Melissa's blog

2014 Upgrade

It's here. After over a year of procrastinating I finally hit the trigger. Along the way I finally figured out one of the main reasons I procrastinate: perfectionism. I figure if I can't do something perfectly, it's not even worth doing. If I had kept to that path, I wouldn't be writing this. I forced myself to stop while I was working and think about whether or not it was really worth it to do what I was doing. To ask whether it's really truly completely necessary. Much of the time it wasn't. I let good enough be good enough. And I can always add things to the site later.

Holiday Cooking: Matsutake pecans, bacon cornbread stuffing

I had to improvise a Thanksgiving meal today because plans with family members fell through. Unfortunately none of the convenient grocery stores were open, so I had to use things I already had. Luckily I've been cooking a lot lately and I had a decent amount of stuff to work with. Except I had almost no vegetables and no thawed or easily thawable meat except bacon. But our meal, while slightly odd, ended up being pretty tasty.

Is "Gluten sensitivity" really a type of carbohydrate intolerance?

What’s the deal with gluten sensitivity? Gluten sensitivity as a proposed disease showed up in the scientific literature in the past few years. The key here is proposed, because there was evidence it might exist, but it remained in a scientific grey area because there was not a known mechanism behind it.

But enough people had already decided or wanted to decide gluten was bad that they took the proposed disease and ran with it, producing and selling a large volume of scientifically dubious diet books featuring “gluten sensitivity”.

The Worst Part of Scotland Was Leaving It

 
 My travels started when I made an off-hand comment to a friend in the UK about WWOOFing in Scotland
 
“I really want to WWOOF in Scotland for some reason.”
 
For the uninitiated, WWOOF stands for “World Wide Opportunities on Organic Farms” and it’s a loosely organized international directory of farms that accept volunteer labor, usually in exchange for some degree of room and board. 
 

Just Kale Me: How your Kale habit is slowly destroying your health and the world

Note: if you do not plan to read the whole post, please skip to the last section

Kale is one of those vegetables that everyone thinks is so healthy. From kale chips to kale salad, kale has become an extremely trendy vegetable. But people have embraced kale without thinking enough about the chemicals it contains and its effects on the Earth. What you don't know could kale you.

Don't be too quick to write that autobiographical cure book

 I was reading this interview yesterday with Jon Reiner, the author of the book The Man Who Couldn't Eat and this quote stood out to me:

A Good Paula Deen is Hard to Find

 “I was always conflicted about being from the South” says Andrew Beck Grace at the beginning of Eating Alabama, a documentary about attempting to eat local which I watched while I was in Alabama.

Invisible Women of Paleo

 I'm thrilled that Grub Street shut down its entire Chicago department so that instead of writing about Chicago’s vibrant food scene, they can publish garbage like this: The Rise of the Lady Paleos: How a Dubious Diet Aimed at Men Appeals to Women, Too.

What really struck me is how they linked to the New York Times article from 2010: 

The Green Land

 My last name came from Scotland. I’m not sure how the McEwens ended up in the United States. The last in the line I can trace is to an overcrowded Philadelphia tenement. They seem to have been very poor. There are rumors of a murder, a flight to South America, and then somehow they ended up in Arkansas.

Gluten digestive enzymes: playing with fire

 Someone I know who follows a gluten-free diet said that he saw an ad for this product called GlutenCutter, an supplement that claims it helps people digest gluten, on Facebook. I would assume he "likes" many gluten-free/paleo/etc. blogs on Facebook that that is why he saw this ad. I looked at the product out of curiosity and it is a bit worrying, particularly the FAQ:

Q: Is Gluten Cutter intended for those with Celiac Disease?