about GF, as well as am a board member with Suffolk Celiacs!) When leaving the manager said "we'll get it right"- I sure hope so, so that others don't get extremely sick as well. Cross contamination issues with how food is prepared Gluten-Free is JUST as important as the ingredients in each of the items! I do intent do go back to Bertucci's and try it again, but next time will be much more cautious in ordering.
What is worrisome is that even though they are now a member of GFRAP, it appears that they are not fully trained. My main concern was their lack of concern... like when I go to a plcace like Outback, and the rare chance that something goes awry, the manager is there quickly to apologize, make corrections, and offer free dessert. (not that I was looking for a free dessert- ha ha- but he didn't even offer AND left the contaminated broccoli on the table when he walked away!)... then the best part... when the waiter came back, he said "are you still working on those, or do you want me to wrap them?"... DUH!!! did you not just hear what I spoke to you AND your manager about?!
ps- the dessert I did order, the Bomba which is "Vanilla and chocolate gelato wrapped in chocolate with almonds and a red heart of maraschino cherry. Served open with a dollop of whipped cream and chocolate sauce"- was the best part of the meal.
1/27/10 UPDATE: I went back last week, and had a GOOD experience! The manager there said they have learned a lot and are making sure to prepare the foods safely GF! I was very excited to see that they are taking this seriously and are making sure to correct any errors that have been made. The more we dine at Bertuccis, the better they will become at knowing how to prepare GF foods, so make sure to visit them and continue to help "train" them. I am very greatful for another big chain to offer us a place to eat! (My husband is thrilled as well!) ;)
Monday, December 14, 2009
It is pretty scary! This further emphasizes the need for an FDA ruling on what is and is not considered (and what can/cannot be labeled) gluten-free!
Below is the summary of what happened, and then click the link for the full article on the Juno Nutrition website. What tipped Juno off to something going on was that products that were bought as gluten-free were hand-delivered to people (and stores I believe) with NO labels on them, and NO ingredient listing (which is in violation of state law in NC where they were sold). Also read the paragraph on their site about the fact that they re-packaged non-gluten free desserts off as being gluten-free! HOLY MOLY.
"Juno Nutrition Update
Great Specialty Products: Seven Tests Show High Gluten
Six (6) different products from Great Specialty Products, a physical and online seller of Gluten-Free products, show high levels of gluten based on seven (7) different gluten tests. Six were over the counter test kits, one was sent off to a 3rd party lab for independent confirmation. We purchased two products, a white-bread loaf, and a sourdough loaf from Great Specialty Products - a website (greatspecialtyproducts [dot] com), and formerly a physical store, based in North Carolina. Both samples, when evaluated with an EZ Gluten Kit, showed 'High Gluten' (photos and details are in the full post). We were present for two other samples (a dinner roll and another white-bread loaf) when other EZ-Gluten Kits were run and showed 'High Gluten'. Two others shared results which were not run in our presence, which both showed high gluten. For an EZ-Gluten kit, a reading of 'High Gluten' indicates 200 ppm or more.
One of these six samples was sent to a 3rd party lab for independent testing, it too found 'High' levels of gluten. For the 3rd party AOAC approved test, High levels of gluten meant 80 ppm or more. As of this writing, seven (7) different tests show products from Great Specialty Products to be high in gluten as defined by the relevant test."
For a full account of our findings see the full post here. http://www.junonutrition.com/blog/?p=323
Also, under the “ingredient and calorie count” page it says “Sorry... This page is under-construction. Please visit us again soon. Thank you.” And Under their “Terms and conditions” it is blank!
12/20/09- UPDATE: Read this Blog entry about someone who was affected by this horiable act- http://thegfcfcookbook.blogspot.com/2009/12/every-celiacs-nightmare.html
and their poor little boy who ate the contaminated food. :(
Sunday, December 13, 2009
La Bottega now offers Gluten Free Panini’s in some of their restaurants. The Garden City South location offers Gluten Free Panini, Soups and weekly changing Pasta. Roslyn offers all the same as Garden City South, plus Gluten Free Pizza! Other locations such as Floral Park, Long Beach and Roosevelt Field Mall all offer Gluten Free Panini only as of right now.
I visited the Garden City South location and the Roosevelt Field location. At the GC South location, I got “Hogans” which was Artichoke, sun-dried tomato, grilled chicken, fresh mozzarella and pesto on a gluten-free roll, toasted- Panini style! It was very good. I also got gluten-free cream of broccoli soup to start which was delicious! I was so excited to be able to get soup and a sandwich again! They also had many other soups on hand that were also gluten-free.
Next door (attached) is Caffe Barocco which had Gluten-Free Gelato for dessert- it was Soooo yummy. I got the tiramisu flavor which was my favorite.
