Sunday, December 12, 2010

Alexa's 1st official restaurant meal!!

Yesterday was a big milestone for our allergic girl.  She went to her first real movie, Tangled, where she ate real movie theater popcorn instead of Mom packed popcorn and she went to Johnny Rockets for lunch where she ate her 1st meal off the kids menu!!  I'm sure some of you are shocked to hear she's never eaten out, but with more than seven allergies it's just too risky.  The chance for cross contamination with egg, soy, or nuts is just too high.  We have allowed her to eat things like french fries, steamed broccoli, fresh fruits, or salad but never anything that is really prepared by the restaurant.  I just don't trust the kitchen staff to get it right.  Yesterday I was feeling brave so even though I had packed her a slice of pizza I decided I would see if we could find something safe on the menu.  For those of you who do not have food allergies or a food allergic child, this is requires asking LOTS of questions and not being embarrassed to ask the restaurant management to accommodate you.  I started with the french fries since she has been able to eat them at other restaurants.  Here's how I went about it.  First, I found a helpful staff member, then I explained that Alexa has multiple food allergies and listed them for him.   Then I asked, what kind of oil do you use? Is any other oil ever used in that friolator? Are the French fries cooked in their own friolator or do they share it with other items? Turns out they are cooked in vegetable oil (ok for Alexa) and in a separate friolator-so thumbs up! Next I asked about the hamburgers. What is in the hamburgers? Do they add soy or any other product? Where are the burgers cooked? Do you cook egg on the same grill where you cook the hamburgers? The burgers were pure beef and cooked on the opposite side of the grill from the eggs so they were safe.  However, when we moved on to the buns we  found that they contained eggs.  I asked Alexa if she wanted a burger without the bun, but she didn't so we decided to have French fries and the pizza I had packed.  After we sat down, Alexa looked at the menu and said, "Mom, they have hot dogs here-can I have a hot dog?" So I went back to the same gentleman and asked to see the ingredients in the hot dogs and the hot dog buns-viola! they were safe!! You should have seen the look on her face-pure heaven! She even ordered it herself like a big girl.  I know to most people this probably seems insignificant but it was a big moment in her allergic life! How big? Well, this morning when I was making breakfast she said "Mom, I'd like to order a bagel with butter please".  I laughed and said "You really enjoyed eating out yesterday didn't you?" and she replied "Yes, it was so great that the food was safe for me-it was like a Miracle".  Out of the mouths of babes.....

No comments:

Post a Comment