May 03, 2012 07:48
| Food and Drink
When diagnosed with coeliac disease or a gluten, wheat intolerance, many people fear about dining out. But there's no need to avoid the pleasure, as long as you go armed with a bit of knowledge and you know what to look for. Here are a few hints and tips to successfully eat out gluten free.
1. Choose the right restaurant
It is important that the restaurant you choose understands your requirements. This was one of the main reasons that Live Gluten Free
was launched. The website enables you to find gluten free friendly places to eat quickly and easily. Once you've found a restaurant, always call ahead and discuss your requirements with the waiters or chef to ensure they can cater for your needs.
2. Be familiar with the gluten free diet
This may go without saying, but the more you know about the gluten free diet the better decisions you can make. It will make you more observant and spot any oversights made by restaurants.
3. Choose the right dish
Firstly choose a dish you know is either gluten free or can be made gluten free and then ask questions, if you have any concerns about the dish. With any luck the restaurant will have gluten free items marked on the menu.
4. Communicating your requirements clearly
Make sure you make it very clear to the waiter that you have special dietary requirements and also ensure they have written it down next to your order. If you are dining out abroad or even in the UK, dining cards can help to clearly communicate to the restaurant what your requirements are, including ingredients to avoid (although if they need to know this information they may be one to avoid!).
5. Be aware of cross-contamination
This come back to point two. If you're aware of the issues surrounding cross contamination you will be able to question the elements on the menu which have a risk of cross-contamination, for example:
Are those chips fried in the same oil as gluten containing dishes such as the battered fish?
Is the gravy made with corn flour not normal?
Has the meat been marinated in anything?
Do not be afraid to ask the waiting staff question, after all it's your health. If they get huffy, find somewhere else.
6. Be observant
Just because they put it in front of you it doesn’t mean it is gluten free. Check the plate for anything untoward and question the staff about it.
Gluten free dining doesn’t have to be a scary experience and following our six point guide should help you to enjoy gluten free dining out.
Live Gluten Free
has hundreds of gluten free friendly places to dine out in London
. If you have dined anywhere gluten free friendly you can let us know by visiting our website with gluten free restaurants.