The Garden City South, Roslyn, Floral Park, Long Beach and Roosevelt Field Mall locations all offer Gluten-Free items. Hopefully all of their locations will soon offer a GF menu (as well as all of the GF items)! There are locations in Merrick, Rockville Centre, Massapequa Park, Oceanside, and others that do NOT have a GF menu at this point.
Visit their website for locations and GF menu
Here are the locations of the two I visited:
Garden City South Location:
La Bottega & Caffe Barocco
147 Nassau Blvd 143 Nassau Blvd
Garden City South, NY 11552 Garden City South, NY 11552
Roosevelt Field Mall Location:
Between Macy’s and Nordstrom
Friday, December 11, 2009
Oh my gosh, and I almost forgot- showing the insides of a small intestine?! They didn’t even explain what he was showing! I’m assuming the damaged villi (but even I was confused, and I understand what gluten does to my intestines!) from the beginning to the bottom- but couldn’t “see” which was the damaged and which wasn’t.
After they came back from commercial they featured a women just diagnosed (who really just stood there and answered 1 question at the end) while EH walked her through the gluten and non-gluten free products. I did like how EH talked about items that one doesn’t necessarily think of as having gluten (ie. salad dressing, hand lotion, lipstick), and I also liked how she explained that items such as peanut butter/butter/jelly (any “jar” type food) is a cross-contamination nightmare, and to label the gluten-free ones so they remain gluten free! (only the GF person is using labeled jar “a” then this way no gluten-containing crumbs will get in there from the knife!) I thought it was great that she had time to say that, because often times someone who is just diagnosed, wouldn’t even think of that!
All in all it was a nice quick segment on Dr. Oz. But, for all the hype surrounding the casting of the “newly diagnosed” celiac, discussions on numerous blogs, email reminders of the show airing, and the fact that this was an “Oprah descendent” featuring CD on his show, it’s too bad you really could have blinked and missed it.
In case you did…. http://www.doctoroz.com/videos/celiac-disease-advantages-gluten-free-diet
There’s no video up yet, but they do feature a bio on celiac disease, and maybe they will put it up soon, so check back!
And here is the preview commercial they aired for it:
Submit your original recipe creations and photograph using Glutino’s best selling Gluten-Free Pretzels for your chance to win a year supply of Glutino’s Gluten Free Pretzels!
Contest Rules & Regulations: The Glutino Holiday Gluten Free Pretzel Recipe Contest seeks original recipes prepared with Glutino’s Gluten Free Pretzels. Recipes may not been published previously and must not infringe upon any other person’s rights. The contest begins November 9, 2009 at midnight Eastern Time and ends on December 18, 2009 at 11:59pm.
How to Enter:
Email: Email your recipe and photograph in English to email@example.com . Please include your full name and mailing address. Email entries must be received by 11:59pm Eastern Time on December 18, 2009. By
Participating in the contest entrants acknowledge and agree that his/her recipe and photos may be used by Glutino Food Group and subsidiaries in any format at its sole discretion.
The Grand Prize Winners will be determined no later than December 31, 2009. The decision is the sole right of Glutino Food Group. The decision by Glutino Food Group will be final and binding on all matters related to the contest.
Contest Prizes: The top 3 recipes based on taste, ease of preparation, creativity, look and style will receive a 1 year supply of Glutino Food Group Pretzels. One year supply is equivalent to 52 units of Glutino 8oz Pretzels. Limit one winner per household.
Tuesday, December 8, 2009
December 4, 2009 - As a precautionary measure, due to mislabeling, College Inn is initiating a voluntary recall of College Inn® No MSG Chicken Broth sold in individual 14 ½ oz cans. All other sizes and varieties of College Inn® Chicken Broth are correctly labeled and therefore are not affected by this voluntary recall.
College Inn is voluntarily recalling College Inn® No MSG Chicken Broth in individual 14 ½ oz cans due to the presence of wheat (an allergen) which was not declared in the ingredient statement. Also, the label incorrectly states that the product does not contain Monosodium Glutamate (MSG).
This Thursday, December 10, 2009, Dr. Oz will be featuring a story on Celiac Disease with Dr. Green! The show will air in the Long Island area on Fox (channel 5 for Cablevision), at 3pm. (According to Cablevision... "Talk-show host Elisabeth Hasselbeck discusses bloating with Dr. Oz; a mother of three tells how she lost 80 pounds; ulcers and stress."
Cast:Elisabeth Hasselbeck; Air Date:Thu 12/10 3:00PM; Channel: 5 FOX or 705 FOXD)
The Dr. Oz Show airing Thursday, December 10th 2009 will discuss celiac disease and the gluten-free diet. Dr. Peter Green, Director of the Celiac Disease Center at Columbia University, will be featured on the program along with a recently diagnosed Celiac and author of The G-Free Diet, Elizabeth Hasselbeck.
