Monday, June 13, 2011

Triangle Saturday with Friends at Gluten Free Fair- New WholeFoods at Six Forks

What a weekend!

Spent the earliest part of Saturday with some ASL friends - (who are just awesome!)
Afterwards, we visited Whole Foods newest location at North Raleigh, on Six Forks Rd.

They had a gluten-free fair that was pretty interesting. More and more people are having digestive allergies, sensitivies or special dietary preferences. It behooves us to think inclusively.

Yes, there is nothing like good old fashioned biscuits, breads and our own cultural dishes.
Those things remind us of home and people we love (I hope!) or just love to bicker with. :)

But in my opinion, cooking for someone is one of the most intimate, personal, and nurturing things you can do for your fellow beings. What we take into our bodies affects us on every level of our existence.
Food memories and aromas have been claimed to make very strong impressions on our brains.

If  for no better reason, that is enough to make one more cognizant of what works for others and what doesn't. But surely, if you have loved ones, friends or acquaitainces at work, who are vegan, gluten-intolerant or have other dietary preferences or needs, compassion and basic human respect should be the order of the day.

Plus its fun to learn new stuff!

So... what did they have? Well, we started out with a hot tray of gluten free baked goods. I appreciated the forethought here. Eating banana bread warm is different than cold folks! It was right. So was the gluten-free warm molasses cookie and definitely the chocolate cake. Headed down from there to some seaside cheddar that was a little to heavy on seasalt. That was out. Hard to get me to turn down cheese. But. The gluten-free almond crackers were a nice crunch without the burnt sesame taste you find often. Headed down to AppleGate Organic's link sausages with Rice and Tapioca hotdog buns and Greens Belgium Ale. I was ready for a full meal of that. The sausages were chicken and turkey Italian that I tasted. They also have them in pork, etc. I believe I've had them before and they were a great alternative to the traditional. But the hot dog buns were notable. Mainly because they were nothing like the flimsy, air filled, enriched white bread buns we all grew up with. These little jewels were good enough to sit down with some butter and eat by themselves! I was very pleasantly surprised!

Green's Belgium Gluten Free Amber Ale was a good medium brew with moderate tartness whereas the Golden Ale was predictably lighter in color, viscosity, and flavor. I wouldn't say that it was beer perfection, I'm not beer versed. But if you're aiming for 'as good as' regular beer- that may be the highest praise one could offer. It is difficult to eat gluten-free and not miss the texture, taste and body that you're used to. Frankly, Greens did a pretty good job at being what people would expect.

Tried the Kerala Mango Chutney. It was very smooth, tangy and had a sweet spiciness that I liked.
I thought the smoothness would be great on a  veggie, pork, or duck dish over rice. Definitely great for anything fried or roasted. Odds are - if mangoes are in it - I'll eat or drink it. So I may be biased. They also had a tomato chutney that may be fun to try if you don't make your own.

We tried a myriad other items, including gluten-free popcorn and caramel corn.
The main coup for me, was the gluten-free peach and gluten-free pecan pie.
The peach was great, the pecan on a scale of 1-10 was somewhere in the outer statosphere.
It wasn't a matter of 'couldn't tell the difference', it was pecan pie perfection. Plus, again, it was hot!
Gluten-free pie shells were available too. Not bad, folks!
 I almost got stepped on twice. I remembered to yield the floor to the more gluten-free needy.

Happy Gluten-Free Eating!
Deelish!

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