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Old 04-08-2010, 05:01 PM posted to rec.food.cooking
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I have been thinking about trying an experiment. (Okay, not really
thinking about it, more like daydreaming about it. Musing. I'm only
about half serious at this point.) We eat fairly well as a family,
relatively speakingówe cook a lot from scratch, we don't eat frozen
convenience dinners or meal-in-a-box things, etcóbut there are still a
lot of processed/prepared items in my shopping cart every Saturday
morning. We certainly could do better.

So I was thinking, what if I only bought basic single-ingredient food
and we made everything else ourselves from those single ingredients?
If we want cookies, we make cookiesóno more buying Oreos. Shredded
Wheat is fine, but Honey Bunches of Oats is not. (That's okay; I make
a damn fine granola.) Brownie mix? Nix. I buy chocolate, butter, eggs,
sugar, flour, vanilla, and nuts instead. We don't buy anything
prepared if it can reasonably be prepared in a home kitchen. Basics
all the way.

How would life change under this new approach? I think we would eat
better. I think, but am not certain, that our grocery bills would be
lower (or at least not higher). I think initially we would spend a
whole lot more time cooking, but I think over time we would gravitate
toward meals that were either simple and quick to prepare or were good
enough to justify the extra effort.

If you were to adopt this approach, how would your life change? Are
there prepared items that you would particularly miss? Any deal-
breakers for you? (I'm close to calling no more Diet Coke a deal-
breaker, but that's me.) Would your life be better or worse?

Scooter

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Old 04-08-2010, 05:48 PM posted to rec.food.cooking
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Scooter wrote:
So I was thinking, what if I only bought basic single-ingredient food
and we made everything else ourselves from those single ingredients?
If we want cookies, we make cookiesóno more buying Oreos. Shredded
Wheat is fine, but Honey Bunches of Oats is not. (That's okay; I make
a damn fine granola.) Brownie mix? Nix. I buy chocolate, butter, eggs,
sugar, flour, vanilla, and nuts instead. We don't buy anything
prepared if it can reasonably be prepared in a home kitchen. Basics
all the way.

How would life change under this new approach? I think we would eat
better. I think, but am not certain, that our grocery bills would be
lower (or at least not higher). I think initially we would spend a
whole lot more time cooking, but I think over time we would gravitate
toward meals that were either simple and quick to prepare or were good
enough to justify the extra effort.

Are you prepared to make your own ketchup? I've only made it once and it
was delicious, but a bit "thin". I make a lot from scratch and know I
could make more if I had to but don't.
I was talking to some folks I work with and they had *no* idea you could
make pudding from scratch! Worse yet, they only bothered with *instant*
blech! so we had a little "teaching moment" there as I explained how
simple pudding is to make from scratch.
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Old 04-08-2010, 06:30 PM posted to rec.food.cooking
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Sycophant wrote:

How would life change under this new approach? I think we would eat
better. I think, but am not certain, that our grocery bills would be
lower (or at least not higher). I think initially we would spend a
whole lot more time cooking, but I think over time we would gravitate
toward meals that were either simple and quick to prepare or were good
enough to justify the extra effort.

If you were to adopt this approach, how would your life change? Are
there prepared items that you would particularly miss? Any deal-
breakers for you? (I'm close to calling no more Diet Coke a deal-
breaker, but that's me.) Would your life be better or worse?

Scooter


Dude, I did this years ago... ;-)
Get with the program!


....and yet, even though you have all those years of experience, you failed
to answer even ONE of the questions asked. CHRIST, you need to get your
brain fixed!

Bob



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Old 04-08-2010, 06:40 PM posted to rec.food.cooking
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Default Back to basics


"Scooter" wrote in message
...
I have been thinking about trying an experiment. (Okay, not really
thinking about it, more like daydreaming about it. Musing. I'm only
about half serious at this point.) We eat fairly well as a family,
relatively speakingówe cook a lot from scratch, we don't eat frozen
convenience dinners or meal-in-a-box things, etcóbut there are still a
lot of processed/prepared items in my shopping cart every Saturday
morning. We certainly could do better.

