The thoughts of an American Muslim and mother of four raising her children in small town USA with her Egyptian husband.
Sunday, June 08, 2008
Can I rant about food for a minute???
I have some complaints about food, and since DH and I are both consummate foodies... Food is a big thing here in our house. Please stay with me and try to muddle through the sarcasm... I'm laying in on thicker than my bechamel...
1)Halal butchers (or halal haramies in most cases): Why is it that "halal" (which is incorrect for so many reasons really, it's more of a brand name... I would say zabiha, but I digress) butchers have the tendency to cut corners and price gouge? And why don't they have standards? Case in point... DH just bought about 20lbs of ground meat, 1/2 lamb and 1/2 beef. And the butcher put it all in bags labeled ground beef with no indicator to tell you which was which. So, now here I am defrosting bags praying that I guessed right. Of course lamb and beef taste totally different so I have ended up screwing up dishes because the lamb is too strong in them. Walahi, the guy at the supermarket has pity on me and my 4 kids and tries to help out by cutting things special for me and suggesting meat that will be good for what I am cooking... Why doesn't the brother???
2)Spoiled family members: I'm not going to name names here (but I think a D and an H are involved) but my culinary generosity has landed me in a situation where naming your own alternative dinner five minutes before we eat is the norm. This is a PAIN in my rear. What it does is throw me into a last minute panic and scramble even if I have planned and prepared ahead of time. Not nice. Ditto to special request for things you want 10 minutes from now and I don't have the ingredients for.
3)Wheat in everything: I know wheat is cheap, but I have an allergy to gluten which cuts it out of my diet... And I know it's a binder and all that... But does EVERYTHING processed have to have it? And do all cereals have to have malt (which also has gluten)? Alternatives people, PUHLEEESE!!!
4)Expensive, underripe, homogeneous produce: Does it occur to the marketing people here in the US that apples, oranges, pears and bananas are not the only fruit in the world? What about the concept that produce is seasonal... It's a big word I know, but it means that different fruit grows at different times of the year. Your produce section should probably reflect that.
5)Labeling and marketing should be separate issues: Although SOME people might be inclined to think that the word "natural" on a label actually means something... I am not. And although I do have my days where I feel only a rung above drooling imbecile even I know that you don't add hormones and antibiotics to chicken post-mortem!!!! So will you stop using things like "natural" on things like canned fruit, which was ALWAYS "natural"? And will you stop labeling meat with "no added hormones or antibiotics" and then having that fine print saying "the USDA prohibits the addition of hormones or antibiotics to all meat and poultry products" like I won't notice?
I am a mother to four wonderful kids and the wife to one wonderful Egyptian! We live in a small town in the Midwest and work in our small businesses. I am also a Waldorf preschool teacher and childcare provider, a backyard chicken lady, a part time homeschooler, and a generally crunchy mama (think hijabi in birks).