Busaba Eathai – Deliveroo

Every Sunday hangover deserves a takeaway, so this week having noticed Busaba Eathai was now available for me on Deliveroo, I decided to treat myself to some Thai food.

Busaba handily indicates which dishes are gluten free on their menu, which makes it very easy – helpful when you’re feeling a little worse for wear.

I ordered the fish cakes with cucumber and peanut relish, green chicken curry, steamed jasmine rice and prawn crackers. It arrived about 25 minutes later, still piping hot.

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As I served up, I was a disappointed with the curry’s sauce to chicken ratio, it was so wet the rice completely drowned and it only had about two pieces of chicken in it.

The fish cakes were average at best – greasy, rubbery and the dip was just sweet chilli sauce rather than the cucumber and peanut relish promised.

The curry itself tasted really good despite being mainly sauce, creamy and rich with a mild spice and the chicken was tender and juicy. Supposedly it should have contained aubergine as well but there was no sign of any.

Overall it did the job and helped me on my way to recovery but it’s weird that I can get Busaba in my area because there isn’t a restaurant anywhere near. I have a feeling they are letting a local kitchen cook on their behalf, which would explain why corners were cut and ingredients missed.

Again, if you want to try it for yourself you can get £5 off your first Deliveroo order by using my invite link: 

Leon

Only a few days after discovering Eat’s gluten free offering, Leon comes along raises the bar. Pretty much everything on Leon’s menu is gluten free. Seriously, even the puddings!

Overexcited by the quantity of gf options available, I ended up buying far too much for lunch today – Thai green chicken curry ‘hot box’, baked fries (with chili sauce) and a billionaire’s shortbread.

The hot boxes are enormous, great at value for 6ish quid. The Thai green curry itself was creamy and flavoursome without being overbearing, it also comes with a fresh salad made up of cabbage and peas (kind of like a slaw but without mayo).

The fries and billionaire shortbread were an unnecessary but delicious edition to lunch and I’ll certainly be buying them again but maybe on a hangover next time rather than as a side to an already very filling meal.

The menu on the Leon website shows you which items are gluten free (and low in saturated fat, low glycemic load, wheat free, dairy free, vegetarian, vegan, contains nuts) and goes in to detail about the ingredients in each, including allergens and calorie information. This is definitely one of the most thorough and useful websites I’ve seen.

Leon – thank you for being so great at creating fresh, healthy (minus the fries and cake) tasty gluten free food. You’ve made me a very happy coeliac, lunchtime on the high street is really starting to look up.

 

Berlin

Gluten tag from Berlin!*

Before I got diagnosed with coeliac disease I booked a trip to Germany, a country famous for it’s beer, currywurst and pretzels. Not ideal for the gluten free amongst us.

To avoid any unnecessary pain, I did a lot of research ahead of my holiday and found some coeliac friendly gems, so I hope this is helpful if you are planning on visiting Berlin any time soon.

Cielo di Berlino

Specialising in freshly made buckwheat pizzas, this restaurant was a great find, not only was my pizza delicious, the staff were incredibly friendly.

I ordered a buckwheat ‘sophia’ pizza, consisting of olives, pepperoni, garlic and mozzarella, all washed down with a Lammsbräu Glutenfrei beer.

It’s important to note that in Germany ‘pepperoni’ is not  pepperoni as we know it, it’s actually pepper, which I didn’t realise until my food arrived! Not to worry though, I like peppers and these ones were fresh, crunchy and had a nice mild heat to them.

When the chef here found out I was coeliac, he gave me a list of Berlin restaurants that have gluten free options, which saved us on our second night. Big thank you to the staff at Cielo for being so amazingly helpful.

Silo Coffee

Just around the corner from where we were staying, this cool coffee shop has a great hangover curing, healthy brunch menu, with gluten free bread available on request.

I went for the ‘build your own breakfast’ option, which comes with 2 eggs (poached or scrambled) on toast and then you choose your extras. Here’s a bad photo of my creation:

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2 poached eggs on gluten free toast with streaky bacon, mushrooms and spicy beans.

The food here is lovely and very reasonably priced considering the portion sizes, plus I’ve never had a more perfectly poached egg! They also have an extensive choice of coffee but no English breakfast tea, only black, white, green or peppermint. I had a white tea after the waitress recommended it and it was incredible! I’m now trying to find out where I can get some in London.

Katz Orange

This excellent restaurant was recommended by our friend at Cielo as ‘one of the best meals I’ve ever had’ and he was right.

The restaurant itself was beautiful, at the back of a courtyard, it is set around a well stocked bar with a cosy candlelit atmosphere. Unfortunately the camera on my phone just isn’t good enough but there are some great photos on this I Heart Berlin post.

The staff were friendly and knowlegable about the food, wine and cocktails and when asked, provided me with an allergy detailed menu.

Between the three of us we shared two starters, duck sausage and calamari. The sausages were small but tasty and although the calamari came with fennel, it wasn’t overpowering like it can sometimes be.

I had the Secreto Ibérico with beetroot, grilled pear, pointed cabbage and potato gratin as my main. Although my friends were disappointed with their choice (the Duroc pork), mine was excellent. It was great to have a completely gluten free meal of such high quality which delivered on both flavour and portion size.

Apologies for the lack of photos but take my word for it, the food was delicious and  as a holiday treat, well worth the expense.

Other recommendations

It’s always worth checking opening hours, we found that many restaurants were closed during the week or only open in the evenings.

Useful information

Gluten free options certainly aren’t mainstream in Berlin but there are a few decent places you can go to have a good meal, however, planning is key. Berlin is massive and coeliac friendly eateries are spread out. I found myself having to make do with cheese platters and jacket potatoes when trying to get lunch on the fly, which isn’t very exciting or healthy but sometimes very funny.

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Jacket potato served in a foil swan

 

*pun courtesy of my friend Louise