Go Nuts with Mother Earth Gluten-Free muesli bars

20160215_131930I was doing the weekly shop at Pak n Save this week, and hit the muesli bar aisle. I know they’re full of sugar. but they’re also incredibly convenient. If only all six children liked the SAME bars, my life would be easy. But no. As a result, I have to browse the muesli bar section quite intensely. And what should I see, but these little beauties! Three different flavours of Mother Earth baked muesli bars (one of them is pictured).

The bars look and taste great and have become a staple in my “snack food at work” cupboard, my car glove box and my pantry at home. It’s nice to have a convenient, healthy-ish on the go type of food available.

I’ve put a shot of the ingredients list for those like me who have multiple avoidances, but hope these will be useful for someone else! The best part? They are EXACTLY THE SAME PRICE as the normal muesli bars. Stop.The.Press. Well played Mother Earth, well played!

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Obviously I can’t speak for the possible gluten contaminants in the factory, but this is a fantastic start. And I wasn’t paid or bribed in any way to do this review – I had to buy my own bars even!

Abe’s Gluten-free Bagels – Part 2: Return of the Bagel

Abes bagels

A while ago, Abe’s were kind enough to send me some of their new gluten-free bagels to try out. I talked about them here.

Last year, they contacted me to ask if I’d like to try out their new Six Seed Bagel – gluten-free of course! It took me a while to decide if I wanted to try some new product…about .1 milliseconds…and in due course my bagels arrived.

I like to look at the ingredients and nutritional breakdown nowadays, so here’s that information for you!

Abes bagels ingredients

As with the plain bagels, these come in a three-pack. The gluten-free bagels are smaller than the regular bagels, but still make for a good breakfast. Here’s what they look like with nothing on them – these are just toasted:

Abes bagels plain

Nice and seedy, with the chewy bagel texture just right and the seeds add a little extra flavour. They went very nicely with hummus and plain butter, but would work brilliantly with your favourite bagel topping. I really liked the high fibre content and the fact that they are made in NZ and have no GM ingredients. But really, it’s the taste that’s the best thing!

Abes bagels hummus

What would I change about these? If I was being picky, I would ask Abe’s to cut these in half in the same way they do with their regular bagels. I always forget to do it before I put them in the freezer and then have to defrost them before I can cut them and put them in the toaster. And I don’t know about anyone else, but I really struggle to cut bagels in half easily!

Also, I would have them in more supermarkets, but I guess that’s not really up to Abe’s. I don’t see the regular bagels around often (so always buy a couple of packets when I come across them and chuck them in the freezer) and have yet to come across the Six Seed bagel anywhere.

Note to self: I have no bagels in the freezer, so must remember to pick some up. And this time, cut them in half before I freeze them!

Check out the Abe’s Bagels website for more information.

Note: I wasn’t paid in any way to write this, apart from being sent some bagels to try. In fact, I have taken a shamefully long time to write this review!

 

Ranga’s gluten-free refreshing drinks!

RangaI was lucky enough to be sent some Ranga drinks to try recently. I love Ginger Beer, so when they said they had an alcoholic version, I was keen to see what it was like. They also sent me through some Blackcurrant and Apple Cider and some Lemon Lime and Bitters – all alcoholic versions. I chucked them in the fridge and then we had a ceremonial family tasting.

Our verdict? The Ginger Beer was lovely – refreshing, gingery and nicely flavoured. The cider was extremely drinkable, but a little sweet for my tastes. It was very nice and had a lovely blackcurrant flavour – kind of like fizzy Ribena. The Lemon Lime and Bitters was probably my favourite. We were drinking these in the middle of winter, not the best time, so they lasted for a few weeks! I can’t wait to try these in summer, and think they’ll become a staple in our fridge.

These drinks are also gluten-free, and produced down in Gisborne, my home town, so a double tick in my book!Ranga bottles

Note: I wasn’t paid for this review, but I was sent some free samples to try. Thanks for letting me try them Ranga!

Gluten-free Mexican Food suppliers

My husband is an excellent man in many ways, and one of these is that he is constantly on the lookout for new gluten-free things for me. Near his work, he came across a cafe called Mexican Specialities. As I have been on a quest for gluten-free tortillas for some time, he thought he’d see if they had any. Well, they do! And he bought a stack of about 50 of them for around $13.00. They are good fresh corn tortillas, very similar to the ones they use at Mexicali Fresh or Mad Mex. They do need to be heated, but can be shaped into a taco style shell or used as a soft tortilla for burritos, enchiladas and the like. They freeze well and separate easily.

You can find Mexican Specialities online here where they offer many imported Mexican items (including decorative items and Day of the Dead paraphernalia) or visit them at the cafe:

5/92 Marua Road

Ellerslie

Note that they are only open for lunch on Thursday, Friday and Saturday.

