Friday, 26 April 2013

The Free From Food Awards Ceremony 2013

Free from food awards 2013
Michelle in full flow

The invite to the Free From Food Awards 2013 dropped into my inbox and I was all of a dither.

Should I hire a limo? Are dresses long or short this season? And which hip thrust forward will give maximum slimness on the red carpet?

I know. I live in cloud cuckoo land.

So, on the evening of the awards, my date and I joined other smartly clad ladies as we tottered around in heels - sans limo - trying to find the entrance to the Royal College of Physicians.

And as we ascended the marble stairs, there was the jewel in the crown. No, not Anthony Worral-Thompson, but the fragrant Michelle Berriedale-Johnson and her unfailingly calm assistant, Cressida.

How those women were still standing after weeks of organising food judging and then an awards ceremony, was a mystery.

But they were in fine fettle and Michelle kicked the evening off with a speech and the promise of a buffet at the end, comprised of the winning foods.

Free from food awards 2013
Can you spot me?!
It was when Michelle mentioned the buffet that at least one person in the audience thought they hadn't won an award. This was because Michelle hadn't placed an order for his product. The man in question said:

 "So we definitely haven’t won. Just as well really, I’m p**sed already."

And no I can’t tell you who it was because a journalist can never reveal her sources. Wink.

And so the winners in all categories were announced and happy free from food producers received their certificates and had their pic taken with Anthony Worral-T.

Huge congrats to Bessant and Drury for winning the FAIR trophy for the best free from food 2013 with their lemon ice cream and big cheer for Pudology whose Banoffee Pudding was highly commended.

I was amazed at the range of fab products that were runners up or winners. In particular the gluten free Aloo Paratha from the Indian Coeliac looks amazing. It's also egg free, nut free and soy free.

I also like the look of this white chocolate couverture from Mortimer chocolate company.    Mainly because I used to love white chocolate mice as a kid and how cool would it be to make them dairy free?

And finally, with summer maybe happening sometime before Christmas, how cool are the Eskal gluten free party tubs?  I'm itching to try these because I once saw a cake baked in an ice cream cone. Random, but delicious.

Free from food awards 2013
The last food judges standing (I look relatively sober)
And after the awards presentation, I have to confess that the rest of the ceremony was a little - umm - blurry.

I cannot tell a lie, I imbibed a little white wine. I remember a thoroughly enjoyable conversation with Grace Cheetham and I also remember being flushed and probably not very coherent.

And remember the guy who was p**sed and thought he wouldn't win?

Well, Michelle and Cressida had placed an order undercover and his sausages scooped the prize. He unleashed a mighty roar when the decision was announced and cheered all the way to the podium.

Definitely the funniest moment of the evening.

And according to his Facebook page, his carousing carried on into the early hours. Snigger.

Free from food awards 2013

Well done Pig and Co, your name is fab!

Free from food awards 2013
Julian Price from Pig & Co. Celebrating demurely

For a full list of winners and runners up, visit the Free From Food Awards website.

Thanks to Media Wisdom Photography for the photo links 

© Pig in the Kitchen All Rights Reserved

Saturday, 20 April 2013

Linseed and sunflower seed 'crackers' (vegan, gluten free, dairy free)

gluten free seed crackers
My husband called these 'bird food'. An unnecessarily cruel comment...
I'm going to say up front that yes, these look strange. 

They have definitely crossed the line between 'slightly unusual food (due to allergies)' and 'OK these look insane, far too weird, I will definitely not make them'.

It's allright, I understand.

They ARE weird. But if you're trying a low carb diet, they are a good vehicle for transporting hummus into your mouth. 

I will be totally honest and say that the coconut oil is a little overpowering and...oh god I have to stop being honest or no-one will make these!

Look, they are what they are and they are nutritious. And doused in maple syrup how good would they taste? 

I don't know because I'm on a low carb bloody diet and I can't try it! 

Do me a favour? 

If you make these, come back and post a comment so I can see whether I'm definitely in the foodie (weird) badlands, or whether actually, these aren't that bad at all.

I've done a truly terrible job of selling these, haven't I?


Linseed and sunflower seed 'crackers'
The following measurements are very ad hoc, use your culinary wisdom to reduce or increase the amount of seeds in play.

3 tbsps linseeds (whole or ground, up to you. whole ones give more crunch)
3 tbsps ground pumpkin seeds
3 tbsps ground sunflower seeds

Approximately 2 tbsps coconut oil
cupcake cases
  • Line a muffin tin with cupcake cases
  • Put the coconut oil into a small saucepan and heat very gently until melted
  • Add the seeds and stir. If there seems to be too many seeds and not enough oil, add a bit more oil. If not enough seeds, add more
  • Using a teaspoon, dollop a small amount of seed mix into each cupcake case and use the back of the spoon to level off the surface
  • Place in the refrigerator (or freezer) until the coconut oil has set
  • Taste. Hmm, what do you think? Weird or wonderful??!
  • Use for wacky canapes, as a decoration for your tomato soup (that would look cool, the oil would melt and you'd be left with a pretty seed formation!) or to munch on when you're starving but your diet book says 'no more food'
  • Come back and tell me what you think!

© Pig in the Kitchen All Rights Reserved

Monday, 8 April 2013

Gluten free seed crackers (vegan, and maybe raw?!)

gluten free seed crackers
The leaning tower of...seeds

Here's the deal: I ate too much over Easter.

The result? I'm feeling like a fat bloater.

The other result? As my birthday approaches (this week!) I've decided:
  • I'm definitely middle-aged
  • I'm also a bit lardy in places 
  • My metabolism has unhelpfully found a new - lower - gear
  • It's time to shed some skin.

So for the first time EVER I'm going on a diet where a recipe book will tell me what to eat. 

I've quashed my inner critic (quite a job as she's put on weight over the years too) and I'm eagerly awaiting the arrival of the book.

And behold the picture above! It is the result of a cunning low-carb plan that took shape in my head as I came back from the school run! 

I'll be back soon with the - ahem - 'recipe'. 

(Those were ironic quote marks to indicate that this is more of a melt-icipe - ooo look! I invented a word! - than a roll up your sleeves, time-to-trash-the-kitchen complicated dish.)

Hasta luego gente muy amicale de mi blog! (ooo look! I made up some Spanish too!)

Pig x