Monday, February 18, 2008

The life of food

The recent beef recall combined with learning about the industry through books such as "Omnivore's Dilemma" make a visit to the meat counter all the more bizarre.

At any time, you'll find chicken and pork products frozen in my refrigerator. For whatever reason I rarely cook beef. That's not to say that I don't eat it. I will order beef for lunch if there are fajitas or burgers. It's certainly nice to order a plate of stir-fry beef when I eat Chinese food. Most of the time, however, I eat chicken.

I really do wonder how this recall and news footage will affect people's eating habits. Sadly, I don't think people will think about this the right way. People will think they're more safe avoiding beef products when the truth is that any meat product could be questionably raised and processed. Do people actually think the 3lb. tray of pork or chicken they buy at Costco is that much safer? Pigs probably sit in just as much filth as cows. Chickens are locked inside huge coops for the six weeks they are grown. All animals (minus truly hand-raised, organic) for consumption are injected with all sorts of antibiotics and growth or vitamin supplements. Out of sight, out of mind... . Sorry if you're eating as you read this, but it makes you think about how little we question what goes into out bodies.

I'm thinking about all this because I just spent the past few hours folding dumplings. My hands still smell of the raw pork that I mixed and dolloped into wonton and potsticker wraps. A couple times during the year, I buy a couple pounds of pork along with various ingredients, mix them together, and stock my freezer with bags of freshly made dumplings. It's more work than buying a bag from the store, but at least I know what goes into them. By having both wontons and potstickers, I can choose between soup or frying. And I love being able to come home and have something to cook up when I'm lazy or have a craving for them. They last me a couple months since I only eat them once per week. Wonton soup today was perfect with the cooler weather returning.


mini said...

that's actually a really great idea. i really don't like the store-bought frozen dumplings. this way, you can make them how you like them

teahouse said...

Mmmm...dumplings!! My mom always made them, too, when we were growing up. So my sister and I are now experts at making dumplings.