Jimmy My Ice Cream

That’s what they call sprinkles or chocolatey topping bits around the Boston area and other parts of New England: Jimmies.

You can’t count on all Jimmies being GF, I have come across ones that use wheat as an ingredient.

Though I have heard more than a few people say the Jimmies are made of wax, I have never seen one that actually contained wax…

These ones are made in Germany. I paid something crazy like $2.10 at a local supermarket’s “health” aisle for an ounce. Thats about enough for a couple of dishes of ice cream, where I come from…

Their consistency is a bit “crunchier” than your average jimmy, found at your average ice cream parlor. They have more of a cocoa taste than other jimmies. And as far as size goes these jimmies are quite thin but a few millimeters up from a dimension that I would regard as hairy (and yes I have had hairy jimmies (they don’t tickle a bit) and they are quite appealing as they melt as opposed to crunch or squish as do some of the too big jimmies).

I want Ice Cream, now.

Gluten-Free Chocolate Starts Like This…

Well, where exactly does anything start, but here you have unripe (they get quite dark) chocolate pods. Each pod has about 50 seeds (“beans”); you need about 200 seeds to make up a pound of chocolate, and a lot of energy to work them up to a bar of edible proportions. This was a tree snapped in the U. of M. greenhouse a few months ago.

Gluten Free Cookie Federation Plays With Food….

And Develops, Largely Edible, Prototype Gluten Free Cookie Federation Flag or Coat of Arms or desservir or…

Licorice and the Human Race

Last evening, we went to see what a lot o’ folk are raving about playing at the cineplex. We got there real early, plopped down in the plum center seats, started in on the unusual for us, large bag of popcorn and, now this the GF part of the show, opened the “licorice” and watched and listened to WALL-E….

I use to really love Twizzlers “licorice” as a kid especially at the movies. A chew that last a long time and could take you through the better part of Star Wars….One of the more surprising things to notice years ago was that one of the main ingredients in Twizzlers, and many other common “licorice” is wheat! I never associated the grain with the candy, but I suppose that gluten in the wheat helps with the wonderful texture of the chew.

The GF licorice with seemingly real licorice that I have encountered and which is quite good is from a company called Candy Tree out of the Netherlands, (the Dutch eat as much licorice as New Englander’s eat ice cream…). The vines are not as thick and bite-into-able as Twizzlers but they are nice and chewy and organic.

I recently noticed this licorice presence – Licorice International – that has many great looking GF licorices. Wow, I will have to try some of these beauties…. Huh, gnomes on licorice teeter totters?

Oh yes, Wall-E was very interesting, especially the minimal dialogue and sound design. Unfortunately, what made it unusually good translated into not really holding the attention nor masking the volume and obnoxiousness of the nine patrons seated directly behind us. We had to leave the movie before the end! First time we ever walked out of a flick because of the gang of non-stop-talk-kick-text-snicker-hit-smack-gross-over caffeinated-twitchy-what-hello-shut up-ugg-ssshh-audio polluting humans who had more dialogue than the film! Really…. But, Wall-E was good enough to go back and check out the rest of it, to see what happens to our human race, but this time we’re going to the drive-in, with my popcorn pillows and my licorice dog in my licorice car with our private licorice FM sound system piping in the sweet Wall-E earcandy…

Necco Candy Gluten Free

The New England Confectionary Company – NECCO – makes lots of vintage brands of gluten-free sweets that perhaps you too grew up eating: Necco Wafers, Conversation Hearts/Sweet Hearts, Sky Bar and through acquisition Squirrel Nut Zippers…

I happened to work next door to two of their factories, at two different times, from two different eras….

Their original buildings still stand and are in the midst of gentrification. I have outlined on trace the classic logo long faded on the side of the funky buildings (circa 1901) in the fort point section of Boston.

(There was once a music joint – The Channel – on the location of where the autos are parked in the below picture. I occasionally spun vinyl and saw many a band there: Ramones, Ministry, Big Black, The Residents w/ Snake Finger, Sisters of Mercy….yikes, I could go on.)

When I worked near the other Necco location (not pictured) in Cambridge MA. there were large four or five inch hose connections sticking out of the building with labels like “corn syrup” printed above them; large trucks would pull up and hose-in ingredients to the plant through the connections. You could smell sugar cookin’ in the air around town. I never did see a “gluten” spigot nor any little men sweeping the candy floor at closing time, but I often hummed the “Oompa Loompa” song