From the Fox 5 website:
Dr. Oz Show Hidden Epidemic: When Bloating Is a Sign of Something Toxic60 mins.Elisabeth Hasselbeck talks about bloating with Dr. Oz. Also: a look at the connection between stress and ulcers; a weight-loss success story.
Also, here is a link to the Dr. Oz show website http://www.doctoroz.com/
Monday, December 7, 2009
I made the Snicker Doodle party mix and it is DELICIOUS! http://www.liveglutenfreely.com/recipes/Snickerdoodle-Chex-Mix.aspx
At this site you can also subscribe to GM’s Gluten-Free Newsletter, which is published every-other-month, or by clicking here: http://links.emails.generalmills.com/servlet/SignUpForm?f=223317
This is so exciting that a main-stream company is providing such awareness and availability of Gluten-Free products! Now hopefully other companies will follow suit!
Saturday, November 21, 2009
How Awesome is this?!
Five Guys website: http://www.fiveguys.com/index.aspx
Here are the following locations on Long Island (Hicksville is "coming soon"). There are also a lot around the NYC boroughs, NJ, CT, PA and upstate NY.
Kohl's Shopping Center (next to DSW)
3497 Hempstead Turnpike
Levittown, NY 11756
Bay Village Plaza
35 Merrick Road
Amityville, NY 11701
2-4 W. Park Avenue
Long Beach, NY 11561
Merrick *NOW OPEN!*
2099 Merrick Road
Merrick, NY 11566
265 North Broadway
Hicksville, NY 11801
601 Veteran's Highway
Hauppauge, NY 11788
Huntington Shopping Plaza
350 Route 110
Huntington Station, NY 11746
Friday, November 20, 2009
USA Today Media Planet on Celiac Disease 11.20.09
Wednesday, November 18, 2009
Based on this report, I am not sure which “phase” of the study I was a part of- it definitely was not an “online survey” nor a “paper survey”- and was not 10,000 people. In this report, it did say in the comments area under comment #7-
“Comment 7) One comment asked that the questions be very clear.
(Response) FDA agrees that it is important that the study questions be unambiguous. To achieve this goal, FDA will conduct cognitive interviews prior to administering the main study, in which a trained interviewer goes through the questionnaire with adults with celiac disease and discusses whether the questions are understandable and valid.”
So, I wonder if this was the “cognitive interviews prior to administering the main study” to ascertain if the questions were unambiguous- or actually a “pre-interview” because they did not ask us the questionnaire, just our feedback on the pictures- so more likely this was a pre-interview in which they will use our comments to MAKE the questions, to THEN be interviewed, and THEN be distributed?
Either way, it’s exciting to see some more info and movement on this VERY important study and eventual label law!
My one concern is in the beginning where it says “In the proposed rule (72 FR 2795), FDA proposed a regulation to define the term ``gluten-free'' and to establish uniform conditions for its use in the voluntary labeling of foods”
VOLUNTARY?!?! Why would they do all this and make it “VOLUNTARY” - unless they are saying that people don’t HAVE to label their food gluten-free, but if they DO, it has to mean something (be legit). I guess this makes sense.
Here is the summary of what the study sets out to do:
FDA is planning to conduct an experimental study about gluten-free labeling of food products. The Gluten-Free Labeling of Food Products Experimental Study will collect information from both consumers who have celiac disease or gluten intolerance and those who do not have either condition. The purpose of the study is to gauge perceptions of characteristics related to claims of ``gluten-free'' and allowed variants (e.g., ``free of gluten,'' ``without gluten,'' ``no gluten''), in addition to other types of statements (e.g., ``made in a gluten-free facility'' or ``not made in a facility that processes gluten-containing foods'') on the food label. The study will also assess consumer understanding of ``gluten-free'' claims on foods that are naturally free of gluten, and gauge consumer reaction to a product carrying a
gluten claim concurrently with a statement about the amount of gluten
the product contains.
Here is the FDA Report link.... http://edocket.access.gpo.gov/2009/E9-27512.htm
Sunday, November 15, 2009
Go to this website, and mid-way down the page, see "Gluten-Free" where you will find the FDA's proposed rule to define the food labeling term "gluten-free" and a Q and A about this proposal.
They told us to keep checking the website for updates (the last posting was from 2007!! so hopefully there will be some updates now in 2009-2010!) We were also told that in the near future, the FDA plans to publish for public comment a Federal Register notice announcing the availability of the agency's safety assessment on gluten exposure in individuals with ceilac disease. Sometime after the comment period on this safety assessment closes, the FDA will issue a final rule defining the term "gluten-free"!
