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According to a new Netflix series based on Michael Pollan’s book “Cooked,” we should all head back to the kitchen and relish in the joys of home cooking. . . . But good advice for one doesn’t always make good advice for all. . . That cooking, and in a particular manner and philosophy, should be a pressing issue for most households is presumptive at best.
Amid the lofty goals of the leaders of the so-called food movement runs an undercurrent of food philosophy and politics that undermines our food freedoms and prosperity. . . . there is a sense in which our more modern innovations – from microwaves to biotechnology – are . . . to blame for current problems as diverse as obesity and soil runoff.
Heirloom varieties. Small farms. . . . Heavy reliance on labor. This was the romanticized state of food and agriculture in the middle of the last century. If, as the story goes, we could get ourselves back to this ideal, there would be less nitrogen runoff, flourishing local economies, and low rates of diabetes. It is wishful thinking.
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American women today spend half as much time in meal preparation and cleanup than they did in the 1960s. . . .Modern innovations in food processing and preparation . . . freed would-be domestic servants to pursue their own desires and careers. . . It is a noble choice to spend more time in the kitchen. The key word is “choice.” For many of our forefathers, or more precisely foremothers, there was little choice in the matter.
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Change is scary. But what’s the alternative? Eating like our grandparents? We can aspire to something more.