I recently watched Food Inc and The Future of Food, and I’ve been reading the companion book to Food Inc as well as Michael Pollan’s The Omnivore’s Dilemma. And since then, I’ve been making a conscious effort to wean myself off of “foods” manufactured by the industrial food complex. Though it’s been a bit of a challenge, especially since I don’t live in California anymore, where all varieties of produce is grown in abundance, I’ve been trying my best to eat mostly local produce and meats from animals that have been treated humanely and fed a diet that nature intended for them. After watching and reading about the horrific ways animals bred for food are treated and raised and how companies manufacture “food” found in our grocery stores, I find it difficult to consume anything produced for mass consumption.
Padma Lakshmi came to Austin a couple of years ago to promote her cookbook, Tangy Tart Hot & Sweet at the Texas Book Festival, and I was lucky enough to snag a seat under the tent where she was doing demonstrations of recipes from her book. I was sold after I took a bite of her macaroni and cheese! Immediately after the demonstration, I grabbed a copy of her book and stood in line to meet her. I’ve prepared a few dishes from the book and I’ve been pleased with the results. But, for the last several months, the book has just been sitting on my bookshelf collecting dust.