In happy news, I just realized I completely missed Food Allergy Awareness Week. Happy because that means Amelia’s allergies have become a part of our regular routine; a far cry from those early days after her diagnosis when I’d stare forlornly at the supermarket shelves cataloguing all the things we couldn’t cook and (true story) once burst into tears when I saw my friend Lorna’s photo of her son eating his first ice cream cone.

This year I intended to send out a big thank you to Cybele Pascal for the occasion. Pascal was the first food allergy cookbook writer I discovered, and she remains one of my favorites seven years later. Pascal’s a thoughtful and inventive cook who enjoys working with healthy ingredients and she never acts like her family is deprived because of their allergies. Pascal’s latest cookbook is Allergy-Free and Easy Cooking: 30-Minute Meals Without Gluten, Wheat, Dairy, Eggs, Soy, Peanuts, Tree Nuts, Fish, Shellfish, and Sesame. For households juggling multiple allergies, it’s a total winner.

Roasted Chicken with Rosemary, Kalamata Olives, and Lemon 

Serves 6

“This is a great one to throw together when you have unexpected company. It seems fancy, but it’s as easy as can be to prepare. One of your best friends in this dish is a mini chopper. Use it to mince your garlic and your rosemary. And look for jarred split kalamata olives to save yourself that prep time, too.” – CP

3 large bone-in, skin-on split chicken breasts (2 1/2 to 2 3/4 pounds total), cut in half crosswise (get the butcher to do it for you, or use a cleaver)

Salt and freshly ground pepper

2 Tablespoons olive oil

1 Tablespoon minced garlic

1 Tablespoon minced fresh rosemary

1 lemon, cut into 8 wedges

15 kalamata olives, split and pitted, or 30 olive halves

2 Tablespoons white wine

White rice for serving (optional)

Preheat the oven to 450°F.

Rinse the chicken, then pat it dry. Season with salt and pepper.

Heat the olive oil in a large heavy casserole or Dutch oven over medium-high heat until the oil is starting to shimmer, about 2 minutes. Cook the chicken, skin side down, for 5 to 6 minutes, until crispy and browned. Flip, being careful to keep the skin attached to the breast, and cook for 5 minutes more.

Remove the pan from the heat. Sprinkle with the garlic and rosemary. Add the lemon wedges and olives and drizzle in the white wine.

Bake in the center of the oven for 18 minutes, until cooked through. Serve with the white rice, spooning the sauce over both the rice and the chicken.

Reprinted with permission from Allergy-Free and Easy Cooking: 30-Minute Meals Without Gluten, Wheat, Dairy, Eggs, Soy, Peanuts, Tree Nuts, Fish, Shellfish, and Sesame by Cybele Pascal (Ten Speed Press, 2012). Photo credit: Chugrad McAndrews.

Andrea Pyros writes often about parenting for publications including Mint, LearnVest and Sesame Street Family. She lives in New York’s Hudson Valley and is the mother to two children, one of whom has food allergies and the other of whom refuses to eat eggs even though he can. 


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Comments (4)


  1. Posted by: Suz

    Pascal is by far my favorite “food allergy” cookbook author. Rather than trying to approximate foods you can’t have or come up with weird substitutes for allergens, she suggests tons of great recipes that simply don’t use those foods. Thanks for sharing this.

  2. Posted by: Erikka

    as the mother of a son with allergies – thank you for posting this!

  3. Posted by: Suzanne

    No allergies here, but that sounds fantastic! I can’t wait to make it.

  4. Posted by: Andrea

    Suz, totally agree. Pascal seems to enjoy the challenge rather than feel constrained by dietary limitations.

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