Author Topic: What should I have done?  (Read 15803 times)

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SuperMartianRobotGirl

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Re: What should I have done?
« Reply #45 on: August 14, 2012, 08:25:14 PM »
If someone is expecting to find some choices without cheese and it's important to them, and they're asked if there are any food issues and they don't say anything, it's all on them. The same for if you don't eat meat, are asked if you have any food issues but don't say anything, and everything has meat in it. If they ask, they ask for a reason. If no one says there's a problem, they assume there isn't a problem.

miranova

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Re: What should I have done?
« Reply #46 on: August 14, 2012, 08:55:52 PM »
You say tou couldnt plan for it, but pert of the point of what posters here are saying is -did you have enough dishes in your menu without cheese in them, to make a decent meal? \

Well the entree had cheese, so by that standard, even if the entree was the only dish that had cheese, he would not have been able to have a full meal.  If you mean could he have eaten enough non-cheese food to get full, most definitely he could have.  There were leftovers of almost everything.


Mikayla

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Re: What should I have done?
« Reply #47 on: August 15, 2012, 11:46:35 AM »
I have to say, parts of this discussion are puzzling me, especially questioning the cheese quotient in the menu.  Miranova did exactly what any polite hostess would do.  She inquired beforehand, and then served accordingly.  I'd also point out that if this is in the US, Italian is a very mainstream cuisine. 

Even if the guy didn't specifically ask for something separate, he's still incredibly rude (and possibly PA) to show up and even comment on that menu. 

And if he made assumptions about cheese not being in that many dishes, let's just say that people with legit intolerances don't make assumptions.  They answer the question when asked about it. 

Maybe it was a weird power play of some sort. 


cicero

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Re: What should I have done?
« Reply #48 on: August 15, 2012, 01:46:23 PM »
OP here.

...  However, I am truly posting to learn, so I will keep that in mind for future events.  The problem is, I still don't know how I'm supposed to plan if I don't know the offending ingredient.  What if it wasn't cheese but instead was garlic or tomatoes or something else?  Those are all very common ingredients.  If I make 7 things and can't have any repeat of a very common ingredient, even in smallish amounts, that gets pretty complicated.  Any thoughts?
 
I don't think you did anything wrong. In fact, you did everything right.

You asked people in advance, you had a varied meal with different ingredients. FTR *I* also would have expected a lot of cheese in an italian-themed meal; i understand from reading this thread that that isn't always the case. it's not like *every* dish had the same *very-objectionable-almost-universally-hated ingredient in it.


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doodlemor

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Re: What should I have done?
« Reply #49 on: August 15, 2012, 02:29:42 PM »
 

Even if the guy didn't specifically ask for something separate, he's still incredibly rude (and possibly PA) to show up and even comment on that menu. 

And if he made assumptions about cheese not being in that many dishes, let's just say that people with legit intolerances don't make assumptions.  They answer the question when asked about it. 

POD

My first thought when I read the OP was that perhaps this guy finds cheese to be ......binding.... to his system, and didn't think about the problem until he actually saw the food.

Whatever the problem, mealtime was too late to blurt it out.

rose red

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Re: What should I have done?
« Reply #50 on: August 16, 2012, 10:42:12 AM »
I have to say, parts of this discussion are puzzling me, especially questioning the cheese quotient in the menu.  Miranova did exactly what any polite hostess would do.  She inquired beforehand, and then served accordingly.  I'd also point out that if this is in the US, Italian is a very mainstream cuisine. 
 

That part stood out and puzzled me too with some of the posts. 

Shea

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Re: What should I have done?
« Reply #51 on: August 20, 2012, 05:51:42 PM »
Add me to those who don't think the OP did anything wrong. It seems that cheese was an important part of the meal, but it's not as though it was in absolutely everything, and apparently the guy was okay with at least some cheese, since according to the OP he ate normal-sized portions of the cheese-containing dishes. And really, the presence of cheese shouldn't even really be an issue, because the OP made a point of asking about guests' food preferences/intolerances before planning the meal. If they guy had an issue with cheese, he needed to say so when the OP asked, not mention it when it was too late to do anything about it.

I once worked as a cook on a guest ranch, and before arriving the guests were asked to fill out a form on which they listed any food needs or preferences (in was made clear that this included anything from allergies and intolerances to religious/moral restrictions to stuff they just really hated) so I could accommodate them when planning the meals, including making special, separate meals if need be. Several times, I had people say they had no food issues, then inform me after I'd cooked and served a meal that they hated onions/won't eat eggs/can't eat pork (my favorite was the guest who took a bite of tiramisu, then spit it out on the plate, saying, while glowering at me, "I HATE coffee!" Thanks for bringing that up in such a gracious manner, lady ::)). Of course, because this was a business situation I would nicely remove the offending item and whip up something else as quickly as possible, but I always wondered why in the holy heck they didn't just fill out the dang form and make life more pleasant for all of us!


