So, apparently we’re off to Bakewell this weekend again… and not for the tarts according to Stuart (yeah, right) Bakewell is all well and good apart from the baking… very bad for the waistline, I have to say. However, there is a hillfort and the original site of an ancient cross to investigate. We may even have a look at the sacred springs in the town… and there is the distinct possibility of a hot pork bap for lunch.
These baps are something else. You can, of course, get them elsewhere, but these things, as sold at the local farm shop, are the mother of all baps, so to speak. A breadcake the size of a small plate, stuffed with hot, roast pork, sage and onion stuffing, apple sauce, gravy and roast potatoes. For less than the price of a pre-packed cardboard sandwich. Throw in a chunk of proper Bakewell tart for afters and you have enough calories to fuel a small army of adventurers…if they can move by then, of course. ‘Healthy eating’ it isn’t, but then, that depends how you define healthy… For me, freshly cooked food is healthy… far more so than some of the stuff that sports that description and lingers for days on supermarket shelves.
There has been a bit of a debate going on this week with my son about what constitutes healthy eating and it has made me think a bit more than usual about how we look at food. We are constantly seeking a healthier way of eating and go to quite extreme lengths to do so. Even the least health conscious amongst us have opinions and are aware of what we should and should not be eating. Yet to be fair, we in the West have access these days to a wider and more varied diet than at any time in human history. Even without artificial ingredients for preservation we have out of season foods at out fingertips, thanks to refrigeration and clever packaging.
The debate sprang up over a blender and what you could do with it. My son was researching recipes and it highlighted so many areas of conflicting opinions and conflicting science that rather than messing about with fresh green smoothies, I personally would just have given up and grabbed a bar of chocolate. Still, he persevered.
One site will extol the benefit of blending the pips in fruit, hailing their chemical components as anti-cancerous, another points out they contain cyanide… one tells you to blend the whole fruit, another tells you this or that bit can do damage on its way through your personal plumbing. Only one website seemed to take a common sense approach, pointing out that we generally don’t eat the pips in certain fruits because they aren’t actually designed to be digested… they are designed to pass through the system and perpetuate their own species. And while there may be real nutrition in the pith and peel of certain fruits, if it doesn’t taste particularly good, I am quite happy to dispense with it. If a monkey peels a banana or an orange, there is probably good reason to peel it.
I was left wondering, after going through all these websites, where common sense had gone where food is concerned, and how little we appreciate the variety available to us. Why are there multi-million dollar corporations selling food supplements when a simple, fresh and varied diet can be had by anyone who can actually afford to shop?
I’m the world’s worst offender for healthy eating, I admit. I like butter and cheese, and whole milk… and pastry and chocolate….But I am a conscious eater, and I know that moderation is required with some things… but there’s nothing wrong with a fresh cream cake once in a while either. In my mind, once you start obsessing about something it takes all the joy out of it. Even food.