Naturally, I requested that the hotel be notified of my vegan, wheat-free diet when I booked the holiday. Of course, they assured me that it wouldn't be a problem. I've heard it all before, and tend to assume the worst.
I always take a packet of pumpernickel bread with me, and some packets of miso soup so that I know I will be able to eat something whilst I sort out what's available. This time we also took along some avocados and fruit from the kitchen, as we were going to be away for three weeks and it would have been a waste not to have taken it.
On our first morning we ventured forth to investigate the local food shops. We discovered many "supermarkets", many smaller than your local greengrocer probably is! In some we were delighted to find beautiful fresh fruit and vegetables, in many more, we were disappointed by the sad, withered displays.
I was pleasantly surprised to see soya milk on the shelves of nearly all of the food shops. Some brands I knew, others I didn't. So, that was breakfast sorted out.
We discovered a large supermarket, called Scotts, nearby.
A sign proudly boasted that they stock Redwood meatfree products. I was so surprised that I found myself taking photos of products on a supermarket shelf!!! Not something I am normally likely to do!
Cheezly is one of the cheese substitutes that I actually buy here in the UK. Not often, because it's full of fat, and doesn't really taste the same as cheese, now does it? However, there are times when I really fancy a toasted cheese sandwich, with onion and olives and tomatoes. When the craving strikes, I feed it! I tell myself it's pretty much like a pizza. Self delusion is a wonderful thing, at times :-)
Although I can't eat most of their products, due to the wheat content, it was still good to see that vegetarian and vegans are provided for in some shops. And you can see that the prices aren't too bad, either. Since we were booked in for half-board, I didn't need to buy anything. I always look at what's available though, in case I plan to return on a self-catering basis.
Gluten-free bread wasn't quite as easy to find as the soya milk and other milk substitutes. I was lucky, in that a reasonable sized supermarket nearby boasted a whole rack down one aisle full of gluten free products. There were five different sliced loaves, plus several varieties of rolls and crackers. The prices were higher than here, but you'd expect that, given that Malta is a small island and everything has to be freighted in.
So, it's possible to buy your essentials if you should travel to Malta or Gozo. It's always good to know that you can buy basic provisions, isn't it?