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phakephur

Eating Out In General

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What can you eat at McDonalds besides french fries, a side salad and chocolate sundae?

I've eaten at Outback, but have gotten sick a couple of times. Probably cross contamination. Even though corporate has worked with the gluten intolerant group doesn't mean that all franchises follow the rules.

That being said, I totally agree with going out to eat and being careful. After giving a quick overview, I'll order a baked potato if I don't think the wait staff understood. My favorite example is ordering eggs and bacon, but asking them to hold the toast because I am gluten intolerant. I also asked to have the bacon cooked in the microwave (on paper towel, not whole wheat bread which some restaurants use to aborsb grease) and the eggs scrambled in a clean pan.

Well, the waitress was so attentive, hanging on to every word wanting to get the order just right. But, the eggs and bacon arrived on separate plates, and on top of the eggs was a flour biscuit! She said, I thought you couldn't have toast! I guess I need to perfect my explanation. I sent it back and asked for fresh eggs.

It's baby steps I realize, but we need to go out and educate restaurants. Does anyone know if there's an association we could contact? You know, go to the top and talk with these folks and have them disseminate the information. Might be faster.

Helen.

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At McDonalds we can have fries, hashbrowns, sundaes, m&m mcflurries, etc...and you can get a list on their website.

When you went to the Outback did you make sure they were well aware of the celiac or did you just order from the gluten free menu? Also talking to the head chef is a really good idea because they prepare your food. Maybe some Outbacks are better then others though.

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Guest Viola

Butter, and sour cream are both safe, as is the chives and bacon bits if they are real bacon bits ... they usually are, but ask anyway. I usually have either steak or chicken breast, and if you use the word allergic they tend to be more understanding. Most restaurants know about food allergies. Also ... one restaurant started making me pan fried mushrooms in fresh garlic and butter and drizzled melted cheddar over my baked potato! :D Yummy :rolleyes:

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Stick to Steakhouses.

Just order steak (no seasoning, no butter) and a baker plain (real butter and cheese on the side). Salad, no croutons oil and vinegar on the side.

Every steakhouse has a baked potato and every one has a side salad.

Steakhouses are by far the easiest places for folks with celiac disease to eat at -------------- (In this ex-waiter's opinion). B)

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2 things in this thread confusing me:

1. i thought bacon could contain gluten (the only i know of that does however is mcdonald's still i thought we shouldn't order it at restaurants unless they know it's gluten-free) if mcdonalds is the only one with gluten bacon i'll go back to ordering bacon at restaurants!

2. i thought sour cream was also sometimes a problem (this could just be an old CSA myth, but maybe there's food starch or something ?)

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I travel and I have to eat out and even if I didn't, eating out is so enjoyable for me that I refuse to give it up. I agree that steakhouses are the easiest, expensive resturants I've never had a problem at, just don't go on Friday or Saturday evening until they know you. Expensive places have a chef not a cook and in my experience they have far more food knowledge and seem to care more.

Some sour creams have gluten (so I've been told) so I usually stick to plain butter with my baked potato and fish is a good choice too. I will not let this disease change my life any more then it has too. And just fyi, I too (once) have been glutened at Outback.... and I not only tell the manager I have to be gluten-free but the server and I ask them to speak to the cook. But it still happened and I'm sure it was from cross contamination.

Susan

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Guest nini

there are still some brands of sour cream that still uses gluten as a CHEAP filler. So I always question sour cream. Breakstones IS NOT gluten-free or at least wasn't the last time I read the ingredients in the supermarket.

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Yes, I asked for a gluten-free menu and the waiter seemed to understand my needs. I went over it with him again when I ordered my food. Did you know that the butter that is melted on the fresh vegetables has seasoning in it? So, when ordering Outback's steamed veggies, you need to tell them no seasoning and no melted butter.

We just have to continue to be pains in their behinds. After all, they are in the service industry and the customer is always right!

But seriously, I always leave huge tips so when I come back they don't say, "here comes that pain in the butt," but rather, "here comes that big tipper." I've actually had a waiter fight with another waiter to have me put in his section. And, he makes sure that my food is cooked on a clean grill and to date, no problems.

Just my $1.00 worth (vs. two cents. I'm a big tipper) :)

Helen.

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Yes I agree with the tipping thing. I get not only better service but they seem to be more careful to satisfy me when I tip alot.

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When you order plain meat, though, don't you have to make sure they don't cook it on the same grill where seasoned meat was cooked? What's the easiest way to accomplish that? Ask them to cook it on a piece of foil?

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When I order plain hamberger or chicken, I request a freshly washed skillet, no oil except olive oil - NO butter, etc. I tell them I have food issues which they can take to be celiac disease, allergies, or intolerances. I have yet to have to explain to get my food the way I want - most servers intrepret as allergies which is fine with me - what do I care as long as they are aware I have problems...

I eat at Texas Roadhouse on a regular basis without any fear. Order plain steak, plain salad, and green beans - occasionally I have had a reaction, but that could be from peanut crumbs from my husband rubbing his hands to remove the crumbs over the TOP of the table!!! He has stopped but does require occasional reminding.

Chili's is accomodating - I have them wash a fajita skillet, no butter, and they put that on the grill instead of putting my burger right on the grill. I wasn't actually happy with the Outback food selections or taste.

I find the hamberger bit at just about any resturaunt that is willing to cook works great...

