Gluten Free,  Recipes,  Sustainable Community

Gluten Free Date Night on Cape Cod

It’s finally summer, commitments are less abundant and spontaneous fun is on the rise. Time to tackle gluten-free date night!

At first it seems like once you’ve given up gluten there is no way you can go out and have fun eating and drinking like a normal person. Once you start mapping out “safe” places to eat and drink, you’ll find it isn’t as limiting as you thought.
Here on Cape Cod, gluten free is taking off. I even heard a hot tip that that new french bakery on main street will make gluten-free bread by request. So much for all that weight I lost when I found out I was gluten-intolerant.

Out to Dinner 

You’ve just met the girl/guy of your dreams, but they are gluten-free. What can they eat?  Where can you take them? 

Here’s a short, ever-expanding (look for future updates) list of restaurants on Cape Cod that have some specifically gluten-free items. Keep in mind that most restaurants will have something the gluten-free can eat. Ethnic food can be a great option since they use more rice than wheat, but watch out for anything fried! Also remember most soy sauce is not gluten free. Maybe it’s time to ask my local sushi restaurant to carry gluten free soy sauce?

BBC, Falmouth, Hyannis, Sandwich – The wait staff here is generally very knowledgeable about what on the menu has gluten in it. There is an entire gluten free menu and also small gluten free pizza crust (frozen?). There is usually a cider or gluten free beer on tap (depending which BBC you are at) and there are several good salads.

The Pickle Jar, Falmouth – Some gluten free options in a fresh and local cafe atmosphere. Again, knowledgeable waitstaff and willingness to make substitutions for the gluten intolerant (i.e. Udi’s gluten free bread for the grilled lavash). Pickles are always gluten free and this restaurant makes their own.

Coonamessett Farm, North Falmouth – As fresh and local as it gets. The farm’s Jamaican buffet (wednesdays) and family farm dinners (fridays) are loaded with fresh salads (most I have seen are GF) and grilled/saute’d veggies. It is not uncommon to see cloth napkins and stemware here, but it’s BYOB (and stemware), so pick up something extra special for date night.

Stone L’Oven, Falmouth– While gluten free pizza is not listed on the menu and they don’t have a separate kitchen (so not suitable for celiacs) if you make sure they know you know that it isn’t 100% gluten free you’re all set. The pizza is good, personal sized. They also have tasty salads (dressing on the side) and cider. Nearly every waiter/waitress we have had is knowledgeable about what gluten-free means and is more than happy to ask about ingredients.

Courtyard, Cataumet– Small gluten free pizza crust (frozen?).

Quicks Hole, Woods Hole – Another fresh and local eatery, this one has really good salads and if you get your tacos on a corn tortilla, you’re good to go! Corn chips and salsa bar should be a safe bet and the sangria pitchers are the best deal if you like a sweet, cool, summer drink.

Wicked, Mashpee – This one has an house gluten-free kitchen. The gluten free pizza dough is from a sourdough starter, organic with no added oil. The pizza is good and they have other gluten free menu options including burgers (or a lobster roll) on a gluten-free roll.

Idgy’s, Yarmouth – Specializing in gluten free dining and gluten free breads, reviews for Idgy’s are golden. An extensive menu, GF eaters are able to dine freely here and they also have vegan options. They make their own puff pastry. I haven’t eaten at Idgy’s, yet. It is on my list.

Green Lotus, Hyannis – This one specializes in vegetarian, vegan, raw and gluten-free. Green Lotus also has glowing reviews and the staff is happy to help customize meals to accommodate those with allergies. Another one I haven’t tried but it is on my list.

Know a GF hotspot on the Cape I haven’t discovered yet? I’d love to hear about it and give it a try. Please leave GF restaurant suggestions as a comment. 

Romantic Home Cooked Meal?

Ok, so a few of those restaurants have a reasonable price tag. What to do if your on a budget and your sweetie is GF? While Stone L’oven delivers locally, cooking up a romantic home cooked GF meal is easier than you think.

Appetizer

Cheese plate – multiple cheeses, GF crackers, olives/pickles and compotes (honey, fig preserves)
Vegan plate – home made hummus, GF crackers, crudites (carrots, celery, pepper slices, etc.)

Salad

Mixed greens, cheese, nuts and fruit. There are limitless delicious combinations here. For a GF vegan, leave out the cheese. For a GF dressing, make a simple vinaigrette: 
Simple Vinaigrette
ratio of oil to vinegar is 3 to 1
salt and pepper to taste
optional flavoring: fruit juice, spices (avoid spice mixes), honey, peanut butter

Entrees

These are vegetarian/vegan, but for the meat eaters out there, these recipes would definitely taste good with the addition of chicken or shrimp. 
 
Coconut Curry
Vegetables (cabbage, sweet/regular potato, green bean, onion, pepper, mushroom, your choice)
oil for sauteing the vegetables (coconut or olive)
1 can coconut milk
2 cups pineapple sliced diced to 1 inch cubes (or 1 can chunk pineapple in juice)
Hot Madras curry powder
Saute vegetables (excluding potatoes) with a little oil in a pot. When they start to brown, add coconut milk pineapple and potatoes. The stir in 2Tbs (or more) of curry powder. Simmer with the lid on  until potatoes are soft. Serve over rice/quinoa.
Sesame Peanut Noodles with Cucumbers – Dear Mollie Katzen, I love this recipe. It says to use cucumbers, but you can really adapt it to work with many vegetables. Make sure to get some rice noodles or soba noodles, the kind you find in the ethnic aisle of the grocery. We’ve tried it with cabbage and broccoli and it turned out amazing. 

Dessert 

Chocoate Dipped Strawberries –  Most high quality chocolate is gluten free (read labels, avoid anything with cookies in it). Fruit is, of course, naturally gluten free.
Ice cream over GF brownies – Ice cream is easy to find gluten free. Read labels (I’ve read Blue Bell uses wheat as a filler) and avoid anything that says cookie or brownie. Researching GF flavors ahead of time will also help. There are lots of gluten free brownie mixes out there to go with the ice cream for those who have limited baking skills. I recommend the King Arthur brand brownie mix if you can find it. For those with baking skills, check out Gluten Free Goddess’ chocolate recipes for love.  
Sorbet over GF fruit clafloutis – Most sorbet should be GF, again check the labels. Gluten Free Goddess has a recipe for clafloutis. I haven’t made clafloutis gluten free yet, but quick breads almost always turn out beautifully after conversion.

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