Smash Kitchen and Bar Restaurant | Markham

We’ve heard great things about this restaurant from friends already so we thought we’d give it a try one weeknight as part of a birthday celebration.  The waiter was very approachable and understanding (he has food allergies as well).  The selection was limited, but he tried to work with us for Kay to have something she’d enjoy.  It came to three choices that are dairy and nut free: 1) Kids Pasta; 2) Kids Smash Burger (bun-less and cheese-less); or 3) BBQ wings (dry, no sauce) from Starters and Sides.  She chose #3 and shared my fries with me.  The portions were pretty decent.

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But what made this one of her favourite restaurants was the surprise dessert at the end: a dairy-free mango gelato.  She was over the moon when it arrived!

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happy-tummy-ometer : 5 out of 5 . For the meal: “I like the wings.  They’re crispy!” For the dessert: “I get dessert too?!!!”

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Mango Dessert Sushi Recipe

Mango Dessert Sushi

Having a sweet tooth runs in our family.  So when it comes to desserts, we definitely LOVE them.

For dairy-free and peanut-free options that are enjoyable to all, we have to get a bit creative with the recipes.  Here’s one we enjoy making with Kay that’s quick and easy: mango sushi with coconut sticky rice.  Mmm mmm goodness!

Ingredients:

  1. 1 cup of sticky rice (also known as glutinous rice), cooked
  2. 1 can of coconut milk
  3. 1 mango
  4. 1 tbsp sugar (or 2)
  5. 1/4 tsp salt

Directions:

  1. Place cooked sticky rice into a medium sized bowl
  2. Pour in coconut milk (can add more to taste)
  3. Sprinkle in salt to taste
  4. Sprinkle in sugar to taste
  5. Mix contents thoroughly
  6. Set aside to cool to room temperature
  7. Peel the mango and remove its seed
  8. Cut mango in thin slices and set aside
  9. Form the coconut sticky rice into sushi
  10. Place mango slices on top of sushi
  11. *Optional* Add garnish (in this case, the blueberry was added by my daughter)

happy-tummy-ometer : 5 out of 5 . “The blueberry mango sushi is my invention!  It is yummier and looks more gooder!”

photo credit : RC2 Films

‘Ohana | Disney’s Polynesian Resort, Disney World

We originally weren’t sure about this restaurant since it’s not character dining for dinner but it soon exceeded our expectations on all fronts.  With excellent service and a cheerful staff that’s also receptive to our child’s allergy needs, we felt at ease right away.

We entered when the events for the children began, where they got to sweep coconuts across the restaurant’s floor with brooms and dance to island music.  Soon after, the polynesian food came out.  We received huge helpings of side dishes first, which ties us over between skewers of meat brought around by our server.  Please note, this is a restaurant for meat lovers (my daughter included).  Vegetables are definitely lacking here.

The side dishes of pan-fried dumplings and chicken wings are both dairy and peanut free and very tasty! Kay feasted on this meal alone and really didn’t need to eat anything else.  She also had some skewered chicken and pork but preferred the crispiness of the dumplings to all other foods.

'Ohana side dish

For dessert hers came out first, which made her feel really special.  It’s also her first ice cream sandwich!  This dairy-free, peanut-free and gluten-free dessert is made with Rice Dream vanilla ice cream and Enjoy Life chocolate chip cookies.  It’s as good as it looks, so she gobbled it up really quickly. It’s definitely a memorable night for us.

'Ohana dairy-free dessert

happy-tummy-ometer : 5 out of 5 . For the meal: “Mmmm. The ‘dum-pe-lings’ are so crispy and yummy” For the dessert: “Ooh it looks deeelicious! Soo yummy. And I like the raspberries a lot.”

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Easy Guacamole Recipe

Easy Guacomole RecipeOne great thing about having ripe avocados… it’s time to make guacamole!  It’s so easy to put together (Kay helps with the mashing), takes only 5 minutes to prep and is a healthy, dairy-free and gluten-free dip for chips.

