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Old 01-31-2013, 07:52 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by medtran49 View Post
Although I have to agree with the comments made about the way Puffin presents his/her opinions, a good point is being made. America is being dumbed down and wallets emptied by all the conveniences.

Case in point, I noticed last week in our grocery flyer that Kraft has apparently come out with a new product, bread/panko crumbs, fresh cheese and spice mixtures. I just Googled it to make sure I had the brand right and they have quite a few mixtures out, ALL of which could be easily made at home in just a very few minutes and a heck of a lot cheaper than what they cost in the grocery. Even at BOGO prices last week I thought it was too expensive to buy, especially since the last time we tried something along similar lines we weren't happy with it at all.

Let's not even mention the tubs of chopped onions, peppers, etc. they have in the produce department. I mean really, how long does it take to chop up an onion? I'll admit I buy pre-peeled garlic cloves (whole cloves, not chopped, I want to see what I'm using) when I'm making up a batch of sausage or something else that requires huge quantities of garlic but chopped onions?

Karen
I couldn't agree with you more. The amount of convenience items available is bordering on silly. Same argument can be made for seasoning/gravy packages. Beef stew seasoning, taco seasoning...really? Much easier to make at home with real ingredients and no mystery chemicals.

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Old 01-31-2013, 08:02 AM   #12
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Originally Posted by forty_caliber View Post
I couldn't agree with you more. The amount of convenience items available is bordering on silly. Same argument can be made for seasoning/gravy packages. Beef stew seasoning, taco seasoning...really? Much easier to make at home with real ingredients and no mystery chemicals.

.40
I agree to an extent. I can afford to order from Penzey's on occasion and get my fresh spices. However, some cannot afford it and they have a choice between different seasoning packets at $1 each for five meals or buying one jar of "spice" for the same $5...been there and had to do that. There was a time I was too busy trying to make a living and didn't have the time or money to eat the best of foods.

I am glad that now I have both and am able to enjoy cooking.
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Old 01-31-2013, 08:14 AM   #13
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I agree to an extent. I can afford to order from Penzey's on occasion and get my fresh spices. However, some cannot afford it and they have a choice between different seasoning packets at $1 each for five meals or buying one jar of "spice" for the same $5...been there and had to do that. There was a time I was too busy trying to make a living and didn't have the time or money to eat the best of foods.

I am glad that now I have both and am able to enjoy cooking.
That's a fair point, herbs and spices are staple items in our pantry. I buy that type of thing in bulk when I can to make it more economical. It's easy to take our many blessings for granted.

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Old 01-31-2013, 08:33 AM   #14
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I once went grocery shopping with a young woman who bought a bunch of frozen "TV dinners". She saw the look on my face an said, "It's cheaper than restaurant food, when I'm too tire to cook."

I'm sure that applies to a lot of that convenience chopped onions, etc. I wonder if people notice that stuff like that is usually coated in preservatives.
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Old 01-31-2013, 09:29 AM   #15
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I agree with PF. I do use some packaged mixes, mainly because of their consistency of flavor.

I can get carried away with the spices sometimes with unpleasant results. I can end up with a pot full of food that I don't like, and that's not economical at all.
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Old 01-31-2013, 12:40 PM   #16
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That's all well and good if you live somewhere that such activities can actually be done. Realism for a lot of people doesn't include space for a couple of flower pots, much less a garden. Many items are dependent on a certain environment. Some locations are entirely unsuitable for growing all but a very few things.

We have 2 acres here on our island in paradise, yet so far we have only found a half dozen things which can be grown here because we are situated on a sand dune, 30 feet above the Atlantic Ocean, with the Trade Winds blowing salt air off the water about 3/4 of the time. As a result, the sandy soil is salt impregnated, and most common veggies won't grow in it. Peppers, basil, rosemary, sweet potatoes are the most likely things we can grow here. On parts of the island farther from the water they grow quite a bit of produce, but we are fairly limited. For that reason, transporting produce is essential if you want any kind of variety.

