Category Archives: Food

And the point is what?

So this woman climbed on the bus the other day with one of those mega prams that appears deceptively small but has 4×4 wheels that run over your feet if you don’t watch out because the wheels are spread like a squatting spider below the seat.

She had child who was getting too big for a pram, a shopping bag and a snack in hand. Curiously I looked at the snack. (I am naturally greedy.) It was a clear box of Quorn veggie cocktail sausages that she was scarfing at speed. Quorn was something I was unfamiliar with before moving countries because South Africans tend to look rather mockingly at people who don’t believe in meat. Quorn being the big brand name for a company that turns soya into a dizzy variety of meat-like products from sausages to mince to breaded chicken cutlets.

Mo Farah endorses it so it must work, even for athletes. And we are not above using a bit of the mince (with its strange squidgy soft tofu texture) to bulk out our normal lean beef mince when in economy mode. But I am not really a Quorn fan.

Looking through the opaque shopping bag I noted it contained a pot of carrot and coriander soup and a pack of ‘Lincolnshire style veggie sausages’ by a supermarket brand.

This to me was even more absurd than Quorn as a brand. This was clearly someone who believed in being a vegetarian for some reason – health/religion/love of fluffy animals – I have no idea. She was probably teaching her kid to be a veggie too. But obviously in denial about the lack of animal in her diet. Why on EARTH would she fill 2/3 of her shopping of imitation meat products? Surely if you are going to be vegetarian, you should embrace the plant. Enthuse on how you can spice and season and appreciate the delectable freshness of vegetables. And what is she teaching her child? Don’t eat meat but let me make your palate accustomed to things vaguely umami meat-ish?

I can fully understand why these products exist on the market but frankly, basing your diet around them is absurd. If you can’t work out how to live on eggs, nuts, cheese, lentils and vegetables maybe you just weren’t cut out to be a herbivore.

Leave a comment

Filed under Food, modern living

Sterotypes

I had to work late last night and as a rule if you commit past a certain hour the company is obligated to get you food. Issues with the usual delivery company and a credit card followed by a long wait time resulted in a decision to rather do a takeaway from the local Vietnamese restaurant.

One of the guys went off to pay and collect the telephone order – quite a big switch from our usual impersonal internet order with delivery.

Later in the day I made a factitious comment and then apologised that it was bordering on racist assumption.

‘That,’ said my colleague, ‘is nothing. Do not send an oriental guy in a white shirt to pick up an order at a Vietnamese restaurant. I stood for ages at the bar and all the staff just ignored me. But customers kept coming up to me and waving their arms in the air for the bill, like I worked there or something.’

On the upside, the food was good, still warm and the order was correct which is more than I can say for the delivery company.

Oh, and we didn’t have to tip.

 

Leave a comment

Filed under anecdote, Food, social

Healthy Living

So one of my friends pointed out a mutual friend is currently trying to fall pregnant and has been told by a certain hippy character we know that she will come by with some henna to help her dye her hair. Hair dye apparently is not good for embryos or foetuses.

I took a deep breath. ‘Isn’t this’, I asked, ‘The same person you said you had a glass of wine with the other day. Except you felt ill after one glass and told me she was happy to finish the bottle.’

Indeed it was.

I admit to being a terrible hypocrite when it comes to my health. I will surmise regretfully after the fact that pickling my liver may not be a great idea and attempt to run it off the next morning with a mouth full of cottonwool and lungs that feel vacumn packed

I will contemplate and commiserate my love handles as I wedge a doughnut into my mouth.

I will suffer the burdens of a headache loudly and irritably while attempting to refuse pain killers while pouring caffeine into my system in the form of very strong coffee.

I admit to all of this. I know that if I was to be a healthy, well preserved earth child, bountiful and beautiful these choices I make are probably flawed.

I was still vaguely insulted by the logic and lifestyle choices of my former friend even though it really is the pot calling the kettle black.

In this instance I’d probably continue to colour my hair as the lesser of two evils as I’m not actually ingesting colourant directly into my body (well, yes through my scalp into my brain but as I’m not drinking it I feel it’s sort of acceptable). But I certainly wouldn’t be drinking.

Just like I quite like spray deodorants even though they are supposed to be environmentally unfriendly and there are scare stories of aluminium poisoning through your pores. But I’ll probably continue to risk it although I avoid antiperspirants like the plague unless in black tie.

I’ll happily consume fruit/veg/dry goods well beyond the use by date as I’m not good at reading them but go off how wrinkly/mouldy/wilted something looks. But catch me with a bloated can or funny smelling meat. I have been known to throw four chicken breasts (in date) into the bin because they came via an online shop and I had no idea what the driver had done that day but the breasts smelt rank on opening.

Modern living means much of what you do is going to be bad for you. But it’s about which battles you pick to staying healthy.

 

 

1 Comment

Filed under Fitness, Food, modern living

Office Lunch

The problem with modern technology is just how cheap appliances have gotten.

In some parts of the world you still have an office tea lady/cleaner. But even if you don’t have her anymore (it is about 70% of the time a ‘her’), you can still invest in a dishwasher and a microwave at very little cost.

So practically every place I have worked at has had some form of kitchen(ette).

In my last office this was taken to ridiculous heights because they were located in this huge old country house. This meant that in addition to two tiny microwave/sink points, they had a full kitchen downstairs.

Some of the guys used to put frozen pizzas into the oven at lunchtime.

This was also partly because the country house was, well, in the country and finding a variety of meals in walking distance was not going to happen.

In my current office we have a number of people with odd dietary requirements.

So called ‘fitness freaks’ on low carb high protein diets exist.¬†They¬†microwave frozen vegetables in their packet to keep up with this diet. When you open them up the entire place smells like old farts and cabbage, broccolli being one of those vegetables that does not steam/boil/microwave well.

Others seem to think microwaving raw fish is a good idea.

Or just buying fish from down the road. Or really strong curry. Or smelly soups.

All of this wouldn’t be so bad if there was a designated seating area you ate this in. A sort of equivalent to those horrible smokers holes where the smoke hovers in the air as they puff frantically away, nicotine sticking to their clothing, the secondary smoke alone bringing about a contact high. The same could be done with a dining area where all smelly foods would hover in the air like a venue where Gordon Ramsey meets a dumpster.

The fact of the matter is a lot of offices do not have allocated seating for eating. So even if you inherit a machine from someone who only ate sandwiches you are likely to discover your keyboard is full of dried crumbs.

But there is the unhygenic-ness of a scattering of old bread and then there is the plain rudeness of foods that noone should eat never mind smell polluting public air.

5 Comments

Filed under Food