I have always considered myself quite a nice person. I like food of all shapes, flavours and colours. From every country and continent. I don’t discriminate, I am an equal opportunity eater. It’s only the doctors who say I’m intolerant. And certain foods who refuse to tolerate me. They certainly refuse to recognise and respect my right to eat them without major physical discomfort and distress.

Gluten and lactose are not my friends.

Despite the negative attitudes surrounding me from many of those I love best, (cakes, ice cream, hot toast) I decided to become a chef. Not always easy when you live in a bread and milk filled world. I like to think that this has helped me become a better person as I embrace my differences and refuse to let the gluten get me down. I believe InTolerance. I am the InTolerant Chef.

Food should not be about what you can’t eat, but what you can and what you enjoy eating. This blog is about my journey of cooking and eating and discovery. It’s not a definitive guide to allergy awareness nor do my intolerances make me an expert. Your body is your responsibility, not mine. I only know what works for me.

I can tell you this..... No glutens were harmed in the making of this website.

December 6, 2011

Some News

You've all heard that saying before surely? "I can do that with one arm tied behind my back!" - meaning something super easy, a no-brainer, no effort required.

Well, let me tell you.... IT'S HARDER THAN IT LOOKS!!!
Especially as I have both out of action at once..

Do you remember my dedicated Readers, back in April I had a couple of days off with concussion? I had a nasty fall at work in the kitchen.  I slipped backwards down a slope (to a drain) and fell directly on my right shoulder/upper back, followed by my head- hard enough to send my glasses flying meters away across the room. Now to be honest, it must have looked hilarious to everyone else in the kitchen, but to give them credit, nobody laughed!

Well, after all sorts of physio and ultrasounds/xrays/MRIs ,blah blah blah, off to surgery I go. I have some general repairs of tendon tears and other nasty issues that need sorting out. The surgeon will know more once she's in there and has a good rummage around.

The Good News-  is that it's all fixable with a positive long term outcome.

 The Bad News-  is that my right shoulder/arm will be completely out of action for a while.

The Worst News-  is I'm right handed.

The Even More Annoying News- is that my left hand/wrist is already pretty tired of being the new right arm (I've been waiting 8 months for surgery), and may need surgery of it's own next. It's currently strapped into a half-cast style brace, which looks terribly impressive teamed with my right arm sling and right hand brace, and drawing plenty of curious looks and questions. This means that both arms are pretty much out-of-action for the time being.
The surgeon did try to persuade me to have both operated on at the same time, but that was just too much to handle without a live in maid, chef, or bidet. At least this way I have a tiny bit of mobility (and dignity)

My problem is this:  I need to come up with a good background story. I did try saying I did the damage juggling cats, but usually say it was a cooking experiment gone terribly wrong.

I don't mind a challenge actually. They can be quite fun and you learn a lot along the way, but I admit this isn't one I would have picked for myself, it doesn't sound much fun but I bet there'll be a steep learning curve!
We will all need patience :)

So Dear Readers, I ask for your indulgence over the next couple of months. My typing may be a little off, my photos worse than usual, and the cooking may be a bit 'interesting'. I will do my best, I always say - Don't let the Gluten get you down, now I'm adjusting my attitude and won't let this get me down either. (well, not all the time anyway!)

If you happen to have any good tips or tricks that I could use I would be really grateful for your input. You can just add a comment, or email me if you like. I'd also be interested in any new 'Cover Story' you can think up, after all, I deserve to get some fun out of this don't I?

Isn't that a cool photo up top by Erik Johansson? He does some great photo shop manipulations, check out his site.

Thanks Sweeties, I'll let you know how it goes.



  1. oh no!!!!
    I am so sorry to hear about your arm :( Sending you lots of speedy recovery vibes! Just think how wonderful your ambidextrous (sp?) skills will be at the end :)

  2. My husband had a parathyroid gland removed last year, and now has a 2-inch scar on the front of his throat. His favorite cover story is that it happened in a bar fight, but he's blamed ninjas, pirates, swordfish... ;)

    *Maybe you were doing some Houdini-like handcuffed escape attempt in an effort to break a world record, when your long-trusted assistant sabotaged your efforts in a shot at glory for himself. Duplicitous magicians' assistants - what are you gonna do?