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Twik

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Re: What should I have done?
« Reply #52 on: September 13, 2012, 03:09:16 PM »
If you had some undressed pasta, or could have thrown together something at short notice you could have offered. You were not obligated, but I presume he mentioned it in case an option was available.

He didn't mention it prior because he did have an allergy and probably didn't expect the majority of your meal to contain cheese. If you told me you were having an Italian night my first thought would NOT be to expect cheese in every entree.

I don't think you did anything wrong, but I don't think he did either. I certainly don't think he's a 'jerk.'

If you can't eat something, and you're asked about it by someone preparing a meal, you either say something then, or don't, and suffer the consequences. You don't wait until the food is coming out of the kitchen, and expect your host to magically whip up something.

I would certainly expect a lot of cheese in Italian food. I would expect someone who know they were coming for an Italian night to say something when asked, as much as I would expect a vegetarian to speak up if invited to a Pig Roast.

Even if the nature of the cuisine were not mentioned, cheese is a common enough ingredient in western cuisine that if someone asks "Is there anything you can't eat?", it should be mentioned.
My cousin's memoir of love and loneliness while raising a child with multiple disabilities will be out on Amazon soon! Know the Night, by Maria Mutch, has been called "full of hope, light, and companionship for surviving the small hours of the night."

Tigger

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Re: What should I have done?
« Reply #53 on: September 13, 2012, 04:42:27 PM »
My husband is Canadian but of Italian descent.  Yes, there are many dishes without cheese.  When we have guests over for a meal we always ask.  If the same thing happened you bet my DH (who does all the cooking) would be upset.  Seriously, why not mention it?  You end up making the host feel very uncomfortable like they've done something wrong when all they have done is been gracious hosts.

We had a few friends over for dinner a few years back.  We were serving hamburgers as my DH makes them from scratch and they're truly amazing!!  We told our friends what we were having and they were happy because they'd had them in the past and LOVED them.  If memory serves it was antipasto (some cheese, tomato), hamburgers, two different kinds of salad, dessert and espresso/tea. One of our guests basically thought my DH was trying to poison her by undercooking the burger on the BBQ.  He had to put it back on 3 times.  By the time she felt it was "safe" to eat it was all black and shrivelled. Our burgers were cold and my DH was quite put out to say the least.  We are Canadian, so eating burgers under cooked is not a normal regional thing.

Not for this reason but we have since cooled our relationship with them.  I find her a Special Snowflake in so many ways that it was torture to spend time with her. 

If she had said I'm really particular about how my meat is cooked we would have either offered to do something else for her or asked her what exact temperature do you like them done too?

When someone asks you if you have any food issues it's not to hear themselves talk.  We always try to educate people on the forum on how to be a good host.  Remember to be a good guest too!




Ontario

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Re: What should I have done?
« Reply #54 on: September 13, 2012, 05:14:37 PM »
Like H's husband, I don't eat meat and I never mention it. It's not an allergy, it's a preference, and I've never had a problem - it would be rather PA of me to bring it up at dinner if I'd been asked beforehand and neglected to mention it.

Please do mention it when asked. When I cook for friends, I want them to enjoy the meal. I would really be miffed if you can't enjoy the food I prepared because you neglected to tell me about your preference. I would happily have prepared a vegetarian meal for you if I would have known.

We once hosted friends and I asked them in advance about food restrictions. The answer was something like "none, but E doesn't care much for tomatoes". Good that I knew as I had planned a tomato-heavy entree and thus still had time to change the menu.

Twik

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Re: What should I have done?
« Reply #55 on: September 14, 2012, 10:37:59 AM »
There was a time when guests were expected to eat what they were given, and if they didn't  like it, tough. I recall an anecdote about Clarence Darrow - his wife used to call hosts beforehand and warn them, quite apologetically, that he just wouldn't eat chicken. Apparently, this offended a lot of high-society hosts, who considered the Darrows incredibly rude, to the point of trashiness, for doing so.

Nowadays, we take more care about meeting our guests' needs, and it's better for everyone, I think. But still, I think it's unreasonable when the host has asked about preferences in advance, to expect him/her to *still* plan the menu to make sure that there's not too much of any one ingredient among the courses. At some point, you have to speak up for yourself, and not expect that the world knows all your preferences by some sort of psychic means.
My cousin's memoir of love and loneliness while raising a child with multiple disabilities will be out on Amazon soon! Know the Night, by Maria Mutch, has been called "full of hope, light, and companionship for surviving the small hours of the night."

