Rebecca stands out in the world of free-from bloggers for her energetic and honest reviews of gluten-free grub across London. we are honoured that she is a loyal fan of Borough 22 and we knew it would be good to get to know her better…
B22: Rebecca, could you tell us about your diagnosis story?
I had been feeling very unwell for a while, I was always tired, always extremely bloated and always had a mild stomach pain. I was also finding it really hard to focus at work. I went multiple times to the doctor and even to A&E with my pain, I was shrugged at a lot by my GP and they didn’t seem to really understand what was going On.
I persisted and nagged at my GP when I started to get a full facial rash and could no longer ignore my symptoms. When I finally got my coeliac diagnosis – which I think probably took me over a year from start to diagnosis – it was almost an overnight change.
B22: How supportive were your friends and family in helping you make the changes in your diet? Did they find it hard to understand why you need to be so strict?
My mum is actually coeliac, so was and is always very supportive. My friends also completely understand, they all saw me before and after my diagnosis and could see the changes in almost all aspects of my life! Of course there is always the odd joke about me being gluten free, but I have never felt unsupported.
B22: That’s good! So tell us your secrets – where is your favourite place to eat your favourite grub?
I have so many places that I love to eat at in London! Probably the place I grab amazing coeliac friendly food most often is*drum roll*…. Honest Burgers. Their burgers are absolutely delicious and all of their sides (even ONION RINGS) are gluten free. Can I have two though? I don’t post about it (because I never want to waste time taking photos) but my favourite restaurant in London (Soho) is Hoppers – I love their Sri Lankan Karis.
B22: Yes you can have two!! so How do you keep a track of where you have eaten?
Instagram or my camera roll is a good place to keep track of where I’ve eaten, although I do always remember if I’ve had a good meal somewhere or if I think a place has ‘glutened’ me.
B22: You have a really popular blog. Could you describe your audience, the kind of people who follow you, the journey they are on?
Thank you! I get the impression that my audience is either newly gluten free or new to London, or thinking of visiting London. I get a lot of messages asking for restaurant recommendations from people who are planning to visit. I imagine most people are just like me, wanting to try new places and new foods and expand the menu for those gluten intolerant among us!
B22: can you suggest any must-reads for people wanting to gain control over their GF diets?
Someone bought me ‘gluten is my…’ by April Peveteaux when I was first diagnosed and this really helped me see the humour in all of the dread that was my diagnosis. It also helped explain some of the symptoms I had been experiencing and didn’t know if they were ‘normal’ or not.
B22: I KNOW IT’S HARD TO CHOOSE, BUT What is your favourite place to eat outside of London?
If we’re talking about favourite place to eat in the world? That would have to be Love and Dough in Dumbo, New York. Their gluten free sourdough base is so good that it actually brought tears to my eyes. My favourite place in the UK (that isn’t London) would probably have to be The Plough at Shutlanger in Northamptonshire, it’s close to my parents house and is run by a coeliac, so I know I never have to worry about cross contamination.
B22: Who has influenced you the most on your food journey?
I started sharing my finds on Instagram around East London and my page caught the eye of Gemma Hitchon of @eat.travel.london – Gemma runs her own PR agency and invited me to an event she was running with the brand Crussh. This event and the people I met there kick started me wanting to share more of my finds and then Gluten, Interrupted was born. So, Gemma has to be the biggest influence on my food journey.
B22: How do you keep up to date with whats happening on the food scene in London? Any go-to blogs or Instagram accounts you love?
I pretty much just find new places to eat solely on Instagram, my favourite pages are @eat.travel.london – as I mentioned previously, @myglutenfreeguide – Laura shares the most amazing photos and products from around the world, @refrainfromthegrain – Cristina is the one to follow for HOT London restaurant finds, and @kimi_eats_gluten_free takes the most beautiful photos.
B22: the most important question coming up…If you could eat just one Borough22 doughnut on your deathbed, which one would it be?
the new cereal crumb doughnut from Borough22 is TO DIE FOR.(we agree).
Follow Rebecca’s blog gluten, interrupted for reviews and guides to the best of gluten free eating in London, New York and elsewhere.