The Counter Gluten-Free Burger

20120328-083808.jpg

The Counter
Various Locations
http://www.thecounterburger.com

Hello from LA! It’s good to be back here! I’ve got several wonderful people to visit here, so I’ve been a time or four in the past couple years. I like to joke that LA is my second home. I got in from Boston at 9:30pm LA time and hadn’t eaten much and was feeling out of it and gross. I wasn’t sure I wanted to eat anything but a friend was at a The Counter so we went to meet her.

I’m so glad we did! It had a great laid back vibe, perfect for the weary but cheery traveler. It felt LA to me without being too much. Our server was awesome – attentive, adorable but not overbearing in the least. He kept my soda water full, which was needed after a 6 hour flight of dehydration.

We got to order on these cool little sheets that allowed us to build our own burger. They had some great stuff to choose from, and a lot of veggies which I appreciated. They had a slew of cool sauces and yummy sides, and the choice of a gluten free bun for just $1 more. Continue reading

Burton’s Grill Gluten-Free Menu

http://www.burtonsgrill.com
Various locations in MA and CT

I have to start this one off bluntly. The gluten-free meal I enjoyed at Burton’s Grill yesterday was not only delicious, it was impressive. I was wow-ed by the selection, the service and the quality of the meal. If you are searching for a stress-free gluten-free dining experience, you have got to try Burton’s.

My mom and sister have been obsessed with Burton’s for many years, yet I never understood why. Back when I lived near one, their gluten-free menu was ahead of its time, they had one when I was first diagnosed in 2006. Still, it was seriously lackluster – one of those “if you get this salad without the croutons and dressing it’s gluten-free!” kind of gluten-free menus. But times have certainly changed. Burton’s now offers tons of gluten-free substitutes and the gluten-free menu is robust – from appetizers to entrees to dessert and even cocktails!

Continue reading

Schar Ciabatta Parbaked Gluten-Free Rolls

http://www.schar.com/us

Schar Ciabatta Parbaked Gluten-Free Rolls

Sadly, on my last trip to Cape Cod, my camera had an unfortunate run-in with the ocean. My wonderful pale pink Canon Powershot could not be saved, so the camera shop gave me a new camera (sadly, not a Canon) that has a food setting. So cool! Thankfully, I got the camera just in time to photograph a new brand of gluten-free rolls my mother discovered, Schar Ciabatta Parbaked Rolls, which look incredible. She had invited my sister and I home for a dinner of gluten-free meatballs and spaghetti and the gluten-free rolls were an added treat.

Although my mother’s gluten-free meatballs are truly delicious, I was focused on trying these delicious looking rolls. They looked like real bread, with all the fluffy nooks and crannies of a regular roll inside, surrounded by a deliciously crunchy outside! But as they say, looks can be deceiving. These rolls were not the incredible, delectable rolls they appeared to be. Instead, they were really quite bland. They crunched fine, but the taste was boring and dry. My mother and I were both disappointed. We shared a nice family Sunday dinner, but next we’ll pass on the Schar Ciabatta Parbaked Gluten-Free Rolls.

Kinnikinnick Hot Dog Buns

Made with Tapioca Rice
www.kinnikinnick.com

Kinnikinnick Hot Dog Bun

They say hindsight is 20/20. I now see that I have been extremely biased. There are people in this world who would choose a hot dog over a hamburger at any given barbecue. I have, on occasion, been one of those people. I apologize for my oversight, especially considering I spent my Fourth with a hot dog enthusiast!

The truth is, I was ecstatic when my mom told me she had found gluten-free hot dog buns. While a naked burger may be unfulfilling, a naked hot dog is just unsatisfying. Kinnikinnick Hot Dog Buns come frozen, which is great for me, since I don’t really eat enough hot dogs to warrant the six-pack. However, now that I’ve tried these buns, I won’t ever eat a hot dog without them.

Like the Kinnikinnick Hamburger Buns, these buns taste best toasted with butter in a pan. The shape makes them difficult to pop in the toaster, but I believe a conventional oven would do the trick. Don’t even think about the microwave. They are a bit difficult to eat because they are rather large, so the hot dog gets a bit lost at points. They are quite good, they aren’t grainy, nor do they taste especially gluten-free. And when toasted correctly, they have that delicious crunch on the outside/fluffiness on the inside that momentarily tricks me into thinking I’m eating the real deal.

The package may say “Hot Dog Buns,” but as the Heritage Festival in my town approaches, I can’t help but plan how I will run down to the harbor, gluten-free bun in hand, to grab one of those street sausages. The perfect meal for a summer’s day and deeeelicious!

Kinnikinnick Hamburger Buns

Made with Tapioca Rice
www.kinnikinnick.com

Kinnikinnick Hamburger Bun

In the wake of the Fourth of July weekend, I’ve been to several barbecues in the past few days, and the delicious food is undoubtedly still on my mind. Barbecuing gluten-free can be easy — there are the kebabs, the chips, the corn on the cob!  But it can be difficult — we’re forced to steer clear of buns, pasta salad, cookies and my aunt’s famously delicious trifle. However, my days of difficult and deprived barbecuing are over! Kinnikinnick Tapioca Rice Hamburger Buns have done away with sad, naked burgers.

I should preface my commentary with one fact: I love cheeseburgers. For me, the barbecue is largely about the cheeseburger. A naked burger just isn’t the same. Nor is the lettuce wrapped burger (I have been known to do this…),that’s just embarrassing…

The package proclaims, “Gluten Free Never Tasted So Good!” A bold statement. But these buns deliver. They taste best toasted in a pan with butter, but toasted in the toaster is delicious, too. They’re light and fluffy, with a crunch that brings me back to the gluten days. They’re the perfect size for burgers, not too big, and they don’t have that gluten-substitute grainy texture. Perfect for a summer day, these buns have revived my love of cheeseburgers.