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Geoffchef's picture

DW likes to take carrot sticks to work for lunch, so I try to keep the Tupperware thingie in the fridge full of them for her. Just finished chopping up some tapered orange cylinders from California that resembled carrots but tasted like sawdust, and wondered how much flavour might equate with nutrition.
If the sugars and other sapid elements have transmogrified so much over their 3000 mile journey that these things are virtually tasteless, what state can the vitamins and minerals be in? How do the ingredients that promote human health cope with the chemicals that keep veggies at least looking like they should over times and distances that reduce people travelling such spans by car to eating Cheez Strings and Snack Enz?
My theory is that if it tastes like cardboard it's probably about as good for you.
Disgust.
I mean - discuss.


 


ADAM'S APPLE, n.
A protuberance in the throat of man, thoughtfully provided by Nature to keep the rope in place.
Ambrose Bierce - The Devil's Dictionary


 

 

ADAM'S APPLE, n.
A protuberance in the throat of man, thoughtfully provided by Nature to keep the rope in place.
Ambrose Bierce - The Devil's Dictionary

 

Glenys's picture

The best nutrition and flavour in a carrot comes from "juicing carrots", which are the least appealing to look at. If you check them out at the whole foods stores you'll notice they have no tops and were allowed to grow to baseball bat thickness. Those are the good ones.

Geoffchef's picture

Did you forget I'm in Winnipeg? Whole food stores?

 


ADAM'S APPLE, n.
A protuberance in the throat of man, thoughtfully provided by Nature to keep the rope in place.
Ambrose Bierce - The Devil's Dictionary


 

 

ADAM'S APPLE, n.
A protuberance in the throat of man, thoughtfully provided by Nature to keep the rope in place.
Ambrose Bierce - The Devil's Dictionary

 

Glenys's picture

I didn't mean WholeFoods, I meant alternative grocery stores or health food stores. Or without looking for juicing carrots, buy the fattest, tops off carrots in the store. The fatter the better, no cracks.

ashleyd's picture

I suppose there are three elements in food, appearance, taste and nutrition and I suspect in most cases it's one of those "pick any two from three" deals. For today's supermarkets appearance is paramount so you're going to struggle to get either, never mind both, of the remaining qualities. With the nutrition of the alleged carrots there are two questions, how much did they start with and how much of that was lost in the packaging and transport process? Probably they started with the average amount of carrot goodness and the physical constituents (the vitamins and minerals) should survive reasonably well for a few days, until you take some action on them like cooking. Taste is more elusive and tends to be biased towards the sugars which start to break down immediately on harvest and turn to starches (the old story about if you want to enjoy corn at its best have the pan boiling at the side of the field before you pick it springs to mind). Nutritionally there's not a lot of change (although others probably can confirm or deny this assumption), but tastewise it's shot, especially as carrots are one of the sweeter vegetables to start with. So my conclusion is that nutritionally they're probably valuable, but as an attractive food, not.


Always take a good look at what you're about to eat. It's not so important to know what it is, but it's critical to know what it was.

Age is unimportant unless you’re a cheese.

Ricks503's picture

one other thing to take into account,is that in some veggies, and I think carrots - like potatos - are one of them, a good portion of the vitamins and minerals is in the skin. So peeling them gets rid of a lot of the nutrients.  I have gotten in the habit of using a green scrubbie to clean them with and not peeling them any more than I have to unless I am going for a specific appearance.

1 - measure the board twice, 2 - cut it once, 3 - measure the space where it is supposed to go        4 - get a new board and go back to step 1

 

 

" There'll be no living with her now" - Captain Jack Sparrow

CookiM0nster's picture

"one other thing to take into account,is that in some veggies, and I think carrots - like potatos - are one of them, a good portion of the vitamins and minerals is in the skin. So peeling them gets rid of a lot of the nutrients."

I read somewhere that this is a myth. There are no more vitamins and minerals in the skin of carrots and potatoes than in the rest of the vegetable. Of course now you've got me wondering where I heard that. I'm going to have to try to find it.

Glenys's picture

Taste is also a factor. Often the older vegetables or some types of potatoes have strong tasting peels. Students always complained about peeling veg for stocks until they ate a piece of the peel on its own.
Not worth wasting a batch of stock over a little effort.

Geoffchef's picture

I am fortunate in having an all natural butcher in proximity, but green grocers cannot survive on local produce here - something to do with our 20 minute growing season - so there aren't any. Until the market gardeners open I'm stuckwith the supermarkets. Even the market gardeners don't buck the trends - you won't find an heirloom tomato for sale anywhere. Peppers are bell, bell, bell or jalapeno. For some reason we can buy about 8 varieties of potatoes.

