Tips for Dining Out!
from the Coeliac Australia www.coeliac.org.au
Ring the restaurant beforehand
But if you can't ring beforehand try these strategies
Restate the basic cross contamination rules to the staff. This is another topic that could be handled during your pre-dining phone call.
Always be patient and good humoured (NEVER threatening)
Use clear language and be prepared to repeat yourself.
Educate yourself in culinary language.
Remain open to new culinary experiences but also remember to enjoy other components of eating out.
Try to use the knowledge of the staff to enhance your selection.
Use positive language.
Stay relaxed and compliment the server and they will be more likely to make several trips to the kitchen to answer your queries.
Be flexible, as there are no menu rules.
As a last resort, be prepared to leave the restaurant. Restate calmly why you are leaving and follow it up with a phone call to management.
Always let the chef/staff know if you have had a good experience.
COMMERCIAL KITCHEN GLUTEN FREE CHECKLIST
Here is a checklist from the Coeliac Australia website for what Restaurants and Cafe's should be doing if they are offering Gluten Free meals on their menu.
Using gluten free ingredients is an important first step. Here's what else you need to do to ensure your meals are gluten free:
Protect against cross-contamination, paying particular attention to your work surfaces and food preparation areas.
Make sure all bread boards, knives and other cooking utensils are clean before preparing gluten free meals.
Any utensils or appliances that may have come into contact with wheat-sourced foods or any other gluten-containing grains may be contaminated: e.g. toasters, sandwich makers, grills and other appliances used with bread.
Avoid contamination with gluten-containing crumbs by using separate butter and condiment containers.
Cook gluten free pasta in fresh water and a clean pot – never re-use water used for cooking regular pasta.
Don't dust meats or fish with wheat flour or any other gluten-containing flour (including wheaten cornflour).
Clean your deep fryer regularly to remove batter and breadcrumbs, preventing contamination of fried food with gluten. A separate fryer for gluten free cooking is even better.
Icing sugar mixture commonly contains wheat starch. Use pure icing sugar or a gluten free icing sugar mixture instead.
Make sure all gluten free ingredients and products are clearly labelled and stored in sealed containers.
Educate your kitchen staff about the importance of all the above.
Make sure your front of house staff know which items are gluten free and are able to correctly answer customer enquiries.
For more information visit www.coeliac.org.au