I have been trying to get caught back up since traveling so much with Gluten Free Calendar for Celiac Disease Awareness Nights with professional athletic teams that have been organized. Also the Celebrate Celiac™ events that happen with them. Recently I enjoyed meeting a new friend that I have been having fun following and getting to know via social media, Chrissy of Glam Without Gluten while in Miami. She is AMAZING!! She is really one of the most genuine and kind people I have ever met. She has dimples that are just too cute and her “sweet-as-pie” personality match them perfectly. We had enjoyed working together to promote the 1st Annual Celebrate Celiac™ Miami Gluten Free Expo and Celiac Awareness Night with the Miami Heat so when we finally got to meet in person, it was so fun! We decided that a night out on the town before the big day was called for. We took the hubby’s out to a local restaurant we had heard a lot about for their gluten free offerings and safety procedures, Yardbird. Turns out the chef’s wife has celiac disease so he really understands our needs. They are famous for their gluten free fried chicken. Yes, I did say fried chicken!! That wasn’t all. We ordered it with the house favorite french fries with real crumbled bacon, bacon salt and a side of buttermilk ranch dressing for dipping. Oh. my. goodness. I was on cloud nine! I am a total ranchaholic but have a hard time finding a really good gluten free dressing. This was the best I have had yet. The fries with bacon salt were so fantastic I thought I was going to cry! The fried chicken was crispy and golden with fresh parsley on top. It looked and tasted amazing, it was truly hard to believe it was gluten free. We also enjoyed the deviled eggs with “Cowboy Caviar” or trout caviar on top. They were rustic and earthly with great flavor for sure. The farm fresh eggs bold taste made them one of a kind.
I also made a quick visit to the famous Miami gluten free bakery I had heard so much about, Bunnie Cakes. It was SO great! The guava cupcakes were so freakin’ amazing, it was like an explosion of flavor in my mouth and one unlike anything I had ever tasted before. I was so impressed with the owner Mari and her ability to put so much great taste into a gorgeous little gluten free cupcake. If your in town, be sure to stop by.
The Celebrate Celiac™ Miami Gluten Free Expo took place at renowned Jungle Island and was a beautiful venue for this event. Many wonderful vendors came out for the celebration including title sponsors Udi’s and Glutino who had their delicious pizza hot right out of the oven. It was so exciting to try new products and meet lots of new people including another gfree friend I have been enjoying getting to know over the past year, Shannon Ford Mrs. United States 2011. She is such a sweetheart and a real advocate for the celiac community. She has used her platform to raise awareness for us and I am forever grateful for that. I also got to spend time with my FAVORITE gluten free cookbook author, Tammy Credicott of The Healthy Gluten Free Life and Paleo Indulgences. These are two books I recommend in every gluten free home. Tammy and her kind husband and family are just amazing!
The Celiac Awareness Night with the Miami Heat turned out fantastic! Gluten Free Calendar was able to raised over $1,500 for their official non-profit partner, the Center for Celiac Research. Dr. Fasano is an excellent doctor and can now research more for celiac disease and gluten sensitivity. We are so excited!! In addition to pre-game on court recognition, the Celiac Disease Foundation Public Service Announcement was played not once but TWICE, woohoo for celiac awareness!! What a fabulous weekend it was. I can’t wait to participate in the 2nd Annual Celebrate Celiac™ Miami Gluten Free Expo and Celiac Awareness Night with the Miami Heat! 🙂