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View Poll Results: Do you eat processed foods?
No processed foods for me! 7 13.73%
as many whole foods as possible, but some processed food in moderation is fine. 31 60.78%
i love processed foods! gimme that baloney and cool whip! 1 1.96%
never really thought about it before, i just eat food. 12 23.53%
Voters: 51. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 10-13-2005, 03:07 AM   #11
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When I say I 'hate' tinned veg - I am not including tomatoes in that - they are a necessary part of many dishes I prepare, and have had minimal processing. Hate things like tinned peas, baked beans, tinned spaghetti (Heinz' stuff is particularly awful, IMO) - don't like tinned fruits at all - and only freeze minimal amounts of fruits, preferring to eat fruits in due season. OK, that can make for pretty boring during the winters here, but we eat well and this means that things like strawberries and soft fruits are a 'look forward to' treat.

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Old 10-13-2005, 05:25 AM   #12
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Originally Posted by ICadvisor
One thing that has bothered me my whole life is MSG! (As a child I would always get sick from Chinese restaurants, and did not learn why until later in life - the MSG!) Which can be really difficult to find as it can be labled under so many names!
Right on Jess... I really detest that thing and that is one of my main reasons why I avoid any prepackaged, ready made foods, or like Jessica, Chinese restaurants (unless someone assures me with a positive review)... too many of them taste solely of MSG!! I also make sure to choose the msg free version when I buy bouillon cube or granules. I also check on the ingredients carefully, and avoid things that contain chemical ingredients.
I don't care for tinned vegs either, except for tomatoes and corn kernels (of course fresh ones are better, but when they are out of season, it is an option), however I often make use of the frozen vegs out of season, I find them as passable substitutes.
Having said that, I must confess I still use two of the most common processed items, white flours and white sugar... I haven't found any practical substitutes as yet...

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Old 10-13-2005, 06:29 AM   #13
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I don't really consider flour or sugar as 'processed' although, of course, they are. BUT, it's not like the processes required for say, a commercially manufactured meat pie or apple pie, or a tin of spaghetti in tomato sauce.

I seriously dislike ready made salad 'dressings' - the French/Italian/whatever you like to name it stuff.... It doesn't take more than a couple of minutes to make up a batch of dressing!
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Old 10-13-2005, 10:03 AM   #14
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wow, interesting points from all... i was thinking these kind of things when i made up the poll, because as far as i know there is no strict definition of "processed" and i suppose that almost all food is processed in some way before it gets to me. so, for my own purposes i consider anything that is made into something else processed. canned foods like tomatos, not processed. canned tomato sauce with added sodium etc. to make it taste good, processed. canned corn, not processed, canned soup, very processed. i know that in actuality its all processed.. but for myself i try to eat foods as close to their natural state as possible, within reason... and you just cant get fresh corn in the wintertime. gosh, i am always shocked by the amount of sodium in many ready to eat or ready to heat foods.

lol, i stopped using jared spagetti sauce a long time ago because i realised that it tastes just as good to take a can of salt free tomatoes (ingredients: tomatoes) and add some garlic and basil and salt and pepper. nobody in my family noticed the change and canned tomatoes cost half as much as the sauce in a jar.
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Old 10-13-2005, 10:14 AM   #15
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I am with you HappyAvocado, and it goes the same for me with something like "cream of mushroom soup". I used to use this so much for so many recipes, and I was a bit stuck when I found out there is no such thing in Italy. Then I figured out just making a bechamele with milk, butter, a little flour and touch of nutmeg, then add some real mushrooms or soaked bits of dry porcini is not just a substitute, but substancially better!! What we consider here as "processed food" (not going so far as to include flour and sugar), it is very often much easier and takes less effort than you would think to make them by yourself, not to mention the taste, quality and health issue... it is a very good point to keep in mind..
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Old 10-13-2005, 10:58 AM   #16
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I try to stay away from processed meats...Spam, hot dogs, balogna...but I allow myself to indulge once in a while.
I make a lot of homemade sauces, but I also utilize a lot of canned soups and pkts of soup and dressing mixes to save time. There have been great improvements made to convenience foods in the last 20 years, and I'm rolling with the changes. Physically, I'm in no shape to be making everything from scratch anymore.
Some processed things I use a lot: canned soups, dry soup mixes, Italian and ranch dressing mixes, Rice-a-roni, Uncle Ben's and Zatarain's rice mixes, canned spaghetti sauces, Hormel real bacon bits, instant mashed potatoes, instant au gratin potatoes, stove-top stuffing, and cake mixes. By the time I get done with them, they taste good, and that's what my family cares about.

I also keep things on hand for our 17 year old, who's in and out at odd times...Easy Mac, Ready Rice, Ramen noodles, Franko American glop, Totino's Pizza Rolls, frozen pizzas...it goes downhill from there. He likes good food too, though, when I can get him to sit down long enough to eat it.
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Old 10-13-2005, 11:14 AM   #17
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Frozen vegetables are generally just as nutritious as fresh vegetables. I always have frozen peas, corn, limas and brussel sprouts on hand, as they are hard to find fresh. Frozen spinach for lasagna, too.

I eat canned peas when I am depressed (childhood favorite).

I usually make my own tomato sauce/baked beans/bean soupand chili/soup, etc. but have no problem eating jarred sauce, canned baked beans, canned beans and some canned soup.

I cook a few things with oxtail soup mix and with dry veal demiglace. Make dip from sour cream and ranch dressing packet (have tried Ina's onion dip and hated it).
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Old 10-13-2005, 06:23 PM   #18
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I'm with you on this Ishbel, never used a preprepared salad dressing, never will.

They are utter rubbish and taste of nothing but sugar, and the consistency?! It's barely liquid. Nothing quicker than taking a base of OO and lemon juice or vinegar, then throwing whatever you want in to suit the salad (minced garlic, oregano, basil, dijon mustard etc etc).
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Old 10-13-2005, 11:45 PM   #19
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When DH really wants to make me peeved (cleaned up the word) he brings home a jar of "Spaghetti sauce". I don't even like to have it in my pantry!

Veggies which are frozen or canned are generally picked at their peak and processed very little so I don't count them but I do read labels very carefully. For instance Green Giant Very Sweet Nibletts have no sugar added but Green Giant Sweet Niblets do! Go figure!

The tomaoes in the produce section during the winter taste like cardboard so I'd rather use canned which are picked ripe and not sprayed.

I've tried Spam once in my life and that was enough.

For luncheon meats I buy from the deli and never "pressed" meats - only roasted or baked ones.

Scratch is what I prefer.
Cooking is like love, it should be entered into with abandon or not at all. Oregon native transplanted to Chicago....
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Old 10-16-2005, 09:28 PM   #20
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Haggis, what is OO? Is it water? I don't want to seem dumb but am not sure just what this is. I am new to some of the sayings. thanks

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