Monday, November 21, 2011

Food Politics

I am neither a food professional or a politician.  However, I am a human who eats food, a mother, a healthcare provider, and a gardener.  I think I may be as well qualified to weigh in on national food policy as the average congressperson, perhaps more so.
I'd like to discuss the big headline story about pizza being classified as a vegetable by Congress.  Well, that's not exactly what happened, but as this Washington Post article discusses, the whole vegetables in school lunch issue is so muddy at this point that its no surprise that we are hearing about the 1/8 cup of tomato paste on a kid's pizza getting extra credit.

I'd like to approach this from a different angle all together, as a person who loves pizza, and vegetables.  Why is the tomato sauce the only vegetable on the pizza?  You see, I feel like pizza could, in the right hands, be a regular vehicle for good.  I 'm not talking about the pre-made frozen factory stuff.  I'm talking about homemade pizza for our kids.

Like this one, it doesn't have any tomato sauce at all but has ricotta, wilted kale, and caramelized red onions.

Or this one with tomato sauce (which actually contains tomatoes, onions, garlic, celery, and carrots), spinach, and sliced red bell peppers.

Are you starting to get my gist?  I am totally OK with feeding my kid pizza if its put together like this, with a balance of components that equate to more than just grease, carbs, and salt.  How do we produce this en masse for entire schools?  I've watched the Jamie Oliver programs about school lunch and I'm convinced that its completely doable and pretty economic when done in bulk.  I'm OK to keep pizza on the menu as long as we get rid of the nonsense and really get down to the work of feeding our kids healthy, tasty food.

No comments:

Winter, finally (and seriously)

I planned to start this blog last spring as my garden flew into action, but then got into the actual work of gardening and abandoned the task. However, today its winter, really winter. I'm wearing long underwear and sitting under a blanket and I'm still cold.
Today is the shortest day of the year so from here on in it gets better. I look forward to longer days, that's for sure. But I'll also tuck in and enjoy winter's freeze and snow, it does mean skiing after all. Maybe more importantly is the snow pack - without snow there isn't water for the West.
The end of the year and the solstice are a good time to think back on the last 365. I have no reason to complain and feel really lucky about the last year and really hopeful about the year to come.