From the GFRAP website:
"Everything is better at Boulder! Come in and enjoy steak, chicken or fish. All of our seasonings are gluten-free. Even the french fries are gluten-free-they are cooked in a dedicated fryer!"
Boulder Creek Steakhouse
200 N Broadway
NY, New York 11801
I can't wait to try the french fries!!! (Update: They were GREAT!)
Tuesday, October 27, 2009
They will be open from Nov. 1st to the 8th for the event. Reservations are recommended. The price fix for the LI Restaurant week is $24.95. Many of their items are gluten free, (according to their website 90% of the menu is GF!) the waiters know which menu items are, or they check with Chef Michael. (My favorite are the Papusas!)
You can see their menu at: http://www.maizecantina.com
1141 E Jericho Turnpike
Commack, NY 11725-3010
Wednesday, October 14, 2009
Among them was Bridget from Bare Naked Bakery, which is located inside Friendly Farms in East Meadow. I stopped by the bakery on Sunday and was pleasantly surprised! The Gluten-free selection on hand that day was a pumpkin pie (which I quickly snagged up!), chocolate chip cookies, pumpkin cookies, pumpkin loafs, banana-peanut butter loaf (which my husband loved!), cinnamon raisin bread, brownies and muffins! I took almost one of everything!! The pumpkin pie was great, as were the pumpkin cookies! The cinnamon raisin bread was really tasty too (It reminded me of when I was able to eat gluten- the Milleridge Inn cinnamon raisin bread! YUM!) and the banana-peanut butter loaf was good as well- nice and moist! The bakery section is open Thursday through Sunday and they get deliveries daily on those days. On Saturday’s they have their GF Chef on hand to give out samples of items such as vegetable quiche and corn chowder! I am looking forward to going back and getting a fresh bagel next week! Their items are baked in a dedicated gluten-free kitchen- and baked with farm fresh ingredients from Friendly Farms! They have Holiday Baskets and special orders available!
bare naked bakery
Now located in Bellmore, on Merrick Road.
*UPDATE: Bare Naked Bakery has now moved to it's own location- in Bellmore- see post http://www.glutenfreeli.com/2010/07/bare-naked-bakery-lis-1st-full-gluten.html all about it! *
Monday, October 12, 2009
The pit master at Ruby’s Famous BBQ Joint in East Meadow created a gluten-free menu because a relative of his has Celiac Disease! I visited there two times and each time was not disappointed!! For an appetizer, we ordered potato skins… These potato skins were loaded with Mashed potatoes, cheese, sour cream and we toped it off with BBQ chicken! They were huge and delicious!! After eating 1 and ½ of these (my husband and I split them) we were so stuffed, but I still had a whole meal coming! I tried the BBQ beef Brisket which came with two sides, I picked sweet potato mashed potato, and baked beans. The entire dish was fabulous!! The BBQ sauce is great and it was all very reasonably priced! The second time we went, I got pulled chicken (same sides! I LOVE the sweet potato mashed!) which was great as well!! If you are in the East Meadow area- stop by this lovely new BBQ place!!
2367 Hempstead Tpke
East Meadow, NY 11554-2027
Monday, September 28, 2009
Look for the article this Thursday, October 1st in Newsday - and online at Newsday.com!
Saturday, September 12, 2009
Pizza Bistro is introducing a new line of gluten free frozen dinners. Heat and eat.
9/12/09 This Weekend Only: Get one frozen dinner free with your purchase of three or more frozen dinners.
Below is a list of their gluten free frozen dinner menu:
-Baked Stuffed Shells
4952 Merrick Rd
Thursday, September 3, 2009
Here's the Info:
The Colin Leslie Walk for Celiac Disease and Vendor Fair
October 18, 2009
9:00 am to 2:00 pm
Rye High School
Rye, NY - in Westchester County
Registration for the Walk includes admittance to the vendor fair. Registrationis required to attend the vendor fair even if you will not be walking. Lunch and snacks will be available for cash purchase, supplied by Soul Dog, a participating restaurant in the Gluten-Free Restaurant Awareness Program.
WALK: Starts at 10:00 am 2 mile or 4 mile route through scenic parts of Rye,
NY VENDOR FAIR 9:00 am to 2:00 pm
REGISTRATION: Pre-registration is available online until October 15, at www.colinlesliewalkforceliacdisease.org
$20 (adults) $15 (children 12 and under)
You can also register at the Walk: $25 (adults) $20 (children 12 and under)
***Be sure to register by October 1 to be guaranteed a free t-shirt***
PARKING: Parking is behind 411 Theodore Fremd Ave., in Rye, for no extracharge. Free shuttle buses will be running throughout the day fortransportation between Rye High School and the parking lot. There is no parking at the high school. All proceeds will be donated to the Celiac Disease Center at ColumbiaUniversity. The Colin Leslie Walk for Celiac Disease in Rye, NY is co-sponsoredby the Westchester Celiac Sprue Support Group. For more information: www.colinlesliewalkforceliacdisease.org We hope you will join us at this special event.
