When people first find out about the food allergies in my home, they respond in astonishment,
How do you cook anything? You must have to do a lot of extra work!
My response is usually the same,
It’s not too bad. I’ve figured it out over the years.
Cooking with food allergies does include a lot of trial and error. But for every bad dish, there are a dozen good dishes. So, how do I create allergy-friendly recipes?
- I stick to the basics. I cook foods that are naturally allergy-friendly, like meat, vegetables, starches and fruit. You’re not going to find a lot of casseroles in our allergy home.
- I am constantly searching for recipes online, in cookbooks, in magazines, or wherever. I look for recipes that are not only already allergy-friendly, but recipes that can be easily “recreated” into an allergy-friendly dish. I am not afraid to change up recipes so much that they no longer resemble the original. The texture or look might be a little different, but I deem it successful if the taste is good. The recipe calls for milk; I use almond or rice milk. The recipe calls for butter; I use canola or coconut oil. The recipe calls for wheat; I find a gluten-free flour that I think will be the best substitute. The recipe calls for corn starch; I use arrowroot flour. You get the idea…
- I create entirely new recipes. I think about the chemistry behind ingredients and how the combination will meld together. I look at the ingredients I have on hand, and go from there. I have created a number of delicious dishes as a result. I have also made a number of flops as a result. I keep a recipe journal in the kitchen for my successes.
There are so many inspiring websites out there now that can help you become a better allergy-friendly cook. Just don’t be afraid to take risks in the kitchen (with the recipe, not the allergy).
Tomorrow, I am sharing a recipe “recreation” that was a huge hit. On Friday, I am premiering a new series that I am sure many of you will enjoy. It may be a little challenge to get you out of a cooking rut, but challenges are good and the results usually better.
Are there any methods that you employ when cooking, either regular cooking or allergy-friendly? Please share with us any tips you have!