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Coeliac Awareness Week is coming up soon, between 13th – 19th May, and BBC Radio Sheffield will definitely be working hard to raise awareness of the condition.

The lovely Paulette Edwards will be having a daily focus on being coeliac and living gluten free every day between Monday 13th to Friday 17th on her show, between 10am – 1pm.

The line up is jam packed, and includes:

  • Renowned gastroenterology consultant, Professor David Sanders (Monday)
  • A trip around a supermarket to check for ‘hidden gluten’ in products
  • Two guests with coeliac disease talk about their condition
  • Sheffield Gastroenterology dietician Nick Trott (Wednesday)
  • Someone from Coeliac UK
  • And… I’ll be in on Friday, talking about recipes and food

Paulette would love listeners to contact the show with their experiences. BBC Radio Sheffield contact details are as follows:

  • On-air – call a show: 0800 111 4949
  • Text number: Send your texts to 81333 and start your text with the word ‘Sheffield’. Texts will be charged at your standard message rate.

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The Rising Sun pub in Fulwood has launched a new menu and I was pleased to be invited to try it. The pub, owned by the local Abbeydale Brewery, had a refurb a couple of years ago, with an extension and full catering kitchen, which has allowed them to be quite creative with the menu.

There are plenty of options marked as gluten free on the menu, with a couple of snacks and starters, over five main courses and a couple of puddings. The staff were knowledgeable about cross contamination, and they have a separate fryer for chips and gluten free food from the other fried items, so the chips are gluten free, although accidentally not marked as such on the menu.

We started off with a Caprese salad, which looked very appealing with its coloured heirloom tomatoes, pea shoots and mozzarella. There was plenty of seasoning and not too much oil, so it tasted as lovely as it looked.

Our other starter was cauliflower (and lentil) fritters, with a homemade mango and lime chutney. These were great – rather substantial and really nicely flavoured. I might have a bash at making these myself!

For mains, carrying on the curried theme, I ordered masala spiced cod fillet, with braised lentils, pickled carrot and a coconut cream sauce. I thought this was excellent. The cod was cooked just right and the spicing was bob on for me. Bags of flavour, particularly with the additions of creamy sauce and the tangy carrot. 

Our other main was a slow roast lamb belly with fresh peas, roasted baby carrots, confit new potatoes and a minted yoghurt. It’s very unusual to see peas in pods these days, and goes to show they’re using lovely fresh ingredients. I’ve not had lamb belly before, so this was interesting to try and we really enjoyed it.

Unfortunately, we didn’t have time for a pud but there was a pineapple upside down cake and a lemon pavlova on offer, which is a bit different from what might normally find in a pub.

Definitely worth a trip out to Fulwood. And it was great to see a whole load of local suppliers listed on the menu.

The Rising Sun, 471 Fulwood Road, Sheffield S10 3QA

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We had a family weekend break to Centerparcs recently, which inevitably involved a fair bit of eating out. We prepared our own breakfasts and lunches in our cabin, but had a couple of evening meals out and one takeaway delivered to the cabin. I have to say, the Centerparcs team seem to have a very good handle on allergens, and although there’s inevitably a bit less choice, I always had confidence in what was served.

Our Sunday night meal was spent at Bella Italia, after an epic day of crazy golf followed by many hours in the Tropical Swimming Paradise. Other than the meal seeming to take a while to come (we were absolutely starving!), I was very impressed, so I looked up where our nearest one is. It turns out to be at Centertainment to the north east of Sheffield, with the cinema and bowling alley etc.

So first of all, I was given a separate gluten free menu, which always impresses me. And there was plenty of choice on it, with bread and olives, starters, salads, grills, pasta, pizza and some lighter choices using spiralised veg. (They also have a decent vegan menu.)

I was also assured that the kitchen staff take good cross contamination precautions, such as separate prep equipment, and separate trays for the gluten free pizzas, which go on the top shelf of the pizza oven. I’ve just called the Centertainment branch and they offered the same assurances.

For a starter, I went for the Burrata, which is a very creamy version of fresh mozzarella cheese, served with some sun dried tomatoes and an artichoke and red pepper dip. Very nice.

My main course was a pizza. I chose the Tonno Puttanesca, which included tuna, olives, capers, garlic, red onion, red peppers & chilli on a fiery* tomato base. The menu doesn’t mention mozzarella as a topping, so I asked for that as an extra.

*Not so fiery, thankfully – just a little bit of heat

I have to say, I was super impressed with the pizza – the base was possibly the best I’ve had. It was a generous size and there were plenty of toppings. It seemed very much like the real (gluteny) deal – I loved it!

