Food Inc
Old 12-09-2009, 05:39 PM   #1 (permalink)
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I don't know if anybody here has seen this documentary. I am am currently watching it in geography. I think it really brings out the real way our food is produced.

I don;t know if it interests any of the people here but if you want to know where your food comes from, and the conditions it is produced in, i would reccomend this.
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Old 12-09-2009, 06:03 PM   #2 (permalink)
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we randomly watched a part in my physics class, the engineering of fast food. I can't believe corn rules the food world.

I also didn't eat lunch that day after seeing the meat part.
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Old 12-09-2009, 06:12 PM   #3 (permalink)
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as an oldtimer I know full well just how much food has become something of a strange thing.

it's funny, because the generation before mine just loved their powdered potatoes and rice-a-roni and shake and bake. Then people got away from that kind of instant meal, for good reasons. But with the next generation after me, convenience was everything, and the food industry just got deadly good at making shit taste good.

The best thing that ever happened to me was living for a time with a couple of restaurant cooks. Oddly enough - they both just flew into town and saw this film while on the plane. Seeing them in action and working with them a bit, gave me a really good basis for cooking on my own, and understanding how to make food creatively. Cooking is incredibly rewarding, gratifying, and ultimately a great escape. But without having gained some solid experience with cooking, I would probably be addicted to the instant garbage.
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Old 12-09-2009, 06:38 PM   #4 (permalink)
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The problem is how corporations almost enitely rule the food world. They know farmers are struggling, so they employ them to grow and produce what they want for as cheap as possible. The farmers have no choice but to agree, because nowadays farming is very lucrative.
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Old 12-09-2009, 07:27 PM   #5 (permalink)
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there's a good british show about this topic called "the river cottage treatment". hugh fearnley-whittingstall (kind of a foppy british twit, but a great chef) takes londoners out to his farm and shows them how food is raised, both industrially and by hand, and teaches them about good quality, local and seasonal food and about the problems with commercially raised livestock and produce.

River Cottage Treatment | Food | Channel4.com

as fergus henderson said, a good pig is a happy pig...
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Old 12-09-2009, 07:45 PM   #6 (permalink)
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I rented this documentary a month ago and found it interesting. My girlfriend vowed after viewing it to never eat meat again.lol

I was thinking of this when 'trane was talking about this topic earlier today.
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Old 12-09-2009, 07:59 PM   #7 (permalink)
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imo, there's nothing wrong with eating meat, it's more about where that meat comes from and how it was both raised and slaughtered.

i am also quite prepared to eat veal and foie gras - i love both of 'em actually - but not industrially produced.
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Old 12-09-2009, 08:48 PM   #8 (permalink)
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imo, there's nothing wrong with eating meat, it's more about where that meat comes from and how it was both raised and slaughtered.

i am also quite prepared to eat veal and foie gras - i love both of 'em actually - but not industrially produced.
I totally agree there is nothing wrong with eating meat in moderation. If you don't eat meat u better be dam sure where u getting ur nourishment from or you'll suffer from malnutrition.

Like trane states if an animal is slaughtered properly and done in a humane manner I dont' see anything wrong with it. Eating local cattle and trying to get your food from a 100 mile radius is problably the best thing you can do for the environment and for your body if you ask me.

I'd be will to back that statement up as well
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Old 12-14-2009, 09:12 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Wow was thinking this thread would get traction but hasn't. I godda admit I lost my lunch when I saw what farmers do to mass produced food. It is true it costs a little more to eat well but at the same time you can eat well and cheap if your creative. Short on money? why not just cook yourself a minestrone and eat it for a few days.

Seems like the sacrifice, willing to take an hour a day and prep your meals, and a little gaining of knowledge is not what some people are willing to do.
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Old 12-14-2009, 09:31 AM   #10 (permalink)
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convenience aways held sway for me until my brother became a chef and showed me how to make meals from scratch. it takes time to internalize the processes to the extent that it is just as easy as grabbing pre-packaged stuff and following the instructions. until i got there, there was no way i was going to get out a recipie, figure out what ingredients i needed, then go shopping, then come home and assemble something that seemed complicated. so much easier to have someone else do that for me.

but living with a chef for a couple of years changed everything. internalizing techniques and recipies, and learning how to keep staples and flavours as stock items in my kitchen was a watershed moment for me. with these things under my belt it became a lot easier to start to consider other factors like where the produce and meat was coming from. it's all a matter of building that base of knowledge and being able to apply it to new things. and the more you get into it, the more it becomes a process of discovery, which is the really fun part to me.
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Old 12-14-2009, 09:36 AM   #11 (permalink)
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convenience aways held sway for me until my brother became a chef and showed me how to make meals from scratch. it takes time to internalize the processes to the extent that it is just as easy as grabbing pre-packaged stuff and following the instructions. until i got there, there was no way i was going to get out a recipie, figure out what ingredients i needed, then go shopping, then come home and assemble something that seemed complicated. so much easier to have someone else do that for me.

but living with a chef for a couple of years changed everything. internalizing techniques and recipies, and learning how to keep staples and flavours as stock items in my kitchen was a watershed moment for me. with these things under my belt it became a lot easier to start to consider other factors like where the produce and meat was coming from. it's all a matter of building that base of knowledge and being able to apply it to new things. and the more you get into it, the more it becomes a process of discovery, which is the really fun part to me.

Agreed, having my whole family either in the food business or good with food I got the same know how. I really think it should be a mandatory High School and Elementary school course one how to cook properly.

