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silk

Do You Still Enjoy Eating?

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Dropping gluten and dairy gave me a challenge and that was fun. Even having to learn to avoid tapioca was interesting. But then I went thru testing, both A.L.C.A.T and regular allergy testing. This week I am on an elmination diet which leaves me only 20 foods I can eat, and the only protien is soy. Well, today (day 5) I added in sunflower seeds, because I hate tofu and just couldnt handle eating it for breakfast again.

I am NOT enjoying eating right now. Ok, todays breakfast seemed like a treat - canned peaches and canned oranges with sunflower seeds. Whoopie.

I reacted to almost everything the allergist tested me for and over 1/3 of the foods on the A.L.C.A.T test, and I'm trying to introduce everything back in very slowly. I have to admit, one advantage of eating so few foods is that it IS easier to see what's tripping me up - I added some potato and sweet-potato chips, and my stomach acted up - i checked the label, and it was fried in canola oil . . I cut the chips out and i feel better, and I'll wait a while before I try canola again.

Boy, i would feel lucky if the only thing I wasnt eating was gluten . . . its all perspective. I have to admit, this diet makes me want to give in and have pizza and brownies . . . but i know i've come too far to throw it all away.

Off to cook a dinner for the family which I cant eat . . .well, i'll make a veggie I can eat, and probably some corn noodles - i just got the canola-free soy version of earth balance, woot.

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Since you seem to be an adventurous person (chocolate covered grasshoppers are, in fact, gluten-free!) you can look at is as an opportunity to explore the world! Look at Japanese, Indonesian, Vietnamese and Thai cooking (get some cookbooks or recipes off the web). Almost everything in those traditions is gluten-free. Also try some Spanish dishes like paella or some of the tapas. Try Italian risotto. And you can do wonderful things with Chinese, Ethiopian and Indian food that are divine and gluten-free!

If you have some Asian grocery stores or Ethnic markets, hop in the car and go! Be happy! Your world just opened up a thousand fold.

It seems like it is much easier if you think outside of the box (literally for American food!)

Good luck!

Lisa

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Dropping gluten and dairy gave me a challenge and that was fun. Even having to learn to avoid tapioca was interesting. But then I went thru testing, both A.L.C.A.T and regular allergy testing. This week I am on an elmination diet which leaves me only 20 foods I can eat, and the only protien is soy. Well, today (day 5) I added in sunflower seeds, because I hate tofu and just couldnt handle eating it for breakfast again.

I am NOT enjoying eating right now. Ok, todays breakfast seemed like a treat - canned peaches and canned oranges with sunflower seeds. Whoopie.

I reacted to almost everything the allergist tested me for and over 1/3 of the foods on the A.L.C.A.T test, and I'm trying to introduce everything back in very slowly. I have to admit, one advantage of eating so few foods is that it IS easier to see what's tripping me up - I added some potato and sweet-potato chips, and my stomach acted up - i checked the label, and it was fried in canola oil . . I cut the chips out and i feel better, and I'll wait a while before I try canola again.

Boy, i would feel lucky if the only thing I wasnt eating was gluten . . . its all perspective. I have to admit, this diet makes me want to give in and have pizza and brownies . . . but i know i've come too far to throw it all away.

Off to cook a dinner for the family which I cant eat . . .well, i'll make a veggie I can eat, and probably some corn noodles - i just got the canola-free soy version of earth balance, woot.

I am so sorry. I was looking at the elimination diet as a very real possibility but cut the dairy, nuts, and tomatoes along with the gluten and seem to be doing okay. After seeing what you can eat, I feel like I get to visit the Old Country Buffet for the Tie On Your Bib and Dig In Feast!

It really is so hard sometimes to cook things that you can't have. A few weeks ago my grandchildren came to stay for the weekend and I have to tell you that making those 4 little sweeties their grilled cheese made me want to slash my wrist with the spatula! They'd never notice. They love ketchup on their grilled cheese! :lol:

It's amazing how we adapt. When I first started going gluten-free, my diet was so limited because I didn't know what I could and couldn't have and the things that I could eat and not get sick from were like heaven. Now that I have learned what I can eat, I have kind of forgotten about or sidestepped some of those first thing I ate like baked sweet potatoes and plain rice with butter for other, more satisfying things. Maybe I would not experience discontent and frustration at the choices available to me if I did eat some of those things once in a while...for days on end...which I did...and which you are now doing.

