The Real Housewives Who Ruined Pork?

Yesterday I decried the persistently crazy public perceptions about lean pork.  Today I want to share a video that does a good job showing just when American eating and farming both started going off the rails.  I’ve gone back to this video many times over the years since I first watched it because it touches on each aspect that contributed to today’s woes. It was produced in 1956, so it has everything you’d expect:  stuffy narration and scratchy footage, but the present day viewer will especially notice the unselfconsciously patronizing remarks about… Read More

The Other White Meat, It’s Back!

Today I heard a story making its round on the news and it made me wonder:  does anyone in the newsroom know anything about pigs?  About pork?  About flavor? The story goes that pigs lack thermoregulation genes that most other mammals have, so somebody used CRISPR to stick mouse DNA into pigs and gave them that gene.  Now they can thermoregulate better, and as a consequence, they burn more fat and run about 25% leaner than normal pigs. Along with all the usual dumb puns and blathering about genetic modification, the story is… Read More

Trading Virtue for Equipment

I’ve given up on another ideal lately and bought myself a used wood splitter.  I’ve split wood by hand since high school and felt some measure of pride at being pretty good at it.  And felt a measure of disdain for all those wimps using wood splitters if truth be told.  Not only do I enjoy the rhythm and physical challenge, but I also value anything that is hand-crafted rather than machine-made.  But as with so many things, ideals and reals aren’t lining up.  Between time demands, rotator cuff injuries, and some… Read More

Finger Food, Toe Food

I made chicken feet for supper yesterday. This is one of those meals that require far too much prep work to be a regular feature on the menu, but the results justify the effort. Twenty years ago a coworker from Hong Kong introduced me to Dim Sum Phoenix Claws.   We don’t live near any place that serves them, and we never eat out anyway, so it has been a long, long time since I’ve last had braised chicken feet.  If I wanted chicken feet, it would be up to me to make… Read More