Colin Leslie and Carine Leslie2009 Co-organizers
Wednesday, August 12, 2009
Chipotle is by far my FAVORITE of the “places I can eat” on a quick meal- or any meal for that matter! The majority of the items are Gluten-Free, which is great (no burrito wrap tortilla’s, or soft taco shells), and the staff at all of the locations I have visited on LI and NYC have been VERY accommodating regarding changing their gloves. The one on Hempstead Turnpike in Uniondale by the Coliseum is great, as are the ones on Rt 110, (by Rt 109 in the Chilis shopping center, as well as the one further north, by the Walt Whitman mall). The one in Tanger Outlet in Deer Park has also been great- I love going there, doing a bit of shopping, eating dinner at Chipotle and then catching a movie in the huge new theatre there, and then going to RED MANGO (See previous blog entry regarding Red Mango) next door to the movie theatre for certified GF FroYo for dessert!
Chipotle not only has good GF food for us to eat, their company prides themselves in providing us with food that is good for us! They call this "Food With Integrity”- Naturally raised meats and dairy!
From their website:
“ To meet our naturally raised standard, chicken must:
• Never be given antibiotics.
• Have more room to move about than in conventional chicken
• Be vegetarian fed, never given animal by-products.
Once again, naturally raised pork at Chipotle means:
• No antibiotics, ever.
• Letting pigs exhibit their natural behaviors in open pasture or
• Vegetarian feed with no animal by-products.
When you order naturally raised beef at Chipotle, here is what you are getting (and not getting):
• No added growth hormones, ever.
• No antibiotics, ever.
• Vegetarian feed with no animal by-products.
We think some things should be sacred. Like dairy. The cheese and the sour cream at all of our restaurants is free of the synthetic growth hormone rBGH. We're not scientists, but ingesting hormones with our crispy tacos just doesn't seem like a good idea.”
OK- so not to bore you with the details, they can be found here but to highlights a few of the AWESOME factoids! (http://www.chipotle.com/#/flash/fwi_fare?sub=2 )
“•Our foods at Chipotle have no artificial colors or artificial flavorings.
• We use no peanuts, tree nuts or any other kind of nuts in our foods. Only our cheese and sour cream contain any dairy. And there are no eggs in our foods.
• We offer a number of vegetarian and vegan dining choices.
• Over three hundred of our restaurants currently recycle glass, plastic, and/or cardboard.”
So, Chipotle is not only Gluten-Free Friendly, but Allergen Friendly, not using any peanuts, tree nuts or any other kind of nuts, and no eggs! Those avoiding Dairy can also eat easy, by avoiding the sour cream and cheese!
Click here for Chipotle locations in LI/NYC area http://www.chipotle.com/restaurants/map.asp?address=&city=&state=&zip=11590
Tuesday, August 4, 2009
Here is the customer service number to call: 1-800-446-1898, then press option #4 to get to an operator, and mention that you are calling for the coupon for a free gluten free mix! They will mail it to you in 6-8 weeks!
Sunday, July 26, 2009
There are currently 2 locations on Long Island- Plainview and Deer Park (in Tanger Outlets), but they are soon to be in Massapequa Park (next door to Pizza Bistro!)
Just be careful of toppings cross-contamination, as not all of their toppings are Gluten-Free!
Red Mango- Plainview
357 S. Oyster Bay Rd.
Plainview, NY 11803
Phone: 516 433 2302
Red Mango- Tanger Outlets (Deer Park)
152 The Arches Circle
Deer Park, NY 11729
Phone: 631 242 8200
There are also locations in NYC area as well!
Tuesday, July 21, 2009
To sign the petition click on the below link.
Thursday, July 16, 2009
I am asking all of my readers (yes, all 3 of you) and anyone who happens upon my blog to write in to Starbucks and COMPLAIN and ask that the GF Valencia cake remain in their product line!!! Here is the link to the "my starbucks idea" forum where you can provide feedback (I started a link- you just need to "sign in" to Starbucks)-http://mystarbucksidea.force.com/ideaView?id=087500000005S0qAAE
Update: VOTE and comment on this link as well called "marketing" on the starbucks site (they merged mine with his) http://mystarbucksidea.force.com/ideaView?id=087500000005S1PAAU&mc=0&p=1
PLEASE DO SO!!