I hope you get to expand your menu soon. Great way to lose weight but I still would really love (not eat it and get sick!) but love a piece of pizza or a cheese burger.

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It seems like it is much easier if you think outside of the box (literally for American food!)

I love that.. too funny.

Actually, I collect cookbooks and love try new things. Time becomes a major factor on the weekdays when your learning to work with a new discipline but look out on the weekends! Tapioca flour is flying everywhere!

My husband and I used to belong to a circle of friends when we were first married and we would make complete international dinners from different countries, starting from the appetizers through dessert. We did this about once every two weeks and took turns at each others homes and had a blast. We have lived in different parts of the U.S and while living in Texas I learned to make a fairly decent tortilla and great tamales and enchiladas with sauce made from the chili pods and chocolate.

And I love almost all of the foods/nationalities that you listed. We have several wonderful asian and hispanic markets and wonderful restaurants from every culture, but I have eaten in most of them prior to going gluten-free and what I saw did not make me overly confident about the condition of my meal when it arrives at my table and the condition of my stomach when I leave the place. I have gone online to view menus and look for gluten-free friendly places in our city and there are plenty but again, right now trust is a huge issue.

My original point was that I realized that you can't just 'go out' without going through the process of doing your homework first. It's not impossible. It's our reality and I accept it. I was just saying that it is sometimes difficult to have it be such a focus for myself and everyone around me.

Thanks so much for your suggestions. You sound like you are adventurous too. And the grasshopper, (ants, catepillars and baby bees) were delicious and tasted very much like chocolate covered peanuts. Of course, I was a kid so what did I know about good taste! :P

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Um....GwenB...I think that if most of us are gluten free, we are all having 'REAL FOOD MOVEMENTS' everyday. (Sorry, bathroom humor :rolleyes: )

I would be happy to share the ravioli recipe with you. Would you like me to p.m. it to you? It does contain parmasean but would be equally delicious without because the filling also has spinach, mushrooms and ground beef or turkey. I suppose you could replace the cheese with bread crumbs for some extra umph, but it wouldn't really need it. Right now I am off of dairy, nuts and tomatoes too and really doing well. I plan to try and re-introduce them one at a time soon but I am feeling so good now that I am scared to mess with it. Cutting those things out makes cooking a little more interesting but not impossible.

Your hubby should try the quinoa pasta. It is so yummy and we now prefer it to the regular packaged stuff. It has more texture and flavor and we ditched the leaded stuff a long time ago. You are lucky that you have a husband who enjoys cooking. Mine loves it too.

I agree with you that many people's health issues today could probably be traced back to poor diet. Aside from the celiac related health issues, those of us who have gone gluten-free will probably outlive many of our flour power friend by many years.

thanks Silk, I would love the recipe. And you're right The RFM probably isn't a great name :D

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We have always liked entertaining at home and I've been surprised that so many of our guests find it hard to believe that food without wheat (and in my case, dairy, soy too) can taste so good. "Wow! This food is delicious and I can't believe it's gluten free!" my friend actully said.

Maybe, there needs to be a 'Real Food' movement and get back to food that actually tastes good. :D

LOL! We always get the "you eat normal food". :rolleyes: I guess they expect a situation like the Everybody Loves Raymond show where there was a rubbery tofu turkey.

We have started having people over more not only to socialize but to let them know we don't eat weird stuff.

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Is this the same Shauna who is paid by McDonnalds to lie?

Um, we were talking about Shauna Ahern, a gluten free bloggist who recently had a book released. I've never read anything in her posts about McDonald's, what exactly are you talking about? She lives in Seattle and is married to a chef. What Shauna are you talking about?

