Thursday, January 04, 2007

Cross-contamination

And no, though it sounds like a haz-mat warning, it is something an allergic consumer is all too aware of. Those of us with severe allergies need to take precautions that our food does not so much even TOUCH a food we are allergic to before we eat it, otherwise we put ourselves at risk.
Yesterday I visited my local Saladworks. This has always been an allergy-friendly place because each ingredient is kept in a separate container, and each salad is made to order right in front of your eyes. I have never had a problem and willingly fork over too much money (seriously, $8 or $9 for lettuce and a few veggies....maybe it's that fresh-baked roll, but i digress).
I ordered my salad and didn't have hard-boiled egg added like I usually do because I could see that the eggs were littered with those evil red intruders, the tomatoes. Several other bins of ingredients had been accidentally mixed as well (cheese in the mushrooms, etc). I understand the lunch rush and that these things happen, but rest assured they aren't throwing out the ingredients that mix, simply separating them and putting them back in the proper location.
ANYWAY, as my non-allergic husband is away on business, i picked myself up an expensive salad, put on garbage TV, my fuzzy slippers, and ate dinner college-style (on the couch). I was halfway through a delicious salad when I discovered that somehow, there were several pieces of pepperoni in my salad! I removed the pepperoni, and all of the salad touching the unwelcome guest, and then finished my salad, fearful of accidentally having eaten the pepperoni. He and I do not get along, to put it mildly.
I was fine, thankfully..but it leads me to ask this question. HOW DIFFICULT IS IT TO MAKE A SALAD? I've learned my lesson, Saladworks, next time, the Allergic Diner is making her own.

3 comments:

Anonymous said...

Make the salad at home!

Enthral said...

My daughter has a nut allergy and I live in constant fear of cross contamination. :( Makes eating out or eating anything premade almost impossible.

RighterLady said...

Enthral -
Thanks for stopping by. I'm hoping that the reviews, recipes, and information I post here can help people like you and your daughter. I used to think eating out was impossible, too. Have you pre-printed any allergy cards to take with you to a restaurant? They can be very helpful!