Monday, June 30

Making Eating Out Safer and a New #1 Seller Recipe!

Going out to restaurants is supposed to be a fun and positive experience, right?

For people with food allergies, it can still be fun to participate in the atmosphere, company and food that's safe for them. But it takes more planning and communication than most people realize.

We've gone out to eat many times with Little Guy, and each time, it's a little nerve-wracking. We do research on the restaurant before we go. We also tend to stick with many of the same restaurants with which we've had great experiences in the past.

But what if you had the power to encourage your favorite local restaurants to be more food allergy aware?

FARE (Food Allergy Research & Education) recently launched SafeFARE as an online resource center that offers tools for diners with food allergies. The goal of SafeFARE is to make dining out safer for families managing food allergies. 

On SafeFARE you can find:
  • Tips for before and during your visit to the restaurant
  • A customizable “Food Allergy Alert” chef card
  • A “Find a Restaurant” feature that enables visitors to locate allergy aware restaurants in their area. 
The SafeFARE database of food allergy aware restaurants is just getting started and you can help it grow! If your family deals with food allergies, FARE urges you to tell your local restaurants about the SafeFARE program and the benefits of allergen training. 

Below are two ways you can help: 

  • BECOME A SafeFARE ADVOCATE! Download this flyer from FARE and share it with restaurant staff and managers to let them know how to become a food allergy aware restaurant. Download and print the flyer and share with your local restaurant today!
  • WATCH FARE's new Food Allergy Teamwork PSA and explore the SafeFARE website. This new PSA presents the importance of teamwork between those dining out with food allergies and restaurant staff.
Now for some delicious FUN...

Chicken Thighs with Pepperoni Sauce are pictured here. Chef Mike has created this dish with both chicken thighs and wings! Excerpted from
One of the chef's in the Food Allergy Teamwork PSA, Chef Mike Isabella, is a professional chef, restaurant owner and a competitor on the TV show, "Top Chef". 

Chef Mike kindly shared his #1 best selling recipe at one of his restaurants. It’s a great family recipe that is not only free of dairy, eggs, peanuts, tree nuts and sesame, but of soy, shellfish, fin fish and wheat – all of the major allergens. 

This dish is proof that you don’t have to be a fancy chef to create something flavorful and memorable for your friends and family.

Recipe and Photo Courtesy of Chef Mike Isabella:

Chicken Wings with Pepperoni Sauce *
You can’t write a book called Crazy Good Italian without including pepperoni. I serve this sauce with chicken thighs or flatbread at my restaurant, Graffiato. It’s our #1 seller. 

Pepperoni Sauce
Makes approximately 1 1/2 cups
Active Time = 1 hour, 20 minutes

1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1/4 cup diced yellow onion
1 garlic clove, thinly sliced
6 ounces pepperoni, thinly sliced
1/2 teaspoon fennel seed
1/2 teaspoon red chili flakes
1/2 cup canned crushed tomatoes
1 1/2 cups chicken broth or stock
1/2 teaspoon red wine vinegar

Pepperoni sauce can be refrigerated for up to 3 days or frozen for up to 3 months. Reheat the sauce before you are ready to use.

  1. Heat the olive oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add the onion and garlic and sweat for 4–5 minutes until soft and translucent. If the garlic begins to brown, lower the heat.
  2. Add the pepperoni and sauté for 4 minutes. Meanwhile, in a separate dry sauté pan, toast the fennel seed over medium heat for 2–3 minutes, shaking the pan often to prevent burning. Add the chili flakes and toast 1 minute longer, then add the toasted spices to the pepperoni mixture.
  3. Stir in the crushed tomatoes and simmer for 3 minutes. Add the chicken broth and increase heat to bring to a gentle boil. Lower the heat and simmer for 50 minutes, stirring every now and then.
  4. Remove from heat and let cool slightly. Transfer the mixture to a blender and purée for 2–3 minutes or until smooth.
  5. Pass the sauce through a fine-mesh strainer into a mixing bowl, using the back of a spoon or a silicone spatula to help the sauce pass through.
  6. Finish the sauce by stirring in the red wine vinegar.
Chicken Wings
Serves 4 as a small plate
Active Time = 40 minutes
Inactive Time = 2 hours, 30 minutes

8 whole chicken wings (about 2 1/2 pounds)
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
3 garlic cloves, smashed
2 sprigs rosemary
Peel of 1 lemon (no pith)
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1 1/2 cups pepperoni sauce 

  1. Using a sharp knife, remove and discard the chicken wing tips. Then, cut each wing into two pieces: find the joint and cut at the joint to separate the drumette from the wing.
  2. In a large glass mixing bowl or other nonreactive bowl, combine the olive oil, garlic, rosemary, and lemon peel. Add the chicken wings and stir until well coated. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and marinate in the refrigerator for 2 1/2 hours.
  3. Preheat the oven to 450°F. Remove the wings from the refrigerator and let rest at room temperature for 10 minutes. Stir in the salt.
  4. Place wings on a baking rack on top of a baking sheet to allow for even cooking. Don’t rinse the marinade from the wings, but do make sure there’s no garlic, rosemary, or lemon peel on the chicken—they will burn.
  5. Roast the wings for 25–30 minutes, until golden brown and crispy.
  6. Pour 3/4 cup warm pepperoni sauce into a large mixing bowl, add the wings, and toss to coat. Transfer wings to a serving platter and serve the remaining sauce on the side.
* As always, please check ingredients in all packaged and canned goods.

Please leave a comment if you do visit to access the restaurant database, helpful tools, information and resources about food allergies. I'd love to know what you think and if you do contact a local restaurant or try this recipe from Chef Mike!


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