Sunday, 13 August 2017

Gluten free toastie in the sunshine

So, I am now living in Truro, Cornwall and loving every second. I moved down from London two weeks ago to be nearer to the sea and have loved finding gluten free treats. I love cheese in any form and I especially love cheese toasties. When I was first diagnosed coming on now for ten years ago g/f sandwiches were a rarity. When trying to grab lunch out somewhere you would inevitably end up with a limp, not very exciting salad or the infamous jacket potato. You would also end up paying more the majority of the time for said salad/potato when sometimes all you crave is a simple sandwich.

Flourish cafe does just that. They are conveniently located on Boscawen Street in the centre of town and you can choose to eat in or take away. I was enjoying a mooch around my new city last Friday and opted to grab a table on my own and watch the world go by. A toastie may not be exciting to many people but believe me it is to a coeliac - it's all about the little things ;-)


This was one awesome gluten free toastie packed with ham, cheese and tomato. The people working at Flourish cafe were really friendly and I know this is going to be regular pit stop for me.

Not a bad start to my new chapter living in Cornwall. I have also discovered gluten free pasties - I will save this for next time.

Claire xx




Sunday, 6 August 2017

Flotsam and Jetsam aka a place I shall miss

Today marks the end of my first week in Cornwall, I have now been living in Truro for seven days and already feel at home. There are aspects of London that, of course, I will miss but this is offset by trips to the beach and a more chilled out life in general where things, on the whole, move a fraction slower. This I like. There are definitely gluten free hotspots that I will miss and a little cafe on Wandsworth Common called Flotsam and Jetsam is one of them. This place is extremely popular and unless you get there early on a weekend you may have a wait on your hands. Catch this place off peak though and you can grab yourself a quiet little corner and with a chilled out vibe you can relax, take it in and watch the world go by.

This is exactly what I did the day before I moved out of the capital. Whether you go for breakfast, lunch or a slice of cake in the afternoon there are always gluten free options. in fact the last weekend before I headed down the A303 I made it in there for both breakfast and cake later on in the day.





I went for a simple but very tasty and aesthetically pleasing eggs Benedict and later on in the day I managed to devour a salted chocolate brownie. Both were delicious. It is clear that the team at Flotsam and Jetsam love what they do, the attention to the detail is on point with a friendly and attentive attitude to boot. No wonder this little spot is so popular. They do healthy juices along with good coffee, interesting sweet offerings and hearty sandwiches. If the sun is shining and you are lucky enough to spot a space to sit outside then grab it. To burn off your food I would recommend a stroll around the common afterwards :-)

Happy munching.

Claire x

Sunday, 16 July 2017

Lunching in Truro

On a recent visit to Truro, my new home to be, we found ourselves hungry and wanting to grab a light lunch. I am in the midst of a month long intensive bootcamp and wanted to put something good in my body. My boyfriend suggested Archie Browns. Archie Browns is a vegetarian cafe where a great deal of the menu is gluten free. There is also a fab little shop downstairs selling lots of gluten free products, some of which you may not find in a regular supermarket.

I ordered the gluten free quiche of the day (cheese, red pepper and pesto) which came with a side salad. This was no regular limp leaf sort of side salad, this was a colourful, flavourful salad with chickpeas, rice and some leaves I have to say I did not recognise. It felt like a hearty yet healthy lunch where along with my smoothie I think I managed pretty much of all of my five a day in one sitting. As I felt I had been so virtuous with my choice of lunch I decided to finish off with a slice of the raw chocolate torte.




Archie Browns is a place I know I will visit a lot following my move. It was so nice to be presented with various gluten free options with not a jacket potato and iceberg lettuce salad in sight. The cafe was busy which is always a good sign and the staff were helpful and really friendly.

I will be in for lunches, cake and take away smoothies to drink at my new desk when I feel I am not getting enough fruit and veg into my body. I have to to say too it was nice to have a break away from meat.

I think I have found a new favourite spot in my new home.

Claire x

Sunday, 2 July 2017

Ice Cream and Tortilla Chips

I like sweet and salty in equal measure. I love crisps and a dip alongside a cool glass of wine sitting outside in the summer just as much as I like a bowl of something sweet curled up in front of the television watching a cheesy film.

To be fair I am not the biggest ice cream fan in the world so if I do invest in a tub its got to be packed with flavour and ideally contain chocolate in some form. I noticed this tub in Tesco a few weeks back and thought I would give it a whirl. The double chocolate chip called out to me in all honesty. Perfect World ice cream is both dairy and gluten free and has no added sugars. There are currently four different flavours - double choc chip, caramel pecan, mint choc chip and a taste of carrot cake. All of the (not so scary) nutritional bumph is clearly outlined on their website so you can see exactly what you are putting in to your body.


I had not idea what my expectations were with this ice cream test but I REALLY liked it. So much so that I managed to put away the entire tub in just three sittings - oops! It had just the right amount of sweetness and filled the craving you tend to have an hour or so after eating your main meal. It had a sort of a mousse consistency, which I really liked. Perfect World ice cream is currently available at Tesco, Nisa stores and Ocado. Go stock up your freezer.



