Friday, January 29, 2010

Read Your Labels!

I bought a bottle of ketchup last week at my local Big Y supermarket. Ketchup is one of those things that just always seems to be in the house. I don't think about it much, and since I don't use much of it, I don't buy it very often. I like a little with eggs or on a salmon patty or veggie burger.

Since it didn't seem like a big deal at the time, I didn't spend a lot of time in front of the ketchup shelf at the store studying all the labels. The house brand was a little cheaper and in big letters on the front label it said: "ALL NATURAL!" Hey, good enuf for me!

Back at home, my dear wife said, "You know, that stuff is loaded with corn syrup." Me: "No way! It clearly says ALL NATURAL!" Sure enough, on the back, right after water and tomatoes (Or was it before tomatoes?), it said one of the major ingredients was "High Fructose Corn Syrup."

Do we really live in a world where a company can proudly proclaim that high fructose corn syrup is "all natural"? I went on the Big Y website and sent them a comment that I thought their label was misleading if not downright dishonest.

I haven't heard back.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Moldy Bread

My bread was moldy this morning, and that's a good thing. These days, about the only bread I eat is home-made in the bread machine. Nothing fancy, just basic 100 percent whole wheat bread. This time of the year, when it's cool in the house, I just keep it in a plastic bag on the kitchen counter. This morning, when I took out the last bit of a loaf I made nearly a week ago I noticed spots of mold growing on it. On the one hand, I didn't like wasting food, but other other, it was good to see that mold would eat my bread.

As Michael Pollan says, if food is so devoid of nutrients and so full of preservatives that it won't rot, it's not good for people, either. So, I'm happy to share a little bread with my fungal friends. But then again, maybe I'll just eat my next loaf a little faster.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

We're on the Way Up!

It's bleak at the bottom, but my annual watch of daily minimum temperatures is over. After a few depressing days at 21 degrees, the temperature chart on the Boston Globe weather page ticked up to 22 degrees yesterday. These are just average temperatures, of course, but I now have a reason to hope, at least, that tomorrow will be a little warmer than yesterday. Spring is on the way!