It doesn’t happen often, but occasionally people ask me for a current list of what I can eat. Used to be I had a card… which all my friends & family had on their fridge. Now it’s a lot longer.
So… I’m going to try and keep this up-to-date. If you’re looking to cook for me, please read this post and the list first. And talk to me- I often like to give an in-person orientation and help with cooking the first time I come over.
If your first inclination while reading this list is to swear repeatedly on my behalf… Join the club. It includes me, and multiple professional chefs. You are always allowed to gracefully back out of cooking for me. I get it, I really do!
From scratch: See anything below. Basically if I didn’t make it or buy it, it’s a HUGE treat. Especially pineapple. Or purple Sweet Potatoes. Or bison.
Pre-packaged: Enjoy Life Chocolate, (I am particularly fond of the dark chocolate chips, but all of their baking chocolates are fine. Sadly the chocolate bars they make aren’t) Earth’s Choice Coconut Chips, Super Seedz Pumpkin Seeds (Sea Salt or Naked Flavours only), Popcorn Kernels (any brand, they can be popped in a microwave without any other ingredient needed!).
Must be fresh, or dried/frozen by me. Must not be covered in seran wrap or cellophane. You’ll want to buy it whole, and cut it up carefully (see the post above).
From Scratch: Banana, Kiwi (golden is AWESOME), Grapefruit, Orange (not a huge fan), Blueberries, Pineapple (can’t eat it at home, my sister’s allergic- so it’d be a HUGE treat for me)
Packaged/Processed: Um… Haven’t found anything safe yet.
Must be fresh, or dried/frozen by me. Must not be covered in seran wrap or cellophane.
From scratch: Corn, Sweet Potato (LOVE the purple ones), Beans, Peas, Beets (LOVE the golden and chioggia ones), Chard (LOVE swiss chard), Winter Squashes (Pumpkin is iffy. Avoid.)
Processed/ Packaged: Earth’s Choice canned organic beans, Bryson Farms frozen corn, Bryson Farms frozen squash, Mill Creek Farms Pre-shelled Peas.
Generally, if it’s packaged… the company MUST be called to verify how they make the product. They are legally allowed to have up to 10 PPM sulphites without labelling, or it could be cross contaminated. I usually call from the grocery store… or I take a picture of the UPS code and phone number so I can call later. I ask “Is it AT ALL possible this product, or the ingredients that are IN this product, could contain sulphites? Could there be any cross-contamination with salt, pepper, or other fruits, vegetables, or nuts?” They usually balk… Some will have no clue about allergies (Mr.Christie), some will be absolutely fantastic (Lundberg, SuperSeedz), and some will escalate the questions to specialists, write down your phone number and get back to you a week or two later (PC).
From scratch: Yuca/Cassava/Tapioca
Processed/Packaged: Rooster brand Jasmine Rice (I trust most brands of rice), Mr.Ben’s 10 minute parboiled rice, Quaker Oats (Quick Oats, Large Flake Oats), Only Oats brand (all products), Post Shredded Wheat, No Name Brand Puffed Wheat, Wheat Flour from a safe mill (Ottawa Valley Grain Products, Manotick Stone Mill, Delta stone Mill), Rizopia Brown Rice Pasta, Dimpflmeyer Light Rye Bread, Lundberg Thin Stackers Unsalted Rice Cakes, Club House Minute Tapioca, Earth’s Choice Coconut Flour, Cuisine Soleil Tapioca Starch, Against The Grain Purple Corn Flour/Meal, No name brand Popcorn Kernels (I trust all brands of plain kernels so long as label says “popcorn” only)
I am mildly lactose-intolerant, so this year to minimize my digestive symptoms, I cut lactose significantly. But not completely- making my own lactose-free butter is a lot of work and not necessary. Someday I may try to make cheese… we’ll see.
From scratch: I’m allergic to hay and a lot of animal dander… so I’m pretty sure any raw dairy would be a bad idea for me! I do, however make my own ricotta cheese frequently, with Marukan rice vinegar, Natrel LF 10% cream, and Madison D’Orphee Sea Salt
Processed/Packaged: Natrel Lactose-Free Milk (all sizes), PC brand lactose-free PLAIN yogurt, Liberte lactose-free PLAIN greek yogurt, Natrel Lactose-Free Salted Butter, Natrel Unsalted Butter, PC unsalted butter, Natrel Lactose Free 10% Cream.
Cannot be packaged in seran wrap/cellophane, or have one of those little absorbent sponges under it. No spices of any kind. If speaking to a butcher, ask “is there ANY chance of cross-contamination with spices, or fruits, or vegetables, or nuts?”. Some will ask you to return at the start of their day so that they can be sure the equipment has been thoroughly washed.
From Scratch: As long as it’s not pork (sulphites… who knew?), all other meat is fine IF it is packaged correctly. Directly from a butcher they usually wrap it in butcher’s paper (which is ok), but please ask them to use that paper for weighing (and to wipe off their scale before using it!). Otherwise they use a thin sheet of suspicious looking plastic. I usually just go to the farmer’s market for very special occasions and get bison, venison, or elk.
The expensive, but safe stuff: New Zealand brand lamb (no spices), O’Briens organic beef (anything from them is safe), Blue Goose Organic Chicken (any of their chicken is safe), Beretta (any of their stuff is safe)
The cheaper, and still safe stuff: PC Prime Portions Chicken Breasts (sold in a plastic bag, with individual portions inside), Loblaws’ Ground Beef in a tube, Loblaws’ Beef Rib Fingers (boneless… so easy!), Exidor Rock Cornish Hen, Noble Chef Rock Cornish Hen
Non-meat Protein: SuperSeedz Unsalted Pumpkin Seeds, Earth’s Choice Unsulphured Coconut, Earth’s Choice canned Beans (Including Chickpeas!), Mumm’s Adzuki Beans, Whole Foods Market 365 Black Chia Seed.
Spices and other Staples:
See above about things from packages… For most recipes you can just omit the spices, and it’ll still be pretty close to the original. More than close enough for me!
From scratch: Ginger! I also have a few herbs that I grew in my garden. The soil may have sulphites. Or I might be mildly reacting to them. Either way, can’t eat them yet. boo.
Packaged/Processed: Lantic Pure Superfine/Fine Sugar, Lantic Raw Sugar, Wholesome Sweeteners (I haven’t tried their coconut palm agave syrup or brown sugar yet, but their molasses, icing sugar, and raw sugar is all fine), Maison D’Orphee Fine Grey Sea Salt (it’s in a white and blue package. Salt is hard to find without sulphites!), No Name 100% pure Corn Oil, Olive Oil (probably any brand that’s pure, I haven’t called any since I rarely use it), Marukan Rice Vinegar, No name Baking Soda (again, i trust most brands of baking soda), Lyle’s Golden Syrup, Lundberg Brown Rice Syrup, Enjoy Life Chocolate Chips.