“Wouldn’t I be silly to make it myself?”

soup campbells vintage

by Carolyn Thomas  ♥  @HeartSisters

“Go to all that bother.. when Campbell’s is so homey and nourishing?  Not me!”

“When I was a little girl, I remember we always made our own vegetable soup.  Mother used to devote just hours to to it. But one day when she was rushed, she tried Campbell’s Vegetable Soup.  My dad’s not so easy to please, but he ate a bowlful, and then another.  Since then, Mother has served Campbell’s… and Dad’s been as pleased as a kid!

“I’m married now myself and — well, we young-marrieds all feel that same way.  I mean why bother to make vegetable soup when Campbell’s Vegetable Soup is so wonderful — a grand-tasting beef stock and all those 15 garden vegetables.  Why, every time I serve it, my husband says: ‘Gosh, darling, this is really swell!’  And what better music can a wife hear than that?  Now I ask you!”

After I picked myself off the floor where I’d fallen down laughing, I pondered what effect this magazine ad from the 1940s actually must have had on women who read it.  And for those concerned about heart health, the widespread marketing of highly processed, high-fat, high salt, low-fibre, mass produced industrial food was a grim development. Continue reading ““Wouldn’t I be silly to make it myself?””

The fall of home cooking and the rise of heart disease

by Carolyn Thomas 

Chef and food activist Dan Barber, writing in The Nation recently, had a goofy, radical, off-the-wall idea:  we need to learn how to cook.  “A lack of technique behind the stove is as complicit in harming human health and the environment as the confinement pig or the corn-fed steer,” he boldly claimed. And author Michael Pollan (In Defense of Food), writing in the New York Times, notes the irony of our fascination with wildly popular celebrity chefs and TV cooking shows (even an entire food cable network!):

“How is it that we are so eager to watch other people browning beef cubes on screen but so much less eager to brown them ourselves? For the rise of Julia Child as a figure of cultural consequence — along with Alice Waters and Mario Batali and Martha Stewart and Emeril Lagasse and whoever is crowned the next Food Network star — has, paradoxically, coincided with the rise of fast food, home-meal replacements and the decline and fall of everyday home cooking. 

Continue reading “The fall of home cooking and the rise of heart disease”