Thursday, July 10, 2008

Recipe for a Real Cheeseburger

While giving a cooking lesson to a small group in New York City the other night, I was discussing different health issues in regard to our food supply. One of the students asked, “Do you not eat meat?” It’s a question I am asked frequently.

“Actually, I eat a ton of meat,” I said. “I just make sure I know what kind of meat I am eating.”

I was met with four quizzical looks.

“Everything depends on the genesis of the food, whether it’s beef, milk, eggs, cheese or chicken. Contrary to popular belief, a bacon cheeseburger is actually really good for you if it’s the right kind of bacon, cheese, beef and roll.”

Four continued quizzical looks.

“I try to eat meat, milk, butter and cheese that only come from grass-fed cows. The flavor is much better than products from corn-fed cows. And the nutritional properties of the grass-fed items are extensive, while the corn-fed stuff is pretty much poison.” (I’ll discuss these positive nutritional properties in future posts.)

I could have been speaking Russian.

“Corn-fed beef, chicken, pork—and by extension milk, cheese and eggs—from animals raised on commercial feed-lots are full of hormones and antibiotics. And the feed these animals are eating is bursting with pesticides. Where do you think that all goes? It ends up in our food supply.”

Four much-less quizzical looks afforded me the opportunity for which I was looking.

“That’s why we have eight-year-old girls getting their periods and developing breasts. After 10,000 years it’s just a coincidence that this is happening now? And the incidences of food allergies, autism, cancers and other 20th- and 21st-century diseases are skyrocketing. I really think it has to do with the poisoning of our food supply.”

Looks of understanding started to appear, and I circled back to the bacon cheeseburger.

“So, a bacon cheeseburger comprised of ground beef and raw milk cheese from a grass-fed cow, bacon from a foraging pig and a whole grain bun is very healthy. A bacon cheeseburger made from beef laden with hormones and antibiotics, bacon packed with nitrates and a bun of bleached white flour [read: sugar] will pretty much kill you.”

We proceeded to cook five diverse fish dishes using several different cooking techniques. While my students tasted what we cooked, they asked why I wasn’t eating.

“I’m going to Burger King after this.”

It’s all in the delivery . . .

No comments: