Saturday, November 18, 2006

Campaign to ban conference food.

I have been a poor blogger this week. I've been in Wales working and living off conference food. I know that old style school dinners have been discredited by Jamie Oliver's campaign. But there should be a new bete noir. Its conference food. It makes school lunches look like haute cuisine. And the irony was completely lost on the caterers as they served six fried snacks to delegates at a health conference. A dish labelled Chicken Firecrackers glistened menacingly under the flourescent lights, accompanied by these filo covered deep fried prawns that looked like they had been wrapped in a fire blanket before incineration. And all this while people tried to find inspirational solutions for improving public health... Anyhow I returned home with a new sense of purpose. Friday night was pizza night. Aubergines were sliced, seasoned and grilled and scattered on pizza bases with mozarella and pancetta. Freddie rated them 6 out of ten. (Peas are 0, artichokes were 8) Pizza provides a useful foil to the vegetable interlopers. It's a safe setting to introduce these new ingredients. So that is how aubergines made their debut in our GBVChallenge.
Tonight I went further. I found a recipe from a Jamie Oliver cookbook for Rigatoni with sweet tomatoes, aubergine and mozarella. I made sure Freddie was really hungry, keeping his appetite keen so that the chances of rejection were slightly minimised. He liked the flavour of the aubergines, which was something, but complained that they were chewy. So although he didn't resort to his old trick of retching, he picked round the aubergines. All is not lost - he asked that we have that recipe again. Next stop is Asparagus....even though its way out of season.


  1. Bravo! let's extend the ban on conference food to include any place where the meals are produced by sad-sack wage slaves - insist on only eating foods that have been prepared with love.

  2. On that basis all chicken nuggets are persona non grata.
    There is NO love whatsoever in their preparation.
    I like your idea. If the least that I achieve is to dole up a bit of parental love with my meals then it will have been worth it.

  3. Anonymous10:27 PM

    I was talking to my 8 year old son about school dinners this morning. He doesn't want to eat HEALTH school dinners.
    The main reason-- they don't taste nice!
    I believe him. The quality of the ingredients is not high, and it doesn't matter if they call it HEALTH school dinner.
    So, he eats only baked potato and cheese. But when they run out of baked potatos, he says: " I have to eat disguisting fish finger or horrible sausage" He eats fish fingers and sausages at my home, but NOT every or any Fishfinger or sausage.
    He chooses the ones which taste GOOD to him.
    In the past I tried to understand why he didnot eart so many foods.
    My answer to that question: lots of foods don't taste good. This year I grew some carrots-- and he loves them, and of course they are so much better than mass- produced, even organic ones ( I only buy org veg).
    What JO showed-- if you feed children with decent food they will like it. Otherwise they will stick to Junk Food, which is manufactured by VERY clever people. Lots of hifghly qualified chemists work to design FOOD ENHANCES to make adults EAT their brand of foods. Children with their taste buds are more susceptible. It is the same if the child starts drinking ir smoking at early age he or she will find more difficult to stop their bad habit.
    I posted this message at BBC MB some time ago, and I am convinced that children don't eat veg as the veg do not taste good, secondly my anscestors did not eat exotic foods, such as avocados, aubergines, artichokes etc so I am not surprised my son would not want to eat them.
    Thirdly, I think, some of us in general get suspecious, when face new food( may be due to our genes, the same happens when a woman gets pregnant).
    My opinion, as long as he eats apples, carrots some brassica family veg, onions, maybe tomatoes or corn-- he will be fine.
    All I am worried is QUALITY OF VEG!
    From Freshlybakedbread


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