Grab the Gold | Triumph Dining

grabthegoldI grabbed the gold on the way to work today. Really! Grab the Gold is a balanced protein snack bar that came in one of my monthly deliveries from Cuisine Cube. I always have a bar or two stashed in my work bag in case I’m hungry and not around gluten free options.

This bar is more the size and shape of a hockey puck, maybe slightly smaller. It’s round like a hockey puck. The flavor of my bar was chocolate peanut butter and had whole chocolate chips and whole oats in it. It was moist but with chunks so it wasn’t pasty like protein bars can be. The size was perfect. I didn’t feel overly full after eating the whole thing but it filled my need for breakfast. The chocolate chips made it a bit sweet but not too much for first thing in the morning. Click to continue reading »

Zema’s Foccacia | Triumph Dining

rosemary-450x767Do you participate in the Meatless Monday trend? It’s a goal in our house although it’s not always accomplished on Mondays. No matter the day, I try to plan at least one or two meatless dinners during the week.

This week’s meal was created around a rosemary-millet focaccia mix made by Zema’s Madhouse Foods. We made a tomato pesto focaccia, vegetarian potato leek soup and a green tossed salad.

The mix came in my monthly Cuisine Cube and could be made into focaccia bread or a pizza crust. We opted to top ours with some homemade pesto, sliced tomatoes and a little shredded cheese. The mix required adding egg whites (or egg replacer), water, maple syrup or agave nectar and vinegar. The directions said to mix everything together then layout on a parchment paper covered cookie sheet before adding the toppings. I didn’t have any parchment but the foil I used worked fine.

The focaccia bread turned out thin, browned on the edges and tasty. The whole thing took about 10 minutes to prep and 40-50 minutes to bake so I put it in the oven then made the soup. Click to continue reading »

Flour Buds Cornbread | Triumph Dining Product Review

There are items in my monthly Cuisine Cube that immediately excite me and ones that I plan to try later. In the case of Flour Buds Bakery Cornbread I didn’t know what I’d eat it with so I added an extra layer of plastic wrap and tossed it in the freezer.

I pulled it out of the freezer this week to eat alongside a steak salad with dinner. I took it straight from the freezer and popped it into the toaster oven with low expectations.

I expected something dry and crumbly especially after taking it out of the freezer. Boy was I wrong. That thing was delicious! It was moist, fluffy and slightly sweet, the way I prefer my corn bread. I sliced it and ate some with butter and some without because it didn’t actually NEED it. I offered to share but was happy when I didn’t have to.

I’ve tried a lot of gluten-free corn bread and this was by far the best. These professional bakers have great skills, which is evidenced in their lighter, smoother product that didn’t have any bad aftertaste like some. The 6 oz. size of the cornbread was large enough for two people. It was bigger than a standard muffin but not as large as a mini loaf.

Flour Buds is a New York-based allergy-free and gluten-free bakery with an emphasis on natural and organic. They pride themselves in offering a wide variety of high-quality healthy items, baked fresh daily.

The founder, Pam Goldberg, is a graduate of The Natural Gourmet Institute for Health and Culinary Arts and she eats gluten free. You can order this cornbread and other Flour Buds items from the Cuisine Cube website. Enjoy!

Thumbs Cookies | Triumph Dining Product Review

ab3097291fc0f073d9e32d669a594c87I got a cute little box of these tiny round cookies called Thumbs in my Cuisine Cube this month. If you see them somewhere run away. These melt-in-your-mouth buttery buttons are too addicting! You can’t eat only a few. Good thing the box was small because it was gone in a flash!

The cookies are about the size of your thumb print and lightly dusted with cinnamon and sugar. They are not soft but they aren’t crisp and brittle either. Think of a tiny butter or sugar cookie. Click to continue reading »

Neat | Triumph Dining Product Review

neat-italian-mix__13897.1405355072.220.290When I was in high school I went vegan for a time. I only made it about four months before the delightful smell of buffalo wings reached my nostrils and I ended up caving. Luckily, in that time, I had learned about organic and free-range meat choices and never had to go back to the awful fake meat products (or “feat” as I called them) which were the only things available at the time.

Recently I came about the Neat meat replacement mixes because they weren’t made out of tempeh and tofu. Instead, these mixes are made from pecans, garbanzo beans, gluten-free oats and cornmeal, and spices. I had seen quite a few raves on Amazon and couldn’t believe that something people liked so much could be 100% vegan, gluten-free, soy-free, and not contain any GMOs.

There are four flavors of Neat: Original, Mexican, Italian and Breakfast. Original is to be used as a replacement for ground beef in burgers, chili, and Sloppy Joe’s. Mexican is to be used as a replacement in tacos, nachos and enchiladas. Italian can be used in pasta and meatballs while breakfast is a replacement for sausage in dishes like sandwiches and quiches. Click to continue reading »

Paleo People Fruit & Nut Clusters | Triumph Dining

414eaZx+seL._SY300_For busy households like mine, snack mixes that you can trust are gluten-free are an absolute must for the pantry. Paleo People has a snack line of Fruit & Nut Cluster snacks that are not only certified gluten-free but also grain-free, sodium-free, soy-free, dairy-free, non GMO, and made from all natural ingredients.

