This is a quick note to those local to me. There is a recently re-opened Coldstone Creamery in Orland Park, on LaGrange Road. I visited there today, inquiring about gluten-free cakes. One of the new owners stated that there are a few cakes that are naturally gluten-free from the start. However, she also told me that they have a chef, Johnny, who can work with us and design a cake specifically to our instructions. He will  discuss each aspect of the presentation as well as ingredients.

Thank you Coldstone Creamery. How refreshing it will be to have an ice cream cake instead of “Mom’s” homemade birthday cake every once and a while.

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Simply a save-the-date note for the University of Chicago’s Celiac Disease Center annual spring benefit, Spring Flours.

This year it will be held on Friday, May 6th at the Swissotel downtown Chicago. Every year, this event turns out to be more spectacular than the year before. The proceeds benefit very important research being done at U of Chicago on celiac disease.
For more information, go to www.celiacdisease.net. I hope to see all of you there!

Huge news out of University of Chicago’s Celiac Disease Center. Dr. Bana Jabri  has been able to isolate an inflammatory compound, Interleukin-15, as a main area of research in the treatment and possible prevention of celiac disease. Through a mouse model of celiac disease, developed at the University of Chicago,  it was found that elevated levels of interleukin-15 caused signs and symptoms synonymous with early onset celiac disease. It was further found that when the pathway to this compound was blocked, there was regression in the disease. Moreover, it was discovered that all of the mice with celiac disease-type symptoms had an elevated level of interleukin-15.

Further study will, of course, ensue. Many more answers will follow. But, for the moment, we will revel in the fact that advancements are on the horizon. I hope my children’s’ children will not need to know what a gluten-free diet is. For the present, however, I would like to congratulate and thank the researchers at University of Chicago for their tireless efforts in finding a cure for this disease!

To read more about this study, follow the link below.

http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20110209/hl_nm/us_celiac_treatments

Wanted to extend a huge THANK YOU to Steve King and Johnnie Putman of WGN Radio 720 for inviting Bill and me back to the studio last night.  We had a wonderful night of talk on celiac disease, answering listener questions and indulging in some home-baked, gluten-free treats. It was such a pleasure seeing the two of them once again. We are already excited for our next visit.

If you would like to listen to the broadcast in its entirety, go to www.wgnradio.com/shows/stevejohnnie . Once onto the website, click on uncut podcasts on the pull-down menu. The broadcast  is presented in three parts. Would love feedback, so let me know what you think!

You can also link directly to the broadcasts (and even download them) here:

Part 1
Part 2
Part 3

Steve King and Johnnie Putman were kind enough to invite us back for more celiac banter. If you would like to tune in, we will be on 720  WGN Radio, starting at midnight on the 25-26th of January.  Look forward to hearing feedback from all of you who have the opportunity to listen.

Thank you!

 

Short but sweet. Just read today that 700 Subway chain stores in Texas are testng out a gluten-free alternative to the regular Subway bun. The gluten-free roll is made of egg whites, corn starch and tapioca. To top off your gluten-free sandwich  is a tasty gluten-free brownie made of potato starch, cocoa and sugar. It is great to see another gluten-free chain opening their eyes to the ever-expanding number of gluten-intolerant individuals. I believe they also see the ever-expanding wallets of those at Betty Crocker and General Mills (of gluten-free Bisquick fame) who reeped the benefits of offering gluten-free alternatives. Whatever the reasoning behind the venture, those of us gluten-free will revel in the rewards. Let’s just hope they controlled for contamination by using a dedicated/pans to bake in. I will look into the safety issue and get back to everyone in another post.

 If you would like to read more on the Subway introduction of gluten-free alternatives, go to

http://pagingdrgupta.blogs.cnn.com/2011/01/13/subway-tests-gluten-free-sandwiches/

I read this short article about gluten free restaurants in the Chicago Tribune today and then did some research.

I was glad to learn that according to a new survey from the National Restaurant Association, gluten-free and allergy conscious cuisine is expected to be one of the hottest restaurant menu trends for 2011.

The Tribune article lists some of the area restaurants that offer gluten free dining. The University of Chicago’s Carol Shilson is also interviewed in the article. She recommended a web site from the Gluten Intolerance Group where you can search celiac-friendly restaurants by zip code. Currently, the site lists 31 restaurants offering gluten free cuisine within 50 miles of downtown Chicago.

I am also going to be working with the Lettuce Entertain You restaurants to introduce patients with celiac disease to their gluten free menus. Look for more information on this blog as we go to sample their cuisine.

When possible, please try to support restaurants that offer gluten free dining. Maybe next year we can make gluten and allergy conscious cuisine the #1 top trend.

By the way, if you aren’t on Bruce Zarlengo’s newsletter mailing list about gluten free restaurants and dining events in the greater Chicagoland area, you should be. He does a great job with it. Write him at brucezarcsa@gmail.com.

Aaaaand … if you’re interested in more gluten-free news, please consider joining the national Celiac Sprue Association and the Celiac Sprue Association of Greater Chicago. By doing so, you’ll support worthy causes and you’ll get regular newsletters containing more gluten free recipes and restaurant recommendations.