But I agree that there is really no excuse for not learning how to cook basic foods. My mother started us cooking back in the 50's when most men didn't even consider it. That introduction has stood me in good stead my whole life, and in the last 20 years I've improved on what I learned from her. I may not be a classically trained chef, but I did take a month long class on the classic essentials at a fairly good cooking school in Denver. I'm no wizard, but I'm fairly comfortable in the kitchen.
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Old 01-31-2013, 01:22 PM   #17
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When my kids were small and my husband was in the trade of being a Chef, I was able to get my seasonings in bulk containers. But now I live alone and no longer cook for a family. So it doesn't pay for me to have great big jars of seasonings. Aha! Between me, my daughter, and my son we now do buy in bulk and split it between the three of us. Spike brought the large restaurant size jar of garlic powder to me last night because I needed a refill. I have the big jar of onion powder and he took some of that home. I also have the large jar of Italian mix of herbs. That got divided immediately betwen the three of us. My daughter asked me a couple of weeks ago if I was going to buy a new large jar. I wasn't. So I split what I did have on hand with her. I will be buying an new jar next month. It is the one seasoning that the three of us use the most. It is my turn to buy it this time. It is a mixture of five different herbs and a lot cheaper than buying individual containers. It is great having the family live so nearby. And a lot cheaper.
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Old 01-31-2013, 01:41 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RPCookin View Post
That's all well and good if you live somewhere that such activities can actually be done. Realism for a lot of people doesn't include space for a couple of flower pots, much less a garden. Many items are dependent on a certain environment. Some locations are entirely unsuitable for growing all but a very few things.

We have 2 acres here on our island in paradise, yet so far we have only found a half dozen things which can be grown here because we are situated on a sand dune, 30 feet above the Atlantic Ocean, with the Trade Winds blowing salt air off the water about 3/4 of the time. As a result, the sandy soil is salt impregnated, and most common veggies won't grow in it. Peppers, basil, rosemary, sweet potatoes are the most likely things we can grow here. On parts of the island farther from the water they grow quite a bit of produce, but we are fairly limited. For that reason, transporting produce is essential if you want any kind of variety.

But I agree that there is really no excuse for not learning how to cook basic foods. My mother started us cooking back in the 50's when most men didn't even consider it. That introduction has stood me in good stead my whole life, and in the last 20 years I've improved on what I learned from her. I may not be a classically trained chef, but I did take a month long class on the classic essentials at a fairly good cooking school in Denver. I'm no wizard, but I'm fairly comfortable in the kitchen.
I am with you RPC. I am 74 y.o. and have difficulty just walking around my apartment. Should I go out and try to garden just for the purpose of feeding myself? Because if I did, everytime I would have to bend over to do the weeding, I would pass out. Should I risk falling while I am trying to walk on uneven ground? I am trying to maintain my independence, but not at the risk of losing my life in the process. Our society has progressed to supermarkets as opposed to living like a pioneer and plowing with just a horse or mule. I have done my share of gardening over the years, and now am enjoying the ability to be able let someone else do the hard work. I will continue to buy my food from the supermarket and enjoy the conveniece of having ready made foods available to me.

I am afraid Puffin doesn't have much faith in the ingenuity and abilities of the American people.
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Old 01-31-2013, 03:30 PM   #19
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"I am afraid Puffin doesn't have much faith in the ingenuity and abilities of the American people."
You and I grew up in a time when most people had to fend for themselves...and we did. We were called "the greatest generation" for a reason. I am referring to young people who have been raised to assume 'someone else' will always be there for them. Basic life skills are 'so fifties'. When the **** hits the fan economically it's those people who never learned how to tie shoe laces because they have always worn 'velcro' who will be leaving the cities and headed by the tens of thousands to your relative's farm who grows a garden in the country.
You are correct. I have no faith in today's young people because they don't have the collective "ingenuity" to start a lawn mower. I see them every day trying to figure out how to use a bicycle pump. They can't read or write. The worst part about that is they believe they don't need to. They have pretty much given up any hope of having anywhere near the lifestyle of their parents. A 'well paying' secure job? Ever buying a house? A new car? A holiday in Spain? Not so much. Just another day with the latest 'shoot em up' video game'. Maybe 'borrow' another fifty from mom when the old man isn't looking.
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Old 01-31-2013, 05:21 PM   #20
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I hesitate to jump into the fray here but here's an observation on my part.

The new poster came here looking for help making roux, and got some sound advice. I'm sure he/she has run for the hills by now. The last two pages have turned into a cat fight.
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