Allergy-Free Cookbook (Egg-Free, Dairy-Free, Gluten-Free, Nut-Free) A Review
When author Alice Sherwood was diagnosed with her 2-year-old son’s nut and egg allergy, she ended up putting together a collection of her own recipes out of frustration with what was on offer on the market. Some allergy cookbooks attempt to include all allergens in each recipe; this can end up leaving the recipes bland and boring. What Alice has done with her recipes in this book is provide a basic recipe with one or two of the ‘Big Four’, eggs, dairy, gluten or nuts omitted and then provide variations for each recipe so you can exclude or add ingredients depending about the particular allergens to avoid.
The book has a great introduction explaining why she wrote the cookbook, loves good food, and discovered that many people she knew had trouble finding useful recipes that would allow entire families to eat the same tasty meals together when one or more were allergic or intolerant to different foods. He then goes on to explain the differences between food allergies and food intolerance, with a good description of the symptoms and a quick reference chart for anaphylaxis. The book then has a section for each of dairy, eggs, nuts, and gluten that explains each and how to make up for the missing nutrients in your diet. Alice then continues with chapters on staying positive, allergy etiquette, helping your allergic child, eating out, special occasions, travel, world cuisine, shopping, what not to eat, and your pantry.
Just before getting into the recipes, there is a handy quick reference chart on how to substitute ingredients with suggested alternatives and associated notes and tips. There are more than 100 recipes divided into: breakfasts, garnishes, starters and light meals, fish, meat and poultry, pasta, noodles and rice dishes, desserts, breads and pastries, sauces, dressings and sides.
My personal favorite is their carrot cake recipe – the best I’ve come across! This cookbook has been one of my best purchases since our son was initially diagnosed with an egg and peanut allergy, but has since discovered that he is also gluten and dairy intolerant, so we must avoid all four major allergens. Our second son is also allergic to eggs and I am gluten and dairy intolerant. Our entire family has benefited from eating a diet free of gluten, dairy, eggs, and peanuts, and this book is an essential for our kitchen shelf.
Come visit our ‘Food Sensitive’ website where you will find more information on various food allergies and links to many more resources we have found in the last 5 years of dealing with food allergies in our family.