Brockwest

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Re: What should I have done?
« Reply #56 on: September 22, 2012, 12:24:58 AM »
Hmmm, I've entertained for years, love to cook, and never have, never will pre-ask my guests about food demands.  I feel it is up to the guest to inform me if they have a severe allergy, which I will certainly accommodate.  If there is a group coming, my feelings are that if a person has certain food demands (OUTSIDE the severe allergy type), that it is up to them to pre-eat or bring the foods they can eat.
I'm thinking of the post where a soccer Mom DEMANDED certain snacks for her kid. 

I would certainly listen/accommodate such allergies as severe peanut allergy.  When you get into personal/moral preferences, then I think it's up to the guest to bring their own, or notify me...and it's up to me to decide if I can accommodate the request.  (Thinking of the post of the picky lady who ONLY wanted rare steak.)

I think it is the responsibility of the guest to inform the host if they can't/won't eat certain foods or are picky eaters...in advance. If they need a macrobiotic, organic, gluten-free, free range, cooked in a non-patterned cookware meal, fine, but I feel it is my right to say, sure, please let me share some of what you bring for yourself to eat. 

On the other hand, (thinking of the post where a guest brought seafood to a seafood-allergy home), that was totally wrong.  A guest bringing unexpected  food has a duty to make sure they are violating the host's home rules....allergies, kosher plates, vegetarian, whatever.

sourwolf

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Re: What should I have done?
« Reply #57 on: September 22, 2012, 12:44:55 AM »
I'm thinking of the post where a soccer Mom DEMANDED certain snacks for her kid.
You have got to be kidding me - can you post a link?

YummyMummy66

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Re: What should I have done?
« Reply #58 on: September 22, 2012, 09:01:31 AM »
How well do you know said friend?

I don't think people realize how many people cannot have cheese.  My dh is one of them.  He is lactose intolerant.  He can have some cheese, (loves pizza, but in limited doses), but too much and it will cause him great pain.  You cannot believe the number of times we go somewhere and he requests no cheese, and he gets this strange looks and always has to be asked again.  Yes, he said no cheese.  There have to be more people out there who cannot have cheese, right? 

Also, because of having a child who is a picky eater, I have always just made a variety of food when having guests over.  I never just use one ingredient for almost everything I make, especially cheese, as that can bind even the most normal person up.  And, honestly, I cannot remember a time when I invited or did the inviting, that there was not a variety of foods to choose from.  But, then I am Berks County, PA, Dutch Country(where no matter what, we always have a variety of food.  We love to eat).  Also, no matter what, even when we are invited somewhere or vice versa, people would bring something also to add to the mix and I would do the same.  In fact, I am invited to a picnic next Saturday and I will take something to add to the mix. 

Also, I grew up always having to eat what was put before me, even if I did not like it.  I could not get up from the table until doing so.  This made for many nights where I sat at the table until dark.  I never did that to my kids. If I cooked something I know they would not like, they were given a choice of something else. (Usually easy, cereal or a sandwich, not a whole other meal).  So, I could never make a meal where I had so limited choices as the OP had when entertaining.  You have a variety of people with different tastes, likes, etc.  I would always have two choices of desserts, at least. 

That is not to say, I think my way is the right way.  Just what works for me and I have never had a problem with or a complaint.

What to do in this situation?  Nothing could be done at the time.  Should he have mentioned it when being invited?  Possibly.  Should the hostess have asked when inviting?  Again.  Possibly.  I see this working both ways and not one way being preferred over the other. 

What I can tell you is in my dh's case, he would have gone away from your house very hungry and we would have stopped at the first place that we could so he could eat.  He would never have said anything and might have eaten items in very small amounts, but I know him and he would be starving.  But, he would have been polite and sat thru the meal and whatever was after and we would have left as soon as we could, because I know he would have been very hungry.




YummyMummy66

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Re: What should I have done?
« Reply #59 on: September 22, 2012, 09:07:20 AM »
I reread some of the replies and I think I missed where the OP did ask about allergies and such?  Correct?

If the OP did this, then, yes, the guest was rude.  He had a chance where he could have stated that he could not have cheese and should not have dones so at the party, especially after having eaten a full meal.

Also, I don't think many people realize just how many recipes call for cheese.  Because I have to deal with this when cooking, I notice things like this.  Almost every recipe I find contains cheese in some form or dairy in some form.  So, I have gotten used to cooking meals and changing them to accomodate my husband.   

Now, if someone would come out with a good cookbook that has many recipes that do not include cheese, I see a millionaire in the making!