Friday, July 3, 2009
This Sunday, July 5th Pizza Bistro in Massapequa will be serving some brand new Gluten Free Pasta dishes that they are considering adding to their menu!
They will have Gluten Free Spinach Ravioli, Gluten Free Cheese Ravioli, Gluten Free Stuffed Shells and Gluten Free Gnocchi! - all can be prepared baked with mozzarella cheese-
On SUNDAY'S they will serve a combination dish serving ALL of these options!!!
They want to know which pasta to add to their already awesome Gluten Free Menu!
Click Here for Google Map of Pizza Bistro
4952 Merrick Rd
Tuesday, June 23, 2009
I went to Francesca's because someone had recommended it to me as advertising in the newspaper that they offer "Gluten Free"- so when I went, asked the girls behind the counter about which were gluten free and they "kind of" pointed to some cookies, even with the add for "Gluten Free" that was big and in the window! The cookies that the girls were saying contained no gluten were at the bottom of open racks with tons of gluten products above them, so even if I DID trust that they didn't contain gluten, I felt the cross-contamination was too great. I asked if they baked in a dedicated facility (which they do not), and what steps they take to eliminate cross-contamination, which they did not know. I asked if there was anyone else I could speak to about their "gluten-free" products, they said they were the only ones there and didn't know. Needless to say I did not buy a thing, and have not gone back.
When my reader wrote me the following I was shocked and felt we had to warn others:
My husband ordered me a sheet cake and cheese cake a few months ago (gluten free). They were great. I went back and tried to order another cheese cake for Easter and spoke to the owner on the phone while in the bakery. He said that he could not make one with such short notice and said that the ones already made "only had "a little "gluten!!!) I questioned him as to whether or not the one I ordered was really gluten free. He could not tell me what the crust was made from! Needless to say, I left without anything. I decided not to get the gluten free cookies (which are also delicious) either. I was afraid that they too may have "a little" gluten!!) I did not trust whether the pantry was cross contaminated. I did try to explain to the owner that by saying that it had a little gluten is like telling someone with a peanut allergy there is only one peanut in it! He asked me if I had gotten sick and if not, it was not big deal!! My concern is that they will continue to sell these products and people will continue to buy them under false pretense.
Unfortunately people who are not educated in gluten-free do not fully understand the seriousness of it and the precaustions that must be taken to prepare fully gluten-free foods! Even KELLOGS, a huge corportation wrote back in an e-mail regarding their items that contain gluten with a list of items that contain only "a little gluten"... C'mon! this is Kellogs! Ugh. So if big companies don't get it, how can we expect the small ones to care?! We have to do our best in the Celiac Community to keep getting out there and educating as many people as we can as to false advertising!
As a rule, I tend to ask a lot of questions before ordering anything "new" that is claiming to be "Gluten Free", so luckily I didn't buy at Franchescas, but I'm sure a lot of people did because they trust in the signage and labeling of Gluten Free...
Can't wait to try it! GF Pita bread!! I'll report back when I try it!
Thursday, May 7, 2009
So it’s official, Starbucks has the Gluten-Free Valencia Cakes! The developer of the new Gluten-free Orange Valencia Cake, Chris writes a behind-the-scenes look at how these new GF treats are made. It’s nice to hear that they are making them in a separate facility in a “gluten free zone” as he called it, so that they took the comments from the public seriously about cross-contamination during production as well as display! They are keeping the cakes in their individual wrappers to ensure that the cakes can not be contaminated with other products at the store! Look at the blog entry from Chris the chef detailing the process of making them as well as some pics of the process!
I have yet to go try them but I will be stopping by soon and will report back! ENJOY!
Thursday, April 16, 2009
Monday, April 13, 2009
Thank you for contacting General Mills with your inquiry.General Mills is reformulating the following Big G Cereals to gluten free status:
o Corn Chex
o Honey Nut Chex
o Strawberry Chex
o Chocolate Chex,
o Cinnamon Chex
As was the case with Gluten Free Rice Chex, the barley malt ingredient was removed and replaced with another ingredient. Production has begun, so consumers may start seeing the gluten free formulas on store shelves now. All 5 products should be widely available across the US by June 1, 2009.As with all reformulated products, both products may be on store shelves at the same time so consumers are encouraged to read labels/packaging carefully.Consumers should carefully examine the product packaging to ensure that the cereal inside the box is in fact the new, gluten free product. Look for "NOW GLUTEN FREE" or "GLUTEN FREE" on the front/side/back panels.We hope you find this information helpful. Please let us know if we can help you again.
