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BS: Recipes - what are we eating?

Related thread:
BS: The other recipe thread is too long (118)


Mrrzy 24 Feb 21 - 09:06 AM
Steve Shaw 24 Feb 21 - 12:28 PM
WalkaboutsVerse 24 Feb 21 - 01:08 PM
Steve Shaw 24 Feb 21 - 01:59 PM
WalkaboutsVerse 24 Feb 21 - 02:15 PM
Steve Shaw 24 Feb 21 - 06:03 PM
Steve Shaw 24 Feb 21 - 06:16 PM
Steve Shaw 24 Feb 21 - 06:17 PM
WalkaboutsVerse 24 Feb 21 - 06:18 PM
Mrrzy 25 Feb 21 - 11:02 AM
WalkaboutsVerse 25 Feb 21 - 12:21 PM
Jos 25 Feb 21 - 12:47 PM

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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Mrrzy
Date: 24 Feb 21 - 09:06 AM

Oddly enough, Wegman's, a US mass-grocery chain, has the only good store-boughten [a local term] pesto I've ever tried. Who'd'a thunk it. Otherwise, yeah, homemade is best.


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 24 Feb 21 - 12:28 PM

My five-minute mini-research into the own-brand green pesto of three supermarkets and one "big brand" revealed the following additives that are not allowed anywhere near my home-made pesto:

Waitrose: salt

Tesco: Yoghurt, sugar, milk, bamboo fibre, cashew, salt

Sainsbury's: Rapeseed oil, salt, potato flakes, vegetable fibre, egg lysozyme, grana padano

Big brand (Sacla): cashew, salt, grana padano, glucose, lactic acid, potato flakes, flavourings


Rapeseed oil is ultra-cheap compared with extra virgin olive oil. Just wrong for pesto. Grana padano is a cheap Parmesan substitute which is banned from our house. Why anyone would need to add extra salt to something with a sufficiency of Parmesan just defeats me. The percentage of pine nuts, where stated, was one percent or less. Hardly any, in other words. I suppose cashews are much cheaper. One cashew nut per pot, d'you suppose? :-). As for some of the other additives, well I'm scratching my head...

The other thing is that, with home-made, you have full control over the QUALITY of the cheese, the oil and the basil.

I'm really glad you prompted my research project!


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: WalkaboutsVerse
Date: 24 Feb 21 - 01:08 PM

Locally grown rapeseed oil had become so common here in England that bottles of it were usually labelled "vegetable oil"; however, due to some farming regulation mentioned on CountryFile a few months ago, we will no longer see lots of yellow fields in our countryside; and, indeed, on my last visit to Tesco, I had to go for sunflower oil.


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 24 Feb 21 - 01:59 PM

Those "lovely" fields of endless bright yellow are a monoculture, usually sprayed with insecticide. One year I walked across 3/4 mile of oilseed rape (on a public footpath) on a sunny May afternoon and didn't see or hear a single insect or bird. A bright yellow desert. The rapeseed oil is very controversial apropos of health risks and is subsequently being superseded by canola oil, which is highly processed and which is generally a GM crop. Fine if you're happy with that. Not for me, thanks.


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: WalkaboutsVerse
Date: 24 Feb 21 - 02:15 PM

I just looked it up: "the ban of neonicotinoids has meant growers can no longer control cabbage stem flea beetle populations, which are decimating the OSR crop across the country" (Farming UK)
.

I used to have food-miles in mind when I chose rapeseed oil - taste-wise, I didn't find much difference (apart from olive oil which, of course, has a very distinctive taste, that I enjoy occasionally, as I do olives).


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 24 Feb 21 - 06:03 PM

Well finding the right olive oil is a minefield, I'm the first to admit. The first thing I'd say is that only extra virgin oil will do for me. Other, cheaper olive oil is highly refined. This is never what I want. Secondly, it's a myth that you can't cook with extra virgin olive oil. You just have to avoid overheating it, that's all. A lot of my Italian dishes start with gently sautéeing sliced garlic and chilli in olive oil, gently being the operative word, no colouring up, no smoke. As soon as you add the next ingredient, tomatoes for example, the overheating potential is nullified. Same with a soffritto. I've been using a Tesco Sicilian extra-virgin oil for cooking as my go-to for a long time. It's about six quid for 500ml, but bejaysus a bottle lasts ages. I also have a superior oil for making pesto, for salad dressing, for sprinkling on a pizza or for dressing any finished pasta dish. I might spend ten to twelve quid (M&S Tuscan in the square bottle is lovely, £10, or I may go for the Sicilian or Tuscan Waitrose 1 ones, at £12-odd.). That sounds extravagant, but each bottle lasts me for months.

The only non-olive oil I use is bog-standard groundnut oil. That does for my oven chips or for frying a steak or anything else that needs real heat. Most fish in our house is fried in butter!


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 24 Feb 21 - 06:16 PM

As for neonictoinoid insecticides, I'd be glad to see them banned from the planet. I have a very strong feeling that the government and the vandalistic farming industry connive in playing down the hazards. As neonics are systemic, they get into the nectar and pollen and poison pollinating insects. In turn, insect-eating birds are poisoned. We already have a near-catastrophic collapse in insect and songbird populations and I have no doubt as to what the main culprit is. If you see your spray label listing acetamiprid as an ingredient (you'll need your magnifying glass - don't know why...), don't use it unless you really hate bees...


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 24 Feb 21 - 06:17 PM

That would be neonicotinoid!


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: WalkaboutsVerse
Date: 24 Feb 21 - 06:18 PM

As I say, last time I got sunflower oil from Tesco; and, the time before, what I think was the very same olive oil you mention, Steve; and I may give groundnut oil a go next time..?


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Mrrzy
Date: 25 Feb 21 - 11:02 AM

Groundnut oil = peanut oil?

I now like olive oil.

New stove! Recommend a recipe for one, using multiple burners and, maybe, the oven? I remain afraid of broilers. Mom *always* set something on fire using hers.


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: WalkaboutsVerse
Date: 25 Feb 21 - 12:21 PM

When I was a lad/before repatriating from Aus. to England, there was an advert where a chap said in a Godfather-type voice "oils ain't oils" - which was referring to the motoring kind but could also be applied to culinary matters, I guess. (Not sure where deep-frying oils can be reused as a biofuel..?)

As I say, the only one that really stands out from the others I've tried is olive oil.


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Subject: RE: BS: Recipes - what are we eating?
From: Jos
Date: 25 Feb 21 - 12:47 PM

From a BBC news item, "How to run your car on chip oil":

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/sci/tech/7047128.stm


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