Growing up in Omaha (I no longer live there) I grew up on Rotella's Italian Bread. We lived not far from their bakery, so every summer I knew when they were baking. The air would fill with the heavenly scent of fresh baked bread and you would find yourself hungry! Chances are- if you grew up in the midwest (especially Nebraska & Iowa)- you grew up on this bread! I remember having gooey peanut butter and jelly sandwiches on their bread. There was nothing like just eating a slice (untoasted) with some butter as a snack, or using it to dip into your steak juice. Then devastation hit- I wast told I could no longer enjoy these wonderful breads. Every time I went to my mom's house I would see a loaf, just sitting there, calling my name but I couldn't touch it.
Rotella's really started way back in 1850 in Calabri, Italy with Domenico Rotella. He grew his own wheat and milled it into flour, the began to bake hearty bread loaves. Over time his breads became more and more popular and he passed his knowledge onto his son Alessandro and his wife Maria. In 1909 the two came to America and settled in Omaha, NE and by 1921 they started Rotella's Italian Bakery. Today Rotella's is still family owned.
Some of those family members have learned though, that they can no longer enjoy what their great grandparents have created. Louis Rotella III has gluten intolerance and was told in 1996 that he could no longer have gluten. With the smell of the fresh bread streaming through his office each day, he knew he had to do something about it. With his brother John Rotella, who's fiance has Celiac, and a company team, they set out to find a solution to their gluten problem! After many formulas and 3 1/2 years they finally found the perfect recipe. But it didn't end there. Knowing they could not make their bread in a regular bakery, Rotella's took a 55,000 square foot building and transformed it into a new bakery, away from the contamination of their regular flours (they do not even share the same parking lot!). They also, in order to ensure that there is no cross contamination, put in a custom air filtration systems similar to those in hospitals.
|finally! toast that isn't as hard as a rock!|
Now onto the bread- Oh my goodness I am in love. I am seriously really excited over their new breads! Not only is it Gluten Free, but it is also nut free and dairy free! You get thick slices of soft, moist, non grainy bread! First thing I did when I opened my box was take out a slice and slather some butter on it. Oh my goodness, zero disappointment. The next morning I had toast- again- zero disappointment.
|a gooey peanut butter and jelly!|
Now the true test- a peanut butter and jelly. Just look at those thick slices! And when I spread the peanut butter on, there was zero crumbling! It went on more smoothly then it does on my son's regular bread! The best part is- They actually recommend leaving their bread on the counter! It will stay for 8-10 days at room temp. The fridge will extend that to 10-12 days, but by doing that you can actually dry the bread out because of the constant air flow. And if you are like me and buy in bulk, the freezer will keep them for up to 6 months!
|A kid's smile of approval says it all!|
I am seriously in heaven and I am so glad they have made their bread available for people with Celiac and Gluten Intolerance! My little Jen now says this is the only bread we can buy! Rotella's has made one happy mommy in this house!
They hope to start sending their breads out to stores by the end of the first quarter (so by March), but be sure to start telling your local stores to request it! The more request stores get for it, the more likely they are to stock it! These will also be available online so be sure to check in on there once in awhile. And no worries, I will also keep watch and will let you know when they are starting to show up! That is- if I can pause from my happy dance long enough to type!
If you are not Gluten Free and you have not tried Rotella's yet you really should! I am telling you their breads are the best ever!