One thing that I like to do when we visit people and they let us stay in their house is to make food for our hosts. This becomes more difficult when people have food allergies and aversions or special diets, and while staying with our friends in CT last weekend it proved to be nearly impossible for us to devise a meal that would both taste good and fit the requirements for all four diners.
Kent is a vegetarian who is deathly allergic to all peanuts and peanut products, plus highly allergic to all legumes, peas, and beans.
Christine is a notoriously picky eater (her list of things she will eat is far easier to relay than things she won’t); plus, as a result of ongoing treatment for thyroid cancer, had to be on a low-iodine diet while we were visiting.
Here is what we made:
Spanish Tortilla, garlic bread, plus regular salad with tasty lettuce and veggies(for us) and iceberg lettuce/cucumber/carrot salad with homemade dressing (for Christine). She made her own pasta with olive oil and garlic and timed her main dish to be done with ours. Had we had more time to prepare, we could have made the bread for the garlic bread ourselves and she could have had that, too.
Spanish Tortilla (recipe adapted from one Dan’s mom makes) (serves 4 large servings or six medium-sized)
4 eggs, scrambled, plus a bit of milk mixed in
2 medium or 1 large russet potato, scrubbed and chopped into small dice
1/2 large sweet onion, chopped
seasonings to taste – garlic powder, salt, pepper, chili powder, herbs, whatevs.
In a large nonstick skillet (you use a lot less oil this way) pour some olive oil. Sautee potatoes and onions with seasonings of choice until pretty well cooked. When po’s are done, add scrambled egg, turn heat down, and cover the pan to let the egg cook, 10-20 minutes depending on your pan and your stovetop. When egg is set, use a cookie sheet or pizza pan to cover the skillet, flip the tortilla over, and slide it back in the pan so the top is now on bottom and cook a few more minutes. Serve with salsa and sour cream (or nonfat greek yogurt, which is what we use instead of sour cream).
To convert this recipe to a low-iodine diet, we would have had to use egg whites, no milk, non-iodized salt, and peeled the potatoes. Christine told us not to bother; she was happy with her plain pasta.