As the song goes, “It’s the most wonderful time of the year,” and whether you believe it or not the stores are filling with Christmas treats. Thankfully our major supermarkets are even catering to those of us who need gluten free. This makes it pretty easy for family members to cater for us at events. just be sure to remind them of cross-contamination risks.
To start us off this festive season, I am reviewing the Woolworths Free From Christmas Range. This year the stores have two flavours of rum balls, fruit mince bites and fruit pudding. These items can be found in the dedicated Christmas area as well as sometimes in the deli section.
The rum balls cost $4 a pack and are available online as well as in stores. With two varieties of white and chocolate, they’ve covered a few bases. The moment you open the packets you are smacked in the face with that rich rum scent. The rum balls themselves are a tad crumbly and could be considered a little dry. I definitely wouldn’t put them in the fridge as they turn into rocks. There isn’t a lot of difference between the two flavours. Albeit of course once has a chocolate note to it, but mostly the rum and coconut are the strongest flavours.
If you’ve been around for a while you’ll know I’m not huge on desiccated coconut but the coating on these didn’t really bother me. The white rum balls contain tapioca Starch, Palm Oil, Chickpea Flour, Sugar, Golden Syrup, Coconut, Invert Sugar Syrup, Rum, Corn Fibre, Almonds and Raisins if you have an aversion to any of these. The chocolate has the addition of cocoa powder, butter and mass.
After indulging in some delicious rum balls, you may want to enjoy a traditional fruit mince pies. Thankfully, there are a few options in this department. Including the Woolworths Free From Fruit Mince Bites. The $6 pack will provide you with 8 bites. The bites are separated into two individually wrapped trays of four. It’s a great way to stop you eating the entire packet.
The pastry is shortbread-like, quite crumbly but still tasty. There is a large pastry to filling ratio though so make sure you bite through the middle. Unlike other options out there, these have no sugar coating. The filling has a nice flavour of spices and fruit, nothing overpowers the other flavours. In terms of ingredients, these do contain soy, beef fast, maize and rice flour. Thankfully they use an egg replacement if you can’t tolerate eggs. If you enjoy these they have a non-seasonal version in their standard range. It can often be found in the health food or bread aisle.
Finally, the fruit pudding comes in two different sizes. These aren’t available online but you can find them in a few spots around the stores. The larger 700g tub will cost you $8 and will work wonderfully at a morning tea or celebration. Otherwise, there are single 100g serves. Unfortunately, I forgot to grab the price of these I’ll update it when I go to the shops next.
The fruit pudding is very heavy on the raisin flavour. It was sticky and in my opinion a little dense. I’d eat it again but probably wouldn’t pay for it. That’s just my thoughts though and I do know a few people really like these. The individual portions are great if not everyone is going to be eating gluten free.
As a bonus, Woolworths are also stocking these two items from the UK brand We Love Cake. These can be found in the freezer section as well as defrosted in the Christmas displays. When they first were introduced to my store, they were with the purebred gluten free items. We managed to buy the fruit mince pies but unfortunately, the iced fruit cake slices were out of stock. Both are still available online and will cost you $6 each. Brody thought that this brand of the fruit mince pies was much better than the other brand. They have a sprinkling of sugar on top and come in little foil trays. Again the pastry was shortbread-like and although better than the free from; we still got a mouthful of pastry in the first bite.
There are plenty of other items available at Woolworths this Christmas, however, this has just touched on their own brand. For the Cadbury, Christmas treats you can check out my last year’s post. Remember that ingredients can change all the time and please check the ingredients at the time of buying. Furthermore, over on Facebook, I have an album filled with treats that is up to date for this year.
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Until Next Time;
Ashlee; The Aussie Coeliac.