The Greater Philly Gluten Free Expo was even better than I imagined! When I first walked in I was surprised at how small the venue was. But we (my friend Jen & I) were there for over an hour and half and still didn’t get around to every stand. I think more of this was due to crowding than too many vendors. I felt the number of vendors was perfect but the venue itself should’ve been bigger and should’ve had better indoor traffic control/flow to handle the large number of people. We got there right at 10:30 a.m. but about 30 minutes after that it was difficult to move around and navigate where the lines were.
Now to the good stuff…the food and samples! Wegman’s was there handing out free pre-packaged samples and coupons. There was seriously so much stuff. I left with a grocery bag full of food. I can’t wait to try everything. I really wish there was a Wegman’s closer than 35 minutes away from my house!
The Happy Mixer is located in Chalfont, PA and it’s probably a good thing that I don’t live near this place! I have a bit of a (ok, a huge) sweet tooth. At their stand I sampled monkey bread, peanut butter delights (their best seller), kiffles (a jelly-filled cookie), and a cream filled doughnut. Yeaaaa…I was kind of in a carb coma after this! The monkey bread was out of control. I was seriously speechless. The texture was doughy and chewy and the outside had a nice crunch from the sugar. This is a special order item that they only make for holidays. As a peanut butter lover and someone who grew up with my mom making her version of the peanut butter delights (“Peanut Butter Tandycakes”), I was very excited to see them there. If you’re not familiar, it’s basically a sponge cake with a layer of peanut butter and topped w/ hardened chocolate. They were fantastic! I see why they’re a best seller. The kiffles were good. My mom makes something similar, and I prefer hers. I think she might use more cream cheese and/or add sour cream. The doughnut was also pretty mind-blowing. The only gluten free donuts I have had are the frozen kind, which are ok, but obviously not as good as something fresh. These were so fluffy and delicious. If you are a lover of sweets in southeastern Pennsylvania you must check this place out!
LUHV was my favorite savory vendor. The black bean burgers were so flavorful. They served it on top of a salad (spring mix, carrots, onions, red cabbage) with a sweet chili dressing. The dressing provided just the right amount heat (this coming from someone who does not like spicy things.) The Energy Soup was surprisingly excellent. I say surprisingly because it had kale and two different types of seaweed in the ingredients, two things I do not like. But I couldn’t taste them at all! They were very well hidden in the soup’s chili-like flavor. I definitely plan to go to Kimberton Whole Foods and buy both of these items!
Other yumminess included: Mompops’ chocolate sea salt popsicle, Sweet Megan’s edible brownie batter in a jar, Veggie Fries (Kale & Tuscan Bean and Chickpea & Red Pepper flavors).
It was such a foreign feeling to be able to eat anything I wanted and not have to stress if it was safe or not. I didn’t have to ask questions or scrutinize ingredient labels. It was seriously…So. Weird. But definitely in a good/refreshing sort of way! I didn’t realize just how stressful it is to have to analyze everything I eat until I didn’t have to do it. I’m so glad I went and I am already planning on going to next year’s event.
Did you attend the Expo? Which vendors were your favorites?