So I was thinking, what if I only bought basic single-ingredient food
and we made everything else ourselves from those single ingredients?
If we want cookies, we make cookiesóno more buying Oreos. Shredded
Wheat is fine, but Honey Bunches of Oats is not. (That's okay; I make
a damn fine granola.) Brownie mix? Nix. I buy chocolate, butter, eggs,
sugar, flour, vanilla, and nuts instead. We don't buy anything
prepared if it can reasonably be prepared in a home kitchen. Basics
all the way.

How would life change under this new approach? I think we would eat
better. I think, but am not certain, that our grocery bills would be
lower (or at least not higher). I think initially we would spend a
whole lot more time cooking, but I think over time we would gravitate
toward meals that were either simple and quick to prepare or were good
enough to justify the extra effort.

If you were to adopt this approach, how would your life change? Are
there prepared items that you would particularly miss? Any deal-
breakers for you? (I'm close to calling no more Diet Coke a deal-
breaker, but that's me.) Would your life be better or worse?

Scooter

Make a Ranch dressing from scratch and don't flinch when everyone asks you
why it is so runny...no chemical thickeners.


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Old 04-08-2010, 06:47 PM posted to rec.food.cooking
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On Wed, 4 Aug 2010 09:01:58 -0700 (PDT), Scooter
wrote:

So I was thinking, what if I only bought basic single-ingredient food
and we made everything else ourselves from those single ingredients?
If we want cookies, we make cookiesóno more buying Oreos. Shredded
Wheat is fine, but Honey Bunches of Oats is not. (That's okay; I make
a damn fine granola.) Brownie mix? Nix. I buy chocolate, butter, eggs,
sugar, flour, vanilla, and nuts instead. We don't buy anything
prepared if it can reasonably be prepared in a home kitchen. Basics
all the way.


That's reasonable. I can't cook without a well stocked kitchen. Too
frustrating for spur of the moment cooking and too much preplanning if
it's not.

How would life change under this new approach? I think we would eat
better. I think, but am not certain, that our grocery bills would be
lower (or at least not higher). I think initially we would spend a
whole lot more time cooking, but I think over time we would gravitate
toward meals that were either simple and quick to prepare or were good
enough to justify the extra effort.


Most of us here do that already. It's the things that take so long to
make fresh, but are completely gone in 10 minutes or less that make us
stop and wonder if it's worth the effort. I make my own caramel corn
for snacking, but it lasts for days so I don't mind the overall time
put into making it.

If you were to adopt this approach, how would your life change? Are
there prepared items that you would particularly miss? Any deal-
breakers for you? (I'm close to calling no more Diet Coke a deal-
breaker, but that's me.) Would your life be better or worse?


I think you're preaching to the choir here because most people on rfc
cook from scratch as much as possible. I'm not so sure about going
overboard to make your own granola or pasta... although I just bought
a hand crank pasta machine yesterday, so it remains to be seen if I
become a total convert to home made pasta. I'm focused on ravioli at
this point. I don't drink soda even on a semi regular basis, so
that's not an issue for me but I definitely would not make my own
juices. I don't own a juicer, have no intention of buying one and I
don't think making my own juice is cost effective.

--

Forget the health food. I need all the preservatives I can get.


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Old 04-08-2010, 07:07 PM posted to rec.food.cooking
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sf wrote:

I just bought a hand crank pasta machine yesterday, so it remains to be
seen if I become a total convert to home made pasta. I'm focused on
ravioli at this point.


Are you totally set on that? Lasagna is easier.

