Friday, October 23, 2015

Batch of links

- With Halloween coming up, I hope you’ve heard about the Teal Pumpkin Project: if you’re offering non-food treats (things which would be safe for kids with food allergies or diabetes), place a teal-painted pumpkin outside your door to let them know. And try to advertise it so that people know which houses are safe for their kids!

- Here’s a good interview with Shauna James Ahern (a.k.a. Gluten-Free Girl) about how the landscape of gluten-free dining has changed over the past 10 years and about her latest cookbook, American Classics Reinvented.

- I talked about Zero8 (the Montreal restaurant serving food free of the 8 major allergens) on several occasions, after I ate there and when they were crowd-funding their move to a new location over the past two years. Well, Zero8 is finally back! They’re having soft-openings this month and should be back in full swing next month, in Rosemont. (Their website is here.)

- There’s a new gluten sensor out there (on pre-sale right now) for individual consumers: the Nima lets you analyze your food to determine whether it has gluten or not. I can see this being useful at restaurants or catered parties where you don’t have a nutrition label handy.

- A new app called EpiAlert reminds you to take your EpiPen with you whenever you leave the house. (Obviously, you need a smartphone for this, but if forgetting your auto-injector device is an issue, as I imagine it might be with recently diagnosed people or children, this seems like a good solution.)

- The company called Follow Your Heart will be producing a new egg-replacement product called VeganEgg, made from algal flour. The big draw is that it can be used to make scrambled “eggs” or similar preparations (like frittatas or quiches), in addition to being used as a substitute in baking. I’m really curious to taste it!

- There’s an interesting vegetarian approach to the My Plate dietary guidelines, called Raising the Bar, which is (unsurprisingly) cheaper than eating meat. Plus, the vegetarian meal plan has more servings of fruits, vegetables and whole grains. Hopefully, the vegetarian meal plan can help people with lower incomes feed themselves in a healthier way.

- This headline made me smile: Vegan chef wins omnivore chili cook-off. She didn’t tell the judges her chili was vegan until all the votes were in.

- Danny Meyer will be eliminating tipping at his restaurants. This is a very controversial move, because our North American culture is steeped in tipping waiters. That being said, the change should not only make things fairer for waiters, but (most importantly, in my opinion) eliminate the wage gap between waiters and back-of-house staff like line cooks. Of course, this will be done by increasing prices, so it remains to be seen what consumers will think. I’m really looking forward to seeing how that plays out and whether other restaurants follow suit.

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