    *You came upon an auto accident and, in an act of selfless, Hurculean strength, single-handedly lifted up the wreckage in order to free a busload of injured travelling nuns. You know, doing God's work. All in a day...

    *You inherited the role of Vampire Slayer after Buffy's untimely passing, and with the Twilight books and what-not, you're busier than ever, and, well, all that staking takes a toll on the wrists!

    Feel better, my friend. I look forward to all of your appendages being back in action soon! ;)

  3. Oh you poor thing! We'll definitely be patient with you. Sending get well vibes and hope you get better quickly! *hugs*

  4. Ooooh my dear friend! This is realy bad news!!
    We will support you all the way & we will be waiting at the other end of our computer's when you will be getting back!! Good luck with the surgeries!!

    Heal well! Big cyberhugs from Belgium! xxx

  5. Love and hugs!
    I'm so glad it's fixable - even if the going will get tougher.

  6. Naww you poor thing! Dont exert yourself :(

  7. Get well soon! What a shocker! Fingers crossed the little ones will help you around the house :)

  8. Hang in there, darling, and get well soon! My big tip - don't even contemplate word recognition software - it will drive you bonkers. Lots of love..Celia

  9. Wow... It's such a humbling reminder to really be careful and take care of yourself isn't it. It's always the post-injuries that really make or break a person. You're truly such a strong person and I admire you so much for it. All the best with the rest of your recovery!

  10. oh dear! That's so tough, poor thing. I hope the time does not drag and before you know it you'll be back to normal. I'm certain in the mean time you'll become super creative and get by just fine. You've got a great attitude, after all! Just have lots of extra helpers in the kitchen :)
    Heidi xo

  11. Oh you poor thing. I remember when my right hand was out of action for several months but at least I had my left to use. I learnt to write left handed and even took an exam! I do wish you a very speedy recovery. GG

  12. Dear InTolerant Chef

    Hope you get well soon. Make sure you use the left hand to knock back a few drinks during this silly season :)

  13. Oh no! A chefs worst nightmare! All the best for a speedy recovery. Thinking of you xxx

  14. Bugger. That doesn't sound so good at all. I hope a hugely speady recovery is on the cards post surgery and I'm sure a lively story of how it all happened will come to you.... I like Michelle J's sugestion of ninja's. Everyone likes a good ninja story.

  15. Oh dear, does not sound good.
    My sister is an occupational therapist and I have seen her make/organise these special type of cutting boards and implements for people who can't use one of their hands or have very limited range of movement in either hand. Perhaps hunt around for a friendly local OT? I will ask my sister when I next speak to her to see if she has any suggestions.

  16. oh god that looks scary.

    heal well X

  17. Oh no! This sounds terrible, although the post was actually quite funnily written. - Humor is still the best way of coping, no?

    I wish all the best to both your arms! And of course I'll be indulgent!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  18. I usually say that I can "do it blindfolded" just to be annoying sometimes :)

  19. Oh Bec, I am sorry to hear about your woes. I can't imagine coping with both arms out of action. I managed to break my right ankle and sprain my left knee in the same incident once when the kids were very small. It was the first day of school holidays and when the doctor said to go home, keep my feet elevated and rest I nearly wet myself laughing. But at least I had my arms working.
    Hopefully this time will fill you full of amazing inspiration for recipes using your Thermochef - that will be your extra hand.
    I wish you the best of luck.

  20. Oh no you poor thing! Here's many wishes and hugs and happy thoughts to help you speed up in the recovery process!!!!

  21. Hello Sweeties,
    Thankyou so very much for your well-wishes everyone, it really does make me feel a bit better when I get such lovely comments.
    I have decided the cooking ninja cover story is the one I'll go with- thanks Michelle!
    In the meantime I'm getting plenty of rest (and morphine) and will let you know how it goes xox

  22. So do you type with one hand? How do you bake? I have RSI and at times I can be really bad so it prevents me from baking and blogging, but it's in both my hands so a little irritating. Hope it heals soon