So Sorry, Sam; I’m not about to break with bread
My friend and fellow columnist Sam Bauman, who usually offers helpful advice in his weekly column for seniors, recently suggested that we should stop eating plain old supermarket bread. I have a one-word response: Never!
“There’s no real food value in modern bread,” Sam wrote recently. He defined “modern” bread as supermarket bread made from cheaper “hot steel-milled flour,” which removes natural nutrients, as opposed to bread that’s made from more nutritious but more expensive stone-ground flour. Be that as it may, I wonder how many fixed-income seniors can afford to spend $5 or more on a loaf of bread.
As an alternative, Sam suggested that you could buy yourself a home stone grinder, or perhaps you could switch to “spelt” or “Einkorn.” Huh? After reading Sam’s column, I think this whole bread thing may be too complicated for me to understand. He also recommended gluten-free bread, but I don’t know what that is either.
Nevertheless, as a card-carrying septuagenarian (!), I’ve been eating supermarket bread for more than 70 years, and I’m still here to tell the story. And my 8-year-old twin grandsons have a couple of questions for Sam: (1) how do you make a hamburger or a hot dog without the bun? And (2) how do you make a peanut butter and jelly sandwich without the bread? Do you spoon the peanut butter and the jelly directly into your mouth? Or what?
Most of us remember when fast-food chains began offering bunless hamburgers to make Michelle Obama and the Food Police happy. The problem was that no one wanted to eat bunless hamburgers, and that experiment ended almost before it began. But that didn’t put the Food Police out of business. They continue to lobby federal, state and local governments to tell us what to eat. A good example is when New York City’s “nanny” mayor, Michael Bloomberg, tried to ban Big Gulps and French fries. He doesn’t look like an example of radiant good health, but that doesn’t stop him from telling the rest of us how to live our lives, and how and what to eat.
I congratulate Sam and others who advocate for healthy lifestyles, but they’re talking and writing about personal choices. I think my lifestyle is fairly healthy even though I don’t ride my bike around town and eat lots of tofu. I’ll leave the tofu and “spelt” — whatever that is — to the certified health nuts among us. The problem is that so much of that allegedly “healthy” food tastes like alfalfa and/or sawdust. No thanks!
I hasten to add, however, that I like all kinds of bread, healthy or not. Sam is right when he endorses the nutritious, stone-ground bread baked and sold at Paul Schat’s Bakery in the Carson Mall. It’s delicious as is the bread and pastries served up at the LA Bakery — a bit pricey but very tasty. I could live on their breakfast rolls.
I’ll spare you my dietary recommendations, except to mention that I’m very fond of animal crackers and beer and when I can afford a fancier diet, I go for single-malt scotch and prosciutto. And for you teetotalers I recommend Ovaltine and Scandinavian Rye-Tack. I think those are balanced food groups, don’t you?
Well, as I was saying I’ve probably eaten several hundred pounds of supermarket bread during my life, and I’m still here to tell the story. So please pass the Wonder Bread … and the butter.
Guy W. Farmer, of Carson City, sometimes eats “unhealthy” food, such as bread.