April Classes at Bob’s Red Mill

Two new upcoming gluten-free classes at Bob’s Red Mill:

New to Gluten Free with Lori Sobelson! Thursday, April 19, 2012 • 5:00-6:30 p.m. Are you new to the gluten free lifestyle? Do you feel overwhelmed not knowing what is safe to eat, what products to buy, how to bake without using gluten flours? In this class Lori Sobelson, Director of Community Outreach with Bob’s Red Mill will walk you through the basic steps of converting to a gluten free lifestyle. We will discuss what it means to live a gluten free lifestyle, talk about brands you can trust, sample gluten free baked goods made from Bob’s Red Mill gluten free mixes as well as learn tips that will make your new menu planning easier. You’ll leave with a recipe packet and a better understanding of all that’s available to make your new lifestyle easy to adapt to and worth the change!

This class is specifically designed for those who are new to gluten free. It is an informational class only; no cooking demonstration will be given. Class Fee: $25.00

and…

Spectacular Spring Salads with Laura B. Russell! Thursday, April 26, 2012 • 5:00-7:00 p.m. Join food writer and cookbook author Laura Russell as she incorporates grains, beans, and lentils into spectacular spring salads. Many are main-dish worthy, such as Quinoa Salad with Chicken and Grapes, Wild Rice Salad with Smoked Trout and Lemony Dill Vinaigrette, and Cannellini Bean Salad with Tuna and Watercress. The others, Lentils Vinaigrette with Toasted Almonds, Tropical Rice Salad with Mango, Avocado, and Cilantro, and Buckwheat Salad with Roasted Asparagus, can be served as side dishes or light main dishes. We’ll talk about cooking grains and beans, making homemade dressings, and ideas for varying the recipes as well.

All of the salads in this class are gluten free. Class Fee $40.00

Where: Bob’s Red Mill Whole Grain Cooking School, 5000 S.E. International Way, Milwaukie, Oregon 97222
Contact: Call Bonnie at (971) 206-2208 to enroll.

Restaurant Review: Picazzo’s Gourmet Pizza

Note to the reader – Picazzo’s changed their name to Sellwood Pizza Kitchen in May 2010.

We are excited to present another gluten-free pizza review. Not just because we love pizza but because there’s another place in Portland Oregon with good gluten-free pizza.

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By now your author is used to frequenting restaurants and having to forego the delicious bread-based appetizers because of his gluten free diet. Like that wonderful bread they serve at Lebanese restaurants, or bruschetta, or just plain sourdough bread with red wine vinegar and olive oil. So if you’re like me, when you read “Garlic Cheese Bread” on an appetizer menu, you skip over it quickly to spare yourself the pain. But wait! Here at Picazzo’s you can eat the Garlic Cheese Bread!

So let’s talk about the restaurant. It is part of a small chain of gourmet pizza restaurants. It is in Sellwood, which is a little out of the way for us, but not so bad when you use the Sellwood bridge. The restaurant is relatively new and very clean. They serve beer and wine, salads, and gourmet pizzas.

Most of you probably already know that the words “gourmet pizza” means two things: 1) It’s a little more expensive than most. 2) They have weird pizzas like “Shrimp, Smoked Bacon and Gorgonzola” with an alfredo sauce. The good news is that you can make your own too. We got a half and half of two different vegetarian pizza varieties: Nonna’s Favorite and the Pesto and Artichokes. We thought both were very good, but wished that they were a little more flavorful. Otherwise I think we would have given them our “Best Italian Restaurant” award.

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I know what you’re thinking: “OK! OK! Get on with the crust!” Yes. the crust is excellent. We felt ours was a little undercooked, but really even still it was excellent. Their crust is more like the bready chewy thin crust that is crunchy on the bottom, and is so much like the real thing that I actually asked our waiter if they didn’t bring us the wrong kind of crust. That was when our waiter started bragging about how there is only one item on their menu that can’t be made gluten-free. Even their sandwiches can be made gluten-free.

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The wait staff was friendly, the pizza was excellent, and we were very happy. If you are on a gluten-free diet or have celiac disease, Picazzo’s is a great place to eat!

Later note: We just went by recently (January 2010) and their crust is EVEN BETTER. Before it seemed a little undercooked. Now it is very crisp and hard to tell from the real thing. They also have delicious cookie desserts which are gluten-free. We tried the chocolate chip cookie and it was excellent. It’s kind of like a large cookie baked in a dish that they serve with ice cream. The cookie ends up being a little uncooked in the center so it’s gooey. If that sounds good to you then I suggest you try it!

Times we have visited: 4+ (So we feel pretty good about our rating)
Overall rating: 4 out of 5 stars
Price compared to “regular”: Same price, although the restaurant itself is a little expensive.

Picazzo’s Gourmet Pizza & Salads
8000 SE 13th Ave
Sellwood, Oregon 97202