Planning Your Menu Around Dietary Restrictions
When planning a menu for any event, whether it is a company picnic or a birthday party, it is also important to take into considerations any food allergies and diets. Chef Will makes this a priority when creating a menu for your event. We have dealt with many different food allergies, from nut-free to vegan to kosher. Here are some food restrictions we recommended you should be aware of when planning your next event menu.
While most people know that vegetarians do not eat any type of meat or fish, the food must also be prepared a specific way and cannot be associated with any meat. When serving vegetarians, take this into consideration. For an appetizer, try a bean salad with various veggies. For an entree, there are many pasta dishes or even a stir-fry with sweet potatoes.
Vegans do not eat any meat, poultry or fish but they also do not eat any dairy or egg-based foods. If you would like, you make a vegetarian meal that is also vegan by removing any eggs, milk or cheese from the recipe. For an appetizer, make crispy zucchini and carrot fritters. A great option for a vegan entree is tacos with BBQ cauliflower with a lime salsa versus using meat (pictured above).
People with celiac disease must eat gluten free. If they do not, inflammation can occur in their small intestines and cause discomfort. This means they cannot eat anything with wheat, oats, rye or even barely. You can usually get away with cooking what you normally would and anyone gluten free will still have many options. The tricky part can be dessert but the Internet can help you find many gluten free recipes. A few we recommend looking up are lemon bars, brownies, monkey bread or a fruit tart.
Any guests that are keeping to a kosher diet can eat meat but only if it is handled a certain way. If you know some of your guests are kosher, take that into consideration when meal prepping. Please be aware that some guests may refrain from eating dairy and meat during the same meal. A delicious kosher appetizer to try is avocado and tomato bruschetta and a good main dish is lamb chops with delicious glaze.
Many people who eat halal meals do not eat any pork, abstain from alcohol, and cannot eat meat unless it has been blessed in a specific way. If this is not something you are familiar with, feel free to contact us or a local vendor to get a few tips. A good option for an appetizer is a homemade yogurt dip and an entree dish is a type of rice or couscous with lots of veggies and spices.
A nut allergy is one of the most common food allergies and can be one of the most dangerous. Even a small trace of nuts or cross contamination can cause an allergic reaction. If anyone at your event does have a nut allergy, make sure to food prep carefully and try to serve all dishes without any nuts to be extra safe. Typical appetizers and main dishes should be fine for guests with nut allergies, as long as they are prepared correctly and do not contain nuts. However, dessert is not always easy. Some that are tasty and nut-free are salted caramel and chocolate mousse tarts (pictured above), chocolate chip cookie dough fudge or s’mores dip.
Looking to host an event at Frogbridge? Learn a little more about Chef Will to see how he can take your event and your food to the next level.