ABOUT FRANCES BUCKLEY
I am an Applied Culinary Nutritionist , licenced food safety trainer and Chef with over 25 years of professional cooking experience in restaurants and diplomat catering. Currently working with the Coeliac society of Ireland and the DDLETB.
My classical training was in Dublin College of Catering, Cathal Brugha Street. I have worked for over 5 years in food sensory science evaluation, with Teagasc and Diageo as part of their food sensory testing panels. For several years, I have been a guest judge for the Associated Craft Butchers of Ireland.
I attained a Master of Science in Applied Culinary Nutrition at Technological University of Dublin, Tallaght campus in 2020. In my applied research project on coeliac disease, I evaluated the understanding of coeliac disease in workplace catering together with the potential deficiencies in the gluten free diet.
Applied Culinary Nutrition provides me with the expertise to apply culinary skills and nutrition knowledge in developing food for health and wellness. It combines advanced nutrition science with professional culinary skills to provide health supportive meal solution.
FOOD CHALLENGES FOR COELIACS:
Coeliac Disease (pronounced see-lee-yak) is an autoimmune disease which causes an adverse reaction in adults and children when they eat gluten. It is not an anaphylactic reaction. Gluten is a protein(gliadin) is found in wheat rye and barley.
Some people with coeliac disease are also sensitive to a similar protein found in oats called avenin. Even a grain of gluten can cause abdominal harm such as diarrhoea, or other symptoms which can last for several days.
Gluten can sometimes be contained within ingredients of foods, e.g. soups, sauces, gravy, crisps, chocolate, sweets, and ready meals. In these cases, it can be hard to tell if the food is safe to eat for coeliacs. Gluten-free manufactured products do not always contain the same nutrients as those that contain gluten.
COELIACS FACE MANY CHALLENGES IN THEIR DIET:
Malabsorption of nutrients is a direct result of the damage to the lining of the small intestine in those with coeliac disease. Increased intake of the following nutrients is important on a coeliac diet, calcium, magnesium, iron, B vitamins, vitamin D and fibre. Try to include the following ingredients to increase nutrients from vegetables and root vegetables; gluten-free grains, such as quinoa and rice.
The inclusion of pseudo cereals (ancient grains) such as amaranth, sorghum and teff can help in mitigating the risk of nutrient deficiency. Fruits and dairy products, meat and poultry, fish, eggs and non -gluten wholegrains will deliver required nutrients. When selecting meat, fish or poultry choose ones which have no seasonings, sauces, crumbs, or batters added, unless they specifically say gluten free.
When using breadcrumbs and flour in the kitchen you may decide to use gluten free option for both menus, reducing the risk of cross contamination. Remember, non- coeliac or non-gluten intolerant customers can eat gluten free food!
When purchasing pre-made options such as gluten free breaded chicken or fish you may consider using this product for both the gluten free selection and the regular menu. This may be a more cost-effective practice.
STEPS TO CATER SAFELY:
Good food safety practices are essential in the kitchen and are vital in the preparation of food free from gluten. HACCP plans already in place in your kitchen will include risk assessment for food safety and allergens. The risk of contamination with gluten to dishes without gluten-containing ingredients, should be built into the steps of the HACCP plan.
What is cross contamination?
IMPORTANT MEASURES TO MINIMISE CROSS CONTAMINATION RISK:
The provision of dishes for coeliacs can be a valuable part of your business, you may decide to provide a separate menu, this can allow you to produce the dishes for this selection at a different time (time zoning) or in a different section to minimise disruption to the kitchen workflow.
The most common request for free-from foods in restaurants and other catering outlets is for GF food
It’s not just the person living with coeliac disease your business could be missing out on as a customer, but their entire party. The coeliac customer will be the decision-maker on what restaurant the party goes to, based on menu choices without gluten and staff understanding of their needs.
63% of Coeliac’s eat out once a month with the average spend on food €120.
70% of Coeliac’s choose the restaurant where a group will eat.
97% of Coeliac’s are more likely to book a restaurant which has had training.
100% believe it is significantly important that the restaurant staff are knowledgeable about Coeliac Disease.
The Coeliac Society of Ireland have a catering training programme on catering safely for coeliacs for further information contact firstname.lastname@example.org