To be a kid in a candy store epitomizes the ultimate dream come true, one that only gets better when the shop is owned by your mom and aunt.
But for Justin Young, whose family owns Washingtons Chocolate Chocolate, the reality was a nightmare. Because he was born with severe food allergies, nearly everything in the store – the rich truffles, the dark-chocolate-dipped caramels, the milk hazelnut pralines – was off-limits.
One second of abandon could cost him his life, Chocolate Chocolate co-owners Ginger and Frances Park, Youngs mom and aunt, write in their new book.
Allergies, Away! is a cookbook and memoir, chronicling the past decade of the Parks efforts to keep Youngs hives at bay without depriving him of treats.
Recipes in the book are free of nuts, dairy and eggs, per Youngs dietary restrictions. (Its important to note that recipes do contain other allergenic ingredients such as soy and gluten.) Comfort foods such as lasagna are made with vegan cheese and tofu, and the chocolate truffles utilize soy creamer and soy butter – alternatives that the writers claim taste as good as, if not better than, the real thing.