Friday, February 27, 2009

Gluten Free Week at Camp Kanata

Camp Kanata, in partnership with the Gluten Intolerance Group of North America (GIG) and its local affiliate, will be offering a week for gluten free campers June 21-27. This will be the sixth year that Camp Kanata has offered this fun-filled week to kids. In my third year as the volunteer dietitian, I will work along side our camp coordinator, overseeing an experienced kitchen staff, and a great group of volunteers to provide gluten free food to our campers. Camp Kanata is a residential camp for children in grades 2-12, located in Wake Forest, NC. We are fortunate to have the GIG east coast camp so conveniently located to the triangle area!

This is a fun-filled camp experience, where children participate in the full camp program with the rest of the campers without worries of what they will eat at meal times. A gluten free menu is designed to mimic what is being served on the camp menu, is cooked in a designated gluten free kitchen and served to children in the dining hall along with the rest of the campers.

While the target audience is those children with Celiac Disease, we are also able to accommodate Celiac kids with other mild food allergies and some other medical conditions such as Lactose Intolerance and Diabetes.

Although food costs are much higher, GF campers are not charged any more than the normal camp fee. In order to buy supplies and gluten free products to make camp possible we welcome donations. GIG in a non profit organization. Please contact me if you would like to support this cause with gluten free products.

This is generally a very popular week for Camp Kanata and spots are expected to fill, so register quickly. For further information, registration and local contacts:
Camp Kanata
Dr Alanna Conder, GF Kids Camp Director
Debbie Jongkind, RD,LDN, Camp Dietitian

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Grocery Store Review: Kroger on Hillsborough Road

I have found the Kroger on Hillsborough Road in Durham to be well stocked in gluten free items. This store seems to carry more variety than some of the other locations in the area. Gluten Free signage is used to identify items. Most items are found in the Nature's Market section of the store. Here one will find several cereals, pastas, soups, cookies, baking mixes and some frozen items as well. I was excited to find that this store is now carrying two of my favorite GF items: Mixes from 1.2.3 Gluten Free and Pure Fit Bars. Both are items that we use and I had only been able to get them via the Internet and mail order; it was nice to see them on the shelves of my local store. 1.2.3 Gluten Free is a company in Pittsburgh that makes incredible GF mixes, we love the bundt cakes and the pan bars. For further information you can check out their website at The Pure Fit Bars are the best gluten free meal replacement bars on the market in my opinion. They come in four flavors: peanut butter, almond, berry, chocolate brownie, 240 Calories and 18 grams of protein. They do not melt, so they are great to keep in your car for an "emergency meal". For more information on these bars go to

The Kroger stores have a nice Web site with information on gluten free foods and Celiac Disease. A few tips that are mentioned here let the consumer know that all the Private Selection yogurts, puddings, gelatins and deli meats are gluten free. However they do caution that meats in the deli could be cross contaminated during slicing. They recommend asking the deli clerk to clean the slicer or have your purchase sliced first thing in the morning.

Remember to shop the perimeter of the store for healthy naturally gluten free items such as fresh fruit and vegetables, low fat dairy options and leans meats, fish and poultry.

3457 Hillsborough Road
Durham, NC 27705
open 24 hours

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Restaurant Review/Word of Caution: Jimmy John's "Unwich"

I stopped by Jimmy John's on ninth street in Durham for lunch the other day thinking their "unwich" would be a good idea for someone who needs to eat gluten free. The "unwich" is advertised as a low carb lettuce wrap; it is the same ingredients and price as a regular sub only without the bread. I asked my server for nutrition information or any information on gluten ingredients and he promptly retrieved the manager to talk with me. Although very nice, the manager was unable to give me any information. After checking out the website at, I still was without the answers I needed, so I sent in some questions to the company. I received a prompt reply with the list of gluten free options for my unwich which includes:
To my surprise their cheese and beef both contain gluten! They did not list their avocado spread on either list, I will keep checking on this item.
I returned to the store today and enjoyed a #4 Turkey Tom (fresh sliced turkey breast, tomato, alfalfa sprouts wrapped in lettuce). Ordering Tip: Because the sub buns are sliced in the same area as the "unwich" prep ask that your sandwich be made on top of the wrapping paper to avoid the cross contamination of the bread crumbs.

Durham has three Jimmy John's locations:

738 Ninth St.

5410 Page Rd.

1125 NC Highway 54 (New store, recently opened)

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Rosie's Plate - Durham Delivery Available

Rosie's Plate offers fresh, organic and gluten free foods to folks in the Triangle area. I first met Rose(the owner) this past summer when she sat down with me in her office, explained her business, gave me a tour of their awesome kitchen facilities and introduced me to executive chef, Anne Everitt. I was so impressed with their cooking practices, knowledge, passion and dedication to producing high quality foods for those of us with food restrictions. Their kitchen is completely gluten, shellfish and peanut free! They also have several vegetarian and dairy free options. Rosie's Plate is located at 701 N. Person St in Raleigh, a long trek from my home in Durham! (Zach has highlighted Rosie's Plate on his Gluten Free Raleigh blog here.)

