Last week we were invited to a gluten-free media dinner hosted by Italpasta at 7 Numbers on the Danforth in Toronto. That’s right, Italpasta—famous for its 100% pure durum semolina pasta (fancy talk for pure wheat)—now serves up pasta for the gluten-free set. Made in Italy! It’s a good thing we showed up hungry. Funnily, neither of us knew the other was attending this event, and we happened to arrive at the exact same moment. After months of attempted dinner plans, we finally got to break bread (so to speak!) courtesy of Italpasta. A GFF (gluten-free friend) reunion and a glass of red vino to kick off the night…what more could a gluten-free gal ask for?
Italpasta has three kinds of gluten-free noodles—penne rigate, fusilli and spaghetti—made from a blend of rice and non-GMO corn. The company recently got a stamp of approval from the Canadian Celiac Association’s Gluten Free Certification Program, which will soon appear on all of its gluten-free packaging.
LISA: As someone who’s been following a gluten-free diet for more than three decades, I’ve seen many-a-mushy pasta come and go. But the science of gluten-free pasta has come a long way, baby! At the Italpasta dinner, I almost felt compelled to check with my server to verify the gluten-free status of the dishes! The noodles are firm and hold their own no matter what sauce is used. See below…and click on the links for recipes!
The evening wasn’t all about stuffing our faces. Nutritionist and author Julie Daniluk gave us the 411 on all things gluten. She talked about the different types of gluten sensitivities and how accommodating food restrictions doesn’t have to mean sacrificing taste. As someone living with celiac disease, Daniluk has a vested interest in cross-contamination awareness—a particular concern for those with celiac and gluten intolerance, especially since so many restaurants now offer gluten-free menu options. We hope more restos will educate their kitchen staff and servers about all the possible ways that food can become contaminated and, of course, take measures to prevent this.
We’re really excited that 7 Numbers is an option for our families when we want to go out for dinner. There’s nothing like authentic Southern Italian soul food! They have gluten-free Italpasta available upon request at the Danforth location; at the Eglinton West locale they need advance notice so give them a call ahead of time. Italian restaurants that do gluten free deliciously and safe are hard to come by and it’s nice to know that 7 Numbers uses our favourite gluten-free pasta and is in-the-know about cross contamination!
After filling our bellies, Italpasta sent us all home with gift bags filled with all three varieties of its gluten-free pasta and a jar of its new gluten-free marinara sauce. We also nabbed a signature jar of 7 Numbers’ tomato sauce!
We are proud to announce that Italpasta is a gold sponsor of the Gluten Free Garage on November 17! That’s amore!
Photo credits: Rick O’Brien