Right Stuff vs. Food Porn

June 2013

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Right Stuff


"Why wait for wheatberries?" asks the Village Harvest Wheatberry & Barley Whole Grain Medley package.

Why, indeed. Ordinary wheatberries (whole wheat kernels) take an hour to cook—typically after an overnight soak.

With Village Harvest, "a minute in the microwave and you've got a bowl of power packed goodness that's as high in iron, protein and fiber as it is in nutty flavor and bold, crunchy texture," as the package notes.

Got that right. Each half cup of the Wheatberry & Barley Medley (half the serving listed on the package) has around 130 calories, 4 grams of protein, 5 percent of a day's iron, and 5 grams of honest-to-goodness unprocessed fiber. You may have to visit the freezer case at Whole Foods or another natural-foods store to find it, but it's worth the trip.

And working wheatberries into your diet is a snap. Think of them as extra-nutty brown rice. Try mixing some with sautéed mushrooms or onions, or with chopped cherry tomatoes, fresh basil, a drizzle of olive oil, and a sprinkle of salt and freshly ground black pepper.

But why stop there? Village sells three other Whole Grain Medleys (Red Quinoa & Brown Rice, Farro & Red Rice, and Brown, Red & Wild Rice) and two Whole Grain Creations (Wheatberries, Barley, and Quinoa with Cranberries & Almonds and Brown and Wild Rice with Corn & Black Beans).

If you're still eating bland, boring white rice because it's convenient, that excuse is over.

"Ancient grains, welcome to the 21st century," says the bag. It took a village.

Village Harvest: villageharvestrice.com

Food Porn


"Chocolate Cookie Crumb Crust Made From Scratch," boasts the box of Marie Callender's frozen Chocolate Satin Pie. "Filled with our most luxuriously rich chocolate filling."

Filled with sugar, white flour, and bad fat is more like it.

Assuming you eat just one-sixth of the pie (the serving listed on the box), you're downing 580 calories and 4 grams of trans fat—much of it from partially hydrogenated soybean oil.

While an expert panel once considered advising people to get no more than 2 grams of trans (including the naturally occurring trans in meat and dairy fat) in an entire day, health authorities now recommend that we eat as little trans as possible. And 4 grams ain't a little.

Neither are the 18 grams (nearly a day's worth) of saturated fat in each serving. But that's palm kernel oil, butter, and milk for you.

It's not just the Chocolate Satin. Marie's six other large cream pies have 1½ to 4 grams of trans fat and 9 to 18 grams of sat fat per slice. And her 10 "Famous Flaky Crust" large fruit pies batter your arteries with around 3 grams each of trans and sat fat. (Her small, two-serving fruit pies are trans free. Go figure.)

In 1948, when Marie Callender first baked pies for local restaurants, she "used only the finest ingredients" and put "love and care into every pie," notes the Chocolate Satin Pie box. "Now you can enjoy the goodness of Marie's freshly made pies at home."

Just make sure your cardiologist is on call.

Marie Callender's: (800) 595-7010

Dish of the Month

Instant Berry Sherbet

Combine 1 cup of frozen mixed berries (strawberries, blueberries, blackberries, and/or raspberries) with 1 frozen chopped banana and ¾ cup of plain, 0% (fat-free) greek yogurt in a blender. Process until completely smooth. Makes 2 cups of pure summer.

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