This weekend is The Allergy & Freefrom Show in Liverpool and after the great time had by all in London we had to come! Daddy Peacock & I used to live in North Wales and in all that time only I ventured to Liverpool and only the once, which is a shame as it is a really lovely place. The sun was shining and it was an absolutely beautiful day so after the show we had a quick wander around Albert Dock. Entry to the show is free and tickets can be downloaded from the Allergy & Freefrom Show website to print at home!
Where Olympia was great because of the sheer quantity of stalls to go to (its 3 small shows co-locating), Liverpool is great because it is small and we got around to see everything & fill our suitcase and many bags with lots of goodies! (Well I say that, we still managed to miss Celebrate Health, who we are big fans of and make very yummy cooking sauces!)
We didn’t stop to catch up with any of the talks or cooking demonstrations (at Dove’s Kitchen) as a lot of it wasn’t particularly relevant to the Peachicks being more focussed on being Gluten Free & Coeliac than other allergies. We were at the show from just after 10 until about 2 so there would easily have been time to catch a few of the talks!
All the major supermarkets were here (with the exception of Morrisons & Waitrose) with all their xmas goodies, all gluten & wheat free! Sadly not a lot of it was suitable for the Peachicks as they mostly contain dairy, soya and/or eggs!! Also as its Christmas a lot of it was full of oranges so no good for me either! Mind you Tesco had some very nice looking chocolate truffles that are vegan & gluten free which do contain soya lecithin which is generally ok for the Peachicks. They also had a very cute looking bauble making kit and a yummy chocolate selection box – all in stores now!
Our Top Tips:
- BRING A COAT! Ok so maybe its because we have been back down South for a long time but yikes! it was freezing yesterday, especially if you have a wander across to Albert Dock which I highly recommend as its so pretty – hop to the bottom of the post for photos!
- REMEMBER CASH! There are cash machines around the centre and you will need it for buying goodies and for the car park! We drove in from the hotel in Warrington and parked in the Waterfront car park, it was so easy to find but like I said you will need cash to pay for it.
- BRING A SMALL SUITCASE – there are a lot of goodies to be had, and if like us you are no longer in need of a buggy then a small wheelie suitcase or shopping trolley bag is a great way of carting everything around!
- PICK UP YOUR SHOW BAG! – Hubby had to queue for a while for ours first thing but when the Peachicks went back for theirs in the afternoon we pretty much walked straight up and got it. Yesterday we walked in and turned immediate right and you will find the queue! Filled with fab things, including a box of gluten free cereals and more yummy Sweet Freedom Chocolate Syrup!
- CHECK THE INGREDIENTS – particularly if you are dairy/soy free as a couple of the gluten-free stands had samples to taste but hadn’t bothered to use dairyfree spread on it. There were also a few stands with nut products, although it was energy bars rather than nut butters or whole nuts.
- Find EAT ALLERGY SAFE – They are lovely, have great information AND you get stickers!!
Our Favourite Finds!
(in no particular order…)
Middleton Foods Stand (Gluten Free Fish & Chips)
Gluten Free Fish & chips cooked fresh! Yep this is what Elodie & Alys had for their lunch, it was really yummy and made with Middleton Foods Fish batter mix! For £5 you get a portion of fish & chips, a bag of batter mix and a Flower & White Gluten Free Muffin! All very yummy and as the instructions on the batter mix say just add cold water I am thinking it was dairy/egg/soy free too! Although there is gram flour in the mixture.
Moo Free Chocolate (Vegan, Soyfree, Glutenfree, Dairyfree BUT may/does contain Hazelnuts)
Always a Peachick favourite, they had their mini chocolate santas for 75p yesterday AND all their big bars so I may have stocked up on Hazelnut & Cranberry as its my favourite but I can’t get it anywhere at home! Made with rice milk but ok in small amounts for the Peachicks.
Naturelly (vegetarian, dairyfree, eggfree, soyfree AND NO BANANAS!!)
A jelly juice, naturally set without gelatine in a handy squeezy pouch for lunchboxes AND not a banana in sight!! Whoop Whoop!! Mummy likes them because there is no gelatine in them as although we are not vegetarian there is something about meat products in a fruit product that just doesn’t sit right with me!
Warburton’s crumpets & Artisan range (Glutenfree AND Soyafree!!)
An actual glutenfree range of breads, crumpets and other things that are not full of soya flour! Ok so there is still a large presence of egg in the range but its good to know if I can’t find any normal bread without soya in I can always look for these instead!
Eat Real (Vegan, Soyfree – BUT may contain traces of wheat)
The Quinoa chips are AMAZING! I didn’t try the lentil or hummus ones but Hubby said they were really good (and he doesn’t like hummus or lentils!) They do however, contain traces of wheat and are made with both Lentil & Pea Flour.
Alys’ Pick of the Day –
‘Meeting a real life fairy’ – The lovely Vicki, the FreeFromFairy herself!
Mummy really wanted to get hold of some flour as it is gluten free (and E is not great with gluten) BUT it is a wholegrain flour so none of the rice flour that gives E horrible eczema! We picked up a bag of plain flour for £5 and the girls got yet more stickers!!
Millie’s Pick of the Day –
It has to be the shed we found at the back of the show – yep you heard it – a shed! But not just any shed, a shed complete with cooking extension that was selling Debbie & Andrew’s freefrom Sausages in Sandwiches! They even had Gluten free rolls! Now my Millie’s favourite food is without a doubt sausages and so she was the best Peachick to try these and they didn’t disappoint – she polished off every last mouthful! For me to watch it was fab as Millie can be quite picky about her food, she has always had a mild food phobia as a result of her allergies and is especially funny about meat! So for her to sit and finish it all they must have been amazing!
There isn’t even photographic evidence as she ate it so quickly!! This is unheard of!
Elodie’s Pick of the Day –
Freedom Marshmallows – of course it had to be, after trying to walk off with the bowl of them in London there was no doubt we had to make at least one stop here! They again had their great show offer of 3 bags of marshmallows for £5 which comes in a lovely little bag which the Peachicks carried like treasure the whole day!
AND the Koko Dairyfree Stand as they are Elodie’s absolute favourite yoghurts! They have a few good show deals on including 3 for £1 on the little strawberry milkshakes! Sadly as we are staying in a hotel I couldn’t stock up on yoghurts which unlike other soyafree dairy replacements have added calcium!
Some pictures from our wander after the show!
** I also want to mention the hotel we stayed in – The Premier Inn in Warrington. As always the staff were amazing (inc the Twitter Team – who sent me over the allergy information for breakfast at some ungodly hour last night!) The pub attached to it – The Swan was fantastic and the staff again were very knowledgable in dealing with allergies, we were presented with a very comprehensive allergy folder! This is a Chef & Brewer Pub which has an amazing Vegan, Glutenfree Chocolate & Coconut Torte on the dessert menu made with coconut milk (but served with Soya ice-cream) alongside a range of sorbets!
Also the Peachicks could pretty much eat anything off the menu. Millie had Chef’s Chicken, a chicken breast topped with bacon (and optional cheese) served with a really yummy tomato & basil sauce. Served with the normal or sweet potato fries it is completely freefrom dairy, soya, gluten & egg! It was £5.99 for 2 courses and the portions were pretty generous! Desserts were very cute, the icecream/sorbet was served in a tea cup & saucer and Millie had chocolate mousse in a flowerpot (not dairyfree but was Millie’s dairy allowance for the week)