Friday, July 31, 2009


Just received an email from the owner/chef at BISTRO 2210. I knew I found a sleeper. As I stated in my last post, keep looking for small, owner operated restaurants to get a good gluten free meal!

Here is his email:

Hello, thanks for the nice review of our bistro. I have no problem cooking for celiacs or any other food allergy. As a chef you have to be able to meet your customer's needs even it means cooking off menu. But most of our food isn't heavy on flour. We like pure vegetable purees for soups and the like. I'm working on a wheat & gluten free sandwich right now! I'll keep you posted. Thanks again!
Jason Armstrong, Chef OwnerBistro 2210

Now go and book that table. The Duck Poutine.......

Friday, July 24, 2009


Loblaw has announced today that they are buying T&T Supermarkets for 225 Million. Interestings facts in this article.

I can't wait for the next wave of commercial with Galen Weston Jr.
Ideas anyone?

Sunday, July 19, 2009


What do you get when you take Bruno and a wood fired Pizza oven from Italy? The best GLUTEN FREE PIZZA in Canada. And of course regular pies as well.
My goal on this trip was to see how GF PATISSERIE'S Pizza shells would taste if baked in a wood fired oven.

Victoria says that is was the best Pizza she had.

Of course big thanks go to Sandra, bruno's wife who really only bought the best ingredients for this Pizza party.
Bruno was manning the oven, which so gladly was provided to us by Heath & Jill in Black Diamond. You can read more about them in this post:

Frutti di mare

Gluten Free Pizza baked in a wood fired oven look that good! And taste even better.

This is Victoria's gluten free Pizza.

Isabella, a picky eater, ate her whole gluten free Pizza.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009


So many of you asked Victoria if the Paninis will be back that she told me to make more gluten free Paninis this Saturday from 11AM to 2PM

I gladly oblige, fans of GF Patisserie. The weather is supposed to be nice, a perfect reason for a nice day trip to Cochrane.
And I promise I won't run out of that dipping sauce this time.

Lauren has also made plans for all sorts of great pies and cakes, Key Lime and Banana Cream Pies, as well as Mini Chocolate cakes with raspberry filling or whipped cream.

Monday, July 13, 2009


Victoria is experimenting. Can you guess what it will be? Queen Elizabeth II loves them.

Guessed right. White Chocolate and Raspberry scones they are.

Thursday, July 09, 2009


I am sure you have heard how some restaurants (such as Cactus Club Cafe) try to sell their Key Lime Pie. Each pie needs THAT (insert number) many key limes to make it just right.

As of yesterday, I can confirm those numbers. Lauren went on to try if she can create the perfect gluten free "pucker your lips" lime mixture for her pie.

The only thing that ruined a perfect photo op was me. My impatience and pushiness to get a slice before I go to bed, ruined the final image. The pie did not settle yet and I was unable to take a good picture of the crust.

I am not sure if Lauren will make it for GF Patisserie this weekend, but let me tell you. Email or call them anyway to see if it's available, the Key Lime Pie is PERFECT in flavor. I think Lauren might try to make individual servings.

If you like Victoria's cheesecake crust, imagine the same, just with a perfect summer filling of key limes!

Wednesday, July 08, 2009


Just so you know Lauren, I am up since 5am staring at that birthday cake of yours. It's almost 8am and you are still sleeping. Torture.

Congratulations to your 20th, you make us all proud.

Please get up now.
Update: 8.30am, Lauren finally made it out of bed and we got to eat the cake. Almond, cream and caramel drizzle. Excellent cake made by the best GF Baker, Victoria.
UPDATE #2: 12:15pm Please note David's waffle. He is allergic to nuts, so he got one of GF Patisserie's waffles with butter, maple sirup and fresh strawberries. Lucky guy....

Tuesday, July 07, 2009


I had a very very busy day today. Now, I am in the absolute "WANT" business. Nobody needs my creations. It looks good (, but really, it's just stuff.
So I take the recent upswing in orders and inquiries as a clear indication that business is getting a bit better and the worst is behind me.

So busy it was, I missed three phone calls from my pal Bruno. You know what that means, three calls from Cougar Ridge? That means food. I never miss an opportunity to eat Bruno's Italian specialties. NEVER. On my way from one appointment to another, I finally was able to return the call and chat with Bruno.

Basically he told me he made something special and I have to come right away. Right away? Business is just starting to pick up. Dollars or food? I am on fire the last week or so....what should I do?
Yes, you guessed right. I took a detour up the hill in Canada Olympic Park ( my favorite shortcut) and dropped by La Casa di Bruno to see what is so important. In the food department.

Huh! Sandra the very good soul and shooting star realtor surprised me with a gluten free Focaccia she made today for Victoria. She has been picking my brain for a while, what sets GF breads apart from real bread, what makes Victoria's versions so much better than the rest, etc., etc.

Now, very much as with Pizza, Focaccia is a combination of things. The dough has to be right, the cooking time has to be spot on and of course the little flavorful things that go on top, VERY IMPORTANT! Bruno put on some olives, herbs, and roasted peppers.

