Have you heard of Gluten Free Garage? It's a one-day event in Toronto that founder RonniLyn Pustil created to give people a taste of gluten-free options in Toronto by bringing over 60 artisanal vendors offering gluten-free products under one roof. We're talking top-quality local gluten-free food, none of that cardboard nonsense. Pustil's mission is to also create awareness about celiac disease, and prove that gluten-free fare can really be delicious!
Gluten-Free Garage began in 2012, but this year is truly special! There will be guest speakers, food trucks, guest speakers and -- get this -- beer and cider tastings! Under one roof, you'll discover local bakeries, caterers, restaurants and retailers that cater to gluten-free needs. You'll be able to sample and purchase gluten-free food, drinks and personal care products. And you'll even be able to learn more about the gluten-free diet and gluten-free cooking/baking from guest speakers Kathy Smart, Ashley Wittig and Marni Wasserman. And the first 500 attendees get a sweet tote bag for all their gluten-free goodies!
Date: Sunday November 9, 2014
Time: 10 am to 4 pm
Location: Artscape Wychwood Barns, 601 Christie Street
Admission: $10 for adults, free for kids 12 years and under
Tickets available at the door or online http://glutenfreegarage
Photos and video from the fall 2013 GFG: http://glutenfreegarage.
I know you want to go, so I'm giving away two pair of tickets to the event!
To win a pair, just leave a comment beneath this post answering this question: Which of the vendors at GFG are you most looking forward to visiting?
You have until November 7, 2014 to enter. You must be a YMC member and please be sure you've registered your email address in our commenting system so we can contact you if you win. Winners' names will be added to the guest list at the door of Gluten-Free Garage.
Yummy Rules and Regs: You must be a YummyMummyClub.ca member to win. Click to sign up! It's free and filled with perks. One comment per member. Entries accepted until November 7, 2014. Contest open to Canadian residents (excluding Quebec). Winners will be picked using www.random.org. See full contest rules.
There is a connection between lupins and peanut allergies that you need to know about. Lupin isn't used as much here in Canada as it is apparently in Europe. There it's a very common alternative to wheat flour. In fact, it's so uncommon here that until this week I didn't even realize they were ever eaten. We have lupins in our garden, and they're a common (and beautiful) site in Newfoundland where we spend our summer vacations. I had no idea they were edible!
Lupin is a legume belonging to the same family as the peanut, and recently there is more buzz about people with peanut allergies reacting to lupin, as well. Since 2008, the EU has been labelling for lupin on food labels just as we do here with peanuts and other top allergens. Now, there's no need to panic, but it's definitely something to be aware of if you deal with legume and/or peanut allergies, for sure.
It is becoming a more common ingredient in baked goods, and since the protein in lupins is very similar to that in peanuts, I think it's worth being careful reading labels (as always!) to ensure you're aware in case a reaction does happen. Lupin beans are also common in Mediterranean dishes and in gluten-free products, and we all know that with the gluten-free revolution going strong, there is a high chance you'll come in contact with this ingredient.
So as always, be aware and be cautious, but don't panic.
Label-reading isn't just for the allergic folks of the world (although, admittedly, we do take it to another level). You should read every label, every time, because I'm betting you'd be surprised about some of the ingredients in foods you eat regularly! Chemical additives, unexpected fats and sugars, things we can't even pronounce . . . it's all in the food we're eating.
When my daughter was just starting kindergarten, I was in the yogurt aisle reading all the packages of yogurts—tubes, mini containers, large containers—there were a million options! Some had cute cartoons on them, drawing kids in with fun packaging. And I totally saw the appeal, but wanted to know what was in them. The vast majority were packed full of sugars, colouring, and fillers (like cornstarch). You know what you should find in packaged yogurt? Milk products and bacterial culture. And maybe some fruit. Maybe. A woman shopping next to me asked why I was reading the labels, and I explained to her that I was checking ingredients, sugar and fat content. She had no idea how to interpret what she read.
You need to know this. You need to read and understand food labels. You need to be aware of what you're eating.
I'm not going to tell you that we don't choose those crappy yogurt treats on occasion. We absolutely do. But we're not under the illusion that they're healthy options. Being aware helps us make those decisions however we feel fit. And I won't even tell you what I consider to be "healthy," because it will vary widely from the next person and I'm not a nutritionist, for sure. But I do know that having awareness about food labels isn't just for the allergic people out there.
When grocery shopping this week, I wanted to buy raisins for my son's morning oatmeal. I am used to reading labels for both nutrition and allergy information, but what I read on these raisins was a surprise even to me.
Do you know what should be in a package of raisins? RAISINS.
So not only are there added oils and sulphites, these may also contain a host of allergens, so they didn't come home in my cart today.
Read the labels. Read the signs. Know where your food comes from and what's in it, and don't assume anything.
Don't get caught in the health trap—stop buying these 10 "health foods" that aren't really healthy at all.