 


ADAM'S APPLE, n.
A protuberance in the throat of man, thoughtfully provided by Nature to keep the rope in place.
Ambrose Bierce - The Devil's Dictionary


 

 

ADAM'S APPLE, n.
A protuberance in the throat of man, thoughtfully provided by Nature to keep the rope in place.
Ambrose Bierce - The Devil's Dictionary

 

Glenys's picture

What you're saying about eating local is true and not true. You have to think back in history, not that long ago and still true today, people on the prairies grew potatoes, cabbage, carrots, apples, turnips... and kept them in their root cellars for the winter. Many people stock and up and keep use them through the winter. It's still true today commercially. When you see a BC apple in the store right now, you know it's not off the tree in this growing season, which is why I don't eat apples or cook with apples at this time of year. There has to be time to say that's enough and wait for the new crop.

Carrots from California are not the problem, you just purchased the peeled, tumbled, washed and rewashed version. Just buy whole and you'll be fine.

pamilyn's picture

Well carrots from California are sorta the problem......they are mass produced, sprayed, and trucked thousands of miles which is very bad for our enviroment. Geoff, I understand your dilema. If you want some interesting veggies from the market you have to ASK the farmers to grow some interesting veggies. We do that all the time here. Ask and hopefully you will recieve. If enough people want certain produce the farmers will oblidge. I am surprised your farmers market isn't open yet. Ours has been open for quite some time. We even have a winter market where they sell bakery, cheese, potatoes, meat, eggs, poultry etc.....It's great. I think we are very lucky here. Pamilyn edit to add... www.madfarmmkt.org


The purpose of Art is washing the dust of daily life off our souls


Edited 5/12/2006 2:13 pm ET by pamilyn

The purpose of Art is washing the dust of daily life off our souls

Adele's picture

Pamilyn- different parts of the country have different growing seasons.  His is very short.   It's not a matter of asking, it's a matter of when!

But, but, it's SUPPOSED to taste like that!

But, but, it's SUPPOSED to taste like that!

pamilyn's picture

Yes I know that. It's just that he said when they DO get the veggies coming in they are boring. No heirloom tomatoes, bell peppers etc. If enough people ask for different varieties the farmers, here anyway, will oblige and grow them, and see how they sell. If a farmer there grew a brandywine for example, and he was the only one selling it, I bet he would sell out and plant them again. Supply and demand. Of course this assumes that people want interesting varieties where he lives. That is where education comes in. A whole nuther story!! Pamilyn

The purpose of Art is washing the dust of daily life off our souls

The purpose of Art is washing the dust of daily life off our souls

Adele's picture

I see. 


Supply and demand. Of course this assumes that people want interesting varieties where he lives. That is where education comes in.


So your educating people to try different things?  To not buy certain things- like California carrots? 


 


 


But, but, it's SUPPOSED to taste like that!

But, but, it's SUPPOSED to taste like that!

pamilyn's picture

Exactly. We have something called the "Carrot cafe" at the market and we do different educational programs each week and demo different kinds of food. What we are trying to do is educate people to TRY and change their mind thought. Instead of picking a recipe, going to the grocery store and buying the ingredients, we are trying to get them to go to the market, see whats available, and making a recipe for that ingredient. A we try to teach them to stock up on things when they are in season and "put them by". Of course this is very time consuming for busy people so it doesn't always work obviously, but we are trying to get them to "Think" differently.  It seems to be working. BUT, it doesn't hurt that our market is in a beautiful spot and it's a great outing for the family. Pamilyn

The purpose of Art is washing the dust of daily life off our souls

The purpose of Art is washing the dust of daily life off our souls

CookiM0nster's picture

"If a farmer there grew a brandywine for example, and he was the only one selling it, I bet he would sell out and plant them again. Supply and demand. Of course this assumes that people want interesting varieties where he lives."

Not around here he wouldn't. I feel Geoff's pain. We have the same problem (short, late growing season, and a market with bell peppers, bell peppers, bell peppers and 8 kinds of potatoes). The BC fruit growers do drive in with apples and stone fruits, but the good stuff goes to Calgary, and what shows up in our market is actually worse than what shows up at the grocery store. It's supply and demand. Not everyone is blessed with living in a food-forward community. Could you educate them? Probably, but it would take a bit more than just growing ugly but tasty tomatoes.

I can get excellent pork, beef, lamb, and chicken, and very good, though, basic veggies, in season, from having done exactly what you do - gotten to know the producers. But this time of year the pickings are slim. To give you a sense of the climate up here, strawberry season doesn't usually start until after my birthday, and my birthday is June 23rd.

On a related note, the Globe and Mail recently did a 100 mile supper.
They had writers in Vancouver, Calgary, Toronto, and er, Halifax or St. John's, I can't recall each host a dinner party where every ingredient was harvested within 100 miles. Weirdly enough, the Calgary host had it easiest, and was the only one with access to wheat flour, sugar, and a full array of bovine dairy products.

pamilyn's picture

That's when strawberries are coming in here too. That dinner sounds really interesting. I would love to see what the menu was as the different locations.

