Top critical review
30 people found this helpful
Not so good for dairy and soya allergy sufferers!
on 26 June 2010
My son has a dairy and soya allergy, so i was very excited when i found this book on amazon, especially with all excellent reviews, however, when i opened the book and started reading i was really disappointed.
First i will start with the positive comments. I like the fact that the author tells you what ingredients do in the recipe, so that it is easier to substitute for an alternative, these are usually in the form of little boxes called "notes for food allergy sufferers".
The first chapter - living with food allergies is quite useful and includes sections on travelling and eating out, which i was interested in as a recent trip abroad was particularly stressful! some of this section is common sense, but there are some good points which you might not think of.
Each recipe clearly shows which allergens are included and if there is an alternative ingredient.
There is also cooking advice such as making sauces, cooking meat and making stock, which would be good for anyone who hasn't done much cooking before.
The downsides for me are as follows:
There are tables of substitutes for each allergen i.e. in the soya substitute table it has soya yogurt, soya cream, soya beans etc, which is a good idea, however in the soya section virtually every ingredient says to substitute with dairy and in the dairy section virtually every ingredient says to substitute with soya ingredients - which is obviously no good for my son and the approximately 30% of dairy allergy sufferers that also are allergic to soya!
My other gripe is that the recipes are not very child friendly. My son is 18 months old and i also have a daughter that is 3 years old and they are a bit fussy (though i think this is normal as most of the kids i know at these ages are a bit fussy!) and as a consequence i don't think they would eat provencal fish stew with fennel, herbs and potatoes ( it contains mussels!) or duck breast with braised lentils! There are also quite a few prawn recipes, which might not be suitable for some children, though mine both like prawns. There is a section on baby food, though these are recipes that are similar to any baby food book. There is a page which shows at a glance which recipes can be adapted to make smaller portions for childrens party ideas.
Overall I'm glad i bought this book, however it was not the 'Holy Grail' i was looking for - hence it lost a star in my review, the other star was lost as there was not a good enough range of recipes for my children and also because there was a recipe for mashed potatoes! ( seriously - did she think we were so stupid as to not work that one out?!)The recipes would be better suited to an adult and i wish i had had this book when i had to give up dairy and soya when breast-feeding! but maybe there just isn't a very good dairy and soya free book out there, if there is, i have yet to find it!