I have completely fallen in love with Manomasa tortilla chips. I was at a BBQ recently when I first spotted them, my friend had picked them up from Waitrose but checking out their website I can see they are readily available from many different shops including Tesco and Sainsbury's. I could have easily chomped down the entire bag in one easy sitting but I restrained myself for not wanting to look like A) a complete pig and B) rude! They were so good though - we had the serrano chilli and yucatan honey flavour which had a kick but a really good kick. The next day I sped to Waitrose to throw some in my basket along with a hot salsa dip. These would be awesome in a nacho dish or piled up with cool feta - drool. They have some really cool recipes on their website, which are definitely worth checking out.


My nacho dish may have to wait though as I have four weeks of boot camp starting on Saturday so for a wee while at least it will be all about the baked fish and steamed veg. Everything in moderation though right?

P.S Since I wrote this post I happened to tweet about how much I loved the Manomasa tortillas and the lovely people at the company sent me some more flavours to try - well it would be rude not to dig in!

Claire xx

Sunday, 7 May 2017

Afternoon Tea at La Fait Maison

Afternoon tea is a luxurious treat and one I absolutely love to do at any given opportunity. Since being diagnosed as a coeliac I do have to do my research though to find places that are tummy friendly, but over the years I have found that this is not all that difficult. More and more places are becoming gluten free friendly and the choices more varied and adventurous. Post diagnosis I have had many a lovely afternoon tea including one at The Ritz, which everybody has to do at some point.

It was my birthday at the beginning of April and my lovely friend booked an afternoon tea for the two of us as a treat at La Fait Maison on Gloucester Road, London. I had vaguely heard of the cafe but did not know much about it I must admit. My friend also opted for the gluten free version for ease.

We caught the bus to the King's Road and made the short walk up to the cafe which was a good opportunity to have a nose at the lovely properties en route.

We arrived at La Fait Maison ready to devour lots of goodies! The staff greeted us warmly and were very friendly and accommodating. It was clear that g/f was not an issue at all so I felt instantly at ease. We had a mocktail each and selected out tea.

Then out came the tier of sandwiches and cakes, it looked gorgeous. The waiter explained what each cake was (I forget now though I am afraid) while we were waiting to dig on in the second he walked away! Every single sandwich and cake was beautiful and we polished the entire lot off. It was all done whilst gossipping away and having a really good catch up. I love spending time with my girlfriends and having a natter, but to do it over cake makes it even better. To me, it is a perfect way to spend an afternoon.



I would not hesitate to go back to La Fait Maison and would wholeheartedly recommend the experience. If you visit the branch on Gloucester Road you can then also then take the opportunity to do a big of shopping (Sloane Square is very close by) or have a mooch around the National History Museum which is a very short hop away.

Claire xx

Sunday, 23 April 2017

Noodle Joy

I love bowl food. If you can cook a meal in one pan and then pop it straight into a bowl even better. I also love noodles and up until a few days ago I could only eat rice noodles (I like the big fat ones). However, I was doing some food shopping in Tesco recently and noticed these:


They looked a little different and I liked the fact they came in a split snap pack. Oomi noodles are a high protein, low fat noodle and can be eaten hot or cold. The protein, rather unusually, comes from fish! A few reviews on Ocado (they stock in both Tesco and Ocado) said they tasted a little fishy - I did not pick up on this at all and it probably wouldn't have bothered me anyway as I love fish.

I love the versatility of noodles, the fact that you can chuck anything in the pan and it's a fab way of using up vegetables.

I did a simple recipe of beef, ginger, red onion, soy sauce (gluten free obvs) and chilli.


It was really really good and reminded me of the old days when I could devour egg noodles. I would definitely recommend Oomi noodles, I found mine in the vegetable/stir fry section in Tesco so go check them out. I am looking forward to trying new recipes using the noodles!

Claire xx

Sunday, 9 April 2017

Time for cake and chatter at Manna Dew.

This blog post is way way overdue. One Saturday earlier this year I met my best friend for cake and gossip - what better way to spend a Saturday afternoon? Best friends since we were 11 years of age we can easily lose hours chattering away. I had been keen to try a cafe/bakery/patisserie I had heard about called Manna Dew in Battersea and as I had since moved to the area it seemed an ideal opportunity. I met my friend at Clapham Junction station and we walked the short journey to the cafe.

I should point out that Manna Dew is entirely gluten free so a complete heaven for me, they sell all sorts of products including freshly baked bread and delectable looking cakes. It didn't take me long at all to figure out what I was going to devour - cheesecake! I love cheesecake, hands down it has to be one of my favourite deserts. Despite it being a very easy pudding to make gluten free you don't often see it in eateries hence it was no brainer for me to opt for this sweet treat.


It was gorgeous and it was such a treat to know I could eat anything in the cafe. It is quite a small space with limited seating but we managed to grab a spot by the window so we could see the world go by outside.

Manna Dew are London's first gluten free patisserie, they are open seven days a week and also do a cake delivery service Monday to Saturday. They are are active on social media (the instragram pics make me drool!) so go and saturate them with some love and pay them visit if you are in the neighbourhood.

Happy cake eating!

Claire xx