The purpose of Art is washing the dust of daily life off our souls

The purpose of Art is washing the dust of daily life off our souls

CookiM0nster's picture

Wow, I didn't realize yours were so late too. What zone are you? We're zone 3. Geoff's in Winnipeg, which I *think* is zone 3 as well.

Edited to say I tried to link to the G&M article for you, but they're charging for it.


Edited 5/12/2006 4:26 pm by CookiM0nster

pamilyn's picture

we are in zone 4. It got down in the 30's last night. I had the fireplace going.

The purpose of Art is washing the dust of daily life off our souls

The purpose of Art is washing the dust of daily life off our souls

madnoodle's picture

We're in 2a, just in case that makes you feel better about your zone . . . We're lucky if we get 100 frost-free days a year.

Saskatchewan:  our mountain-removal project is nearly complete.

What if there were no hypothetical questions?

 

pamilyn's picture

OMG, people LIVE there?  I hope you like lettuce!! LOL. Seriously, how cold does it get there in the winter? Pamilyn

The purpose of Art is washing the dust of daily life off our souls

The purpose of Art is washing the dust of daily life off our souls

Glenys's picture

Not as cold as Alaska. Actually, where she lives is better in winter than any New England ice storm. It's just dry and frosty.

madnoodle's picture

how cold does it get there in the winter?


Colder than a well-digger's arse.  Try this link for evidence:


http://forums.taunton.com/n/mb/at.asp?webtag=tp-cookstalk&guid=F81DE5C9-7710-41A9-8804-56CC440C459D&frames=no


Just for the record, that's from January 2004, which was the longest, coldest stretch of winter I can remember.  I think we had the dubious distinction of being, quite literally, the coldest place on Earth for a few weeks.



Saskatchewan:  our mountain-removal project is nearly complete.


Edited 5/12/2006 6:45 pm by madnoodle

What if there were no hypothetical questions?

 

Glenys's picture

Maybe we should use Fargo as a reference, for a number of reasons.

madnoodle's picture

The movie, or the place? :)


When I was a kid growing up in Winnipeg, Fargo was an exotic locale.  Grand Forks was exciting enough, but Fargo--wow!


Saskatchewan:  our mountain-removal project is nearly complete.

What if there were no hypothetical questions?

 

Astrid's picture

The local Farmer's Market here in Silver City will open tomorrow for the season. I'm eager to find out what will be available. I have heard that we should have a good fruit season later on this year as this spring has been very warm, and dry, with little or no damage to fruit tree blossoms.There evidently has also been enough water to irrigate. It has been several years since we've had good fruit crops here because of years with late frosts. We should get plums, apricots, an interesting variety of apples, some heirloom, and quince. As to what will be on hand tomorrow, I will have to wait and see.

New Mexico home organic gardener

Adopt the pace of nature; her secret is patience. Emerson

New Mexico home organic gardener Adopt the pace of nature; her secret is patience. Emerson
Quilter's picture

And here I was feeling sorry for myself!  Well, not anymore.  I'm in zone 5, and some years we actually manage to be zone 6.  The coldest it got this past winter, which in all fairness I have to admit was really an easy winter, was -14C.  And that was only for a couple of days in December.  But the night temperatures right now are hovering around 3 degrees and today the maximum temperature only managed to reach 11.  But by Tuesday we should be in the mid twenties. 


We usually try to have our little garden planted by the long weekend in May, but I've already planted green onions, lettuce, spinach.  My tomato plants have been harded off, and can probably go out this weekend with night protection.  Cukes, pumpkin, beans will have to wait until the end of May just to be on the safe side.  Everything else either this weekend or next.

Jean's picture

Coming through town tonight on the way home from the symphony and the temp was 33°F. It's usually 5-10 degrees warmer in town. Brrrr. The tomatoes will have to wait. Not much change in the forcast for next week either.   sigh.



Good judgment comes from experience, and a lot of that comes from bad judgment.  Will Rogers


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KarenP's picture

  FINALLY,  I've connected up with the woman I know who uses the software to use her photographs to create crossstitch patterns.  It is www.pcstitch.com
  She and her husband travel a good deal of the year, she snaps pictures of their travels and makes the patterns from those snapshots.  She feels that the $39.95 package is probably adequate for most people.
  Sorry it took so long.


 

Quilter's picture

Thank you!  I didn't mind the wait, and in the meantime I did try to track down something on the internet, but had no luck at all. 


I actually have an old copy of PCStitch that I bought about 5 years ago, but it wasn't able to scan photographs and I just wasn't into the laborious task of doing all the designing myself.  I checked the link you sent and I'll definately look into PC Stitch professional - it looks like exactly what I'd like to have. 


So many things to do...so little time!  I also have a quilt designing program that I have yet to master.  Oy.  Thanks again.

KarenP's picture

So many things to do...so little time!  I also have a quilt designing program that I have yet to master.  Oy.  Thanks again.


  You're very welcome!  Hope it works out for you.