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I, too, had the pleasure of trying chocolate covered ants and grasshoppers as a kid. lol

Like you, I love to cook and love to try alot of ethnic foods. I especially love asian food so learning to cook it allows me the pleasure of eating it. Thank goodness for gluten free soysauce. Indian is great as it is mostly gluten free (and my family loves it) and I discovered that the little hole in the wall Malaysian cafe that I loved before celiac does not use soysauce in their food (with the exception of their Hainese Chicken) (they mostly do Laksas and curries). Whoohoo!!!

I was lactose intolerant for a few months but that has fixed itself (I did find cooking and eating less pleasurable without dairy). I waited until I arrived in Panama (I was visiting some friends - evolutionary biologists) and the first day there I tried a latte - SUCCESS. I was careful and only tried one dairy product for the first few days then slowly added others. I was great to be in a warm and beautiful place with good friends (who wanted me to have a break from cooking and served and ate gluten free themselves for the 10 days that I was with them) and the time to relax and recover (I also have arthitis and fibromyalgia so the warmth was like heaven).

Is your lactose intolerance a permanent thing or temporary while your gut heals?

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I, too, had the pleasure of trying chocolate covered ants and grasshoppers as a kid. lol

Like you, I love to cook and love to try alot of ethnic foods. I especially love asian food so learning to cook it allows me the pleasure of eating it. Thank goodness for gluten free soysauce. Indian is great as it is mostly gluten free (and my family loves it) and I discovered that the little hole in the wall Malaysian cafe that I loved before celiac does not use soysauce in their food (with the exception of their Hainese Chicken) (they mostly do Laksas and curries). Whoohoo!!!

I was lactose intolerant for a few months but that has fixed itself (I did find cooking and eating less pleasurable without dairy). I waited until I arrived in Panama (I was visiting some friends - evolutionary biologists) and the first day there I tried a latte - SUCCESS. I was careful and only tried one dairy product for the first few days then slowly added others. I was great to be in a warm and beautiful place with good friends (who wanted me to have a break from cooking and served and ate gluten free themselves for the 10 days that I was with them) and the time to relax and recover (I also have arthitis and fibromyalgia so the warmth was like heaven).

Is your lactose intolerance a permanent thing or temporary while your gut heals?

I'm praying that it is temporary. I have also cut nuts and tomatoes out. I have tried to re-introduce the tomatoes twice and that did not go so well, so I will leave them alone. The weird thing is that I do okay with ketchup but anything like a tomato sauce really gets to me quickly. I also seem to have a hard time digesting raw fruit like apples and pears but do okay with carrots and celery. Don't get that one at all?????

Your trip to Panama sounds wonderful and how nice that you have such caring friends who are willing to accommodate your dietary needs. I have never heard of Hainese Chicken or Laksas. Care to explain? I found gluten free soy sauce yesterday. Yay. Made rice noodles last night and saute'd asparagus, diced carrot, garlic, peas and green onions with a bit of soy and white wine and put it over the rice noodles. Heaven. Could have drank the bottle of soy sauce. As for trying different things, I like adventure but I would draw the line at snake meat. Frog legs and snails are pretty tasty though and here's an odd one. Ever eat bar-b-qued chicken feet? Don't laugh. They were really pretty good.

My last two trips to dinner out were a big fiasco and I have not gotten up the courage to venture out again. I'm sure I will at some point.

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I have had chicken feet at a dimsum restaurant. Mostly skin and bone, a bit spicy but OK.

Hainese chicken is a chicken cooked in chicken broth. It is cut into pieces, served cold with a soy sauce splash on top. It also comes with a soup made from the broth and Hainese rice (I'm not sure what they do with it but it's good. The Latksa is a Malaysian soup make with chicken stock, coconut milk and a chili concoction to spice it up nicely. I usually get mine with rice noodle only, chicken and vegetables. My kids like the Fish Ball Latksa. I love this little restaurant. Often I'm the only white face in the place. The sign of a good asian restaurant.

You may just find that your lactose intolerance goes away once your gut heals. We make lactose in the tips of the villi. So when we damage these with gluten we also stop producing lactase.

It is weird. I can eat tofu, eat edamame, I'm fine with soy sauce but I react to soy milk, rice milk and almond milk. I can't figure that one out at all. I wonder if their is some kind of preservative that is used in all three that my body can't tolerate. We are a facinating study.

