I am a “non-traditional” grad school student (whatever that means.) My focus in school is rhetoric, and every chance I get I apply my projects to my passion, which is all things food. My friends often tell me I should open a restaurant, and I jokingly say, “Right, I want to get my PhD and open a restaurant.” But, that might happen. I have dreams of writing cookbooks for my recipes and food findings, but, blogging is a much quicker way of sharing my ideas.
I developed a long list of food allergies a few years back, and learned that if I want to eat well and not feel like I’m missing out on anything, I need to figure out how to create substitutions that work. Many of the recipes I post will have modifications for my fellow allergy sufferers.
The onset of my allergies forced me to read every label of everything I ate, and in doing so, I started questioning other ingredients. The more I researched, I decided that if I can’t pronounce something, or identify it without doing a Google search, then it doesn’t belong in my body. (When did eating get so complicated anyway?) I’ve developed a back to basics approach and packed it with flavor.
I am a trained charcutier who additionally attended the school of my grandmother’s kitchen, and have done a lot of trial and error on my own. I really enjoy experimenting in the kitchen and figuring things out, like why some spice work better together than others. I also like to transform “a” recipe into “the” recipe, and creating “no fail, go-to dishes” that turn out great every time I make them. Not everyone is going to be a professional chef, but everyone eats. I learned ways to make food make sense, and wan’t to pass my knowledge along.
I’ve been nicknamed a “kitchen savant” and if I can learn to create food that tastes good, then anyone can. Enjoy the blog, and your kitchen!
*An update on my allergies for food allergy sufferers. — You may want to have a conversation with your allergist.
I have been told by doctors & allergists for a number of years that I am allergic to pretty much everything under the sun, and even labeled “disabled” in my field because of it. Turns out, it was a misdiagnosis, although, it seemed like a logical one.
What I do have is a combo of angiodema and dermotographic urticaria. Both mimic food allergies in different ways. The first causes swelling in the throat, and other muscles – similar to anaphylaxis (except it isn’t, it’s just hives below the skin’s surface). The second is called “skin writing” and is basically hives that occur when you are warm, when your skin is irritated, or when you are experiencing anxiety. It can even be triggered by the pressure of your clothing, your own sweat, or wiping your face with a napkin – (hence the assumed connection to hives from eating foods you are allergic to) and- it can also cause false positives on the skin allergy tests, because, they irritate the skin.
I have struggled with dairy all my life. It tastes like poison to me. My allergist said that dairy tastes metallic to some people, and I am just one of those people. Because of this, I am going to continue to exclude dairy from my diet.
Although I am beyond excited that this foodie gets to have food back, I will continue to include allergy substitutions when possible in my recipes. I have already spent years navigating recipes believing there were many things I could not eat, and I want to pass my substitutions/solutions on to those who can use them.