Edited to change the post title, as it sounded like I had found a supplier of gluten-free Mexicans which was not the case at all!

Zero-G Wholemeal Gluten-free bread mix

20140203-231832.jpgAnother new product has come across my desk! Well, across my oven! Zero-G Wheat & Gluten-free Wholemeal Bread Mix, which is  a product I hadn’t come across before.  Janelle McNeil has recently taken over this company and kindly sent me through a sample. The mix is gluten-free, dairy-free, egg free, soy free, wheat and potato free. I made a loaf at the weekend, and was very pleased with the result – for the most part!

The mixing is very straightforward and easy, and I left the bread to rise on the window sill. The dough looked like such a small amount, I was sure my big loaf tin would be fine. About 45 minutes into the rising, I happened to look at the window and here’s what I saw…

20140203-231843.jpgOops!!

However, the finished product came up very nicely. It has a nutty flavour, no aftertaste and made up into very nice ham and mustard sandwiches for our afternoon high tea. The only drawback was that I couldn’t slice the loaf very thinly, either the day it was cooked, or the next day. But having a doorstop of tasty bread as toast for my breakfast was lovely!

You can find Zero-G at their website or on their Facebook page (search for Zero-G NZ).

I was not paid in any way to write this review, apart from receiving a sample to try.

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Soft fish tacos

I have a new favourite summer dinner which is quick and easy and extraordinarily tasty! And it’s all due to two new products I’ve found. The first, I sampled at the Gluten-free Food and Allergy Show this year and it was the Sealord Gluten-free Crumbed Fish Fillets. At the time, couldn’t think of any way I would use them. Then I came across Gerry’s Go No Gluten Wraps at a reasonable price, and EUREKA! A yummy new dinner, and what’s more, it’s one the whole family can enjoy, although for them, they just eat the regular fish and wraps.

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Ingredients

  • Sealord Gluten-free Crumbed Fish Fillets (1 for each wrap)
  • Gerry’s Go No Gluten Wraps
  • Lettuce
  • Guacamole or avocado
  • Sour cream
  • Sweet chilli sauce
  • Salsa cruda (recipe below)
  • Grated cheese (optional)
  • Chopped tomato (optional)

Method

  • Prepare the salsa and guacamole a little before you are ready to serve the dinner.
  • Cook the fish according to the directions – about 25 minutes in a hot oven.
  • Heat the wraps in a cast iron frypan just before serving.
  • Either assemble the tacos before serving, or let everyone assemble their own with the ingredients that they want.

And this is the result:

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The fish is tasty and the crumb is light. The wraps are very nice, and I found that they stayed nice and fresh in the fridge for a week or so after opening the packet. They are best warmed through, either in a cast iron frypan or microwave or oven. Best of all, they’re readily available at my local Pak n Save!

Salsa Cruda

Ingredients

  • Half a red capsicum, finely chopped
  • Half a green or yellow capsicum, finely chopped
  • Half a red onion, finely chopped
  • 1 green chilli, finely chopped
  • 2 stalks celery, finely chopped
  • Half a tomato, finely chopped
  • Half a cup of fresh coriander, chopped
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 2 tbsp oil
  • 2 tbsp red wine vinegar
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Method

Combine all in a bowl. Cover and refrigerate until it is time to serve. Excellent in tacos, fajitas, with salad and even with eggs as a huevos rancheros.

Abe’s Bagels – gluten-free!

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I saw a Facebook ad just before Christmas for Abe’s Gluten-free Bagels, and thought “what a great idea!” So I very cheekily contacted Abe’s and asked if they would be prepared to send me a sample. They very kindly did so and a few days later, several packets of bagels arrived.

I took them home and my tasting panel and I immediately sampled them fresh. As they’re bagels, of course we toasted them. I had one with just butter, and a second with avocado. They were the prefect texture for bagels and the taste was fabulous, even with just butter. My tasting panel shared one bagel and pronounced them yummy, both with butter and jam.

My extra test for any bread-like product is how they are after being frozen. The reason for this is that I am the only gluten-intolerant person in my household, and I can’t go through, for instance, a loaf of bread or a packet of bagels in one sitting. So I freeze everything and just take out what I need. Accordingly, the bagels went into the freezer and I tried one a few days later. I defrosted it a little in the microwave, which is what I would do for a normal bagel, and then toasted it. Exactly the same result – delicious!

Abe’s have worked with Venerdi to produce these bagels, and the product is delicious. In theory, they should be at my local supermarket with the other gluten-free products. I have yet to find them at my Pak n Save, but have yet to check out New World and Countdown. I’ll keep you all posted on where I find them, and perhaps in the meantime, let me know if you come across them somewhere!