Wilson’s Arms – Torver, Lake District – a hidden coeliac gem

Enjoying a weekend away can be affected as a coeliac when you have to plan every meal in advance. 

Whilst away on a walking weekend with friends I was delighted to find a lovely pub with gluten free options. 

Wilson’s Arm’s at Torver near Coniston actually has a number of gluten free, veggie and vegan options including platters, sandwiches and salads on the lunch menu. 

I actually opted for a classic and after a hard morning walking I had a jacket potato and beans. It’s comforting to eat safely and happily and this pub and it’s adjoining deli is a treat. 


Pizza Express

I recently heard a rumour that Pizza Express had expanded their gluten free menu to include a vegan cheese. Naturally I needed to find out more. Quickly. So off I popped to my nearest Pizza Express. 

When I arrived I spoke to the manager who provided me with full allergy menus and options. They spoke to me about my needs, made recommendations and discussed it with the chef.

I ordered the gluten free dough balls with olive oil and balsamic followed by a gluten free margherita with vegan cheese. 

The food was delicious, the service was inclusive and I was in no way unwell. 

I would highly recommend and look forward to a future trip. 

Creamy Broccoli Soup

September is one of my favourite times of the year. I love the change of season and the autumnal spirit. Soup is a perfect Autumn weekend lunch and today I’ve used summery broccoli and vegan cream cheese to make a delicious soup.

I am lucky enough to have a lovely Le Creuset casserole pan and it makes soups really easy as you can just pop all the ingredients in and let it work it’s magic. 

For this soup, a vegan twist on broccoli and stilton, I start by chopping new potatoes, broccoli and brown onion. You can chop quite roughly as when it’s cooked it will need blending. Add all the ingredient to the pan and cover with stock. As I’m a coeliac I use Kallo gluten free stock cubes to avoid a reaction. 

Cover and cook on a medium heat for approximately 90 minutes stirring as required. Once the vegetables are soft and cooked entirely blend the soup. 

I’m serving with a soya, vegan alternative to cream cheese and flavour with salt and pepper. 

A lovely Saturday lunch in a sunny autumn day. 

Perfect Late Summer Chutney 

It’s apple time! To celebrate beautiful moment of the year when my neighbour presents me with a bucket full of apples fresh from their tree and all ready for me to transform into treats. 

This year I’m making a tasty chutney with a load of apples, a little pear and a generous serving of gin. 

Chop the apples and place into a large saucepan or cooking pot along with 2 chopped pears. I’m using my oval Le Creuset dish as it’s perfectly sized. Cover the fruit with demerara sugar, about 200g for a large pan full of fruit. 

Add 500ml red wine vinegar. I’m using red wine vinegar instead of other vinegar as it’s one of the gluten free vinegars suitable for coeliacs. Top with a generous helping of gin. Approximately 100ml. I’m using Arbikie’s gin as, like the vinegar, it’s completely gluten free. 

Switch the temperature up to high so the chutney can start bubbling and then when the liquid is beginning to boil turn down to a low temperature and simmer for about 2 hours stirring regularly. 

The apple and pear will break down forming a chutney of thick consistency. 

Dish into jars and allow to cool. This will be perfect with a gluten free cracker – I can’t wait. 

Gluten Free, Vegan Cupcakes (accesorised with Moomins) 

I’m definitely getting in the spirit for the first episode of Great British Bake Off as the new series starts tonight! 

As I’m lactose intolerant and a coeliac I don’t tend to do much baking these days but I’ve made a special effort and whipped up some gluten freee, vegan cakes. 

I’m lying. I’ve made no effort at all. These cakes came from a ready mix I actually found in Aldi. Betty Crocker Gluten Free Devil Food Cake Mix. The instructions say to mix with eggs, water and vegetable oil but I’ve replaced the egg with vegan alternative before mixing and it’s worked out perfectly. 

Following the steps are simple. Mix all the ingredients together and pour into cupcake cases or a greased cake tin and bake for approximately 25 minutes. 

Once cooked and cooled I have made my own chocolate icing with Vitalite, icing sugar and cocoa powder. I’ve also topped some with Moomin cake toppers made of rice paper, not all because I ran out though. This box made 24 cakes so I will be tucking in for a while. A perfect accompaniment for when Bake Off starts at 8pm! 

Sesame Crunch Noodles

I’m going through a real sesame phase and am enjoying sesame oil and seeds. This crunchy stir fry lightly cooks the vegetables making for a crisp and delicious meal. 

Start by soaking pad thai rice noodles in boiling water for about 5 minutes. Rice noodles are an excellent staple for coeliacs as it never feels like you are missing out. Keep the noodles soaking whilst you prepare and cook the veg. 

Warm a little sesame oil in a large wok and add chopped broccoli and slices of yellow pepper. Stir frequently to ensure even cooking. After 3 -5 minutes add chopped spring onions and sweetcorn and continue to stir fry for a further 3 – 5 minutes. Drain and then add the rice noodles. Season with gluten free tamari and continue to cook. 

Serve with toasted sesame seeds to add extra bite. I love the combination of crunchy vegetables in this vegan and coeliac friendly dish. 

Coriander Stir Fry

Coriander is quite a divisive herb, those with an aversion to it will taste soap and be unable to taste anything else at all. Fortunately I don’t have this aversion and I love the warm, peppery taste of coriander and enjoy cooking with it. This stir fry uses coriander as a key flavour. 

Cook enough brown rice for the number of people eating the meal. Once cooked drain the rice and stand to one side.

Now it’s time to get to work on the stir fry. Start by chopping courgette and whilst you do warm a little sesame oil in a wok or large frying pan. Add the courgette to the wok and cook for a couple of minutes. When the courgette starts to soften add tofu pieces to the pan. As ever I use Cauldron tofu but I’m actually using the ready marinated pieces. Continue to cook on a high heat for a further 5 minutes stirring frequently. 

Once the tofu has started to crisp add chopped spring onions, pak choi and chopped coriander. Keep stirring and continue to fry for a further 5 minutes before sprinkling with a teaspoon of gluten free tamari. 

Once all the vegetables and tofu are cooked stir through the brown rice until evenly distributed. 

Serve with an additional coriander garnish and enjoy tucking into a perfect coeliac friendly vegan meal.