Monday, September 20, 2010

10 things I've learned about food.

  1. Food is precious, as are the bodies and beings who eat it, and the land, sun, air and water that creates it.
  2. Food production is like great art and should be valued highly. 
  3. Food preparation is an art for everyone. Going the other way, everyone deserves to have good quality, well-prepared food in their life. They should also know how to make it themselves. It doesn't have to be fancy, just nutritious and well-made. We've lost the thread of mothers teaching young eaters of both sexes kitchen wisdom. I think there's just as much wrong with a culture that forces parents to overvalue the workplace and undervalue the home as there is with one that traps mothers at home and doesn't allow them to work at all. 
  4. Good meat that is grown and slaughtered mindfully is good food. If it's expensive, we eat less of it. We don't bother with the other stuff.
  5. With that in mind, our family is not built for vegetarianism, too much sugar (including fructose) or a low-fat diet. Maybe some people out there are. Not us. 
  6. Between my allergies and my daughter's, if it comes in a package it's not an option. Besides, it often takes just as long to heat up a package of stuff as it does to prepare the ingredients from scratch. Homemade always tastes better. 
  7. If a sweet food doesn't taste rich enough, add ghee, not sugar. If a savory doesn't taste satisfying, add a dash of unprocessed sea salt and more ghee or dress it with olive oil. If it's still not quite right, add a bit of lemon or lime juice.
  8. When a person wants to eat just one thing that's generally the thing to which they're sensitive or allergic. When that food goes away, the diversity comes back to the taste buds. 
  9. For heat: Turmeric, cumin, mustard, cinnamon, fat, broth. (I'd add ginger, too, but I'm allergic to it.) Cook it, preferably slow-cook or steam. Eat soup before or as a meal. 
  10. For cooling: Add a raw veggie or fruit like pear or apple. Add coriander or yogurt. Eat a salad before a meal.