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Raw Materials

Posted Jul 28 2008 8:14pm


My kids had one of those marshmallow/rice-crispy dessert thingies this morning at church.

I got to thinking about those. Basically what those are is melted marshmallows mixed with Rice Crispies. Would my great-great-grandmother have been able to make those? Nope. They are made from a highly processed cereal and a highly processed “candy.” Each of those things are made out of highly processed other ingredients (the marshmallows are largely corn syrup from corn). When my great-great-grandmother was alive, Rice Crispies hadn’t even been invented.

This is how people cook these days. For most modern home cooks, raw ingredients are the things that come in boxes at the grocery store. They take highly processed foods and then process them some more. For my great-great-grandmother, raw ingredients were things that came out of a field or garden - with the exception of sugar and flour. My great-great-great-great-grandmother probably wouldn’t have even had those.

While I actually quite like those Rice Crispy treats, for the most part foods that are made with raw ingredients that come out of the ground or from some animal instead of a factory are far better not only in the health department, but taste, texture, and smell. Now I’m unusual in this regard because the vast majority of people have become so accustomed to processed foods that they actually prefer them. Velveeta is a prime example. I still don’t understand how anybody can confuse that stuff with cheese…

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