Ingredients:

  1. 2-3 ripened avocados, peeled and pitted
  2. 1 lime, halved
  3. 1 garlic clove, minced
  4. salt and pepper
  5. 1/4 tomato, diced (optional, my child avoids the tomatoes)

Directions:

  1. In a medium bowl, mash the avocados with a fork
  2. Stir in minced garlic
  3. Squeeze in the lime juice
  4. Salt and pepper to taste
  5. Mix thoroughly
  6. Garnish with diced tomatoes
  7. Immediately dip in tortilla chips!

photo credit : RC2 Films

Crystal Palace | Magic Kingdom, Disney World

When we stayed at Disney World, we were on a dining plan and actually enjoyed all of our table service meals.  These next posts will be ALL about Disney dining.

We had the character breakfast at Crystal Palace.  We didn’t go there for the food.  We were there to see Winnie the Pooh and friends and to take advantage of the early reservations.  This gave us access to Magic Kingdom before the park opened for great photo opportunities!

The food was mostly standard breakfast buffet fare.  What stood out in my mind were the Mickey waffles and breakfast lasagne (warm trifle cake with fruit and Bavarian cream). Those are must-haves!

For our daughter, we mentioned her allergies to our server and was informed that the manager would come and walk us through what’s safe for her to eat. Service overall was good except for that wait. I think it took 20 minutes before he showed up. By then we’ve already laid out some dry cereal (Fruit Loops) for her to munch on.

Once we’ve discussed her food allergies and what she’s interested in eating, we settled on a bowl of fruit, Van’s Waffles and bacon (her favourite).  It’s too bad Mickey waffles aren’t dairy-free.  I would’ve like for her to try them.

The overall experience was good. Kay’s face lit up like never before with each of the characters. It was only then I truly understood the power and effect of Disney.  It really is a magical place once I saw it through her eyes.

crystalpalace-01      Crystal Palace with Piglet

happy-tummy-ometer : 3.5 out of 5 “Can I have more bacon?”

Jasmine Lounge, Fairmont Southampton | Bermuda

We vacationed in Bermuda and wanted to try the Jasmine Lounge at the Fairmont Southampton.  Our experience?  Well, let’s just say we went back twice more!

For our first time, Kay had the chicken fingers.  The waiter verified it with the kitchen before we ordered it since chicken fingers tend to have dairy in them.  The side was fries and a tiny ketchup bottle. The verdict?  No-go for the chicken fingers, unfortunately.  They were too peppery for her.  But the fries and tiny bottle of ketchup were a huge hit!

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happy-tummy-ometer : 3 out of 5 “Chicken is spicy. Fries are crispy and yummy!  The ketchup is sooo cute!”

At our second visit the chef came over to speak with us, which was a nice touch!  We settled on whole-wheat penne with tomato sauce and meatballs.  For the drink, she had a virgin strawberry daiquiri.  She ate the penne but preferred the virgin daiquiri.  For dessert, she had a dairy-free, sugarless banana ice cream with mixed fruit (think frozen mashed banana).  Her eyes lit up when it arrived since this was one of the few times she can enjoy dessert at a restaurant.  Usually I had to bring a small treat for her if we wanted dessert too.

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happy-tummy-ometer : 3 out of 5 “It’s okay. I like your meatballs better, mommy.”

For the third visit, we had the pleasure of talking with the chef again.  We mentioned her disinterest in previous meals so he offered to make her something she would enjoy.  Did he say dairy-free pizza?   This personal pizza had gluten-free dough (which is also dairy and egg-free), tomato sauce, chicken, bacon and basil.  She polished off most of it in addition to her fries.  And for both her drink and dessert, she had the virgin strawberry banana daiquiri – less sweet than the other drink.   Like they always say, third time’s a charm!

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happy-tummy-ometer : 5 out of 5 “Party in my tummy!”