guacamole and chips….gluten free in chicago!


When the gluten free boy was five years old, he had a severe allergic reaction to eating a tainted corn tortilla in our home.  This was 6 years ago.  I had no idea about cross contamination and the risks associated with it.  Food labels were not as strict as they are now.  It never occurred to me that there could be a risk associated with him eating a corn tortilla.  The ingredients listed were: corn treated with lime and water.
Up until that point, the gluten free boy never experienced a "severe" allergic reaction.  All of his reactions were localized hives, nothing more.  I didn't know that each allergic reaction presents itself worse then the one before it.
At the emergency room that night I learned that cross contamination between the corn and wheat tortillas is fairly common is some factories.  Since that night in november 2003 I have been obsessed with finding or making my own corn tortillas.
Making my own was a disaster.  I can make a lot of things but the tortillas came up short every time.  My corn tortillas were horrible and pathetic.  Think dry piece of rubber meets hard plastic frisbee.  Back to google.  It isn't necessary to bore you with the hundreds of hours spent researching.  I swear it was literally hundreds of hours.  fast forward to 2009!  We stumbled upon adobo grill in chicago!  not only do they have a gluten free menu but they just started to offer GLUTEN FREE CORN TORTILLAS!  BINGO, JACKPOT!
  It was exciting to see that they offer new tortilla chips which are made in a dedicated fryer!  matthew ate the chips, quesadillas and of course the made to order amazing guacamole!
Yesterday we made a trip to the tortilla factory, El Popocatepetl in Chicago where the Adobo Grill buys their tortillas (just to make sure!)
We were told that yes, they do manufacture flour tortillas but they are made in a separate building.  And yes the chips are fried at another site, a place where only corn is fried.
Next step was to find the place where the chips are fried.  Back in the car.  When we arrived we found a single man in a large space frying the corn tortillas.  Only corn, no flour!
For now we have safe corn tortillas for our son to eat.  They are divine! Perfect triangles of salty, crunchy corn.  Exactly how they should be!

If you can not find fresh made corn tortilla chips in your neighborhood I have found two commercial brands are also considered to be gluten free.  el gringo brand corn tortilla chips and mission tortilla chips both found at whole foods in Chicago and Treasure Island in Chicago.

One Response to guacamole and chips….gluten free in chicago!

  1. Nancy of Sisters Three Gluten Free says:

    Linda, thank you for taking the time to write this. I was diagnosis in 2002 after breaking my hip and on my death bed at the age of 40. Your son does have it tough. He must be so sensitve. I could feel the joy flowing as you wrote about your awesome find. I am excited for you and your son as well. It is always a thrilling moment when you find something new such as your special find.
    Thank you and Be Blessed,
    Nancy Bowser –

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