My friend went for the Risotto Funghi, which also features on the gluten free menu, and was apparently very nice. Mushrooms don’t do it for me, but I’m assured it was lovely, so here it is: 

We were far too stuffed for desserts, but there’s a choice of pannacotta, ice cream and sorbet – we went back to the cabin for wine and board games instead, once the kids were in bed.

I also liked the rather cheery ceiling lights, although they might just be at Centerparcs. All in all, a very successful and surprisingly good meal. Next stop, Coeliac UK accreditation..?

Unit 3, Valley Centertainment, Broughton Ln, Sheffield S9 2EP

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I had a tip off about a new place called Amaro last week, which has a gluten free menu. So when our plans fell through on Friday and the kids were away for the night, we decided to pop down and give it a try – and it turned out to have only been open a couple of days.

Amaro is part of the Lounge chain, which, from what I can gather, is about hanging out, drinks, food and eccentric interiors with old fashioned photos. Fine by me, as long as there’s a gluten free option – I’m not too picky. Lounge’s food policy is “everyone welcome” with an emphasis on making sure their gluten free and vegan menu aren’t second best. So good news on the free from front.

As it was Friday, I treated myself to a cocktail (Prosecco and passionfruit martini) whilst we browsed the menu.

There are salads, sandwiches, burgers, tapas and some main courses on the menu – so plenty to choose from. I went for buttermilk chicken (unusual gluten free offer, but I was reassured about them using a separate fryer) with fries and slaw, and a a side of tenderstem broccoli with chilli and garlic.

It came fairly quickly and tasted great, with a good crispy coating on the chicken. My only comment would be that the broccoli portion was a bit small (3 pieces so almost £1 a stem), but overall it was very enjoyable.

We shared a dark chocolate orange tart for dessert, which is on offer alongside the ubiquitous chocolate brownie and a couple of sundae options. The tart was lovely and rich, and could only really have been improved with a dollop of cream.

Lounge also do some interesting brunch options, which I’m tempted to go back and try at some point. Gluten free breakfast out is usually a bit disappointing, so it’s refreshing to see some creativity on this menu. Chorizo and halloumi hash, Halloumi and sweetcorn pancake, and the Avocado brunch all sound great. And the hash browns are gluten free – winner!

Looking on their website, there’s also another branch in Stocksbridge called Zorro, which I imagine would have the same menu.

Amaro, 519 Ecclesall Road, Sheffield, S11 8PR
Zorro, 6 Fox Valley, Stocksbridge, Sheffield, S36 2AE

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We recently went to a birthday meal at Smoke BBQ, which is at St Paul’s Place, very close to the Charles Street ‘Cheesegrater’ car park and near the Winter Gardens. (Incidentally, the Cheesegrater has just been voted the world’s number one quirky car park!)

It’s your classic barbecue fayre, with lots of spiced, smoked meats on the menu, served with chips and a side. Not much in the way of vegetarian food, other than a bean chilli – but we went with a party of hungry carnivores, so it worked for us.

Smoke has a separate gluten free menu, which, if you’ve read other reviews of mine, you’ll know puts it high up my list of places to go. It’s much more pleasant to choose your meal from a list of food you can have, rather than search for things on the main menu.

I opted for the brisket pit plate, as somebody had previously enjoyed it. This had smoked brisket and burnt ends (which is much tastier than it sounds) with chips and I chose a side of pickled slaw, which I went halves on with a friend who ordered sweet potato mash. There are plenty of choices, including steak, pork belly, chicken, pulled pork, and an assortment of sides including corn on the cob and greens, as a token gesture to vegetables!

I really enjoyed my meal, which had bags of flavour and great textures to the meat. However, the serving style is a bit trendy: food on a metal tray and my red wine came in tumbler. So if that’s the sort of thing that annoys, this might not be the place for you!

We were too full for desserts, so I don’t know what’s on offer, although they are referred to on the gluten free menu. Children’s portions are also available, although you need to speak to the server about these.

Smoke BBQ, St Paul’s Place, Sheffield S1 2NB

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I went for a great works night out recently at the Cutlery Works on Kelham Island. The Cutlery Works describes itself as a food hall, with a mix of permanent and semi permanent independent restaurants, communal dining spaces, bars and coffee roasters.

This makes it a great space for informal groups that can satisfy pretty much any dining requirement, from vegan and gluten free, through sushi to pies and chips. Everybody can hang out together and eat from the different places. Although I couldn’t get it to work on my phone, you can order and pay for your food an an app and it will be brought to your table.