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If it helps, these are the steakhouses I have had good luck with

1. Outback

2. Flemings (my favorite --not everywhere yet -- Flemings Potatoes are the best and gluten-free)

3. Ruth Chris (usually too expensive)

4. Morton's of Chicago (too expensive, but great)

5. Steaks at Chilis (no seasoning and mashed potatoes, no onion straws)

I have not been to Ponderosa since I went gluten-free, anybody have any experience there???? At least they are not expensive.....

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Normally they cook your meat on a grill-so you just ask them to do your on a clean skillet instead? that makes sense...I will try that.

The hard part is wondering if they actually did it.

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I refused to eat out for a long time... I was afraid that I would get sick. However, I have had a few good experiences with restauants.

In my experience, I find the fancier the better... I find that fancy smancy places are less crowed and the staff have more time and patience for "special" diets. I just say that I'm celiac and no bread blah blah can touch my food. Luckily most places I go to know what celiac is. Once I asked for my fish to be cooked on tinfoil, and they brought it out on the plate with the tinfoil!

I highly recommend Swiss Chalet if you live in Canada or if you are visting Canada. Just ask for the celiac or gluten free menu and they will bring you a nutrition and allergy guide indicating all the food with and without gluten. I have eaten there 4x and have never got sick.

Lobster is always a safe option, as long as it is just cooked in water.

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I have had a reaction, but that could be from peanut crumbs from my husband rubbing his hands to remove the crumbs over the TOP of the table!!! He has stopped but does require occasional reminding.

Husbands! :D We were eating at McDonalds and my husband dipped his crispy chicken sandwich into the ketchup I was using too. I just looked at him and he was like "what?!" :P

At the Outback I asked for a gluten-free menu and the waitress brought it too me and then asked if I wanted their bread. :rolleyes: Geez! I thought that they would know what it is, so I wouldn't have to explain it. I guess I was wrong.

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Guest nini

it makes my hubby nervous when we are out to dinner and I ask "too many questions" "can't you just order something simple and not bother the poor waiter"???? UMMMMMMM NO!!!! I AM going to tip him VERY WELL so he can listen to my questions... chill.....

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Husbands! :D We were eating at McDonalds and my husband dipped his crispy chicken sandwich into the ketchup I was using too. I just looked at him and he was like "what?!" :P

I went to P.F. Changs last night and my boyfriend was using the chopsticks and had already started eating his dinner and then just figured he would help himself to myplate with the same chopsticks :P

He gave the the same reaction. :lol:

But he made a quick recovery and asked me if I wanted my food re-made. what a sweety :)

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I've never worked as a buyer for a restaurant, so I don't know if this is an issue, but given what's available in the meat departments of grocery stores I think it's a legitimate question for those of you who feel comfortable ordering "plain meat". Do you verify that the meat in question is actually plain meat and not a bastardized slab enhanced with up to 15% solution which may or may not contain gluten? (I'm not talking about seasonings added during cooking, I'm talking about meat as it comes out of the package)

Thanks

Sarah

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question for those of you who feel comfortable ordering "plain meat". Do you verify that the meat in question is actually plain meat and not a bastardized slab enhanced with up to 15% solution which may or may not contain gluten? (I'm not talking about seasonings added during cooking, I'm talking about meat as it comes out of the package)

I'm bumping this question back to the top because I'm really curious about this.

Mel, your post about the catering hall reminded me that nobody had replied yet.

Sarah

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If raw meat has anything with gluten in those "flavorings" or "solution," it must according to USDA rules be clearly listed on the package (this because it adds nutrition, not specifically because it's gluten). I have yet to find plain raw meat, even with flavoring or solution, (I'm not talking about a marinade or actual seasonings), that has gluten. This includes beef, prok, chicken, turkey, lamb and so on.

richard

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Husbands! :D We were eating at McDonalds and my husband dipped his crispy chicken sandwich into the ketchup I was using too. I just looked at him and he was like "what?!" :P

At the Outback I asked for a gluten-free menu and the waitress brought it too me and then asked if I wanted their bread. :rolleyes: Geez! I thought that they would know what it is, so I wouldn't have to explain it. I guess I was wrong.

Thats pretty funny!!! That is actually a running joke b/y me and my non-celiac disease but very understanding friends. I have been asked so many times at a restaurant AFTER explaining the whole deal whether I want bread/croutons/etc. I have noticed that the waitstaff at outback is improving.

"would you like your bread later" ??? Da Funk!?

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I just want to say that I've never had a problems with "plain" meat, fish, or chicken, however I almost only eat at expensive places because I've had such good luck with them (I will however do MacDonalds, Outback and PF Changs) and I can't see a restaurant such as Morton's or Ruth's Chris using steak that has anything added to it.

Also I've had far better luck telling the server that I have allergies as opposed to intolerances... and to me if you say food issues... its like a mental thing not a physical thing. Most people in the restaurant industry understand allergies and because of the severity of some allergies like....peanut and shellfish (deadly) they take food allergies very seriously.

Susan

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Richard,

Is that something that applies specifically to the plumping solutions used for meat? I thought "flavoring" or "natural flavors" were suspect until the allergen labeling law goes into effect.

Sarah

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It's a USDA law that applies to fresh, raw meats (including frozen ones). This law has actually been around for years. For other foods you do still need to check on "flavors." BTW, this information has been confirmed by several people (including myself) with the USDA.

richard

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