Friday, December 23, 2016

Happy Anniversary to me again

Today marks the sixth anniversary of my celiac diagnosis.

That was a day of panic, of course. I had no idea what a gluten-free diet would look like, and it was compounded by the fact that I received this diagnosis as Christmas weekend was beginning.

But a lot has changed in six years. We still have a lot of work to do on education, and it's mind-boggling to me that so many people don't understand the gluten-free diet and still think it's a fad diet.

But we have so many more food choices than we did six years ago, both in grocery stores and restaurants. Just this week, another significant burger chain announced it was offering gluten-free buns when Shake Shack said it now has them.

We don't have any Shake Shacks yet in Jacksonville but it's a growing, popular brand that does have restaurants in Orlando. I'm going to have to try it on my next visit there.

A couple of years ago, I was begging burger joints to start offering gluten-free buns, instead of forcing me to bring my own bun. It's becoming more common.

Unfortunately, we still need to work on getting these places to ensure their french fries are gluten free. I noticed Shake Shack says its fries have gluten free ingredients but it can't assure they are free from contamination. That's also, unfortunately, a common trend.

So that will be my cause for 2017: gluten-free fries. And burritos. I still don't know of any taco place that can offer a gluten-free burrito. I realize it's hard, because gluten-free tortillas almost always crumble in your hands. But I think it's time that somebody comes up with the formula.

I hope this is the year.

Friday, December 9, 2016

A lot of GF stuff at Lucky's, but nothing special

When a new grocery chain arrives in the Jacksonville market, I'm of course curious to see what kind of gluten-free offerings it brings.

So I visited the new Lucky's Market in Neptune Beach today.

My quick take: they do have a lot of gluten-free stuff but if you don't live in the Neptune Beach area, it's not worth a special trip.

Most of the gluten-free stuff is familiar brands that you'll find in other local stores. However, I did notice a couple of things: there seemed to be a lot of gluten-free bake mixes available and there was also a nice choice of Katz gluten-free goodies, including several varieties of pie which I have never seen. Katz products are generally pretty good but I didn't buy any because I'm trying to avoid sweets.

There also was nothing special about the prices. There were some items on sale but this is definitely not a discount store.

So, if you're in the Neptune Beach neighborhood, you may want to check out Lucky's. But don't go out of your way.