I ordered my food from a vegan restaurant called Shed, but I think they’ve since updated the menu and I can’t find it any more! But it was a fresh tasting salad bowl with rice, broccoli, celeriac, a pickled slaw and I think a tahini dip. They have a variety of gluten free dishes on their current menu including sweet potato bravas, a Sri Lankan curry and a selection of desserts (a beetroot brownie sundae and a cacao and rhubarb mousse amongst others).

Other gluten free options include Canadian ‘poutine’ from Gravy Train (posh chips and gravy) and plant based desserts from Elly Joy. There are other potential options of Indian and Japanese food, but I’ve not been able to look at menus for those.

Later in the evening, after a couple of very fashionable gins in fishbowl glasses, I noticed that Fin and Bone were serving chips from a dedicated fryer. I did the decent thing and went over to talk chips with them just to make sure, and I was delighted to buy some piping hot fresh gluten free chips. An unusual treat on a night out – delicious.

The Cutlery Works has a really nice vibe, with all sorts of different kinds of people. It was a really fun evening, and whilst the place did get busy, there was never really much of a queue for the bar. The table service for food was great, and the huge variety of food was a winner with our group of people.

It’s open from morning until evening Wednesday through Sunday, so we’re planning to go back with the kids too.

Cutlery Works, 73 – 101 Neepsend Lane, Sheffield S3 8AT

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I don’t think this is particularly news, but as I don’t usually shop in Tesco, it was news to me! I am very impressed that they have opted for a gluten free soy sauce in their takeaway sushi packs, giving me a rather splendid work lunch today. This little lot was only £3. Not all the packs are gluten free as one of them had panko breadcrumbs in the sushi, but the plain fish ones will be ok.

They also had a gluten free cheese and onion pre-packed sandwich, but sushi generally wins over a sandwich for me.

I also discovered these gluten free KitKat type biscuits, which look rather fine. Will be testing these out over the weekend. It’s a long time since I had a KitKat!

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The new branch of Mediterranean chain Ego in the Dore Moor Inn is due to open very soon. The website suggests a provisional date of 28th February.

Other branches of Ego I’ve been to have had a really extensive gluten free menu, so I’m really hoping this one will, too. Here’s a link to the city centre branch gluten free menu, which is near the theatres in Sheffield.

This place should be a great option for a hearty meal after returning from a walk in the Peaks. Looking forward to checking it out very soon…

Follow their Facebook page for more info and updates.

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I was very pleased over Christmas when my lovely mother-in-law arrived laden with these boxes from Baked, the new free from bakery at Sharrow Vale:

I’d planned a menu for the day, which was a pre-Christmas celebration, but I wasn’t disappointed to have to squeeze these in as an extra course, so we added an elevenses in to proceedings.

The chocolate cake was fabulous and moist, with a great frosting. I’m not normally one for icing as it’s a bit too sweet, but everybody enjoyed it. 

This weekend we dropped in as a post haircut treat for the boys, after having admired the honeycomb doughnuts on Facebook recently. We bought a selection of cakes to share: a crumble slice, a honeycomb doughnut, and a piece of salted peanut and chocolate cake. 

They were all really impressive. The doughnut was the clear winner with the kids, but the grown ups like thed crumble slice best. I thought the salted peanut frosting on the cake was just right. 

There was also some fabulous smelling vegan hot chocolate, which I would have tried if we were staying in. Hot drinks are served with free from milk, so don’t go expecting a cappuccino with dairy milk. 

Business seems to be going well, as they had to close early a couple of times due to selling out of everything in the New Year. Best get there early!

Baked
14 Hickmott Rd, Sheffield S11 8QF

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Some of the committee members of the Coeliac UK Sheffield local group are moving on, and Coeliac UK are looking to recruit new volunteers to get involved with leading the group.

Without new members, the Sheffield group might not be able to continue supporting the Sheffield coeliac community, which would be a shame.

If you’re interested in getting involved or even just having your say about keeping the group going, have a look at this from Coeliac UK. It contains a link to a survey where you can submit your views on what you would want to see from the local group, and there’s an opportunity to register your interest in becoming a member. (The survey is available until Jan 28th.)

Currently, the group organises a meet-up with talks and a food fair a couple of times a year, as well as occasional socials including a Christmas dinner. I attended a really interesting research talk recently by outgoing Coeliac UK chief executive, Sarah Sleet that was set up with the local group. The group has some information on the Coeliac UK website including info on places to eat and shops that have signed up to the Gluten free Guarantee to stock gluten free staple foods. There’s also a Facebook page, but it’s not terribly active.

The committee has also had a really strong link with the amazing gastroenterology professionals at the Hallamshire hospital, including the dietitian team.

I hope the local group can be revitalised. I’d be interested to read your thoughts on developing the coeliac community here in Sheffield…

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