Product Reviews, Restaurant Reviews and Recipes: All GLUTEN FREE!
Unfortunately, Chef Hugh Fernley Whittingstall wasn’t cooking or serving when I popped into his River Cottage Canteen in Axminster, but he might have been working down the Farm HQ, located around the corner but it is always a delight to pop in. I was there last year, and have visited his sister restaurant in Plymouth so knew what to expect: a good GLUTEN FREE Meal with no fuss, no mess and no feeling awkward!
The Menu changes daily, which means their offerings reflect the seasons and what’s been delivered by the multitude of local suppliers. It was mid-afternoon, so we were offered the Lunchtime Menu which had two pages of exciting dishes. They don’t provide a separate allergen listing or GLUTEN FREE Menu, but the staff are always well informed and very quick to support your decision making. Indeed, I opted for the Hot Chicken Salad “Pipers farm chicken & fresh leaf salad, crispy bacon…” AND I DIDN’T HAVE “croutons” which seemed a little dull but wasn’t at all.
The Chicken was hot and there was plenty of it, drizzled with a light fresh salad sauce and of course, NO CROUTONS. It was plentiful and filling with lovely different textures, indeed, I don’t think I actually finished my plate! And to wash my salad down, I enjoyed a Strawberry Crush (by Luscombe) which is made locally. It was a fizz fun drink: not too sweet but very refreshing.
Whilst in the area, I have to mention Jacksons Gluten Free Bakery. I found them on Google and managed to arrive in Torquay before they closed but did feel like Anneka Rice (Treasure Hunt) in finding the Market Forum building, and inside, a sign for them, but I located them! I did ask a local cafe owner who insisted on taking me up (through what appears to be the Lavender Shop) and thorough a doorway, I then stood in a kitchen.
Jacksons GF Bakery
I guess I expected (at the Market Forum) a stall or a shop, but no, they have a kitchen which members of the public can visit and purchase GLUTEN FREE goodies. There is no “Menu” but they were very good in sharing what products they had available and bringing them out for me to see. A great selection (£28 worth) was purchased in two very large boxes! including Pies (Chicken and Mushroom, Chicken and Bacon), Pastries (Cornish Pasty, Cheese & Onion), Sausage Rolls, Muffins (a beautiful Lemon muffin!), biscuits (Chocolate Chip, Ginger and Currant), Sub Rolls, Sandwich Rolls, Cakes (Rocky Road, Carrot and Chocolate). I really spoilt myself with their selection, my only regret was that they didn’t have any Mince Pies available (as they had already been allocated for orders).
The power of Google means that where ever you are in the world, you can find the local GLUTEN FREE suppliers and find new products, new supplies and GLUTEN FREE Delight!
Other Bakeries reviewed on my blog include Beyond Bread (London), Wheat Free Bakery (online & delivered), M&S bread, Tescos bread, Newburn Bakehouse bread, Perkier Bread, Paul’s Sourdough Bread, The Honest Carrot bread and home-made breads: Helens Brilliant Bread.
If you are a member of Coeliac UK, they produce a comprehensive directory which covers over 16,000 food and drink items (including GLUTEN FREE Chocolate Bars). And at Christmas, they produce a highlights sheet which outlines key products. This is available in a paper-based Manual and online FREE to members of Coeliac UK.
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