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I can relate completely!!! I'm semi-vegetarian (only eggs, fish and occasionally chicken). I used to love ethnic restaurants, especially thai, japanese and indian. Now I just find eating a chore, and am too afraid to go to any ethnic restaurants, because either there will be nothing on the menu thats safe, or the only safe thing won't be what I really want anyway, so whats the point?

Definitely no more joy in cooking, eating, or food in general.

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I don't enjoy eating or cooking anymore at all. Trying to find something all my family will eat that is safe for my daughter and me, and that is vegetarian is too much of a challenge. I miss eating out, I miss take-out, and I miss garlic bread.

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I can relate completely!!! I'm semi-vegetarian (only eggs, fish and occasionally chicken). I used to love ethnic restaurants, especially thai, japanese and indian. Now I just find eating a chore, and am too afraid to go to any ethnic restaurants, because either there will be nothing on the menu thats safe, or the only safe thing won't be what I really want anyway, so whats the point?

Definitely no more joy in cooking, eating, or food in general.

You should try Indian. Besides Samosas and the bread (and pakoras because they are cooked in the same oil as the somosas) most Indian food is safe. There are lots of vegetarian options and the fact that you eat fish and chicken occasionally opens up lots of choices for you.

I guess that I'm lucky. I have always loved to cook and I've had no difficulty adapting many of my favourite recipes. So I haven't found the switch to gluten free to hard. The hardest part for me has been training my family so that they don't cc me.

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I do. At first I didn't. I was upset about finding foods I could eat but the more I dig, the better it is. I think starting out it's about gathering as much info as you can.

My husband thinks we eat healthier, especially me. I eat more steamed items now and I actually don't miss bread all that much. And if it's going towards me feeling better than I am in this to win this. :)

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Wow--really? What did they pay her to say?

It depends if its the same person.

I seem to remember a Shauna who said McDonalds fries were gluten free even when the analysis say's they are not. However it might not be the same one, hence the question. (which is a question)

I guess that I'm lucky. I have always loved to cook and I've had no difficulty adapting many of my favourite recipes. So I haven't found the switch to gluten free to hard. The hardest part for me has been training my family so that they don't cc me.

That's exactly how I feel about it really. I hardly have anything I eat (excepting Pasta) that isn't just as easy gluten-free. I say hardly, there are a few things which just don't work well but these are really few and far between.

However on the other side eating gluten-free has actually opened me to cooking things I might not otherwise have tried or discovered.

Eating out ... is the real problem and mostly the inability to just buy a sandwich or take-away when on the go or with friends etc.

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It depends if its the same person.

I seem to remember a Shauna who said McDonalds fries were gluten free even when the analysis say's they are not. However it might not be the same one, hence the question. (which is a question)

Well, McDonald's does state that there is wheat protein included in the fries ingredients, but they also (did, at one point) claim that the gluten itself is processed out and that the fries are safe. Now, I have no idea what analysis you're talking about, whether or not a 3rd party did a gluten assay. But a lot of people on this board eat McDonald's fries, apparently without symptom, or did at the time we discussed this a numer of months ago. If there is someone who claims they are gluten free, it is probably based on that information, and it is most likely that they were not paid to do so. Not sure where you got that idea.

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Well, McDonald's does state that there is wheat protein included in the fries ingredients, but they also (did, at one point) claim that the gluten itself is processed out and that the fries are safe. Now, I have no idea what analysis you're talking about, whether or not a 3rd party did a gluten assay. But a lot of people on this board eat McDonald's fries, apparently without symptom, or did at the time we discussed this a numer of months ago. If there is someone who claims they are gluten free, it is probably based on that information, and it is most likely that they were not paid to do so. Not sure where you got that idea.

There is a long a short version, long version I guess a search on McDonalds fries will find!

Short version, the analysis itself is available, I've linked to it several times. (I Also worked half my life in analytical labs).

If you read the summary you get the idea the oil is gluten-free and CF. If you read it all very carefully then you realise (if you are used to reading analytical reports) that they are only talking about the ELISA test in the summary and later on the RAST test is +ve for both gluten and casein.

