June 26, 2008

Scrapin’ Up the Bits… Alton Brown Style

I’ve always been an Alton Brown fan. He always set himself apart from the other “personalities” on the Evil Network with his wit and style, and if I happen to be watching TV and Good Eats is on, I’ll watch it.

Now, courtesy of the folks at Grist, I’m glad to see that Mr. Brown is planning to use his television platform to talk about something that is glaringly absent from most Evil Network programming:

During his lecture, Alton announced that his TV show would begin focusing on sustainability issues: how crops are grown and animals are raised. The shift in focus would be a form of penance, he said. ...

"I've spent the last nine years influencing what people do with food, but I haven't taught them about the real essence of feeding themselves, and I feel that it's high time to step up to bat," he says. "I've been busy being clever, but now I want to use what credibility I may have to help people think about sustainability."

My DVR will be set, Alton.

We don’t drink much tequila. But when we do, we choose Herradura Silver, which is then poured over ice with lime juice and some Cuantro for an excellent margarita. For the uninitiated on the finer points of tequila – such as myself – here is a short and sweet primer.

And if you like to cook with alcohol, here is an excellent way to use just a tablespoon or two of some high-end tequila.

Michael Ruhlman asks for some feedback on dinners that are “weekly staples” in his readers’ households. Reading through the comments, I can’t help but be a bit taken aback by some of the fairly, shall we say, complex weekday meals?

Thin loin pork chops on the bone, bound with a breading of Wondra flour, eggs (beaten and strained to get rid of the chalaza), and Ian's panko, cooked in olive oil; cucumber salad with a sweetened vinegar dressing (Hungarian style); lima beans braised in heavy cream.

Also, I must now grill a whole chicken. That basting sauce sounds too good.

And, finally, two researchers at Carnegie Mellon took a closer look at the environmental impact of eating local versus other factors in the food production chain. Their conclusion:

Thus, we suggest that dietary shift can be a more effective means of lowering an average household’s food-related climate footprint than “buying local.” Shifting less than one day per week’s worth of calories from red meat and dairy products to chicken, fish, eggs, or a vegetable-based diet achieves more GHG reduction than buying all locally sourced food.

Mental Masala at Ethicurean has a great post on the study and some factors it failed to consider, including pasture-raised animals for meat.

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