{weekend reading} NATIONAL edition

Busy week in food-related news…I say this every week. It still amazes me, now that I concentrate my news topics to  “food” how many stories there are in one week.

Before I get to the linking bonanza there are two pieces of housekeeping to attend to:

1) One of my favorite cooking blogs, the kitchn, is taking nominations for their annual “The Homies” Awards. There is a category for Favorite Home Cooking Blog. If you feel we deserve a nomination, please nominate us by commenting on this link.

2) Yesterday was the 5th Annual National Soup Swap Day. The FSC crew is getting together today, with the kiddos, to celebrate soup and swapping. We are a day late but at least we’re participating! We will have all of our soup recipes and lots of pictures to share starting tomorrow. If you want to see up-to-the-minute pictures from various soup swaps all over the country, join their Facebook page.

Okay, now onto linking linking linking linking linking. – Christina

The biggest food story of the week is The First Lady’s press conference with Walmart to announce that the big box giant was joining her “Let’s Move” campaign with new company “commitments” to healthier food. I’m going to “try my best” stay pretty neutral with my opinion (very hard for me to do) ; as we all know Walmart is part of the problem but also has to be part of the solution to make a dent in our growing waistlines and general derterrating public health. Walmart is not going away anytime soon. That said, the food blog/newspaper/magazine world has been ablaze since the announcement. The reception is all over the place. I will highlight some of the most interesting pieces that also have great comments. First, author/activist/mama/daughter to Diet for a Small Planet’s author Francis Lappe,  Anna Lappe on Huffington Post. Second, of course I need to defer to my most favorite nutritionist and author, Dr. Marion Nestle. Another favorite is Jane Black on The Atlantic. Emily Ho on the kitchen, again the 15 comments are a must read here folks. Lastly, an absolute brilliant blog post by The Yummy Mummy. Truly Awesome.

The second biggest food story of the week is about the misleading “front of packaging” claims on the packaged foods targeted at children. Oakland’s Prevention Institute found that 85% of all kid’s food with these “ads” on the front of the package didn’t meet basic nutritional needs. We can laugh and say “no kidding” but as we all know there are a lot of children in this country that rely on these foods everyday which are purchased by consumers who trust those claims combined with a great price point and lack of time & other resources to cook from scratch. Dr. Marion Nestle chimes in.

Two big food stories out of Los Angeles this week. First, The City Council has unanimously voted to ban new construction of fast food joints in South LA. This is the biggest “public health” move a city has every made like this. Other cities have such bans on additional fast food establishments but its for aesthetic reasons not for public health. The New York Times reports. The second story is actually an ongoing saga between Jamie Oliver, Food Revolution’s 2nd season and LA’s public schools. They are refusing him in the door. Period. From the sounds of the news stories coming out of LA, no one is behind him; meaning the population of LA. This past week he held a public stunt to show how much sugar, 57 Tons, LAPS kids consume weekly JUST by their consumption of flavored milks. No one showed except 20 people and 1 journalist. Jamie Oliver is feeling discouraged. LAWeekly reports. Mrs. Q, over at Fed Up with School Lunch, has a great post on the subject with a link to a great post on the blog, Better School Food.

A must read over at GRIST by Michelle Venetucci Harvey “Parsing the New ‘humane’ Food Labels” An extremely informative post on untangling of all the front of packaging labeling on meat & poultry. Excellent!

Dr. David Wallinga, MD, MPA, the Director of the Food and Health Program at the Minneapolis-based Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy and a current fellow at University of Minnesota, wrote an interesting article on Huffington Post about how 70% of all US antibiotic use is for ANIMALS (not for ear infections in toddlers!!!) and how that will effect the meat industry’s international trade as more & more countries ban the substances.

The New York Times talks with Dr. Marion Nestle and others about homemade cat & dog food vs. commercial stuff.

In company news: Muir Glen tomatoes will be in BPA-free cans soon!

In a follow-up to last week’s link to an article in The Washington Post about value-added products at Winter Farmers Markets, I found an interesting post at Urban Places and Spaces about the article.

Mrs. Q, Fed Up with School Lunch, has completed her goal of eating an entire school year’s worth of lunches, 162 in total. CNN has the story and a cute quiz. Congrats Mrs. Q on the completion of your goal and your pending memoir from Chronicle Books on your journey!

