Saturday, March 12, 2022
Monday, January 17, 2022
Friday, October 22, 2021
A food scientist walks into a grocery store. What does the food scientist know that you should know??
A food scientist understands that all food is life. Food needs to reach you safely. The food's goal is to nourish you well so its life was meaningful. The life sacrificed is just as important as you are. Food doesn't want to be tossed away as if its life doesn't matter.
The food scientist knows that the shorter the transportation time under the best possible conditions is what is best for the food and therefore for you. You want the food itself to have minimal transit time once harvested and enjoy a comfortable trip to you! In these times with food coming from all over the world, think about the food's journey to you. The better the journey, the more it remains intact with loving care. A quick and pleasant journey means you are honoring the food itself and its ability to nurture you. What goes around, comes around.
The food scientist knows that for every request that you make for your personal convenience, there will be a tradeoff. Think of "no fat" products. If you take out the fat and want to keep the portion the same something needs to be added back. When a food scientist makes a decision about the product based on what you told them is important and you do not stay conscious and informed of tradeoffs, you may get what you asked for but not necessarily what is best for you. In the case of "no fat" products, products higher in added sugar were the consequence. Be sure that the replacement is something you want to consume and it is worth the tradeoff. Food companies are in the business of giving you choices and you get to decide which choices to make.
The food scientist knows that processing food isn't always a bad thing. Fermentation is a process that not only preserves food but creates a product for consumption that can provide added value for humans. It requires expertise and time as indigenous cultures have known for many years. Not only does fermentation aid digestion (by breaking down a nutrient such as gluten outside the human body first) to assist us in getting the nutrition that we as humans were not designed to digest without help from nature, but also provides probiotics that seed beneficial gut bacteria.
Thursday, October 21, 2021
Don't panic. Three ways to address rising food costs and availability while saving time, money and your health.
Let's start with the bad news first. Food prices will not be declining any time in the foreseeable future so planning well and trying new solutions is the best way forward.
Now for the good news. Availability issues are temporary. In the meantime, there are so many options out there to keep your budget intact while exploring the wonderful variety of food available to you. With a little help have fun discovering some new favorites!
1) Eat less meat. Guess what. We already are likely eating more meat than we need to. A serving of protein is the size of your fist - slightly larger for fish than other meat. A pound is 16 ounces and a serving is 3-4 ounces which means if you purchase a pound of the grass-fed organic protein at $12/pound, your cost is only $3-$4/serving. Adding other protein sources to your meal will also help. For example, bean-based sides reduce the amount of meat you need to serve. Or use meat in a meal as a condiment as opposed to the main feature of your dish.
2) Stock up on canned foods and other shelf-stable items with clean labels. These are often the least expensive and great for items that you'd have to cook for a long time anyway. So you save time and money and you are not giving up nutrition. Faster, cheaper, and better in one solution. Cans are easy to store. Since canning is a means of preservation, preservatives are not needed and there are so many options. Just watch the label for sodium over 300 mg and buy foods with little or no added sugars. If you need to add salt or sugar in cooking, you are in control of how much is added. Chili anyone?
3) Start freezing meals. Buy in bulk and cook in bulk - then freeze. Freezing saves time and money and nutrition. Freezing preserves nutrient content and stops spoilage. It also reduces waste and you are always ready for dinner. Just heat and serve.
A few favorite items? Share below in the comments.
If you'd like to hear more on this topic, let me know in the comments or contact me at email@example.com.
Monday, July 26, 2021
Monday, June 15, 2020
One of the silver linings of the COVID-19 pandemic is that it has slowed the pace of everyday life. Based on availability and perhaps eating more meals at home than before, we have the time and need (due to less food availability and rising prices) to plan our food choices more wisely. No longer can we say that we are bombarded with food all around us everywhere, anywhere at any time without some additional planning and preparation. Typically, I hear, "I don't have time so I just....") but really, we don't make time for an act that is so important to our personal nourishment and health. We want the convenience of someone else preparing and making our food because we can but the question is to what extent is to our benefit.
The consequences of not honoring other life and not knowing what we are putting in our bodies are steep. We are often trusting others we don't know so we don't need to think about it.
Think about it.
Why would you not want to know what you are putting in your body?
Why do we disconnect with the fact that we consume life for nourishment that sends messages to us for our health?
Why do we say we care about the environment but don't know more about the path of the packaging we toss into our oceans and easy solutions available to us?
Why do we say we respect life and nature and yet waste 40% of the food that is harvested?
Why do we stay away from refined and altered food ingredients such as high fructose corn syrup, trans fat, resist GMO crops but are willing to eat biologically and chemically altered ingredients in plant-based meat?
Most often the answer is not far away. We want choices and they are available. We act like we have no control when we do. We are proud of our humanity yet more often than not feel compelled because we are hungry, stressed, tired, or simply need to treat ourselves yet don't take the time to break out of these damaging cycles.
Let's be real about our choices, have a conversation, and be open to solutions that are there for the asking.
Monday, August 6, 2018
I was invited to celebrate the grand opening of the new location of The Gourmandise School just a few steps away from their previous spot but now with more space and an even greater variety of classes.
The expansion of the school enables more students and unique culinary classes taught by the finest instructors offering the best techniques and instruction for all skill levels. The school offers cooking and baking classes, a professional series, kid’s classes, fascinating food workshops, and private events.
If you are lucky enough to live near or plan to visit Santa Monica in the future, check out TheGoumandiseSchool.com to find a class. For inspiration anytime, follow
@GourmandiseLA on Instagram.
- First trained as a food chemist and nutritionist, my career began enriching a Twinkie, comparing the nutrition of a Twinkie to an apple and studying the role of sugar in the diet. With an M.B.A. and years in food and pharma understanding consumers and manufacturers, I'm back to where I started - food should taste great and serve to keep us healthy. To do so, there needs to be consumer awareness. Consumers need to vote for what they want by buying what they really want. If they buy impulsively, that's what they will see more of. They need to practice balance and responsible choices. That's when change will come. Please engage me with your conversation so that I can help you make and stick to better food choices that you enjoy. You'll gain a deeper appreciation of food not only from farm to table but farm to health. My vision is to promote solutions for healthful food and food practices you can happily embody and embrace!