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Food Buzzword Death Watch

2 December 2010

Pringles Multigrain Cheesy Cheddar can

A couple of years ago, I posted about the impending demise of “artisanal” as a descriptor with any valid meaning. I figured that once Quizno’s started selling sandwiches on something they call “artisanal flatbread,” it probably wasn’t long before the folks at Dunkin’ Donuts who heat up the breakfast sandwiches in those turbo-charged convection ovens would start to consider themselves artisans.

Today, I realized that “multigrain”’s days are numbered.

(It’s sort of surprising it took me so long to reach this conclusion.)

One of my colleagues brought in snacksfor her students to celebrate their last class meeting. The menu included Multigrain Pringles. In Cheesy Cheddar flavor. No, seriously, these exist.

And if the very idea of Cheesy Cheddar flavor Multigrain Pringles isn’t enough to make your brain explode, you should know that they’re covered in that lurid orange cheese cheesy powder. (I can’t bring myself use the word cheese here.)

Before we know it a product will be allowed to be labeled “multigrain if it’s made of chlorine bleached, chemically enriched wheat flour plus a few parts per million of floor sweepings from an oatmeal processing factory.

Don’t Ask Me How I Know This

2 November 2009

When you are chewing a lemon Starburst and take a sip of coconut-flavored iced coffee, the resulting flavor combination may remind you of Thai food.

Winter Squash Risotto

23 September 2009

Winter squash (or pumpkin) and sage is a classic Italian flavor combination that’s showcased in this creamy, rice dish. Risotto is Italian comfort food at its finest.

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Squash Rolls

23 September 2009

These tender, sweet dinner rolls turn up at all my family’s holiday meals. The butternut squash tints the dough a warm, golden color.

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Winter Squash Potage

23 September 2009

This savory winter squash soup recipe is based on a recipe for potage, a puréed vegetable soup from France. There are as many different recipes for potage as there are cooks, so you should feel free to substitute like quantities of similar vegetables. Part of the fun for the eater is guessing which vegetables the cook as chosen for the soup. Read more…

I Am the Elephant in the Room

17 September 2009

For days now I’ve been trying to string together a cogent response to Michael Pollan’s fat-baiting New York Times op-ed piece. You know, the one where he writes:

One recent study estimated that 30 percent of the increase in health care spending over the past 20 years could be attributed to the soaring rate of obesity, a condition that now accounts for nearly a tenth of all spending on health care.

The American way of eating has become the elephant in the room in the debate over health care.

I’ve started about eight letters in response, but have been too furious to finish them. That’s furious as in “wake up in the middle of the night and sit at the computer in an angry fog trying to come up with a statement that encapsulates my rage and disappointment.” Read more…

The Roots of Flavor

9 September 2009

If there’s a smell more homey that that of onions slowly softening in butter or olive oil, I’ve certainly never smelled it. I don’t know if I’d go so far to bottle the scent and dab it behind my ears, but it certainly draws me into the kitchen. Fortunately, it’s one of the more common scents in my house. From stocks to stews, curries to quiche, many of my favorite recipes start with the cutting and sautéing of an onion.

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