Posts categorised ‘Food’

Link: “Are plastic containers safe for our food?”

Original post found at: https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2020/feb/18/are-plastic-containers-safe-to-use-food-experts

Not a new article, but I came across it today from this Reddit discussion(external link) about how plastic containers shouldn’t be microwaved (even the ones that say it’s fine) because the chemical bonds of plastic start to break down under heat, leeching plastic particles (including microplastics) into your food. I’ve heard this before, but kind of always brushed it off because TBH a huge amount of what I eat is meal-prepped food reheated in plastic containers so this microplastics stuff was really not something I wanted to be true 😂 But maybe it’s time to stop sticking my head in the sand and switch over to glass…

Had a go at a new recipe today – jollof rice, working from this Kitchn recipe(external link). I did add chicken and chickpeas to make it an all-in-one meal, rather than having to cook a separate protein. Overall, it was DELICIOUS! The three birds’ eye chillies I blended into it gave it a good amount of heat 😋

close-up of a rice-based dish, with the rice coated in red sauce and at least one piece of chicken prominently visible

Sauce bottles where legitimately the last 10% of the sauce refuses to come out and just gets stuck on the sides of the bottle: truly one of the universe’s enduring mysteries.

I’m Not a Vegetarian, But

Last night, Viv and I had to go to a Christmas function for a volunteer organisation that he’s a part of. It was the kind of function where you had to tell them your “preference” in advance for what you wanted to eat, but they only gave you two options: “meat” or “vegetarian”.

As I’ve mentioned in passing before on this blog, I’m not a …

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Link: “A Surprising Number of Kids in The US Think Hot Dogs Are Actually This”

Original post found at: https://www.sciencealert.com/a-surprising-number-of-kids-in-the-us-think-hotdogs-are-actually-vegetables

Modern American children have become so disconnected from the source of their food that many kindergarteners think bacon comes from a plant, not a pig, according to a small new survey.

According to this article, 41% of 4–5 years olds thought bacon came from plants, while “just under half” thought that French fries were an animal-derived product. What it goes on to suggest, furthermore, is that one of the main reasons they have so much confusion is that their parents are reluctant to tell them the truth for fear of upsetting them, saying:

Researchers suspect young humans start out placing a high value on mammal lives, but as they grow up, those values begin to decline in favor of food.

I remember being on one of my teaching placements, and the chaos that broke out one afternoon when one of the grade 1s let slip to the others that meat was dead animals. Of course it was a Catholic school, so the teacher managed to calm them all down by saying that while it is sad, God put those animals on this Earth to be eaten 😜 Don’t think you could get away with that kind of cop-out in a state school.

The article finishes by making the point that reducing global meat consumption is one of the things that would reduce global carbon emissions, and if children are freaked out by the idea of eating dead animals to the point that adults feel the need to “shield” them from reality, maybe it’d be better to not shield them and let a natural transition to a more plant-based diet happen. It kinda makes sense to me 🤷🏻‍♀️

Ras El-Hanout

For a few months now I haven’t felt able to replenish my supplies of “boutique” or “exotic” spices and blends (the ones you can’t just get at the supermarket), because Australia Post has been so crippled by the pandemic that deliveries are falling weeks behind, if they’re getting through at all. Today, though, I really had a craving for a chicken tagine, …

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Today I learned that in the US, “chilli powder” usually means a mild spice blend intended for use in the dish called “chilli”, not actual powdered chillies. This makes so much more sense; until now I’d always just assumed that cooking-enthusiast Americans must really like ultra-spicy food!

In retrospect, something that would’ve been really, really valuable to learn in Home Economics classes are all these words for food ingredients that mean different things in different countries. When I read a recipe that calls for something we don’t even say here, like “green onion”, I can look it up and work it out. But when we use the exact same word, just for something different, it can take me years to work out that what recipe writers mean by that word is different from what I mean by it! Imagine if we’d just had a few more weeks in Home Ec learning how to interpret recipes and a few less weeks cooking gross vegetable fritters…

Is It a Wrap or a Flour Tortilla?

The other day I caught myself wondering what is actually the difference between a wrap and a flour tortilla (you know, other than wraps being in the “bakery” section of the supermarket and tortillas in “international foods”). I did a web search, and found to my surprise that there actually are some differences… at least in theory:

  • wraps contain yeast, while tortillas do …

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a cartoony avatar of Jessica Smith is a left-wing feminist who loves animals, books, gaming, and cooking; she’s also very interested in linguistics, history, technology and society.