Bob



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Old 04-08-2010, 07:12 PM posted to rec.food.cooking
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On Aug 4, 12:01*pm, Scooter wrote:
I have been thinking about trying an experiment. (Okay, not really
thinking about it, more like daydreaming about it. Musing. I'm only
about half serious at this point.) We eat fairly well as a family,
relatively speakingówe cook a lot from scratch, we don't eat frozen
convenience dinners or meal-in-a-box things, etcóbut there are still a
lot of processed/prepared items in my shopping cart every Saturday
morning. We certainly could do better.

So I was thinking, what if I only bought basic single-ingredient food
and we made everything else ourselves from those single ingredients?
If we want cookies, we make cookiesóno more buying Oreos. Shredded
Wheat is fine, but Honey Bunches of Oats is not. (That's okay; I make
a damn fine granola.) Brownie mix? Nix. I buy chocolate, butter, eggs,
sugar, flour, vanilla, and nuts instead. We don't buy anything
prepared if it can reasonably be prepared in a home kitchen. Basics
all the way.

How would life change under this new approach? I think we would eat
better. I think, but am not certain, that our grocery bills would be
lower (or at least not higher). I think initially we would spend a
whole lot more time cooking, but I think over time we would gravitate
toward meals that were either simple and quick to prepare or were good
enough to justify the extra effort.

If you were to adopt this approach, how would your life change? Are
there prepared items that you would particularly miss? Any deal-
breakers for you? (I'm close to calling no more Diet Coke a deal-
breaker, but that's me.) Would your life be better or worse?

Scooter


You'll eat better, save a lot of money and KNOW pretty much what's
going in your bod.

I'd like to see the supermkts set up a Basic Ingredient aisle, so some
of us could get thru the store faster. My aisle would include
oils, flours, vinegar, maybe some raisins, oatmeal, coffee....

I don't buy 'prepared items' - I guess by that you mean salad
dressings, taco flavoring, Hamburger Helper type stuff. Yes, I do buy
mayo, but if I ever get that immersion blender -- Hellmanns, look out.
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Old 04-08-2010, 07:29 PM posted to rec.food.cooking
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On Aug 4, 9:01 am, Scooter wrote:
[snip]
So I was thinking, what if I only bought basic single-ingredient food
and we made everything else ourselves from those single ingredients?
..... We don't buy anything
prepared if it can reasonably be prepared in a home kitchen. Basics
all the way.

Where do you set your limits, what does "reasonably" mean? Make all
your own bread, fine. What about all the pasta and Asian noodles?
Make your own tomato sauce, fine; what about your favorite ten
different kinds of German, Italian and Chinese sausages? Make your
own mayonnaise, fine; what about mustards, ketchup, soy sauce,
worcestershire sauce, sriracha? Can I make key lime pie with
sweetened condensed milk or do I have to go the custard route because
the ingredients are more "basic"?

How would life change under this new approach?


A lot more time in the kitchen. Time that would become work instead
of fun.

I think we would eat better.


I think you might eat more wholesome food because fewer additives, but
very likely would also eat blander food.

....
If you were to adopt this approach, how would your life change?


Wouldn't do it, too rigid. I'm not going to try to make my own
fermented bean curd or oyster sauce and I'm not going to give up soba
noodles or knockwurst or andouille sausage. And don't even think
about how to make my gin and tonic...... -aem
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Old 04-08-2010, 07:53 PM posted to rec.food.cooking
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On Wed, 4 Aug 2010 11:07:36 -0700, "Bob Terwilliger"
wrote:

sf wrote:

I just bought a hand crank pasta machine yesterday, so it remains to be
seen if I become a total convert to home made pasta. I'm focused on
ravioli at this point.


Are you totally set on that? Lasagna is easier.

I know I should start there, and I'll do it eventually (or even first)
but I'm focused on ravioli at the moment... actually I'm focused on
the type where you cut a circle, fold it over and end up with a filled
half circle... whatever that's called.

