Grocery Shopping & Dining Out

Hello All!  So I’ve been trying to adjust to my new “exclusion diet”, and I’ve been doing a pretty good job of it these last two weeks.  My goal is to stick to 95% of the diet 95%  of the time.  Of course, when I cook from scratch at home it’s easy, but it’s going out to eat that’s been difficult.  I’ve found that going to larger or general restaurants make it easy to customize a meal, while going to specialty restaurants makes it more likely that they’ll use another item on “bad list” as a substitute.  It makes things difficult for me that vegans turn to coconut when you’re sensitive to that as well.

For example, the other night a group of friends and I went to Chevy’s after seeing Ghostbusters (which, by the way, was hilarious!).  Being a Tex-Mex restaurant, it was no surprise that almost all of their options had flour and/or corn and/or dairy in it, so I had to get creative.  I started by apologizing to the waitress and mentioned that I couldn’t have “gluten, dairy, or corn”, and told her that I wanted the Sizzling Fajita Salad with steak strips.  I’m glad that I told her what I’m sensitive to, because she actually wouldn’t let me order that and advised that I go with the chicken instead (it was a week ago, I forgot what the specific reason was but went with it).  No tortilla strips, no cheese, and she confirmed that I could have the apple-chipotle vinaigrette.  It was absolutely delicious, and I had many people at the table jealous of my choice.  It was great!

One thing that I’ve really been missing has been cheese – anything to eat with breakfast, a snack, anything.  I was recommended to give Daiya a try, but after checking their ingredients list they use coconut, so I haven’t been able to get it for myself.  On another trip to Brooklyn Fare, which is near my apartment, I came across some Tofutti “cream cheese”.  I hesitantly tried it with a rice cake (still need to find a bread substitute!), and boy am I glad to have taken that leap.  It absolutely fulfills its role as a cream cheese, and will be a permanent fixture in my fridge.  I even recommended it to my mom, in case she ever can’t eat dairy herself (our restricted diets are similar but not the same).  I’m looking forward to trying the other flavors as well.

I had a “empty your fridge & cupboards” potluck last weekend, and my cousin brought by a bag of chips (among other things) that she thought I’d be interested in trying.  I’m so glad that she did, because I have a feeling that eating Terra chips or general potato chips will get old soon (as much as I love them).  So far I only know that they’re sold in person at Costco, but I’m sure I’ll find other sources.

I found a new crunchy snack that I’m glad I tried as well.  Saffron Road’s Crunchy Chickpeas in Korean BBQ were a joy to eat, a small handful at a time.  Another product I’ll be getting again and again.

Lastly is a new tortilla that I wasn’t impressed with.  Maria and Ricardo’s Gluten-Free tortillas are very tough and difficult to chew, and also come apart very easily when used as a soft taco wrap.  I’m going to try to see if I can use them in a recipe to maybe create a type of chip or something?  However, these are not tortillas I will buy again.

Thanks for reading my reviews!  I made a lot of new items this week, so I’ll be posting my recipes sometime over the weekend.  Hopefully I helped influence someone trying to find a new product.  And if you have any questions or want my input on anything, please reach out.

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