Let me tell you. Not only was Sandra's version really tasty and very fluffy, the thoughtfulness of them, Italian gluten eaters of mega proportions, to think of Victoria and her disease, that is even more impressive than the actual flat bread. I am glad I made the detour. And missed my next appointment. You can't just go to Bruno's house and pick up something to go. You sit down, there is wine, there is antipasto, there is talk, there are ideas, there are plans.

Just great! Life is good.

Friday, July 03, 2009



Mass marketer General Mills Inc. is carving out a niche in gluten-freefood after realizing it could reach eager customers without costly adcampaigns.
The company’s Betty Crocker brand is rolling out gluten-free mixes forcookies, brownies and cakes. The mixes are the first gluten-freeoffering from a major, mainstream brand in the cake-mix aisle. Gluten isa key protein in wheat, but many people react badly to it.
Ann Simonds, General Mills’s president of baking products, says thecompany decided to pursue gluten-free products last year after itscustomer-relations department noticed that customer inquiries about food allergies and sensitivities most frequently centered on whether items contained gluten.

“It used to be, as a marketer in the food industry, you needed a $50million idea to make the business model work,” says Ms. Simonds. “Today, you can meet an unmet need that will be a $5 million business . … That would be worth it for a company like General Mills.”
Last July, General Mills released a gluten-free version of its Chexcereal, and the company received thousands of grateful emails and phone calls.

Doctors increasingly are diagnosing Celiac disease — in which ingestinggluten causes the body to damage the digestive system. Moreover, a diet fad is focusing on reducing gluten consumption.
Although only about 1% of the U.S. population has Celiac disease,General Mills says its research shows about 12% of U.S. households want to eliminate or reduce their gluten intake, although some doctors say it’s nutritionally important for those who aren’t sensitive to it.
General Mills won’t disclose how much it’s spending for the gluten-freemarketing, but says it’s much less than what it normally dishes out fornational product launches.

The company’s move also reflects consumer goods makers’ growing use of digital tools to market less expensively to niche segments of consumers. In recent years, companies such as Procter & Gamble Co., candy-maker Mars Inc. and others have launched new products without marketing through TV, magazines or newspapers.
Instead, big marketers have relied on Web sites, toll-free numbers anddirect sales to customers such as doctors and specific retailers tointroduce some new products, says Alison Chaltas, a marketing consultant with Interscope LLC.

The Betty Crocker brand plans to spread the word by sponsoring onlinemarketing, advertising in gluten-free lifestyle magazines, andparticipating in gluten-related events. In early May, Betty Crockersponsored a booth at a Celiac Disease Foundation event in California.
The company paid for product links to show up more prominently whenpeople search “gluten-free birthday cake mix” and “gluten free dessertmixes” on Google. The company also sent hundreds of product samples to bloggers who write about Celiac disease, motherhood and related issues.

General Mills, which reported higher-than-expected fiscal fourth quarterearnings per share of $1.07 on Wednesday, plans to launch more than 50 new products — the gluten-free items among them — in the first half of the recently started 2010 fiscal year.
Even though retailers have been focusing on trimming products from their shelves recently, the new gluten-free products could get a welcome reception. “Gluten has increasingly become an area of dietary focus and concern for consumers, and we want to ensure our stores are able to meet their needs,” says Haley Meyer, a spokeswoman for grocery giant Supervalu Inc., some of whose stores are now carrying the new Betty Crocker products.
Currently, mostly small food companies supply gluten-free products.
Producing gluten-free cookie, brownie and cake mixes that consumerswould recognize as Betty Crocker products wasn’t easy. Gluten in wheat flour makes dough springy, helps cakes rise in the oven, and keeps cookies together. Most traditional baked goods contain at least 30% wheat flour.

From September to December, General Mills food scientists baked morethan 1,000 pans of brownies, cookies and cakes while conducting about 75 experiments with different formulations, says Jodi Benson, director of baking products research and development.
In initial experiments with yellow cake, the rice-flour mix wouldn’trise, leaving flat, dense and moist matter in the bottom of the pan, Ms.Benson says. The mix needed something to trap air.
They tried removing some water, substituting butter for oil and uppingthe egg ratios among other things to get the batter to rise in the oven.
After adding testing procedures in its own factories to assure agluten-free environment, General Mills is rolling out the new mixesacross the country. The mixes will sell for about $2 more than thetraditional Betty Crocker mixes.
“We refer to [the customer base] as narrow but deep,” says Dena Larson, marketing manager in the baking products division. “This may be the only brownie [a customer] buys.”


Wow. Victoria, BC to Edmonton, AB. 1400 kilometres. On a bike. For a good cause. Cycling for Celiacs.

The Edmonton Chapter of the Canadian Celiac Association is putting on this annual event to raise funds for research and awareness. Needless to say, I am in awe. I get tired pushing Isabella on her bike around the Cul de sac.

AUGUST 14th, 11.30AM. The group of riders is making a detour on their way from Canmore to Calgary, to stop for lunch at GF Patisserie. There will be some food for them and of course Victoria's treats as a reward for those great people.

GF Patisserie wants to make this a special stop for the riders and if you have time that Friday, August 14th, please mark it in your calender. They not only need your support, they deserve it.

More updates to come.