Holiday Greetings All!! We hope you are having a wonderful season of preparing for your Holiday Celebrations! Should you be in need of some gluten-free goodies here are some ideas to move you in the right direction!
At Cafe Avalaun they are hard at work creating yummy treats for our gluten-free needs – and they are a certified and fully dedicated kitchen!!
BUT, by the time this post makes it to your emailbox they will be at the final day of preorders so get moving – you don’t have much time – in fact, the time to make the call is…….TODAY!!
OR, call Brian and very politely, very nicely, request your goodies reservation!
On a serious note!! Someone called me to suggest I read the following article. I am sharing this with all of us because it is a serious issue that we need to be very conscious of AND make sure that we are not this behaving like this person described in this letter to Dear Amy!
Dear Amy: I have a friendship of more than 40 years with a delightful woman. We see each other about once a month, often at dinner in a restaurant with mutual friends. About six months ago, “Sandra” announced to us that she had just discovered that she is allergic/intolerant to gluten. This has become a focus of her life and often dominates the conversation. Since that time, every trip to a restaurant includes a very (VERY) long discussion with our waitperson and/or chef regarding each item on the menu and whether it fits into her gluten-free diet. Then the bread basket comes, and Sandra dives in because “it’s just too good to pass up.” Several of us, outside of Sandra’s presence, have commented that not only is the gluten conversation tiresome, but also embarrassing when held in a busy restaurant. Additionally, most people are aware that those who are truly gluten intolerant become very ill when they eat bread, and avoid doing so at all cost. We’d love to talk this out with Sandra, but are afraid she’ll become defensive and angry, although this is not her usual reaction to thoughtful criticism. Any advice? — Like Oprah, I Love Bread
from Mariann: To be clear! I am not saying that we should not advocate for ourselves when dining out. This diet can be so limiting. This diet can cause us to feel so left out. This diet can be such a inconvenience. This diet can be so unfair! But, this diet is not the problem of our fellow diners and we should not make it theirs. That is unfair of us.
So, here are some tips to make it more palatable (pun intended) for our own well being and for the well being of our fellow diners and for the well being of the serving and preparing staff!
- Try to not corner the staff during a busy time to talk about the entire menu. Rather, call ahead or check out the menu, on-line, and prepare yourself with a couple of items you would like. Ask specifically about the options you have interest in eating.
- Do not ask to see the Chef during peak service hours – I’m sorry – that is just rude. The folks in the kitchen are working hard on a very tight schedule so running out to the floor to talk with you throws everything out of whack! Again, call ahead and speak with the manager or the kitchen staff. To consider, in order for a kitchen person to make their way to the dining area, it may be necessary for them to change out of their garments just to make that walk to your table. And then, to change back in order to get back on the line.
- Do Not. Do Not. Do Not. Under any circumstances, Do Not, eat the bread just because it looks too good to pass up. Additionally, do not drink traditional beer just because. And finally, do not order desserts that are not safe.
- Finally, unless you have checked in advance do not bring your own food with you. There are laws that prevent consumption of outside food and beverages and many owners take that seriously. Again, call in advance.
A thought…….I have asked, in advance, in some venues if I could bring a fresh – unopened box of chocolates to share at the table at the end of dinner with coffee or after dinner drinks. Often the restaurant has been fine with that and my companions have happily shared in the tastings. That being said, make the event one to enjoy with your family, friends, or colleagues! Because after all Life (can be) Truly Like a Box of Chocolates:)
If baking is one of your ‘front and center’ activities for the season and you are looking at a fun activity to share with family and friends or you want to bring along something to share at an event take a look at the recipes in this post from GFF, gluten-free forever magazine!
Finally, we are now fully connected to Gluten Intolerance Group!
GIG is a non-profit support and advocacy group for all things gluten-free! Check out their page! You’ll find listings for restaurants – useful for travel times – recipes, activities, coupons, certification standards and news.
If you are so inclined you can make a donation at their page to assist in the efforts of behalf of the community!
And, here is the link to sign up for the Gluten Intolerance Group monthly e-news:)