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Happy Monday,

Well, it seems food allergies and eating at friends, relatives and public emporiums has really struck a nerve.  I can see why!

On Saturday, 10 of us from Fab40 met for brunch in my home area of OC, CA-we talked and joked about so many various things-but we all had something that had to be “watched“.  Whether it was because we found an item in our order that wasn’t mentioned in the description of the dish and we didn’t happen to like the item or we had to watch calories, allergies or found ourselves not ordering something everyone else wanted to enjoy and we could not, it was a concern.

Not that we all didn’t have a grand time!  When you’ve had a “food” issue for a while-you learn that while you always have to be vigilant, you don’t have to ever forgo having fun.

The best way to avoid “mistakes“-ask questions!  Don’t be afraid to say what you may and may not have.  I remember going to a restaurant and the menu said “We use butter in everything-everything’s better with butter”

Well, not for me!  Not for my niece!  Didn’t stop us though.  I simply explained to our server about the allergy and to please use olive oil or vegetable oil in place of the dairy product.

What I’m trying to say is-there is no reason for anyone to “have to eat something“, knowing that they will have a bad reaction.  Also, I always ask-“Now I don’t see this mentioned, but since I have an allergy-I need to know...”

Believe me, when servers here the word, if they are good at their job (and want a tip) they will make suggestions, alterations and check back with you when something cannot be done.

When cooking at home and trying to adapt a recipe for your personal needs-don’t give up, experiment!

You might come out with a better dish than the one you started out with.

A friend of mine sent me a recipe for her favorite salad.  It included endive-which isn’t one of my husband’s favorites. It also used red wine vinegar.  I rarely use it, but always have balsamic on hand. The original used blue cheese.  Well, that’s made from a cow-so that was out.  I swapped spinach for the endive, balsamic for the red wine and since I can eat small amounts of sheep or goats milk cheese, I went to a feta.  

That salad is one of our favorites.  I’m sure I’ve put it in one of my earlier columns-but if you let me know before I write up Friday’s blog-I’ll include it.

It’s the one with cauliflower and cannellini beans.

In the meantime-ladies, share some of your recipes that you’ve made to fit your personal allergies or sensitivities.  Or if you’d like some help in a re-do, share!

Here’s the place to do it.

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