Posts Tagged ‘special orders’

Summer Fun and Eating Out

Friday, July 23rd, 2010

After a brief trip to NH to visit family on vacation, I’m happy to be back to my normal eating routine. It’s not that I don’t enjoy the occasional ice cream cone or grilled chicken dinner with the gang, but I have food sensitivities and most people don’t really understand why some of us need to avoid certain foods.

A very common flavoring to meats and vegetables like garlic and onions can hammer me with a migraine ( a typical delayed onset food sensitivity). The tough part is that not only can’t I order a dish made with these vegetables, but I can’t have meat cooked on the same grill either. To my garlic loving family, this definitely puts a damper on meal time. That’s why I wanted to bring this up.

If you have food allergies, there are a few alternatives to the standard seasonings and maybe it’s time we educated our close friends and relatives about what we can enjoy with them. For instance, I use horseradish root as a seasoning substitute for garlic and onions. It adds a delicious flavor to all kinds of dishes. I recently made veggie lasagna for my husband’s birthday and our friends and family raved about the dish!

Another common food sensitivity is wheat or gluten. Our breads now routinely contain 10 times more gluten than they did 40 years ago, and more people are becoming sensitive as a result. Some people find that they can better tolerate sprouted wheat like Mana bread. Others opt for brown rice or another gluten free bread. Tortillas made with corn or brown rice are a great substitute for wheat and arrowroot powder may be used as a thickener instead of wheat flour.

If you have difficulty with dairy, try coconut milk ice cream (heavenly!), almond, hemp or rice milk and sheep’s or goat’s milk yogurt. The proteins in the sheep and goat’s milk are usually better tolerated than those in cow’s milk. A delicious breakfast combination is fresh berries, a dash of cinnamon, half a banana and goat’s milk yogurt. Goat cheese¬† with fresh herbs is another option that tastes great in a salad or sandwich.

A fourth category that can cause an adverse reaction is eggs. I buy only farm fresh eggs and avoid the “wash” that may cause irritation. If eggs don’t work for you, though, you can always substitute organic tofu and scramble it in olive oil with sea salt and pepper.

Traveling with your own tried and true foods is always helpful when possible. I usually bring snacks like apples, almonds, dates, gojiberries or brown rice cakes, because they travel well.¬† However, more restaurants and inns are becoming aware of the growing number of people with food allergies. In fact, our inn in NH questioned us about food allergies before we arrived, so every morning I had options on what to eat for breakfast. If you let your server know that you have food allergies, many places are happy to prepare your food free of the aggravating ingredients. The more we ask for what we need, the more restaurants will become accustomed to “special orders.”

If you would like to know more about food allergies and how to detect them, feel free to visit my website at or contact me through the site. Summer picnics and cookouts can be fun for everyone with a little planning and communication.