September 30, 2010
If you have a food allergy to potatoes and/or corn have no fear. I love crisps. I love them so much that I am going to say it one more time just for emphasis: I LOVE crisps! For readers outside of Ireland and the UK I will translate my ravings: I LOVE potato chips!... Now, as I am sure you are aware, crisps are more than they once were. Recent trends have seen them made from luxury potatoes such as 'Jersey Royal', exorbitant flavours like 'Honey Roast Wiltshire Ham' or downright crazy flavours like 'American Hamburger' or even 'Cajun Squirrel'... But for the purposes of Survival Guide the most interesting trend which has been creeping into our crisp bags is crisps made out of alternative root vegetables other than potatoes.
I will always love the original (not to mention it's affordability) but when I was told that I should avoid potatoes because of a moderate food allergy (Tortilla chips -or nachos- were banned as well because corn was on my list too) my already educated taste buds took comfort in the crisps they had recently been frequenting. I had been indulging in Tyrrell's Root Vegetable crisps which are handmade with carrots, beetroot and parsnips instead of potatoes. These little crisps are spot on with their wholesome hearty flavour and gourmet packaging which fits perfectly into the new crisp generation. Marks & Spencers had branched out as well but their first attempt was uncharacteristically far from competition level with Tyrrell's. However, I am recently happy to report that they have fine tuned their attempt and are now offering 'Hand cooked Vegetable Crisps' made with parsnips, sweet potato and beetroot which are top notch and suit me even better due to the lack of carrot which was also listed as one of my allergens. The flavour of vegetable crisps is so rich and the slight variety of textures between the different vegetables make for a more intricate and 'full' snacking experience.
In addition to the above tasty potato free and corn free savoury treats LapSnacks has come onto my radar with their roasted broad bean selection, as pictured above. In my opinion, Lapsnacks cannot be eaten in the same quantity as vegetable crisps because the broad beans make for a heavier snack (note that the small bag contains 100g!) but it is none-the-less another genuine option for people with a food allergy or intolerance to potato and/or corn.
Quick Look List for Potato Free Crisps:
- Tyrrell's Mixed Root Vegetable Crisps (www.tyrrellspotatochips.co.uk) €1.39-1.85 for 40g; €3.99 for 150g
- Tyrrell's Beetroot Crisps (www.tyrrellspotatochips.co.uk) note: not yet widely available in Dublin €1.29 for 40g
- Tyrrell's Parsnip Crisps (www.tyrrellspotatochips.co.uk) €1.29 for 40g
- Marks & Spencer's Hand Cooked Vegetable Crisps (www.marksandspencer.com) €3.49 for 100g
- LapSnacks Habas Fritas roasted broad beans (www.olivesetal.co.uk) €2.27 for 100g; €3.35 for 200g
- LapSnacks Habas Mojadas coated in spicy batter (www.olivesetal.co.uk) €2.27 for 100g; €3.35 for 200g
All of these, with the exception of the M&S crisps are available in health food shops and gourmet grocer's such as Nolan's Food Fare and Fallon & Byrne. Obviously the M&S variety are strictly limited to Marks and Spencer's food departments.