These snacks are available in four flavors: Cacao Nut, Apple Crisp, Cappuccino Crunch and Banana Nut Crunch. While often compared to a granola, these cluster snacks are a bit more moist and chewy, though there is still a distinctive crunch.

The Cacao Nut is perfect for a chocoholic. The raw cacao powder is lightly dusted on all the almonds, raisins, pumpkin seeds and various other nuts and adds the robust but not overly sweet taste of the cocoa nibs mixed in. If you add this to yogurt it really brings out the chocolate flavor. Click to continue reading »

Finnriver Farm Cider | Triumph Dining

images-2At Finnriver, cider making isn’t their only venture, but it sure is one of the tastiest. Finnriver Farm is a 33 acre organic family farm, artisan cider, and event venue located in on Washington State’s Olympic Peninsula. They are a certified organic and salmon safe farm where you can find an assortment of berries, vegetables, flowers, honey bees, chicken, ducks, pigs, and goats as well as heirloom apple orchards. From those apple orchards comes the apple juice that is fermented through the winter using both traditional and contemporary methods to make the Finnriver Cider. Click to continue reading »

Pairdd | Triumph Dining Review

If you’ve seen the online ads for “meal in a box” services such as Blue Apron or Plated and wished there was a gluten-free option available, you may be in luck. Pairdd is a new Wisconsin-based company that will ship you gluten-free ingredients and easy-to-follow recipes each week so you can cook your own gluten-free meals without any hassle.

With Pairdd, you decide which meals you would like to make for the following week and pay for them on the website before each Sunday. On Tuesday, your ingredients will arrive at your doorstep, pre-measured with the recipes you chose from gluten-free bloggers, chefs and businesses. All the prep work is taken care of ahead of time so you can have your meal on the table in under an hour.

You can choose to make the meals the day you receive your box or keep them refrigerated for up to five days for meat-based dinners or two days for seafood-based dinners. The Pairdd boxes are sent to you with FedEx PeriShip, which is tailored to perishable items so there’s no need to worry about a box getting delivered to your home while you’re at work.

Pairdd has six weekly menu options either a la carte for $15 a serving, though each order is two servings, or through a weekly subscription of $50 for two meals (4 servings). This company takes a lot of the legwork and guesswork out of eating gluten-free. Sometimes a product is not clearly labeled gluten-free, or a manufacturer makes other products that contain gluten, resulting in cross-contamination. Pairdd double checks the ingredients in its meals whenever possible.

“We’re reading all labels and we also attempt to make phone calls to manufacturers to make sure that they are prepared in a place that doesn’t have any gluten around,” Casey Lanto, one of the company’s founders, said. “There’s certain products, say blue cheese, where it can be grown on gluten containing bread. Some blue cheese isn’t clearly labeled on whether or not there’s gluten in it.”

Also convenient is that Pairdd offers up their past recipes of a la carte items on their website so if you have already cooked your meal for the week, you can easily find inspiration for the rest of your dinners.

Unfortunately, Pairdd only serves the Wisconsin area right now but hopefully will be expanding soon! If you’re lucky enough to live in the delivery area, get your first week free by signing up on their website though you do have to pay shipping fees.

Boonville Cider House | Triumph Dining Product Review

2db6ff_0fd37da307ab4a729c58af4a7e0e0f3e.png_srz_311_374_85_22_0.50_1.20_0.00_png_srzFrom the owners of California’s Boonville Hotel comes one of the newest and hardest gluten-free cider brewers, Boonville Cider House. These folks have only been making cider since 2010, but have been doing it well enough to make a name for themselves in the emerging craft cider scene. Also making them stand out, Boonville Cider House’s Bite Hard Apple Cider is one of only a few served in an aluminum can.

Their Bite Hard cider is crisp and semi-dry, slow fermented from heirloom Northern California apples in the English tradition. This cider carries a distinctive bite thanks to the tannic and full-bodied fruit that goes in it. It’s a solid cider with a light sweetness and it’s very refreshing. It’s affectionately called Autumn in a Can. And at 6.9% ABV, Bite Hard is fairly typical of full-strength hard ciders, with no perceptible harshness imparted by the alcohol. Click to continue reading »

Devoto Orchards Cider | Triumph Dining Review

Review of Devoto Cider by Triumph DiningIn the hills near Sebastopol, California, amidst all the vineyards, is a small cidery named Devoto Orchards. Devoto uses exclusively California-grown certified organic apples for their ciders and more than that, they grow more than a hundred different varieties of apples! Though they’ve only been making cider for a few of the 40 years they have had the farm, a few years is apparently all you need to make an award-winning bunch. According to the cidery, the sandy soil and coastal fog, which produces amazing wine grapes, is also very good for their heirloom and cider apples.

Devoto’s gluten-free cider is only made between the months of August to November, which are when the apples are the freshest. These apples are shaken off tree branches before being turned into one of four artisanal ciders: 1976, Cider Noir, Gravenstein and Backyard.

In 1976, the Devoto family left Berkeley to brew cider and their 1976 Cider is an homage to that beginning. 1976 is a semi-dry cider blended from the 17 original apple varieties that the family started with.

Cider Noir is a dry cider made from the last apples picked of the season. The flavors in these apples develop for seven months before being harvested in late October. Click to continue reading »