Uncommon Food for the Common Man

Great food is worth the time to make it

Processed Food


I did a little web wandering tonight, as I got a bit distracted while doing some school work.

I need to do a presentation and my topic is Are processed foods killing us? or some variation on that theme.

In my wanderings, I missed out on an event by a food blogger eating RULES called October: Unprocessed. It chronicles his and others’ experiences who have taken the pledge to eat only unprocessed foods for the whole month.

It is pretty interesting concept, and one I would like to try.

As I think about it, most of the food I make is pretty much unprocessed. Meats, fish, fresh vegetables make the bulk of our meals. Lately, I have eaten lots of oatmeal for breakfast.

Pasta is a bit of a sticking point, as we have lately eaten a lot of it lately. It is minimally processed, and good stuff, so if I buy organic, it should be good.

Many recipes call for tomato sauce and such, and do organic tomato products constitute ‘processed food?’ If the ingredient list is just organic tomatoes, I’m OK with it. (the October Unprocessed project defines processed as anything you could not make yourself. I could make various diced, sauces tomatoes if I needed, and likely will in the future once I get a little growing space.)

I find I don’t buy stuff in boxes much anymore. It is so much nicer to make things from bulk items, but that takes a bit more effort and time.

The last couple of days I have pretty quickly fixed meals. Today was nice, a fritata using some neglected vegetables, some dried mushrooms I foraged, counter-ripened romas, eggs (that very-well could have come from my own chickens – it’s just the space thing again) and that’s it.

One thing I need to get rid of in my diet is milk. Milk always associates with really bad stuff – cookies, graham crackers (of late), cereal, etc. Today I tried oatmeal without the milk, but I almost scorched it. I was going to try it with soy milk, but instinctively grabbed the milk container.

Coffee is fine without milk, but I do like my coffee with it.

We do have a bottle of ‘caramel’ syrup, but that stuff is nasty! I’ve been experimenting with my own caramel – a couple teaspoons of sugar, a tiny bit of water, microwave it for 50 seconds or so. If it comes out bubbling, and stays that way for a few, that is fine. Add a little half-and-half and depending on how much you added, it should solidify a bit, but just nuke for about 20-25 seconds and it is good to go. Pour in your coffee and enjoy. Careful, it is likely a little hot.

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