The Gluten-Free Expo 2017!
2017 ain't a bad year to be a celiac (or a vegan for that matter.) But then again, I acknowledge that site specificity and contextuality play a huge role, we celiacs have it lucky here in Vancouver.
With so many gluten-free options in the city, one can subsist off of pseudo carb dishes without ever succumbing to the temptation of actual gluten (asian food however, poses a challenge.)
Residing in Kits has made gluten-free living all the more accessible (Whole Foods is practically my second home.) This lifestyle was pretty attainable when I lived in Burnaby as well, being that there was a organic grocer 5 mins away from my house.
Having been a full blown celiac for a few months now, it only made sense for me to attend the Gluten-free Expo this year (given that I'm still hopelessly devoted to my cause and am always on the lookout for new celiac friendly products to try.)
I found it interesting that we were one of the only asians there...one could not help but notice the demographic consisted of mostly white, middle class, suburban moms (I'm sure there were a ton of mommy bloggers in the crowd.)
Being the supportive boyfriend that he is, Jeremy sacrificed his precious stomach space to try all of the bread samples available because I wanted to buy a loaf (mind you, there was A LOT)...much to the dismay of his distended stomach.
But to our horror, most of the bread stalls weren't doing any sales, you either had to buy them in store or order them online! (We only found this out after combing through every bread sample in sight.)
Nonetheless, we were able to leave with a full bag of loot, stuffed to the brim with decadent treats (oreo sandwich cookies anyone?) and free samples galore (we be granola bar leechers!) I also took it as an opportunity to stock up on my favourite Freeyum snacks (for way less than what I usually pay in-store.)
Here are some highlights! Reviewing the expo in its entirety would've been impossible given the size of the venue!
ZONING IN ON DEM GLUTEN-FREE PASTRIES!!
Fudge Bar (2-pack) $7
OMG...so caloric, but so worth the calories!! Very filling as well (as evidenced by how hefty it was.) Despite being packed with chocolate, the fudge bar was very seedy tasting, without being overly sweet. Incredibly moist, a tad crumbly, and no dryness to speak of!
Oreo Sandwich Cookie (2-pack) $7
This tasted EXACTLY like an oreo...just as sweet! Which I was all for, I ain't lookin to eat a semi-sweet oreo! The cookie was of the crunchy variety, so it was a tad bit crumbly. I would've preferred if it was a chewy cookie, but nonetheless, I was impressed!
ONE MUST NEVER TURN DOWN PIE!! ESPECIALLY NOT OF THE GLUTEN-FREE VARIETY!
Cherry, Blueberry Handpies $10
Quite decent I'd say. The batter could've used some work (it was a tad dense) but the filling was satisfying in that it was oozing with cherry. I definitely got my fair share of pie that weekend because we went for organic/gluten-free/vegan pie at Aphrodite's the next day!
Matcha Cookies $4
VEGAN/GLUTEN-FREE MATCHA LOVERS, REJOICE!! I'm usually shut out of the matcha circle due to my dietary restrictions (most asian matcha desserts have dairy in them, not to mention gluten) so as soon as I spotted these in my peripheral vision, my eyes just lit up! These were absolutely delicious in that the matcha flavour was identifiable without being overbearing, with a subtle amount of bitterness to boot.
STOCKING UP ON FREEYUMS!!!! 3 for $10 *happy dance*
We each got a box of Ener-C for $15 (they go for $25 at Whole Foods) because Jeremy drinks a pack everyday!
FREE BREAD YOO!! Upon handing me this, the guy was like "You look like someone who would appreciate some bread!" Indeed I would, sir!
MY FAVOURITE BRAND MAKES AN APPEARANCE!! Their bars were a part of said routine circa 2015.
WENDEL'S! I tried their cookies last year at Whole Foods!
Jeremy preferred the ginger sugar cookie over the chocolate chip one!
HEY, IT'S THE $4 BAR I TRIED LAST WEEK AT HEIRLOOM JUICE CO!
I always have some MadeGood bars on hand. I have some in my cupboard right now!
UDI'SSSS (their hamburger buns give me LIFEEE.)