Before you get to this PDF following McDo's links is a statement by someone in the GIG of America (or something like that) saying the fries are 'safe' . This is where the name sounds familiar with.

However ...whomever quoted this ... must have given permission to McDO ... to use there name... did they just do it for free?

The question of how much is too much one not easily resolved ...

Many also report problems with McDo fries... and others don't....

The variables are too many to resolve... but are some people more sensitive or less sensitive? Is it only exterior symptoms?? Does a 100% gluten-free diet make you react more violently?

Is it possible many of those eating the fries without problem are not really 100% gluten-free?

This last one is not really a question but rhetoric. IMHO ANYONE who thinks McDo fries are consistently gluten-free is not gluten-free. Its almost a definition... forgetting the oil its seems impossible that McDo could consistently make anything gluten-free due to cross contamination... or come to that more or less any resto but especially 'fast food'.

Unless a resto has special areas and policies its just impossible to be consistent... and fast food is more given to slips than individually prepared food.

Since McDo serves however many million portions of fries per day then a huge amount must be contaminated, its just stats.

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Since McDo serves however many million portions of fries per day then a huge amount must be contaminated, its just stats.
This statement in itself is nuts! McDonalds does serve many millions per day, but not in any one restuarant, the millions is in all of their restuarants. We have the same risk of contamination in any restuarant as we do in MickyD's. The risk comes from the people we must trust, who are handling the food, not the place in which we are eating. I find it difficult to trust anyone.

I was watching the news the other day when they were anouncing the increase in the price of flour. I watched this man in some bagel shop in NYC run his naked hand, meaning no glove, through his flour, now that was disgusting.

Back to the topic---no, I do not find eating fun any longer. I have to many intolerance's now. Eating is a survival thing now, not ever really enjoyable any more.

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This statement in itself is nuts! McDonalds does serve many millions per day, but not in any one restuarant, the millions is in all of their restuarants. We have the same risk of contamination in any restuarant as we do in MickyD's. The risk comes from the people we must trust, who are handling the food, not the place in which we are eating. I find it difficult to trust anyone.

I was watching the news the other day when they were anouncing the increase in the price of flour. I watched this man in some bagel shop in NYC run his naked hand, meaning no glove, through his flour, now that was disgusting.

Back to the topic---no, I do not find eating fun any longer. I have to many intolerance's now. Eating is a survival thing now, not ever really enjoyable any more.

I am learning to enjoy cooking for myself and my family again but as originally stated, it is never just a spontaneous event but requires much planning and preparedness. I spent two nights at my daughter's house and felt like I was packing for a month because of the stuff I had to take so that I could eat 3 meals a day gluten-free. 1 bag for clothing, 3 bags with groceries.

Last night, encouraged by this thread to try different restaurants, I decided to venture back to one of our pre-gluten-free favorites, Applebee's. This was a mistake. The menu had changed two days before and they have cut some of the items from their menu that I thought I could have. The waitress was less than accommodating and while they did deliver what I eventually ordered (steak and a plain baked potato) when I enquired about corn tortillas as an alternative to the flour for the fajitas, I was told "we don't have those". Not a huge problem in itself that they don't have them but the waitress was not terribly nice about the way she handled it. When I asked for plain steamed rice in place of the southwestern rice, I was told "we don't do steamed rice" again as if I was a huge pain. I have made up a note explaining the gluten-free problem and what is needed that I gave to the waitress to send along with my order. She brought it back to my table and told me I could keep it because that manager had read it out loud to everyone working in the kitchen. This is fine and what should have happened, and as a result, I did not get sick from eating there. I can also tell you that it was not a wonderful dining experience and mostly because of the waitress' attitude. Not only did she charge too much for my meal and had to correct the bill but added insult to injury by asking if I wanted any dessert! My appreciation of her compassion was reflected in her tip!

But this is part of the reason for the sentiment behind my original statement. Because of our dietary issues, and the frustration of dealing with them just to have a simple meal out, it does take some of the enjoyment out of the experience and tends to make me not want to venture out anymore. Which is just not fair to the rest of the family because they do enjoy eating out and because they feel bad for me it makes it an unpleasant experience for them too.