Fortunately for those of us who live and work in Durham, Rosie's Plate started delivering to the Durham area this past fall. They are part of the Duke Mobile Market sponsored by the Live for Life Program at Duke. They deliver every Tuesday between 4-6pm at the Sarah P. Duke Gardens parking lot. For a complete menu and further information on ordering check out their website at or call 833-0505. You do not need to be a Duke employee to take advantage of this delivery option. Remember to place your orders by Monday for delivery on Tuesday. All foods are delivered chilled, ready to be reheated or frozen. We recently tried their new pizza crusts. My family really enjoyed the thin crust, but remember to remove the parchment paper before cooking if you want a crisp crust! Other favorites include their muffins, ready made luncheons, and of course their cookies! Look for the white small SUV with the Rosie's Plate sign in the parking lot. Thank you Rose for making the effort to deliver in Durham.

Sarah P Duke Gardens
426 Anderson St.
Durham, NC 27708

Monday, February 9, 2009

Useful Resources: Treats for Young Celiacs

I have been very busy the last week without much time to blog. I was watching my 3 year old niece who has Celiac Disease and her 8 month old brother while their parents were away on a trip. Since all of my children are much older now, this was a step back in time to the sweet days of infants and toddlers. Also new for me was feeding and caring for a toddler with Celiac Disease. My own daughter was not diagnosed with Celiac Disease until she was a teenager. My sister is raising her daughter on a lacto-ovo vegetarian diet. I am an expert at watching for gluten, but now we were also were eliminating all meat, chicken and fish.

As an aunt I feel it my duty to spoil my niece a little, so I was in search of goodies that would be suitable for her to enjoy. The beautiful weather in Durham this weekend gave us the opportunity to enjoy gluten free ice cream cones outside on the deck. We love the Barkat waffle ice cream cones. They taste as good as the real thing! According to a recent email I received, the Gluten Free Mall has lowered prices on their Barkat products 25-50%. The box of waffle cones are listed at $7.56 for 10 cones. These were worth every cent to me, as I watched my niece lick away at her special treat.
I had also picked up some gluten free cupcakes from Rosie's Plate. Rosie's has a very convenient weekly delivery in the Durham area on Tuesdays at Duke Gardens ( I will be blogging more about this very soon.) She enjoyed a special frozen kids meal from Amy's that was vegetarian and gluten free, but best of all came with a tattoo inside! I picked this up at the Willowdaile Harris Teeter.

Music is fun and educational for children. Kyle Dine, a Canadian Musician, has produced a CD called "You Must Be Nuts". This CD has 14 tracks about various food allergies. Our favorite of course is "The Gluten Free Blues". I had down loaded this song to my i-pod several months ago and was itching for the chance to share it with my niece. Kyle Dine has a website and a free newsletter that one can request via his web site at

It was great to watch my niece giggle, dance and eat her snacks. She has been following her gluten free diet for about a year. My sister is teaching her that "gluten will make her belly sick" and she knows not to eat some of her baby brother's snacks because they contain wheat. She was the fourth diagnosed Celiac in our family and because her Celiac Disease was caught early she is thriving and growing just fine!

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Restaurant Review: Tosca Ristorante Italiano

What a nice surprise I had the other evening when my husband and I went out to dinner at TOSCA'S. I was unfamiliar with the menu and had not called ahead, so figured I would just be making due with a salad and watch my husband eat the lasagna he had been craving. As I was reading through the menu my eyes fell on the words "gluten free pasta available." I also learned that all of TOSCA's sauces are gluten free! The wait staff was very helpful and we had a wonderful dining experience. The gelato is a nice option for dessert.

The menu and specials are listed on TOSCA's website at . Here the restaurant describes itself as serving traditional central and southern Italian cuisine daily in a casual elegant atmosphere.

As with all dining experiences it is a good idea to verify that what you are ordering is gluten free. Make sure you request that your gluten free pasta be cooked in a clean separate cooking pot from the other pastas.

I look forward to returning to TOSCA's enjoying gluten free pasta, a glass of wine and listening to the live music that is offered in the spring and fall.

TOSCA is located in central Durham
604 W Morgan Street
Durham, NC 27701
Hours of Operation
11:30-2:00 M-F
5:30-10:30 Sat
Closed Sundays

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