--

Forget the health food. I need all the preservatives I can get.
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Old 04-08-2010, 07:54 PM posted to rec.food.cooking
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On Wed, 4 Aug 2010 11:12:26 -0700 (PDT), Kalmia
wrote:

Yes, I do buy
mayo, but if I ever get that immersion blender -- Hellmanns, look out.


I love homemade, but even one egg makes too much to use before it
needs to be tossed.

--

Forget the health food. I need all the preservatives I can get.


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Old 04-08-2010, 08:45 PM posted to rec.food.cooking
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On Aug 4, 12:25 pm, Omelet wrote:
In article
,

aem wrote:

How would life change under this new approach?


A lot more time in the kitchen. Time that would become work instead
of fun.


Disagree.


You don't really disagree, you just didn't read or understand what I
wrote. Try again when you're not so tired or in such a rush. -
aem
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Old 04-08-2010, 08:53 PM posted to rec.food.cooking
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"sf" wrote in message
...
On Wed, 4 Aug 2010 11:07:36 -0700, "Bob Terwilliger"
wrote:

sf wrote:

I just bought a hand crank pasta machine yesterday, so it remains to be
seen if I become a total convert to home made pasta. I'm focused on
ravioli at this point.


Are you totally set on that? Lasagna is easier.

I know I should start there, and I'll do it eventually (or even first)
but I'm focused on ravioli at the moment... actually I'm focused on
the type where you cut a circle, fold it over and end up with a filled
half circle... whatever that's called.

--

Forget the health food. I need all the preservatives I can get.


Mesa-luna?

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Old 04-08-2010, 09:15 PM posted to rec.food.cooking
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On Aug 4, 12:53 pm, Omelet wrote:
[snips]
It's just that I don't consider cooking to be "work".

YMMV or course! ;-)

Cooking from scratch does not have to be that time consuming, if you
know how and what.


Do you consider boiling dried pasta to be cooking from scratch? Sure
you do, but the OP talked about 'basic single ingredients'. If that
means flour then you've first got to make and dry and store your
pasta. I would consider that work. I bake bread sometimes, but not
always and not all the kinds we like to eat. Baking some is fun;
baking all of it, or going without some kinds, would be work.

You make some sausage. Do you make all the kinds you enjoy?
Knockwurst? Lop cheong? Andouille? Making some Italian sausage is
fun, making every kind we like would be work.

I buy very few processed foods but quite a few prepared condiments and
flavorings. My question of the OP is, which are "reasonably" prepared
at home and which are not? The ingredients for oyster sauce are
known; is making your own "basic"? You might think it's fun once; I
think it's work.

You're still missing the essential point, which is how do you choose
to define what is "basic"? -aem

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Old 04-08-2010, 09:21 PM posted to rec.food.cooking
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Kswck wrote:

Make a Ranch dressing from scratch and don't flinch when everyone asks you
why it is so runny...no chemical thickeners.


Xanthum gum is right there on the supermarket shelf.

Steve
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Old 04-08-2010, 09:21 PM posted to rec.food.cooking
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If you were to adopt this approach, how would your life change? Are
there prepared items that you would particularly miss? Any deal-
breakers for you? (I'm close to calling no more Diet Coke a deal-
breaker, but that's me.) Would your life be better or worse?

Scooter


I wonder how you'd like making soda crackers or oyster crackers from
scratch. Or any number of condiments that wouldn't be refrigerator-
stable for long periods of time because they wouldn't have any of even
a minimum number of stabilizers and preservatives in them....

You apparently don't currently buy "meal in a box," but you have no
problem buying box mixes like for brownies? Scratch brownies are so
much better. And making granola is good, but how much variety can you
arrange for scratch cereals? Do you make one kind? two? four? The
packaged cereal gives about 50 times more variety.

As for Diet Coke, or any soda, that stuff will kill ya, and you
shouldn't be drinking it anyway - it has absolutely no nutrient value
at all, and is actually detrimental to many parts of your body.

N.


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