Kathlena welcomes us into her kitchen for Zestfull’s “In the Kitchen” series and shows us how she is cooking in the kitchen with food allergies.
Cooking in the kitchen with food allergies
Food allergies are managed differently in every household. Some of us manage multiple food allergies and keep allergens in the house, while others keep an allergen-free kitchen.
The kitchen is the heart of every home. Our goal in sharing our kitchens is to learn tips from each other that will help make cooking with food allergies more joyful while also providing a unique perspective on how each of us manage food allergies.
In the Kitchen with The Allergy Chef
Kathlena, also known as The Allergy Chef, has more than two hundred food allergies and intolerances and she cannot drink most water. She has made it her mission to change the world, one bite at a time, ensuring everyone has something safe and delicious to eat.
Kathlena is the founder of RAISE website, a platform that provides solutions for restricted diets including allergies, intolerances, special diets and EOE. RAISE has a positive and can-do approach to managing food allergies. There is a range of information for everyone, whether you are new to an allergy diagnosis or if you are an experienced food allergy parent or adult.
Membership includes access to webinars, allergy friendly recipes, guides, printables and more. Kathlena also shares her expertise by offering custom, one on one consultations.
Kathlena’s Kitchen Tour
Kathlena shows us how she uses color coding as a tool to help manage multiple food allergies in her kitchen
7 Questions for Kathlena about cooking in the kitchen with food allergies
1. Who is the head chef in your kitchen?
I do about 80% of the cooking and our teens cover the rest.
2. What food allergies do you or your family live with?
Everyone in our family has a different dietary requirement. Combined, we eliminate a lot of allergens.
3. Do you have food allergens in your house? If so, what influenced your decision?
Yes, and we always have lived with food allergens in our home. It would be much too costly to have everyone in our family eat for the greatest common denominator. Additionally, the bio-individual needs of each person is different.
4. What is the most challenging part of a corn allergy? Any suggestions for someone who has just been diagnosed with a corn allergy?
Corn has more than two hundred names and uses in food, medicine, and agriculture. Finding anything free from corn derivatives is a full time job. To the newly diagnosed, I’d say visit our website, as we have a lot of accurate information.
5. What three kitchen/cooking tips do you have for someone who just started their food allergy journey?
- Just about anything you want to eat can be made at home, as long as you’re willing to put in the elbow grease.
- Non-stick surfaces remember allergens. There will be several things in your kitchen that will need replacing such as cutting boards, wooden utensils, etc.
- Keep several lists of everything you’re allergic to, derivatives, and every name for your allergen. Read labels before using an item. Refer to your list liberally.
6. What is the one dish that always makes an appearance every year at your holiday table?
Cookies! Some of our holiday favorites from RAISE include cranberry orange cookies, dark chocolate peppermint and gingerbread cookies.
7. What is one cooking/baking tip that came out of managing multiple food allergies that you think everyone should add to their kitchen tool kit?
Parchment paper- never bake without it. Greasing and flouring pans isn’t necessary but parchment paper is essential.
Thanks for sharing your kitchen with us!
Want more of Kathlena? Check her out here:
Website: The Allergy Chef
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Shahla is a mom of two girls who live with environmental allergies such as asthma and eczema. Their food allergies include tree nuts, peanuts, sesame and other seeds. Shahla is trained as a Natural Chef who wants to share the comfort that cooking has brought her family. She believes that everyone, regardless of dietary requirements, deserves a plate full of color and flavor.