Triumph Dining Grocery Guide

Friday, October 26, 2012

Celiacs - I need your input!

I work for two local weekly newspapers, and I'm pitching an idea to my editor for a couple of articles in the Holiday Gift Guide of the newspaper for December. 

One is: gift ideas for celiacs
The other is: Gluten-free Holiday Dining challenges


What would you think would be a great holiday gift for a celiac?

I've already thought of the following, but I would love you to add your own suggestions. Here's mine so far:

Gift certificates to GF restaurants
Gift certificates to natural/whole food stores
A subscription to one of the GF magazines
A GF cookbook or book on celiac
A visit to a nutritionist/dietitian
A GF gift basket from a bakery or online source
The Triumph Dining Guide
A food processor or mixer (a new one that's not contaminated with gluten)
GF beer or wine
GF cosmetics such as Red Apple Lipstick
A GF T-shirt
A GF "app" to find places to eat or shop

What would you like to get for Christmas that's celiac-related?

Also, what is the greatest challenge you face for holiday dining, whether it is cooking it yourself, eating at a relatives, or dining out?
Do you have well-meaning relatives who just don't get it, and get insulted or offended is you don't try their efforts? Do you have a recipe you'd like to share?

What is the most difficult thing you face about the holidays in general?
Food? Gifts? Visiting? Dining out? I'd love to hear your comments, and hopefully I can sell my boss lady on the idea for the articles. I'd love to have some recipes to go with the articles, to have some photos of GF items you couldn't imagine living without.  


Saturday, October 20, 2012

Back to Basics' 30th Anniversary Gala, Oct. 13, 2012

This past weekend, I had the pleasure of attending the Back to Basics' 30th anniversary Gala at their store, 500 Main St., East Greenwich. Bob and Mary Ann Hartman had a great turnout, and there were many vendors with samples. I've got to tell you – it feels good to go to an event and be able to sample products without worrying about having a reaction.
I'm posting a ton of pictures, since I want you to see as many products as you can. The vendors were diverse, including a handmade soap, crackers, Omega-3, supplements, food, and more. When you left the store, you received a "bag o' swag" as well, which contained product information brochures, as well as samples to try at home. (I apologize for the haphazard layout of the photos, but the program I am using for this website has its limitations.)

The North○East Independent did an interview with the Hartmans in their Oct. 18 issue. Check it out. The photo is by yours truly, taken at the event, when the Hartmans graciously took a minute to pose for me. Katy Hartman, their daughter, is a registered and licensed dietitian and nutritionist.


Owners Bob and Mary Ann Hartman
Daughter Katy Hartman, a dietitian

Bag of samples that we were given to take home!

Monday, October 1, 2012

This just in...

I work for a newspaper, and I love saying "This just in!" like the old-time newspapers. (I'm a sucker for "Hold the presses" as well.)

Anyway, I found a few minutes, and I've got some scoop. It's official...the gluten-free food pantry at the West Bay Community Action Program in operation! I just received an email from Joshua-Michael, the manager of the program, with the details.

The Westbay CAP Marketplace gluten-free program is up and running

This year, the Marketplace started a Special Diets’ program for people with specific dietary needs. They have launched a gluten-free food pantry for people with celiac disease, and they are planning to expand to include a program for people with diabetes in 2013.

In order to participate in the Special Diets gluten-free program, you will need to bring a doctor’s note or a note from a registered dietitian to the Program Service Office, certifying that you have celiac disease or a gluten allergy . Once you are enrolled in the program, you can come to the Marketplace once a month and receive a choice of foods labeled gluten-free, as well as meat, pre-made salads, etc. that the Marketplace may have available.  Unlike the two other Marketplace programs, i.e., commodities and emergency food, all the Special Diets program client-families will be families numbering no more than one. The Marketplace served the communities of Warwick, West Warwick and East Greenwich. For more information, call 732-4660, Ext. 140, or visit 211 Buttonwoods Ave., Warwick.

Gluten-free Baking Class

The Alternative Food Co-op, 357 Main St., Wakefield, will hold a Gluten-Free Baking class on Oct. 25 from 6 to 8 p.m. Cost is $19 for Wakefield residents, and $25 for non-residents. The class description reads as follows:
"Gluten free does not have to mean no bread, muffins, breakfast sandwiches, cookies or cakes. We will explore and learn how to bake basic foods that help you manage food allergies and gluten free diets without losing taste. This is a hands-on class with lots of samples! Please wear closed toe shoes and bring your favorite cutting board and knife. Instructor: Suzi Belanger." 
For more information, call 789-2240, or visit

Stephen Marra Foundation 5K Road Race

The Stephen Marra Foundation and The Grille on Main will hold a 5K road race on Oct. 21, 2012. They hope to raise $50,000 for the Foundation, which was formed in 2012 to continue the work of Stephen P. Marra, one of the founders of the Pinelli-Marra group of restaurants, which have gluten-free menu options. The foundation's aim is to help the homeless, the sick and aging, and the disadvantaged – both animal and human. For more information, visit

New from EvaRuth's Bakery

It's fall, and EvaRuth's has some new items to maple corn muffins, pumpkin donuts, Bananas Foster whoopie pies, caramel apple cupcakes (save one for me!), pancake mix, Caesar-seasoned croutons, Russian bread and spicy artisan bread. Thanksgiving will be here sooner than you think, and EvaRuth's is ready with and extensive menu, including pies and stuffing. For more information, visit

Enjoy all the season has to offer, and safe!