If we can't take care of our own body we shouldn't have time for other things IMHO.
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Old 12-14-2009, 09:42 AM   #12 (permalink)
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i started my first real vegetable garden this past year - carrots, bok choy, a couple of types of lettuce, a few varieties of tomatoes, peppers and a bigger herb garden than i've done in the past. it wasn't much, but it's awesome to be able to just pluck carrots from your garden and cook them for dinner. i'll expand it a bit next year now that i've had some experience. it surprised me how little work it was after the initial planting. i'm not going to lie and say it was tone of fun, but the reward was totally worth it.

is it bad that i've been eyeing my dog and wondering how many people you could feed off of a leg once he's passed on...
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Old 12-14-2009, 10:18 AM   #13 (permalink)
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i am also quite prepared to eat veal and foie gras - i love both of 'em actually - but not industrially produced.
good luck with finding that
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Old 12-14-2009, 10:20 AM   #14 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by 'trane View Post
convenience aways held sway for me until my brother became a chef and showed me how to make meals from scratch. it takes time to internalize the processes to the extent that it is just as easy as grabbing pre-packaged stuff and following the instructions. until i got there, there was no way i was going to get out a recipie, figure out what ingredients i needed, then go shopping, then come home and assemble something that seemed complicated. so much easier to have someone else do that for me.
Any tips on how one can get from point A to point B without being related to or knowing a chef?

I have always wanted to get better at preparing good, healthy meals, but i have never had the know-how myself. I mean i can make a few things in the kitchen, but nothing that i am really proud of. I'd love to get more adept in cooking, but I don't really know where to start.
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Old 12-14-2009, 11:42 AM   #15 (permalink)
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Any tips on how one can get from point A to point B without being related to or knowing a chef?

I have always wanted to get better at preparing good, healthy meals, but i have never had the know-how myself. I mean i can make a few things in the kitchen, but nothing that i am really proud of. I'd love to get more adept in cooking, but I don't really know where to start.
you could take a cooking class - apparently there are some great ones out there.

a couple of good quality cookbooks helps too. the essentials of italian cooking by marcella hazan was fantastic for me. i think the best way is to find someone - buddies/wife/etc - that are also interested and figure it out together. getting together for meals is the key - pick something you would like to try and go for it. we used to do this twice per month - get a couple of bottles of wine, pick a meal we wanted to eat and put it together as a group activity. have some laughs, figure out what works and what doesn't. my buddies and i now do this all teh time - at least once per week. the more you do it, the more you learn and the broader your horizons become. trial and error is really the best way. but it starts with some good resources, and if you don't know a foodie, try some good cookbooks. i would suggest picking up a copy of marcella hazan's book, and maybe the james beard cookbook as well. those are two decent starting points.

fancy - what skills so you have already? can you roast a chicken? make pasta sauce from scratch?

in fact, here's an awesome starter i got from marcella hazan - the perfect easy tomato sauce for pasta:

take 2 cans of whole tomatoes and put them in a sauce pot. cut one onion in half and add it to the tomatoes (you don't even need to take the skins off). add a chunk of butter (2tbsp is probably enough). add a bay leaf if you have one, but you don't need it. put it on med-high and get it to simmer. strir occasionally to make sure the bottom doesn't burn and let it bubble away until the tomatoes start to break down and the sauce thickens. at the end, toss the onion bits away (the flavour is now in the tomatoes and the solids are just waste). that's it. it's awesome. add basil leaves if you have them, but again, not necessary. you won't buy canned sauce anymore. triple the recipie and freeze it in batches and you will have prepared sauce for your next 4 or 5 pasta meals.

i could go on forever. i love this stuff.
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Old 12-14-2009, 11:45 AM   #16 (permalink)
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good luck with finding that
gavage - or force feeding ducks/geese - mimics their natural instinct to gorge themselves before the winter. it's not as bad as people think, and can be done humanely. there are certainly farms in ontario and especially quebec who do it this way.
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Old 12-14-2009, 11:55 AM   #17 (permalink)
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some good advice trane. thanks.

Being married to a vegetarian has its drawbacks when it comes to food. For one, i haven't prepared any meat in 10 years or so. I'll eat meat myself when i go out, but we just don't have any at home. I have made a similar sauce to the one you described (although i didn't use onions - i will next time). I have a small repetoire of stuff i make, but frankly it's boring me at this point. I may well take a class like you said. That's a great idea.
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Old 12-15-2009, 04:08 PM   #18 (permalink)
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I live on a rather large acreage in the Kawartha Lakes(perfect for growing most things) and this year we had 3 large gardens. Grew carrots, potato's, beets, turnips, strawberries, tomatoes, leek, oinion-etc. We also have sheep and chickens, so every year we are becoming more self sufficient in many terms. We have the veggies, eggs, meat, honey, maple syrup, (sometimes goats milk) wild apples.

So what I m trying to say is that many more people can grow gardens/chickens than what is curently happening. We do not use chemicals either, so we keep the soil as healthy as possible.

On a side not: does anybody have any good Yorkshire pudding recipes?
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Old 12-15-2009, 06:50 PM   #19 (permalink)
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germain thats awesome.

you belive its actually illegal to have a chicken farm in Toronto.

I wish I had the land and resources as yourself but today I had a great dinner.

I fried up some moose meat shot and prepped by my dad, some local potatoes with Radicchio from the backyard.

Now thats some good eats. I love simple food myself.
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