Friday, November 5, 2010

Top 10 Links of the Week: 10/29/10 – 11/4/10

Today, it's lotsa food politics, a temporary (but sufficiently fabulous) Thanksgiving section, and a guest appearance from the greatest Scandinavian cook in history. (No, it's not Marcus Samuelsson.)

1) Christian Science Monitor: The End of Cheap Food
Fascinating, relatively short piece on world food economics, in which it’s explained why countries with improving qualities of life will ultimately drive up global grocery costs. The last quote kind of sums it up: “Americans have become accustomed to cheap and abundant food … They’re about to get a rude surprise.”

From Diet-blog.
2) Chicago Sun-Times: Kids in kitchen are worth the trouble - Hands-on cooking at an early age can help foster mental, social skills
Mirror neurons, meaning, responsibility, higher-level learning, sensory learning, active learning, simplicity, skill building, and purpose. What do these things all have in common? Yes, they're words, spelled with letters. But they’re also qualities developed/enhanced when your kid helps out in the kitchen. Hand 'em some butter knives and get goin’, ‘rents!

3) Daily Mail UK: Eating fruit and vegetable peel could combat cancer
Banana peels: they’re not just for tripping up Yosemite Sam anymore. Turns out, garlic skin, pineapple cores, and … stay with me here … kiwi husks (yep) are superb cancer fighters. Sure, they need a little extra prep, but maybe it’s worth it? Maybe? Yeah, I need a minute to think about that kiwi thing.

4) Food Politics: The food movement’s new frontier: “ultra-processing”
This Marion Nestle piece has been all over the interweb this week, thanks largely to its neat summary of a larger article in the Journal of the World Public Health Nutrition Association (or, in journal acronym parlance, JWPHNAUIDOHFEUNSFUS). The author, Carlos Monteiro, devised a tri-level classification for processed foods. Level 1 is unprocessed, Level 2 is minimally processed, and Level 3 is ultra-processed, and includes almost every convenience product out there. Guess which is the unhealthiest? Yeah. It’s that one. Interesting stuff, not least because Nutritionism is highlighted as a veddy bad ting.

5) HuffPo: Whole Foods Doubles Net Income
Wow. You knew Whole Paycheck was doing well, but not this well. They attribute the growth to, “more competitive pricing and efforts during the quarter to appeal to its core customers' concerns about healthy eating, animal welfare and sustainable seafood.” Makes sense. Everybody, invest now!

6) Good Eater: For Young Locavores - Eating Local on a Budget
I’m trying to think of ways to describe this piece that don’t already appear in the title, but that headline pretty much sums it up. So, hey! Young locavores! Check this thing. It’s about eating local on a budget. But you knew that.

7) The Simple Dollar: Review – Cut Your Grocery Bill in Half
Trent lays out a chapter-by-chapter summary of the new book from the Economides (“World’s Cheapest”) Family, expanding on key theories within the text. Really, it’s kind of a primer for thriftier, healthier eating in itself, making it worth the read.

Debbie Stabenow
8) Serious Eats: Midterm Elections - Who Will Be the Next Chair of the Senate Agriculture Committee?
Agribusiness stalwart Blanche Lincoln (D-AR) is out (with a vengeance), so who’s to take her place? According to Obama Foodarama, it’s looking like Debbie Stabenow of Michigan, who may be in a position to challenge Big Ag on certain policies.

9) Wise Bread: 6 Plant-Based Diet Tricks for Carnivores
This dovetails nicely with Leigh’s piece from yesterday, if you’re looking to chop some meat. Er … cut some meat out of your diet. Oh, English language. How you confound me sometimes.

10) AOL News: Security Gourd - Man Fights Off Robber With Squash
Butternut squash: more effective than handguns, and only ten times as heavy. I'm thinkin' the NYPD might want to look into this.


Chow: What’s the Difference Between Types of Oatmeal?
Don’t know your instant from your steel-cut? Now you do.

Money Saving Mom: What Meals Can I Cook Without an Oven?
As it turns out, many.

stonesoup: Knife Skills – How to Chop Like a Chef
I link to lots o' knife skills posts, 'cause they're important. Anyway, here’s another one.


The Swedish Chef: Cårven der Pümpkîn
I’m a week late on this, but is der Swedish Chef ever unwelcome? No. And there’s a chainsaw. Mork mork mork!

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Daniel said...

Great lineup of links as usual Kris. Particularly liked the first article about the end of cheap food, specifically because it made me think how wrong the fundamental premise of the article is.

About every decade some pundit comes out and predicts population growth will outstrip our food supply--and then goes on to predict famines, bread riots and the end of the world as we know it. It started with Malthus, Paul Erlich continued it this century with his book "The Population Bomb" and the past few years we're seeing a ton of new articles on the same subject as developing countries increase their demand for meat.

The thing is, all of these rigorous-sounding arguments ignore innovation and technology. I suppose they could be right this time, but I'm not betting on it.

Always a pleasure to read an article that makes you think--and the articles you disagree with generally make you think the most.

Casual Kitchen

Kayla said...

Hey Kris,

I am a college student and I love your blog. Read it everyday. And kiwi skins are delicious. I eat kiwis like apples. That aside, I really appreciate the knowledge that I have gained since stumbling upon your blog and I wanted to thank you because you showed me that I don't have to sacrifice good food with a college student budget. Thank you a million times for all that you do.

- Kayla

Kris said...

@Daniel: Thanks, Dan. I do think the article is worthwhile in that it discusses the possibility. There may not be shortages, per se, but prices for unprocessed foods will rise, despite innovation. (I think, anyway.)

@Kayla: Thank you so much! I'm really happy you're getting something out of it, and appreciate the kind words.

The Calico Cat said...

I used to eat the whole kiwi (minus the hard bits on the two ends) until someone told me I was eating them wrong...

Daniel said...

Kris, maybe we should have our own Simon-Erlich wager! The loser writes a guest post on the winner's blog. :)

Whaddya think?

Casual Kitchen