*Disclaimer: BFree Foods sent me a pack of BFree products free of charge for me to review. All opinions expressed here are my own.
I have vivid memories of eating bread as a child. At a time when meat was hard to find and throwing food away was simply not an option, bread was a household staple we thoroughly enjoyed: It filled our bellies and kept us away from hunger, and content in our little world. I remember my father and I would often dunk days-old bread into warm milk and have it for breakfast, in the kitchen of our tiny apartment. A lot of time has passed and a lot of things have happened in my life, yet I’ve actually never grown tired of bread. It is a simple yet deeply meaningful food, with the simplest of ingredients 🙂
These days I’m always on the lookout for new breads to use in my panini and sandwiches. As I said in a previous post, I was inspired by my visit to this year’s National Restaurant Association Show (you can read my review here) to search for quality breads, to work hard to discover innovative and flavorful varieties, and to share my findings with my readers. This is why I was very excited when BFree Foods contacted me and asked me to review their range of gluten-free, low-fat and high fiber products, which are now available for purchase in select Chicagoland stores.
BFree makes wraps, rolls, bagels and bread loaves which are wheat, dairy, egg, nut and soy free and suitable for vegans. Boasting a low caloric content and a high nutritional value, BFree specialty products are suitable for home freezing and seem to be a great option for those of us who are celiac, vegan or just concerned with their overall health and well-being.
The bagels were the first BFree items we tried. My husband loves deli meat-packed bagels in the morning, and the BFree bagels definitely raised to the expectations. Both the plain and the multiseed varieties were tasty, fresh and (last but not least) easy to slice.
If I were to pick my favorite BFree product, I would say: the bread rolls! Initially I tried them on their own, and they were amazing in terms of both flavor and texture. I then served the white rolls with sliced tomatoes, mozzarella and smoked sausage, whereas for the brown rolls I used Polish ham instead of smoked sausage and kept the tomatoes and mozzarella. In both cases, the result was delicious. The bread was soft, fresh and flavorful – all marks of a high quality product. I especially liked the sunflower seeds in the brown rolls, which provided an extra bit of texture.
I used the BFree soft white and brown seeded loaves to make several sandwiches, and I was pleased with the results. These loaves are sliced lengthways to provide bigger and better slices, and thus to accommodate a variety of ingredients. I liked this type of slice because it allowed me to pile the sandwiches high, to my heart’s content, without fearing that they might fall apart.
To make the white bread sandwich I smeared the bread with a red pepper spread and then topped up with hard salami, fresh mozzarella, sliced bell peppers and kosher dill pickles:
I kept it simple with my brown seeded bread sandwich: I did not use red pepper spread or pickles, but an abundance of fresh produce (green lettuce, tomatoes and bell peppers) along with smoked ham and provolone. The sandwich was flavorful and the bread tasted like a high quality non gluten-free bread – despite being gluten-free, of course!
I also kept it simple when it came to the BFree pita bread, and filled it with some leftover Greek salad. I recommend this as a light and easy to make dinner option:
My favorite BFree wraps were the quinoa & chia seed wraps with teff and flax seeds. Protein-packed and high in fiber, these wraps had a wholesome flavor and a nice texture with a bit of a bite, thanks in part to the quinoa. I filled the wraps with shredded roast chicken, red pepper spread and romaine lettuce. Sadly, the wraps broke a bit when I rolled them, which meant that it was difficult to eat them as wraps.
I thought for a few days whether anything else could be done with the wraps, and in the end I decided to use them in cannelloni. As you know by now, we love cannelloni and eat them very often – so why not try to make gluten free cannelloni? I loaded the wraps with a ground beef & ricotta mixture and covered them with sautéed diced eggplant, tomato sauce and lots and lots of mozzarella, and the dish was a stunning success. It did not taste any different than our “usual” cannelloni (made with store-bought pasta shells). It actually tasted so nice that my husband had it for lunch at work for two days in a row. Thankfully, what started off as a less-than-perfect wrap turned into a great, gluten-free cannelloni discovery.
Overall, I was pleased with the BFree products I was sent for review. I thought they were flavorful and versatile, and I enjoyed incorporating them into various dishes, from straightforward breakfast options to more elaborate family dinners. I fell in love with the BFree rolls and I will definitely continue to enjoy them in the future – be it as a sandwich or simply dunk into milk 🙂
BFree Foods is offering Chicago Loves Panini readers the chance to win a pack of delicious BFree gluten-free products.
To enter the giveaway, leave a comment on this post and answer the following question: In your opinion, what ingredients do you need to create the perfect sandwich?
Giveaway open to US residents only. One entry per person. Deadline for entries is 6PM central time on July 20th, 2016. One winner will be chosen on or around July 21st, 2016 by using a random number generator and will have 72 hours to respond to the winner notification email. I reserve the right to pick an alternative winner if the original winner does not contact me 72 hours after receipt of winner notification email.