Hidden Culinary Treasure

Finding places to eat to please all the pallets in your group can be challenging. Some people don’t like spicy food, others don’t like Chinese and sometimes you just can’t eat one more burger and fries combo.

In our circumstance, my husband and I are both full time vegetarians and part time vegans, it can be hard for us to find something to eat.

Back home, we have to usually ask for grilled chicken salads with out the grilled chicken or order a sub without the meat (crazy I know.)

So we were really looking forward to enjoying all the wonderful vegetarian/vegan options available.

The meal that I was looking forward to the most was located in one of the most surprising places for a non-meat eater: Trails End Café at Fort Wilderness.

Situated at the campground at the Walt Disney Resort, Trails End is in Pioneer Hall which is only a short walk from the boat dock that takes you from the Magic Kingdom to the resort (this is the way we arrived to the campground.)

While the restaurant is a buffet that would please any meat-eater, it is surprising that this is a vegan haven.

Chef TJ has been recognized for his commitment to keeping those with food allergies safe. Because, not only does chef TJ work with those who are vegans he is also the person that helps people with food allergies.

The great thing about him is that he really goes above and beyond to make the meal extra special for those with dietary restrictions.

When we went to the restaurant Chef TJ was super busy that day. He had a bunch of people with dietary restrictions so he asked us to be patient and was so nice throughout the meal. He showed us to the buffet and told us what we could eat, which was pretty much limited to a few salad items and a baked potato, but he said he would bring the rest of the food to us.

The very first course were delicious vegan samosas.

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They were crispy with a little bit of spice brought on by the filling and also the tangy sauce on the outside. To add a little bit of a tang, a balsamic reduction was drizzled over top.

The second course were delicious vegan nachos.

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This picture isn’t doing justice to how delicious these nachos were. I am pretty sure that these were rice nachos because they were lighter and a little crispier than traditional nachos.

On top there were grilled peppers and onions, the delicious balsamic drizzle and homemade vegan cheese.

We have made vegan cheese at home with cashews and it always comes out delicious, but also kind of heavy. This recipe was light but also had a cheesy taste with an excellent cheese-like mouth feel.

Just, when I thought we were going to get our main course, Chef TJ comes out with a delicious mushroom soup.

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I am not sure how it was done, but the mushroom soup was so creamy without any dairy products. You have to really like mushrooms to enjoy this soup. Luckily, I do love mushrooms so this was the perfect soup.

Right when I was starting to feel pretty full, Chef TJ comes out with our main entrée.

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Not only was this meal beautiful, but it was so delicious. It consisted of grilled zucchini, squash and portabella cap toped with an onion. There was also baked tofu and stir fry rice drizzled with a mesquite sauce.

I might have been pretty full but there was no way I was going to not enjoy this meal. It was delicious, with a yummy grill flavor. The rice was not salty, which can sometimes be the case with stir fry rice, and the grilled vegetables had the perfect crispy texture.

To end the evening’s eating events, Chef TJ, brought out this amazing dessert tower and proceeded to drizzle chocolate syrup all over it.

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In this dessert tower was vegan ice cream sandwiches, bananas, strawberries, a strawberry compote, gummy worms, a whole apple and sprinkles.

To say that I was impressed would be an understatement. The fact that Chef TJ takes the time to create something so special for vegan guests just blows me away. While, all of the Disney restaurants do a wonderful job taking care of their guests with special dietary needs, Chef TJ takes it to a whole new level.

His friendliness also puts you at ease. For me, I hate to have a fuss made over my food. I always feel like I am putting someone out. But, Chef TJ never once made me feel like that.

So if you are looking for a great place to dine for anyone with special dietary needs, you need to check out Trails End at Fort Wilderness Resort.

 

MNSSHP with Allergies

 

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Photo courtesy of Walt Disney World

Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party (MNSSHP) is one of the highlights of the fall season at Walt Disney World. The Magic Kingdom is transformed into a slightly spooky, but never scary Halloween wonderland.

While you have the opportunity to see many of the decorations during regular days at the parks, it is when the entertainment at night really shines and makes MNSSHP extra special.

One of the Hallmarks of the event is the opportunity to go to various “treat stops,” that are marked on a map to go trick-or-treating.

But, if you have a food allergy, the decorations are not the only scary thing in the park.

The candy changes each year, but it usually stays around the same type including Snickers, Milky Way, Butterfingers, M&Ms and Kit Kats, Werther’s Caramels, chocolate and yogurt covered Craisins, Halloween Peeps and more.



When you enter the park, you will be greeted by cast members that give you a wristband and a treat bag. If your child has an allergy exchange the bag for a teal colored one at Market Street, City Hall, Heritage House, Town Square Theater or any of the treat locations. When you reach a treat location, the cast member will then give your child a teal token that can be redeemed for allergy friendly goodies or non-food treats at Heritage House and Town Square Theater. These are also places where you can go if you have any questions.

You might also want to check out the City Hall treat location because they have been known to pass out allergy free candy.

As with everything, if your child does have a severe allergy, do not forget to carry their medication with you.

If an issue would arise make your way to the park’s first aid station, located near the entrance of the Crystal Palace restaurant situated toward the left of Main Street U.S.A., where they will be able to give you emergency treatment.

If your child has food allergies, how do you deal with special events where there is a chance to allergy exposure? Leave your comments below.

 

 

Tot Five: How to Handle Food Allergies

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Photo courtesy of Disney Food Blog
One of the best things about Walt Disney World, Disneyland and the Disney Cruise Line is they cater to the needs of everyone.
For those dealing with food allergies dining out can be come complicated and even dangerous, depending on the severity of the allergy.
Disney has many precautions in place that help people avoid contamination.
Here are the tot five ways to help manage food allergies in your family while at a Disney property.
1. Send an email
If you or a family member have a serious, uncommon food allergy, the number one thing you should do is send an email to special.diets@disneyworld.com. You need to send the email after you have made your dining reservations and at least 14 days prior to your vacation.
People who have an allergy with the following need to send the email:
•Any allergy or intolerance not listed as a common food allergy (i.e. Gluten or wheat, lactose or milk, peanuts or tree nuts, shellfish, soy, fish, eggs and corn)
•Phenylketonuria (PKU)
•Metabolic disorders
•A single guest with multiple allergies/intolerances or multiple guests with allergies/intolerances within the same party
2. Ask for the allergy menu
All restaurants, have a list of the ingredients that are in their menu items, include the counter service restaurants.
Some of the table service restaurants will have a special allergy menu, so don’t forget to talk to your server.
3. Indicate an allergy when making a reservation
It doesn’t matter if you make your reservations online, through the My Disney Experience app or over the phone you can indicate that you have a food allergy.
Because you have this indicated with your reservation you are more likely to have a chief come out and talk to you about your allergies.
4.  Make sure you are prepared
No one wants to think that something will happen on their vacation concerning their food allergies. However, you always have to be prepared with your medication should a need arise.
If there would be an emergency, and you forgot your EpiPen there are several stations throughout Walt Disney World that have EpiPens available.
The stations are located on the guide maps.
5. Don’t be afraid to speak up
If you think there might be an issue with your order or if you don’t trust an ingredient, please speak up. You are never inconveniencing the people that work at Disney. They want you to be safe and not see something happen to you.
Do you have any tips on dealing with food allergies? Leave them in the comments below.