My husband's comment was "why, with a national food chain as large as Applebee's, would they not do more to provide for other dietary needs. gluten-free would not be the only issue that is not well-covered in their menu items. When I asked for steamed veggies, they could not do that either. Their seasonal veggies are pre-cooked with a seasoning on them. My only other option was salad or steamed broccoli, both of which I cannot digest. My problems are not their fault, but I also realize that I am not the only one with these problems and while I will at some point in time summon the courage to try again somewhere else, I know that it will never be at an Applebee's.

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After watching Supersize Me with my kids (they refuse to eat in any fast food places now Yeah!) and seeing his experiment with McD's fries (he kept them for a long time to see how long they took to go bad). After a month they still looked the same as the day they were bought. Real food does not do that, it goes bad. For that reason alone I would never eat their fries.

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This statement in itself is nuts! McDonalds does serve many millions per day, but not in any one restuarant, the millions is in all of their restuarants. We have the same risk of contamination in any restuarant as we do in MickyD's. The risk comes from the people we must trust, who are handling the food, not the place in which we are eating. I find it difficult to trust anyone.

The two are not the same, the statement is false because McDo say's the fries are safe yet its an impossibility ..

A single resto might say "they make every effort" and they may well but with thousands of resto's a blancket statement like "our fries are safe" is just wrong ...

Even a single resto its pretty hard (and like you i would still be wary) but as a sweeping statement for a whole chain its just misleading... or telling people what they want to hear.

I was watching the news the other day when they were anouncing the increase in the price of flour. I watched this man in some bagel shop in NYC run his naked hand, meaning no glove, through his flour, now that was disgusting.

Well not sure disgusting is the word (after all its only ourselves a 'small minority as they keep saying' find wheat distasteful) but it illustrates the problem. Its treated as a harmless substance ... and even my friends/relatives find it hard ... so to me any kitchen using flour is pretty much a very high risk.... more so than pre-prepped fast food but pre-prepped fastfood does still come a close second ....

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About running hands thru flour . . .that sounds really pleasant to me. I used to do that. I think her point was more that its not sanitary, but I'm not sure.

In response to the post about Applebees - I cooked in Denny's for a while, and I strongly suspect most chain family restaraunts are the same - all the food arrives frozen or canned. This isnt a fine restaraunt , where they buy fresh food, prepare it and cook it from scratch. At dennys, all soups and any sort of stew came in a plastic bag, and you added some amount of water or milk to it and reheated it. Rice was from a mix, just add water, with seasonings already in it.

Chain family restaraunts are really not much different than fast food, in that the food is all created on an assembly line somewhere else so that basically unskilled workers can quickly put it together in to an appealing meal. These arent chef's working there - i cooked at Denny's for 8 months and was told I would be able to get a job anywhere in the country, that that was a huge amount of experience for a cook at that kind of restaraunt.

So - expecting them to be able to find some veggies to steam, or make you plain rice, isnt realistic, not at most of these kinds of restaraunts.

Ok, now i'm sure someone will come tell me they get custom-made meals eating out all the time .. . i have to admit, i dont eat out - never did much, and havent at all since i went on dietary restrictions.

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About running hands thru flour . . .that sounds really pleasant to me. I used to do that. I think her point was more that its not sanitary, but I'm not sure.

In response to the post about Applebees - I cooked in Denny's for a while, and I strongly suspect most chain family restaraunts are the same - all the food arrives frozen or canned. This isnt a fine restaraunt , where they buy fresh food, prepare it and cook it from scratch. At dennys, all soups and any sort of stew came in a plastic bag, and you added some amount of water or milk to it and reheated it. Rice was from a mix, just add water, with seasonings already in it.

Chain family restaraunts are really not much different than fast food, in that the food is all created on an assembly line somewhere else so that basically unskilled workers can quickly put it together in to an appealing meal. These arent chef's working there - i cooked at Denny's for 8 months and was told I would be able to get a job anywhere in the country, that that was a huge amount of experience for a cook at that kind of restaraunt.

