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Buffet


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#1 Duhlina

 
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Posted 12 October 2011 - 02:49 AM

My mom does a "girls night out" once a month with a group of her friends. I have been invited this month and they are going to a $25 all you can eat lobster & prime rib buffet. It sounds VERY tempting...I love lobster and I love prime rib, but I am VERY hesitant to go. I know I'll probably have to avoid the prime rib, since the 'au jus' probably has gluten in it but I'm afraid to try anything else on the buffet and I certainly don't want to spend $25 for a salad! Mom suggested I call ahead. Uh, no. I went out to dinner last night to a place we frequent and, even though I discussed (at length) celiac with the waitress, I think I still got glutened with cross contamination somehow. I have a raging headache and my hands are swollen.

As celiacs, do we DARE go to a buffet??
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#2 kareng

 
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Posted 12 October 2011 - 04:59 AM

I would only do a buffet if everything on it was gluten-free. People always take the spoon from the green beans (gluten-free) and use it to scoop up croutons then stick it back in the green beans. Or drop a piece of pasta in something.
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#3 Simona19

 
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Posted 12 October 2011 - 05:31 AM

My mom does a "girls night out" once a month with a group of her friends. I have been invited this month and they are going to a $25 all you can eat lobster & prime rib buffet. It sounds VERY tempting...I love lobster and I love prime rib, but I am VERY hesitant to go. I know I'll probably have to avoid the prime rib, since the 'au jus' probably has gluten in it but I'm afraid to try anything else on the buffet and I certainly don't want to spend $25 for a salad! Mom suggested I call ahead. Uh, no. I went out to dinner last night to a place we frequent and, even though I discussed (at length) celiac with the waitress, I think I still got glutened with cross contamination somehow. I have a raging headache and my hands are swollen.

As celiacs, do we DARE go to a buffet??



Buffet? Hmm I went twice to a chine's place, but each time I just watched how others were eating. I told the waitress up front that I won't eat anything. She was watching me all the time. I was in the company of my family. We were talking, laughing, they were eating, I was watching them and everybody left happy.

And reason why I would not eat in buffet:

1. Cross contamination from using the same spatula that was previously used for something with breadcrumbs, or flour by other guests.

2. Was the knife clean when they prepared your salad?

3. Was the working surface in the buffet clean from flour, crumbs?

4. Some people are very sensitive. Did a cook used flour in his recipes? The dust particles may still linger in the air and will fall on your food.

5. Are they using the same old pots and pans? Do they have scratches? The first rule for newly diagnosed celiacs is to replace pots, pans, wooden boards and utensils. What about those? Are they safe? Is the cook in the buffet using dedicated utensils for gluten free eaters? I don't think so.

6. The most important thing why I wouldn't eat in restaurants is: I pay a lot of money for gluten and casein free substitutions. I'm washing my hands at least 100 times per day to avoid cross contamination ( I still have gluten free eaters in my house). I can't eat what I want anymore. Others can. For 14 months I watched others enjoying my favorite dishes and I wasn't able to eat it. I felt sorry for myself from the beginning.

Today? I don't care much about the gluten food anymore. I have passion for gluten and casein free cooking and baking.

My health improved tremendously. I wouldn't jeopardize it.

I always tell myself this when I'm tempted to do something not very safe: Do you remember how sick you were? Why are you so careful all the time? Why are you avoiding gluten everywhere? Why are you paying extra money for your groceries? If you would eat this, then what was all this for? Why are you "suffering" for 14 months and now you want to throw everything away?

I would go outside with my friends, but I would eat my dinner at home. You don't have to miss on fun. You can have a very good time. Just tell the waitress that you won't eat anything today because you are highly allergic.

Or

Call ahead early morning and find out from the cook, if something in the restaurant would be safe for your to eat. Tell them about cross contamination. Some people will go to a kitchen to check for themselves, but I would be to embarrass to do that. If the answer would be satisfied for you, then eat your dinner at that place.
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#4 Reba32

 
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Posted 12 October 2011 - 07:44 AM

I personally stay away from buffet restaurants like the plague. There is just too much opportunity for cross-contamination, even if they do have one or two gluten free options in it. Which is unlikely.

Someone really needs to start a chain of all gluten free buffets. I'm sure they'd get lots of business.
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#5 GlutenFreeManna

 
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Posted 12 October 2011 - 07:52 AM

I stay away from buffets. But if you were to go the salad bar part would probably be the least safe area. The croutons are usually near the dressing and you can never tell if some one dropped a crouton in the bottom of the dressing or used the same tongs for the croutons as for the lettuce. I've heard some (less sensitive) people go to them and always are careful to take stuff from the BACK of the containers where there is less likely to have been a crouton dropped in the lettuce bin and picked back out. I've also heard that some people have success calling ahead and having the servers bring out fresh items JUST for them so things have not been contminated. That would be more likely during a non-busy time, however, it never hurts to call and ask if they could do that for you.
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A simple meal with love is better than a feast where there is hatred. Proverbs 15:17 (CEV)

#6 sariesue

 
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Posted 12 October 2011 - 08:12 AM

I would call the resturant and ask if they could accommodation you by plating your meal in the kitchen omiting gluten items. If they could put the lobster and the prime rib (minus the au gus) on a plate for me from the reserve stocks I would go because then I don't see it as being any worse than going to a normal restaurant. I would also go if it was set up with manned stations for the prime rib and the lobsters. If there was an employee who was only cutting the meat and one who was only handling the lobsters, I would do that and probably skip the sides. But, I am not overly sensitive.
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