Local v Comfort

Join the debate on Local v Comfort. I enjoyed this article from the NY Times entitled “When Local Sourcing Means Aisle 12.” It has comments and thoughts from chefs across the country about their favorite comfort foods, and how that generally equates to processed, packaged foods. It is a wry look at how these chefs espouse local, seasonal, farm to table, etc, yet their fallbacks tend to have an extended shelf life and impossible-to-pronounce ingredients.

Some examples include American cheese slices, Fritos and Saltines. Land O’Lakes American cheese Kraft singles, really, Wylie Dufresne? Guess nobody’s perfect, huh?

[I stand corrected by none other than Jeff Gordinier, the author of the article. Thanks, Jeff]

Michael Chiarello says that he loves Skippy peanut butter and cannot stand organic peanut butter. That actually surprised me. I love pure peanut butter, made only with peanuts and salt. Actually don’t care if it’s organic or not, just don’t want the hydrogenated oils in Skippy and other live-forever peanut butters.

It also pokes fun at some restaurants’ attempts to make homemade versions of “classic” processed foods, like ketchup. Seriously, why mess with perfection when you have Heinz? Even I’m not in favor of that. I’ve had “homemade” ketchup before in a restaurant and it is usually a disaster. Not worth anyone’s effort to prepare, and certainly not appreciated on this end.


  1. Kay Wasinger says:

    I’m trying out this new site for “ease of commenting” vs the former site.

  2. Wylie Dufresne didn’t say that he eats Kraft singles; he said he loves Land O’Lakes American slices. Big difference, actually. cheers,
    Jeff Gordinier

  3. Jeff, Thanks for identifying this. I guess I revealed my personal brand bias for cheese products with the Kraft Singles slip. I enjoyed your piece, and also today’s on Nora Ephron’s recipes.

    Please keep reading!

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