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Form Letter and an Example of a Dinner Meal and How I Would Eat Gluten-Free

Right to the point since this is the second time and some folks are following this blog.
This is a Carnival menu we will use as if I was going to dinner and what I would eat. First the menu that was sent to us before we left port:


day 3

  crusted Crispy shrimp quenelles
accompanied by candied carrots and  mushrooms

*Tender Hearts of Tropical Palm & California Artichoke
marinated with a roasted tomato

Escargots Bourguignonne
Burgundy snails in garlic butter with an infusion of Chablis and Pernod

French Onion Soup
Baked with a slice of homemade bread, freshly grated Gruyere and Parmesan cheese

Black Bean Soup
served with a steamed Rice and a touch of sour cream

Chilled Cucumber Soup with Dill

Mixed Garden & Field Greens
tomatoes, cucumbers, carrots with choice of dressing

*Wilted Spinach and  Mushrooms with Fresh Bacon Bits
Walnut and Blue Cheese dressing


Penn Mariscos
Pasta Cooked  , tossed with shrimp & Scallops in a tomato cream sauce
(also available as a starter)

*Lemon Topped Fillet of White Roughy
Sauteed Potatoes, green beans, asparagus, zucchini, fennel and  blanc

Bourbon & Honey Glazed Roasted Spring Chicken
Jalapeno Mashed potatoes, cauliflower and onion fritter, grilled zucchini & chicken

Jerked Pork Loin
slowly roasted center cut pork loin, marinated in Island spices and Herbs
Caribbean Bean Stew and Caramelized plantains

Veal Picatta
Tender breaded veal  Lemon scented veal essence
Green beans and young potato

Tender Roasted Sirloin of American Beef Mushroom  Roast potatoes, sauteed green beans
grilled tomatoes, red wine sauce and basil oil Tomato Braised

Tofu vegetarian entree: served with charred peppers & olives

My form letter here is just a example and may not be the complete on that I might send them:
Name: (as on the reservation)                Room # 555          Table #44444         Time eating: 7:00     Dinner meal

I am informing you that I have a special diet request of a gluten free diet.  This diet is very important that I do not receive anything that I do not ask for. I will explain how to prepare my meal in full detail and ask you not to vary from it by the slightest.  The smallest crumb of wheat, barley, rye or any other grain could make me very, very sick, and spoil my time on your wonderful cruise.  I know you hold my health in in high regard, as well as making our stay here as good as it can be.

Some examples of gluten can be found in bread, catsup, margarine, candy, desserts, salad preservatives and really too many more things to tell you.

My worst fear is cross-contamination which can happen with a chef cutting my meal on a dirty cutting board or just on the table, with a chef using tongs he has used on something else. So please be extra careful.
Please do not season my food unless I ask you to, and only use salt and pepper and no garnish on my plate unless it is fresh and not pickled or has sauce.
Thank you and if you have any questions feel free to call me in my room.

Here is what I would eat from the menu above:
Saute shrimp in olive oil with the shitake mushrooms and some button mushrooms and deglaze with white wine and lemon juice.
Soup: Cucumber pureed with heavy whipping cream little sour cream and fresh chives. Serve cold.
Salad: 6 whole cherry tomatoes and a whole uncut cucumber (I ask for it whole so I can take out the cross-contamination risk of the pantry, who are in another area, this is just a precaution that I take).
Entree: I would like the spring chicken (I also could have went with others like the veal) break it down and I would like 1/2 of the chicken. Take all bones out of it and cut the thigh a little so when they saute it it will cook as fast as the breast.
I would like it sauted in olive oil and then add tequila and honey, (***) cook until the chicken is done, reducing the sauce, if needed add water to the pan but not chicken stock. Pull the chicken out and cut small pieces of REAL butter and make a sauce and spread it over the chicken.
Starch:  I would like one cup of rice cooked in the microwave (I know cooking in the microwave is safe and no one is going to accidentally spill something in it if the chef walks away).
Vegetable: Some medley of fresh vegetables also cooked in the microwave.

Dessert: This night and every night plus during lunch I would like chocolate moose.  Be careful to use real vanilla because some have alcohol in them and I cannot have the alcohol as it may contain gluten--so fresh vanilla beans please..

Thank you and please ask me any questions.
Chef Daniel P.
*** Remember to make sure to choose an alcohol that is gluten free..some Bourbons might be so if you're sure there is one name it by name and tell the chef if they don't have it to use a wine or tequila that you might like.
That is some of what I would say and I would make extra copies with spaces under the names in blue so if I have another meal I just can write it in or if the menu changes bring extra copies but make sure you use the same one so they get used to seeing this paper and know that you are serious about your diet.

Next I will review and put in order everything that should be done before your sailing date.

Chef Daniel P.

As always, welcomes your comments (see below).

Spread The Word

2 Responses:

Tina Marchand

said this on
28 Mar 2008 8:48:10 AM PDT
My 14 year old daughter was just diagnosed yesterday with Celiac. Any website, directions or advice you can offer would be greatly appreciated.


said this on
29 Mar 2008 4:17:27 PM PDT
I would feel sending a letter like this to the cruise line would make them angry. This seems very demanding of the cooks! I would feel as if they would purposely CC my food for being so demanding! Also, I don't cook well enough to even know what your talking about! I would be... grill chicken, add BBQ Sauce! I don't want to cook on my vacation!

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