A Chicago Institution Embraces Gluten-Free

By Mary Duggan

MaryDuggan_holds glasses

My dear Mother would have said, “The Lord works in mysterious ways.” Because when a member of the famed Chicago restaurant family Berghoff gets diagnosed with Celiac Disease, the whole city gets healed. I would not wish Celiac on anyone, let alone Sarah Berghoff McClure, the petite, 12-year-old daughter of Carlyn Berghoff of restaurant family fame. But sick she was and diagnosed she got – with Celiac Disease.

And here’s where the story gets heart-warming and heart-healthy for their family and yours. The whole family got on board with the transition, especially her Mom, and the end result is a healthy Sarah and a wonderful cookbook entitled Cooking for Your Gluten-Free Teen.”

berghoff mom and sarah

The Berghoff McClure family has used their personal health challenge to help heal the Chicago restaurant scene and teenagers EVERYWHERE!

Eve Becker of the Tribune reports, “At home, Berghoff cooks entirely gluten-free for her husband and three kids. She also has trained the staff at The Berghoff Restaurant how to prepare gluten-free requests safely.”

So, I am off to do three things. One, buy the book. Two, try to catch up with the author at Printer’s Row Lit Fest next weekend, and three? Why of course have a meal at the Berghoff with my sisters. I am looking forward to: an appetizer of Applewood Bacon wrapped Shrimp with bbq sauce glaze and cheese polenta; an entree of Miesmuscheln en Weisswein, translation – mussels, leeks, white wine, garlic and spinach, gorgonzola and spring pea risotto; and climaxing (and I don’t think that is too strong a word) with Salty Caramel Cheesecake. Do you see why I can’t abide people moaning whoa is me, I am gluten-free? And do you see how gluten-free folks still have every opportunity to be rotund and unhealthy in all sorts of other gluten-free ways. But please, don’t judge. I am thinking here of my upcoming 60th birthday and a bit of celebration. I don’t eat this way every day. Furthermore, I might just order the healthy option of Whitefish instead – with roasted vegetable napoleon, jasmine rice timbale and dill-caper butter sauce. That sounds pretty healthy, don’t you think?

Not from Chicago? Not sure what all this Berghoff iconographic talk means? Why it’s like having a piece of your hometown restored just for your personal delight. It’s a childhood memory that you thought could never be retrieved coming back to life. It’s like waking up one day and finding out that the Macy’s star has fallen and MARSHALL FIELDS is back! I can go to the Berghoff for lunch just like I did with my sisters so many years ago. Safely. And I don’t have to explain what gluten-free means to the wait staff or worry at all. Yay!

Thank you Berghoff family. And a big Kudos to you! You have made my gluten-free world a whole lot wider and me probably a bit wider in the process. But what the hey, it’s my 60th birthday and that only rolls around once. And speaking of rolls – got any that are gluten-free? Sorry Dr. Bill Davis, but I just had to ask.




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About the author:

Mary Duggan

Mary Duggan is Co-Founder and President of the Duggan Sisters.

TheDuggan Sisters cracked the code and created a natural deodorant that actually works: lifestinks.  We hope you will spend a few minutes exploring duggansisters.com to experience their spirited approach to wellness through their natural products and healing stories.

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