So - expecting them to be able to find some veggies to steam, or make you plain rice, isnt realistic, not at most of these kinds of restaraunts.

Ok, now i'm sure someone will come tell me they get custom-made meals eating out all the time .. . i have to admit, i dont eat out - never did much, and havent at all since i went on dietary restrictions.

On the Applebees thread. I also had a dissapointing meal there. I didn't want steak and plain potato so opted for the only other available menu option, grilled shrimp and salad. I told the waiter about the gluten-free, CF, soy free diet, handed a note (from the Celiac Soc website) about diet and was reassured that he knew all about being vegan! I knew from that point on that it might be difficult. They also broought the slip of paper back saying it was fine but they still brought me the salad with cheese all over it and croutons! :angry:

I was never a fan of Applebees before going gluten-free and am even less so now. However, when your out all day it's nice to know a restaurant you can go to and know what you can have in advance without too much anxiety. I've eaten at Red Robin 3 times and not had a problem, each time I spoke with the server they made sure the chef came to explain menu options and were careful to serve my food separate from everyone elses with a lovely "allergy allert" printed all over the receipt. At least it shows they were paying attention and they do great gluten-free fries to order. :)

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"Chain family restaraunts are really not much different than fast food, in that the food is all created on an assembly line somewhere else so that basically unskilled workers can quickly put it together in to an appealing meal. These arent chef's working there - i cooked at Denny's for 8 months and was told I would be able to get a job anywhere in the country, that that was a huge amount of experience for a cook at that kind of restaraunt.

So - expecting them to be able to find some veggies to steam, or make you plain rice, isnt realistic, not at most of these kinds of restaraunts."

Thanks dbmamaz, for the info. Nice to have a better idea what goes on in the kitchen. I would still have to wonder though, if you can steam broccoli, why couldn't you steam any other veggies available and for that matter, how hard would it be to steam rice? At least when you order at Burger King you get to ask for it 'your way'. May not always get what you asked for and we all know that that resto is not really a viable option for most of us, but I guess by biggest problem was with the way the waitress reacted to my questions.

"I've eaten at Red Robin 3 times and not had a problem, each time I spoke with the server they made sure the chef came to explain menu options and were careful to serve my food separate from everyone elses with a lovely "allergy allert" printed all over the receipt. At least it shows they were paying attention and they do great gluten-free fries to order. "

GwenB, this is good news. We have a Red Robins and I would kill for fries made to order. Well, not kill maybe, but slightly maim. What else did you order that was good. I am only familiar with the burger fare. Do they have seafood, steaks???

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Odd topic alert.

I was thinking today that where eating used to be such a source of enjoyment for me I used to love to plan meals, try new recipes, cook together with my family and try new restaurants. I've never been just a meat and potatoes girl. Would try just about anything once, including snails and chocolate covered grasshoppers! :P Since I found out about the Celiac disease and have gone gluten, nut and dairy free, there isn't so much joy in it anymore. Of course, I do realize that you can do all of the things that I listed above and still exclude the things that you can't have. It's just that where eating was once a social activity and did so much more than just satisfy your appetite, now it seems to be more of just the means to an end. Not nearly as much pleasure in it. Just a necessary requirement to satisfy my bodies need for nourishment.

Not trying to sound pitiful and there are definitely wonderful dishes and meals to be had. It just seems that for most of us, there is so much more effort and care involved in planning & preparing those meals, by necessity, and add to that a feeling of anxiety if there are not things readily available when you are hungry that it often takes the joy out of it.

Again, not feeling sorry for myself. The thought just occurred to me that my way of thing about food and it's purpose has totally changed. I think my husband called it a paradyme(sp). Not just a temporary change by choice of once small part of your life, but a total change in the way you live and think about everything.

Does this make sense and does anyone else feel this way?

I feel the same way, but I don't miss the fancy food as much just the simple things we used to be able to eat. Cheeseburger deluxe, BLT, Ruben on Rye, Pizza, Giant breaded tenderloin, breaded cod, submarine sandwich, etc. etc. etc.

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