Adventures in Half Term

So this week, as well as whipping by like lightning, has been blissful. I love holiday times with my little lady and feel very lucky to be able to spend most of these days with her.

Monday began the holidays with Twycross Zoo, just a 40 minute drive from us and a guaranteed fun day out.  Tuesday found us wandering down our local canal, feeding the ducks and muttering about how we really should do this more.  Wednesday with more rain, was spent with a quick trip to the supermarket and a potter round the newly housed local library then an afternoon slobbed out on the sofa watching Tinkerbell (living the dream!).

half term fun
Then today, well today was a special day. We began with a trip to the morning showing of ‘Charlie and Lola’s Extremely New Play’ at the REP theatre in Birmingham, well wow, it was simply magical. I won’t give away too much but I highly recommend this production, the puppetry is amazing and I found myself grinning from ear to ear throughout the whole show. It’s on until Saturday here in Birmingham, see here for details. We have seen this company before in Wimbledon at the Polka Theatre, an awesome children’s theatre in south London so I was so excited to hear they were touring and dropping by on old Brum with their new production.

day out 29th may

The second wonderous event today ( I won’t count the unfortunate trip to Monsoon and the calamitous accidental purchasing of not one, but two, oh ok, three items of beautiful clothing in between, that is to be kept between me and you ok?).  Anyway, if it wasn’t for my stumbling on a few bargains, which may have hampered our chances of being seated immediately at a couple of other restaurants,  we wouldn’t have been forced to try the new burger joint in the Bull Ring shopping centre . So Five Guys, oh my. It. Is. AMAZING. I had thought the delights of such dirty, filthy American burgers would never come to the tropical climes of Birmingham, but they have. AND…drum roll please, they only go and cater for coeliacs. Now don’t go all ape on me dear readers they didn’t go so far as offering gluten free buns, although their website does state you can bring your on should you wish. They do however offer god damn delicious, delectable and down right d__________ (you fill the blank with an appropriate alliterative adjective, go on spoil yourself) bun free burgers with ALL the toppings and frankly fantastic chips, golden brown, skin on, crispy, salty goodness (most importantly for us coeliacs, not cross contaminated by any other frying, just pure glorious potatoes). I’m dribbling salivating just thinking about them.  *Sigh* People of Birmingham, people of anywhere, seek this place out, it’s awesome.

Ok, and onto the third and final, ok maybe less monumental but equally wonderful flavour revelation of the day, and feeling rather virtuous too I might add.  I may be a tad late to the party on this one, but when seeking out a naughty little sweet something before we popped on the train home, we found Yoomoo frozen yoghurt stand in the Food Hall in Selfridges.  I don’t know why I’ve never tried this before but boy is it good, we had a vanilla pot with strawberries, white chocolate buttons and chocolate sauce (good choice lil m) and I have to say me and my little companion were mighty pleased with our choice.

So after another classic game of eye-spy on the train back, we are home, cartoons might be on the telly, we might well be planning to *forget* we have washing to sort and we may have turned a blind eye to the mounting  toy covered carpet in the living room, but who cares, we had an ace day and I hope you didn’t mind me sharing it with you.

What have you been up to this week?

 

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Chocolate Tofu Pudding

I’ve been developing a bit of a dessert habit of late, oh who am I kidding I’ve been developing it most of my life. A liking of the sweet stuff, sadly, does no good so I’ve been looking at ways of getting my fix without the heavy laden of calories. This was a pudding I was keen to try out. Tofu is full of good stuff – bloody amazing huh?! Anyways recipe time, you can have this little wonder pus whipped up and ready to serve in minutes or leave it in the fridge to set further ready for your guests oh yeah think of this as upmarket vegan angel delight.

Ingredients:

300g pack of silken and firm tofu
1 dessert spoonful of agave syrup
50g dark chocolate (vegan chocolate if needed)
1 teaspoon of vanilla extract

Method:

Drain the tofu and whizz in a blender. Melt the chocolate, then combine with liquid tofu, syrup and vanilla extract and whiz some more. Serve in little dishes with a bit of grated chocolate on top or spooned from the blender into your gob. Delish.

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Gluten Free Nectarine and Raspberry Clafoutis

Well hello there, I’ve been a bit busy recently and as a result some changes are afoot, I’ll be moving sticks shortly and returning to my spiritual homeland, well not really, I’ve been offered a job in Solihull so I’ve got the summer to pack up, sell up and get my self settled back in the Midlands.  Anyone who has any tips on nice areas near Solihull please get in touch, I’m currently looking at Moseley, Kings Heath and Shirley but am open to suggestions.

Anyway consequently blogging hasn’t been my first priority of late however I have managed to do a little something over here at LiveGlutenFree, so check it out… 🙂

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New Starbucks Gluten Free Cheddar Cheese and Pickle Sandwich

Starbucks new gluten free sandwich option brimming with cheddary goodness!

Now I’m not entirely fond of this brand of coffee shop, I don’t rate their coffee that much (sorry!) but the one thing that this multinational coffee gang do well is gluten free nibbles.  I’m often impressed by the range of sweet treats I can buy there AND they have been doing gluten free sandwiches for a long time now. And this, folks, impresses me.  I mean sandwiches, gluten free ones, on the high street, it’s not a lot to some but it means a great deal to me.  Now they were doing a chicken and pesto thingy me jig filling which I sampled in a motorway service station last year but I was a tad disappointed by the lack of filling and ended up leaving all the crusts behind.  However this new sandwich, well, it is jam packed with cheesey goodness and pickle AND salad, and I was rather impressed.  Good things sometimes do happen, even to us sad coeliacs! So my friends there is more choice out there, go forth and try it, then tootle back and tell me what you think…

My Instagram Feast

Clockwise from top left: the ever amazing cress (sewn by my even more amazing 3 yo on cotton wool, can’t beat it), a griddled courgette, aubergine, mozarella and tomato salad; good old strawberries and ice cream; pesto and spinach potato salad with carrot, tomatoes and fruit salad for al fresco eating on the grass outside our flat, more potato salad with yummy smoked salmon; home made ice pops – a daily habit at the mo; feta, cucumber, spinach and mint salad with the new Genius tomato and basil pittas – approved, very scrummy cheese and potato pie from Clives at the Allergy and Free From show; and my lazy dinner du jour of pasta, pesto and sugar snap peas – I know I’m a real gourmet!

Chocamole

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I know, I know everyone has done a chocamole, but I was intrigued, surely a green fruit mixed with cocoa could not make a thick, creamy and satisfying pudding. It does though. I made a quick portion tonight using this recipe herewith the maple syrup substituted with agave. I’ve been eating it whilst reading the health benefits of avocados, I know, multi tasking pudding eating with web reading, that’s just how I roll.

If this post looks a bit funny it’s because it’s my first complete upload from the app on my phone, fingers crossed it works though.