Barry Estabrook has an extensive story on methyl iodide, the {very toxic} chemical now being used on California’s strawberry fields due to the go-ahead by Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger before he left office. In an interesting turn of events the maker of the chemical, Arysta LifeScience, emailed Estabrook with a response. He posted it on his blog. Both posts are must-read.

Two articles on Alternet that caught my attention. First story about Mark D. Keating who was terminated as an Agricultural Marketing Specialist with the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Organic Program (NOP) for expressing personal opinions in communications with the National Organic Standards Board. The second story is a slamming critique of 4 places that you should never purchase seafood from…I won’t spoil it by listing them here.

Lastly, a scary/gross article on all the chemical fillers that comprise the non-chicken part of McNuggets by Dr. Joseph Mercola . S-C-A-R-Y!


Dinner With Julie has banana waffles with a touch of quinoa flour

A tweaked Artisian Bread in 5 Minutes recipe: Gomasia Breakfast Rolls by Cardamom and Cast Iron. (YUM!)

I have made my first successful gluten free bread loaf and it comes in the form of brioche! Yummy Brioche! Courtesy of Artistian Bread in 5 Minutes via Michael Ruhlman’s blog. I will be posting my trials in GF bread making soon!

Local Kitchen has two great recipes this week: Locally milled Corn tortillas and whole wheat tortilla. I can’t wait to try the corn version since they are Miles safe… well with a small tweak with different GF flour!

The Perfect Pantry has Roasted Winter Squash with Cranberries, Pepitas and Honey-Lime Vinaigrette. Wow!

For all you canning pros out there; Knit & Nosh has Preserved Lemons Two Ways. Can’t wait to try this one.

Smitten Kitchen has a Baked Potato Soup.

Tes at Home has Lamb Korma. I purchased lamb from Mary @ Eluhi Farm just for this recipe!

Cuizoo with a quick African Chicken Stew with Sweet Potatoes and Sunflower Seeds.

Its gluten-free week over on the kitchn and they had two partical posts that I liked a lot; a recipe round-up that uses coconut flour. The second post is a roundup for “naturally” gluten-free recipes, flatbreads from around the world, like buckwheat crepes and Injera, an Ethiopian flatbread.

Lastly, Mark Bittman has a simple potato salad.

7 Comments Add yours

  1. Celia says:

    Thank you for the shout out and for some really good Sunday morning reading. It pains me to learn that LA is being so unreceptive to Jamie Oliver’s efforts. Do they have something against Oliver specifically, or is there just that much lack of concern over the health of our country and children?

    1. Christina says:

      Thanks for thanking me for the “shout out”, I’m loving your blog, so expect more shout outs.

      As for Jamie Oliver, my guess is that Public School Administrator’s don’t want the additional negative attention to an already troubled system. I lived in LA for four years, I left about 4 years ago and back then I heard nothing but negative things about the system. Also there is probably liability, and privacy issues… It’s a “public” school system, the food the kids are eating should be known to the people who pay the taxes, the population of LA.. I’m more troubled by the lack of interest of the parents who could probably make a huge stink and get him in the cafeterias… Wow, these thoughts are all over the place. What are your thoughts?

      1. Celia says:

        I think there are two big issues here:

        1. People don’t want to think about what they’re eating. Food is such a big industry, and we’re content as a society to take what we’re given without considering its source or complaining about some of the major issues (political, nutritional, and environmental) relating to what we’re putting in our mouths.

        2. Lack of personal responsibility. This is where you and I absolutely agree about being worried by the parents’ lack of interest. I think one of the problems with the school system as a whole as it relates to society–and I have tons of thoughts on this, not many of them kind–is that the majority of parents seem to use it as a way to escape parenting. They drop their kids off at the bus and see them for dinner, and expect the school system to know what’s best for their children from age 5 to 18. Obviously this isn’t every parent, but its a worrisome trend.

  2. Lana says:

    I made a batch of preserved lemons yesterday! Can’t wait to try them. Loved tis week’s round up!

    1. Christina says:

      Ohhh nice! I’ve had a pile of oranges and clementine on my dining table for DAYS… ready to make marmalade…. let’s hope i get to it before mold sets in.

  3. Lana says:

    Um “this”

  4. Alexis says:

    I love the Yummy Mummy’s comment that “it has to become cool, sexy, fun to cook from scratch.” I like to think that we at this blog are making that a reality.

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