Need recipe help quickly!

Discussion in 'The Watercooler' started by Wiped Out, Aug 11, 2013.

  1. Wiped Out

    Wiped Out Well-Known Member Staff Member

    difficult child has been asking and asking us to have over his Special Education teacher from middle school. She is a great person and we are happy to have her coming. However, when I asked for dietary restrictions she told me she eats no meat, no dairy, and is gluten free (I'm gluten free too but the other stuff is new to me as I am a big meat eater).

    Any ideas for a main dish with some sides?
  2. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    Depends on the definition of "no meat"... some will eat fish, or eggs, either of which gives you a protein base.

    Another option is to serve the kind of meal that you put together at your plate. Chef salad, for example - various veggies and toppings, including things like sunflower seeds. Or tacos - refried beans are also protein, and the other toppings are according to taste, including optional meat.

    Some people will serve hamburgers... and grill oversized portabella mushrooms to serve as an alternative. Never had it, so don't know how good they are, but some people like them.

    If you can solve the main dish, sides are easy: anything veggie! from veggies and dip, to squash, to steamed veggies to... the world is wide open. (For me, solving the protein thing would be the hardest. )

    Dairy-free isn't hard. If you have something in mind that relies on dairy, let me know and I'll see if I know of alternatives. One that I have no alternatives for is cheesecake... But, just as an example, if you wanted to serve fruit salad and ice cream for desert, you can get (or make) a lemon sorbet - not sherbet, which still has dairy, but a true sorbet, which is based on a sugar/water syrup with lemon juice. Tastes great with fruit (in my opinion, better than ice cream).
  3. DDD

    DDD Well-Known Member

    Why not send a note and say "We are eager to have you as a dinner guest but I need to be sure that I don't violate your dietary options. Would grilled salmon, a baked potato and fresh steamed vegetables suit you? What's your very favorite dessert? We are ALL looking forward to sharing time with you...just let me know." DDD

    Your post, by the way, made me smile. I had a very special young friend (my children's live in babysitter after my divorce) who reached out much to my happy delight. I responded with a dinner invitation which she accepted and then she added "we don't eat meat". I bought very expensive Key West king sized shrimp as the main course and OMG they did not eat seafood either. The VERY funny part of the story is that I made steamed fresh beans and a package of instant potatoes and she shared with her financee "DDD was a wonderful cook even when she was 30...and she NEVER used premade products! Aren't her homemade potatoes awesome?" Without exaggeration, lol, that happened in the late 70's and I remember the dinner as if it were yesterday. The moral? Try to figure out what to heck the real dietary choices are. It can be a B, LOL! DDD
  4. soapbox

    soapbox Member

    In addition to what ever other starch you're serving, maybe do up some pot barley. It makes a great vegan/vegetarian "filler", but if it's left over, it's also a great addition to soup for anybody.
    Last edited: Aug 11, 2013
  5. Josie

    Josie Active Member

    We are gluten and dairy free and one of my daughters is a vegetarian. You could do a frittata or Spanish omelet for the main course with a salad as the side. If the recipe calls for milk, you could substitute coconut, soy, or almond milk and just leave out any cheese. You can use olive oil instead of butter. If you feel you need a bread, you could make girlfriend cornbread. Fruit salad, girlfriend brownies, or coconut milk ice cream for dessert. I sub coconut oil for butter in brownies but you could probably use vegetable oil or dairy free butter.

    Another idea is vegetarian taco soup or chili.
  6. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    Brownies need "saturated" fat. Coconut oil works, so does old fashioned margarine - the cheap stuff. I find veggie oil doesn't work for things that normally need "solid" fat. Coconut is the exception.
  7. LittleDudesMom

    LittleDudesMom Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Perhaps a cold kenwa salad with broccoli and leeks for a side (make a dressing with a little fresh lime juice, rice vinegar and evoo), a big bowl of summer tomatoes with basil and a little olive oil (you can use veggie cheese - they sell veggie feta and moz at our markets) and a nice platter of roasted or grilled veggies - summer squash, peppers, mushrooms, onions, eggplant and onions sprinkled with evoo, tarragon and rosemary. Another nice side is cooked lentils (you can buy them precooked at the store), sliced purple grapes, tiny chopped carrots and celery, lemon zest and the juice of one lemon, s&p - one of my new favs! For an appetizer you could serve hummus and veggies. If you don't do the fresh tomatoes with dinner, a lovely summer dessert is (and it's going to sound weird but it really is good) chopped tomatoes, chunked watermelon, fresh mint and a little balsamic - really delicious and unexpected!

    Let us know what you decide to prepare.

  8. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    Double-check that so-called veggie cheese. Most that we have found, are made with milk protein. If the guest can't have dairy, this will cause problems.
  9. LittleDudesMom

    LittleDudesMom Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Veggie cheese here in the states is usually specifically non-dairy. It's usually soy or almond based.
  10. Wiped Out

    Wiped Out Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Thanks for all of the great ideas! I would love to try something like the roasted veggies but just haven't ever made squash and am worried it wouldn't turn out (will have to try it on my own:)). I also like fish but it turns out she can't/doesn't eat fish or eggs either!

    I've decided (I think) to do a corn pasta with sauce and a side salad along with a fruit salad for dessert.

    I'll let you know how everything turns out!
  11. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    Check the ingredients list. ALL the ones we can get here list casein... which is milk protein.

    They will have a BASE of soy or whatever... but I haven't found any that don't use casein... (and for me, it's casein that I have an intolerance to, so... )
  12. Josie

    Josie Active Member

    I agree a lot of them do have casein. That is our problem, too. They will say "lactose free" which is not the same thing. I don't like the soy cheese so maybe some of them are truly dairy free.

    Daiya cheese is really dairy free and soy free, I believe.
  13. recoveringenabler

    recoveringenabler Well-Known Member Staff Member

    An easy pasta alternative is to use spaghetti squash, just use your favorite sauce....... when the squash is cooked just run a fork through the squash and it comes out looking a lot like spaghetti....and it's good for you too.
  14. Wiped Out

    Wiped Out Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Great dinner! We did the corn pasta with a homemade tomato sauce (roasted in the oven), salad, girlfriend bread that was amazing (picked it up at a restaurant), and a fruit salad!
  15. LittleDudesMom

    LittleDudesMom Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Sounds perfect!