Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Is adaptability too much to ask?

I’m thrilled to see from the “stats” register on this blog that I’ve had 15 pageviews from Europe, in addition to those from the US and Australia!  Thank you, everyone, and please don’t forget to leave comments or ask questions about anything food allergy-related J 

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Today’s short post (I’m aiming for short, anyway) is really more of a question:  I’ve recently been looking at the websites and blogs of some of the most well-known and respected food allergy authors of current times; is it just me, or do they really seem to skirt (or ignore altogether) the topic of food allergies BEYOND the “Top 8”?

Gluten-free, dairy-free, nut-free etc. are great, and needed, but what about people who not only have to avoid those “common” food allergies but also must steer clear of some less commonly-known ones like potato, quinoa, sorghum, green peas, tomato, citrus, peppers, beef, turkey?  Granted, the majority of those particular ingredients aren’t found in baked goods, so the authors specializing in gluten-free recipes might be somewhat let off the hook, but my point is that if a person is allergic to ANY food/ingredient other than the “Top 8”, can’t they be offered alternatives in recipes such that the recipe can still be used, simply “adapted” to accommodate diverse food allergies?

For example, yesterday I made some delicious and very quick chocolate chip cookies for my kids to have when they got home from school – I got the recipe from Nicolette Dumke’s book Allergy Cooking With Ease – and though the recipe calls for rye flour and maple syrup, I know that if I wanted to make these for my mom, both ingredients would have to be replaced.  There are at least four flours I can think of to replace the rye (spelt or oat, which she can eat, and barley or sorghum, which she can’t but which would still be OK for my wheat-allergic daughter and me).  The maple syrup could be replaced with date sugar or date molasses, corn syrup, or brown rice syrup, which though lacking in maple flavor would still make the cookies yummy and the right consistency.  By the way, the recipe called for carob chips, which I did use, but obviously chocolate chips would be OK too.  My daughter liked the cookies so much she said she’d eat them even without chips LOL.

I’d love to hear your comments on the dearth of “adaptable” recipes currently available for food allergy sufferers – or am I the only one who is bothered by it?!?

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