I believe I have mentioned this before, but I am the only person in my family (as far as we know; though I do question that) who is gluten intolerant. Sometimes going out to dinner can be complicated, we don’t do it often, #1 because it’s too expensive & #2 choosing a place we can all agree on (and I can safely eat at) is not always that easy.
I have a couple of solutions for this; I like to use a site called Gluten Free Registry; www.glutenfreeregistry.com & through that I’ve found a couple of go to spots, or I just go wherever my boys want to & try to be as safe as possible. Tonight we were heading out for dinner as a prize for my 5-year-old having a good week at home & at school (a new check mark/sticker system we have going), this was the prize he chose as an incentive for this week. (Hopefully that won’t be every week, we can’t afford it!, ha ha) We will encourage him to pick out $5 worth of toys (i.e. crap) from dollar tree next week; (insert evil cackle here). The reason for a prize per week is pretty simple, he is 5 and having a short-term goal is more easily attainable & less overwhelming for him and also because we’re dealing with some jealousy issues as his younger brother is recently potty trained & thus has been given a lot of attention, putting big brother in an attention seeking phase.
In the title I’ve already given away where we went to dinner, but I chose 99, because it’s “family friendly” with other children, not being perfect, but perfectly children & since we have a 5 & 3-year-old these are the types of restaurants we go to & also because it’s fairly affordable & most importantly for me, offers a gluten-free menu, including beer if you’re a fan; I’m not.
I was able to get a nice fresh salad with a delicious buttermilk ranch dressing (while not figure flattering I’m sure, it was tasty and a lot of ranch dressings contain gluten). I asked the waitress if she could tell me who the vendor was on the dressing, she didn’t know, but did suggest I reach out to 99 (online) and ask if they could tell me the vendor (she thought they actually produce it themselves) and if they do, maybe they would give me the recipe. I then had the Balsamic Grilled Chicken with garlic mashed potatoes and steamed broccoli (maybe a little too steamed – for my personal tastes), but all in all a good, decent & affordable meal. The rest of my gluten-loving man & boys had the following: fish & chips (which I miss ordering out, but do on rare occasion make at home gluten-free), pasta with butter & garlic bread (oh garlic bread, I do miss thee as well) and macaroni & cheese with french fries; assuming I can’t eat the french fries because of either the seasoning, or it’s fried in a cross-contaminated fryer. Either way my meal was delicious, service was great & my choices were fairly healthy as well. Okay, maybe not the buttermilk ranch, but give a girl a break!! 😉
So, if you need gluten-free and don’t feel like cooking; head over to the 99; my recommendation. Enjoy!