Gluten Free in NYC

Freidman's pastrami sandwich and sweet potato fries

Freidman’s pastrami sandwich and sweet potato fries

Friends of GFB, Wendy and Paul, recently made their annual pilgrimage to the amazing city of New York and Wendy, being gluten intolerant, was kind enough to write some notes about the places she visited that were GF friendly.

Freidman’s Lunch

A great café inside the foodie Chelsea Market. Many items on the menu can be adapted to be gluten free. I had a yummy pastrami sandwich and sweet potato fries. The bread they use was much tastier than anything I’ve had in the UK.

They also do bagels for breakfast/brunch but only at the weekend. And they stock a bottled gluten free beer called Redbridge which was really good.

Very reasonably priced.

S’MAC (short for Sarita’s Macaroni & Cheese)

S'MAC - New York's best Macaroni & Cheese

Great little place in the East Village serving only mac ‘n’ cheese – they position themselves as “New York’s best Macaroni & Cheese” on their website.

All dishes are ‘build your own’ where you choose your own cheese combinations and additional ingredients and can all be made with gluten free pasta. I had a ‘nosh’ size (the smallest size) though I wished I’d had the ‘major munch’ as it was so good! Only negative was that on their website they say they offer a vegan/non dairy cheese option but they didn’t have this on the day we visisted – (I shouldn’t really have dairy but did).

A filling and tasty cheap lunch.

Bar Breton

Bar Breton, 250 5th Ave, New York

Bar Breton
UPDATE: Apparently closed now unfortunately
A smart but cosy French restaurant open for lunch and dinner on 5th Avenue not far from the Empire State Building which specialises in traditional Brittany buckwheat galettes.

Absolutely delicious and they also have a dedicated gluten free fryer for their herb fries! We had a salmon galette with horseradish cream and also a Gruyère and Black Forest ham. Traditional Breton cider to drink served in a teacup!

Reasonably priced for the great quality.

Babycakes NYC

Babycakes NYC, 248 Broome Street, New York

Babycakes NYC

Oh my God! Heaven on earth! Cute bakery on the Lower East Side selling the most delicious breads, cookies and cupcakes and all made with healthy ingredients. They don’t use eggs or dairy instead using healthy coconut oil and only use agave nectar, never sugar.

Almost all of their cakes are gluten free with the exception of a few which are made using spelt – though the cabinets are all clearly labeled and the staff always ask about intolerances when serving.

I had carrot cupcake and pumpkin bread (as it was Halloween) – really amazing and deliciously moist with the subtle taste of coconut. We need one of these in London!

Babycakes NYC cupcakes

Babycakes NYC cupcakes

I also bought the Babycakes book (Babycakes: Vegan, (Mostly) Gluten-Free, and (Mostly) Sugar-Free Recipes from New York’s Most Talked-about Bakery) by founder Erin McKenna so will be testing out my baking skills over the coming weeks – I just need to source some of the ingredients online first which are not as easy to find in the UK – they have great online suppliers in the US.

Other places we ate were all very helpful by adapting dishes to exclude specific ingredients to ensure that they were gluten free.

It sounds like Wendy and Paul had a fantastic time in New York and we thank them for taking the time to send us their experiences.

Get yourselves over there to try out some of these places. It’s getting cheaper and cheaper for us in the UK to visit the States. And of course, let us know if you discover or know of any other great places in New York.

Innocent Veg Pots: An easy way to get 3 of your 5 a day

If you’re looking for a fresh and filling lunch you might want to grab yourself a tasty veg pot from Innocent. Of course, Innocent are more famous for their smoothies, thickies and juices. But they’ve recently added veg pots to their range – and they’re absolutely delicious.

Which Innocent Veg Pots are gluten free?

Which Innocent Veg Pots are gluten free?

There are eight in the range and I tried these two this week: Mexican sweet potato chilli with brown rice, jalapeno peppers and smoke paprika; and Indian daal curry with spicy cauliflower, chickpeas and fresh spinach. The ingredients are all fresh with no colourings, flavourings or nasty E numbers. And these two are gluten free, low in fat and contain three of my daily veg portions.

Not all the pots are gluten free so be sure to check the ingredients before you buy.

You can buy Innocent tasty veg pots at Sainsbury’s, Tesco, Waitrose and Asda where they normally retail for about £3.50. But Asda currently have them for 2 for £5 which is a bargain!

Try out a few of the other flavours and let us know what you think.

Sweet Potato and Carrot Soup

This recipe is taken from The Wheat and Dairy Free Cookbook by Terence Stamp & Elizabeth Buxton.

This is a very clean tasting soup that has a truly amazing colour. Neither orange nor red, it is a brilliant flame colour. Equally delicious hot or cold, this is a useful party standby and makes a refreshing alternative to gazpacho. It may seem from the ingredient list that this is a very spicy soup, but it is not. The blend of flavours is very carefully balanced and no one ingredient dominates.

  • Olive oil – 5 tbsp
  • Carrots, diced – 140 g (5 oz)
  • Orange-fleshed sweet potato, cut into chunks – 140 g (5 oz)
  • Onion, chopped – 115 g (4 oz)
  • 10 green cardamom seeds
  • Coriander seeds – 1 tsp
  • 3 dried bay leaves
  • Turmeric or a few saffron strands – ½ tsp
  • Lemon juice – 1 tbsp
  • Can chopped tomatoes – 1 x 400 g (1 x 14 oz)
  • Stock, either vegetable or chicken – 500 ml (16 fl oz)

For the garnish:

  • Sheep’s yoghurt – 100 ml (3½ fl oz)
  • Chopped fresh chives

In a heavy saucepan heat the oil and cook the carrot, sweet potato and onion for 3 minutes. Add the spices and stir them into the oil for 1 minute. Add the lemon juice, tomatoes and stock, and simmer covered with a lid for 30 minutes, or until the vegetables are tender. Remove the bay leaves and liquidise the contents of the pan in a food processor. Pass the purée through a sieve.

If the soup is to be served hot, pour back into the cleaned saucepan and gently reheat. The soup is meant to be fairly thick, but if you prefer a thinner soup, add a little more stock at this stage. You may then need to adjust the seasoning slightly with a little more lemon juice and black pepper.

If the soup is to be served cold, pour into a bowl, cover and chill in the refrigerator.

Whether hot or cold, garnish with a dollop of the yoghurt into which you have whisked the chives.

Serves 4