Saturday, April 11, 2009
"Jandi's introduces new allergy coded signs in our deli! You may have noticed new signs on the food in our deli. To make it easy for our many allergy sensitive customers to shop, there are 4 color coded carrots at the top left corner of our deli signs to help determine what is best for you. Here is the coding - Green carrot = Vegan, Yellow carrot = Gluten Free, Orange carrot = Soy free, Purple carrot = nut free. We use almost exclusively USDA certified organic ingredients. We use no yeast and no refined sugar. Most of our food is dairy free. We do not fry. We offer a number of live/raw food dishes. All of our food is DELICIOUS! Stop in today and ask for a sample."
Jandi's Natural Market
3000 Long Beach Road
Oceanside, NY 11572
(516) 536-5535 Phone
Friday, April 10, 2009
The day began in Bellmore, at Joan’s Gluten Free Great Bakes where we got a first hand look at Joan and her crew preparing Joan’s DELICIOUS Gluten Free Sicilian Pizzas. Joan’s offers frozen bagels, pizza’s, Cookies, English muffins and soon to be released Italian rolls (which were SO AMAZING- I can not wait until they are available for sale!). Next we visited Smoking Sloes in East Northport for a Gluten Free Lunch of BBQ pulled-chicken, GF baked beans, and GF BBQ shrimp on salad we also were treated to GF brownies (made by Azure Chocolate) to-go for dessert. From there we headed south to Oakdale to eat at Mama’s. At Mama’s we dined on fresh baked Gluten Free bread, Garlic Bread, Pizza, and my favorite, Chicken Montanara, which is Chicken, Sun-Dried Tomatoes, Broccoli tossed in Garlic and Oil, served over Gluten Free Ziti. For dessert we had Gluten Free Cannoli (my FAVORITE!), Gluten Free Chocolate Cake and Gluten Free Italian Cheese Cake. As if we weren’t stuffed already, our last stop of the day took us back to Nassau County, to Wantagh to visit Caffé Baldo. At Caffe Baldo we ordered a Gluten Free Pizza and were pleased to find out that their regular menu is now one in the same with their Gluten Free menu- that is, anything on the menu can be made Gluten Free! The pizza has a wonderful flavor on it’s thin crust and the size is similar to a traditional pizza pie! There were gluten-free cakes and cookies on display, and I made sure to order my gluten free apple pie for Easter!
Our day began at 10:30 am and we circled the island to finish by 6:15 pm! It was a wonderful day of exploring only some of the GF options available on Long Island and the people behind the GF menus! I truly appreciate them sowing us what they have to offer, and am glad that they provide this valuable service for those of us who can’t eat Gluten- making it easier for us to feel “normal” again.
Watch for the segment in a few weeks on a Monday, during Mary’s weekly report (every hour) on News 12 Long Island. Visit Mary’s Blog at http://blogs.news12.com/longisland/author/mpmucci/
Tuesday, April 7, 2009
This is the largest Gluten-free consumer event in North America!! Over 50 gluten-free vendors will be selling their products! (most vendors will have samples and some will accept credit cards)
Date: Sunday, April 26, 2009
Time: 11:00am- 4:00pm
Location: International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers
(IBEW) Local 25
370 Vanderbilt Motor Parkway
Google Map Directions : Click Here
• Dr. Peter Green, Director, Celiac Disease Center at Columbia University
• Cynthia Kupper, Registered Dietitian, Director, Gluten Intolerance Group
One day Membership and Entrance fee is $10.00 per person (Cash only)
Children under 12 free; families of 4 or more $30.00 total.
Profits will be donated to: The Celiac Disease Center at Columbia.
Come join us and help the Celiac Community:
Find improved diagnosis and treatments for Celiacs, Educate the medical community on Long Island and possibly find a cure!
Approximately 1% of people in the US have Celiac Disease and 97% have not been properly diagnosed. That means that over 300,000 Long Islanders suffer from Celiac and more than 290,000 of them have not yet been diagnosed.
Here is a list of participating vendors:
Aleia's Gluten Free Foods
Allergy Friendly Foods
Kitchen Table Bakers
Aunt Gussies Cookies & Crackers
Little Bay Baking Co.
Marble Slab Creamery
Bakery on Main
Bob & Ruth's GF Travel Club
Bob's Red Mill Natural Foods
Miller's Gluten Free Bread Co.
Buona Sera Restaurant
Mixes from the Heartland
Caesar's Pasta Products
Mr. Ritts Bakery
Clare Rose Distributors (Red Bridge Beer)
Domata Living Flour
Nutritional Healing Technologies
Foods by George
Organic Bistro Whole Life Meals
Enjoy Life Natural Brands
Rose Door Inc.
