Let’s talk trends!! Not fashion, not hashtags, but food trends:
2000 was the good carbs only movement
2003 was the low carb movement
2006 was the organic food movement
2007 was eating locally and sustainably
2008 was the whole grains movement
Leading into the 2010’s we saw the rise of the “I quit sugar” diet, as well as Paleo Pete jumping on the food fad bandwagon. This was followed quickly by the now very popular Vegan movement and those opting to remove gluten, dairy and other allergens from their diet just for fun, or because of the alleged health benefits as described by some celebrity chef.
But what about those of us with allergies and dietary restrictions that are an affliction of a lifetime rather than a lifestyle?
A year after the birth of my second child I was diagnosed coeliac disease. For those of you who aren’t familiar with it;
“Coeliac disease is caused by a reaction to gluten, which are various proteins found in wheat and in other grains such as barley, and rye. Upon exposure to gluten, an abnormal immune response may lead to the production of several different autoantibodiesthat can affect a number of different organs. In the small-bowel this causes an inflammatory reactionand may produce shortening of the villi lining the small intestine. This affects the absorption of nutrients, frequently leading to anaemia.”
On Top of that, I also became lactose intolerant and allergic to sulfites – which means a lot of wines and dried fruits are completely off the table. (Yes, wine. Please feel free to grieve in my honour.)
To a degree, I am thankful that the trending food style has influenced menu options in my favour, with many restaurants and cafes adding extra options for those in need through choice or otherwise, however the monotony still gets to me slightly.
After all, We ceoliacs are not hipsters on a fad diet. We are fighters who are facing and unbeatable foe with nothing more than the food on our plates. Salads, risotto, grilled and the OCCASIONAL gluten free penne or gluten free pizza base (usually NOT with gluten free toppings) about sums up the options given.
So this month we are cruising around Adelaide finding the very best of gluten free dining that breaks the mould and offers something outside of the norm. Check out this weeks journal entry!
Sunday May 28th: Cafe salsa at west beach
Recently revamped, Cafe Salsa is situated close to the West Beach foreshore. The cafe has offered its patrons a retro, kitch, beach style dining atmosphere with an Italian inspired menu for many years and will clearly continue to do so for many more.
I was blown away and the amount of options available for someone with my particular ailment. At least two thirds of the menu is available gluten free, with the only exceptions being potatoes, fries and pizzas.
Lemon pepper calamari with a rocket, pear and Parmesan salad –
The salad is a stark contrast as the support act to the squid. The flavours are bold and pungent, marinated in balsamic and olive oil. Peppery arugula works perfectly with a sharp bite from the Parmesan, the soft, fruity flesh of the pear and the sweet acidity of the balsamic.
Melanzani parmigiana – aka, eggplant parmy –
Also a vegetarian option, this dish is rich and homely. Layered eggplant baked then Smothered in a homemade Napoletana and topped with melted Parmesan cheese. It’s simple, rustic and full of flavour that leaves you with the feeling of a big, warm hug from nonna. Robust and moorish but definitely a dish that was fill you up!
This is just the first of our stops of many this month, as we try to bring you the best gluten-free menu this state has to offer. If you have any restaurant recommendations that should be featured please let us know! In the meantime- get amongst it!
Cafe salsa located at
5 West Beach Road, West Beach