I do better when I don't eat wheat.
This is a sad reality I've had to come to grips with over the past several years, but I'm in good company. Although only a small percentage of people have celiac disease, experiencing a severe immune reaction when consuming gluten (wheat, barley and rye), many people have noticed negative effects including gut irritation, poor digestion and weight gain.
Still others think gluten may be a factor in their health concerns and are interested in finding out. The best way to do this is to get off gluten for 30 days and see if you notice a change, and a national campaign called Gluten-free January has encouraged people to do just that. My boyfriend and I signed up for the challenge, and have been pleasantly surprised by the many gluten-free options available right here in Hudson.
My brother recently came to visit and wanted to go out for dessert. The low temperatures did not make ice cream seem enticing, so I thought I was out of luck—until I remembered that Fresh & Natural has a full selection of gluten-free pastries. I picked up a brownie and my brother had a pumpkin bar, and though we both braced ourselves for the worst, I’m pleased to report that the baked goods were delicious. In addition to these and other gluten-free pastries, Fresh & Natural also sells gluten-free frozen pizzas.
Beer is one of Hudson’s four food groups.
When I planned my first dinner party in town, I knew I needed a supply. Of course, our friends can drink gluten-rich beer to their hearts’ content, but we wanted to drink beer too! Luckily, there are several gluten-free beers on the market. The one recommended to me was Bard’s, a sorghum-based craft beer, and I found some at Chicone’s Liquor Mart—along with a few other gluten-free selections I haven’t had the chance to sample. Bard’s is a golden lager that is tasty and reasonably priced. It is also available at the Historic Casanova Liquor Store.
Shanghai Bistro has many rice-based and meat-based dishes. Paddy Ryan’s Irish Pub provides an assortment of gluten-free entrees. Dough Boy's Pizza carries a 10-inch gluten-free pizza for only $10.40. Chipotle, of course, is always an option. But it was San Pedro Café where I’ve experienced some of the most delicious gluten-free meals available in town.
The smoked chicken nachos are an excellent and filling gluten-free appetizer. The white corn chips are layered with wood fired chicken, drizzled with mozzarella cheese and Wisconsin cheddar and topped with green chiles, pico de gallo and guacamole. A delicious lemon-habenero aioli is available as a dipping sauce.
San Pedro Café’s most popular gluten-free dish is a variation on their chicken chili penne. The penne pasta is substituted with rice, which is served with spicy chicken cooked in a red chile cream sauce, wood-roasted vegetables and asiago cheese.
Another option for spice lovers is the Yucatan Pork Stew, a perfect blend of wood-smoked pulled pork, hearty potatoes and peppers, onions, tomatoes served in a broth. Rice and beans are also included.
Entrees are served with a salad containing mixed greens, jicama, carrots and a mango vinaigrette.