Full Flavor Foods
Shabtai Gourmet Bakery
Get Healthy America
Smokin Sloe's Restaurant
Gilbert's Gourmet Goodies
The Best Ever Low Carb Cakes
Gluten Free Naturals
The Diet Shop
Gluten Free Passport
The Gluten Free Choice
Good Day Sunshine
The Grainless Baker
The L. Lodico Walk for Celiac Disease
Joan's GF Great Bakes
The Silly Yak Bakery
Katz Gluten Free
Two Fresh Chefs
For more information on the Suffolk County Celiac Support Group visit their website: http://www.suffolkcountyceliacs.org/Index.htm
Monday, April 6, 2009
The pizza’s themselves had a very nice flavor, although the crusts did tend to crumble a bit, and the crust at the top would fall off (See pic). You have to eat them with a fork and knife, because if you picked it up it would crumble a bit- but it was still tasty enough that that didn’t matter- and being able to order GF pizza at a main-stream chain restaurant with your friends is definitely a bonus!
They even have a $1 off coupon http://www.unos.com/coupons/glutenfree/ to try the new Gluten Free Pizzas! (coupon valid until May 31, 2009)
Unfortunately, their only Long Island location right now is Lynbrook (the rest closed down), but you can visit their website for other non-LI locations (which include NYC, and other states) - http://www.unos.com/
Thursday, February 26, 2009
My sister and I ate there (both celiacs) and we got a GF Pizza, with 1/2 BBQ chicken, and 1/2 Buffalo Chicken Pizza. It was OUTSTANDING. I think it was one of the best Gluten Free Pizza's I have ever had. The crust was thin and crispy, but not too thin and the prefect crispness! One of my blog readers also wote in that the Margaritta pizza was fabluous as well, and I will definately try that next time!
UPDATE: I went back for the Margaritta pizza and it WAS FABULOUS. The best tasting GF pizza- the flavor- was the BEST, and again, I'm still a fan of the crust! (See pic!)
UPDATE: I went back again, for the ZITI GF pizza- which was GREAT!!! It was so nice to be able to get a ziti slice again- I am in love with these pizzas!
1/29/10 UPDATE: Pizza Bistro now has a website where you can also print out their gluten-free menu http://www.pizzabistrony.com/ ...and is a Member of GFRAP http://www.glutenfreerestaurants.org/adv_search.php?name=&city=Massapequa&state=NY&cuisine=&submit=Search
Check them out!
4952 Merrick Road
Massapequa Park, NY
Sunday, January 4, 2009
They have thoroughly thought through cross-contamination issues, and although they do not have a dedicated Gluten-Free facility, the baking of GF products is done on the day they are closed, and every piece of equipment is completely washed, cleaned, and sanitized prior to anything GF being made in/on it.
Sweet Karma also makes Gluten-Free occasion cakes! The GF cakes can be made with 48 hours notice, and they come in either GF Chocolate Cake, Yellow Genoise (Spongecake) or an Almond (or) Hazelnut cake. You also get a choice of fillings which include too many to list (but among my fav’s): Cannoli (w/chocolate chips), Chocolate Moose, Fresh Fruit (in season), Vanilla Custard, and Chocolate Pudding. (YUM). For Icing you can choose: Whipped Cream, Buttercream, or Rolled Fondant (Extra cost). Cakes come in a variety of sizes and include a simple artwork. Multi-level cakes and intricate artwork are also available- including tiered wedding cakes! Visit the store to see some of the amazing designs they have done! The order forms for Gluten-Free cakes are on bright neon green forms and say GLUTEN FREE on it, so that it immediately sticks out as a Gluten-Free order! They also usually have frozen Gluten-Free cupcakes on hand, just go in and ask for 1 or 4 to take with you to a party so that you can eat a cupcake along with everyone else (and bring the others home to the freezer)! ;) They keep extra desserts in the freezer as well, so you can go there, pick them up frozen and bring them home to put in Tupperware or freezer bags and place directly into your freezer until you want to use them, when you take them out to thaw!
They also plan to start making pizza crust in Plain, Sesame, and Parmesan.
I am definitely going to order a GF cake for the next birthday we have coming up (I’m getting Canoli filling!) and I will report back on how that is- I almost can’t wait! Too bad my birthday was in November- I’ll have to see if someone else wants a gluten-free cake for THEIR birthday to humor me! (although I’m told that their cakes are so good it’s almost hard to tell- from the taste of the desserts we sampled, they were so good, I would definitely say I could not tell that they were Gluten-Free!)
Sweet Karma Desserts
550 East Meadow Avenue
East Meadow, NY 11554
about Students at Purdue University who have developed a gluten free alternative to Play-Doh!
Play-Doh, which contains wheat, could be a problem to kids with Celiac, if they put it in their mouth and eat it, or have residual doh on their hands and then eat, creating a possibility of a cross-contamination of their food
New York Times Article: