9:14 PM, May 24, 2015 • By DANIEL HALPER
Victorino Matus reviews The Dorito Effect in the Wall Street Journal:
In ‘Tuesdays With Saddam,’ a 2005 essay for GQ, writer Lisa DePaolo interviewed the Pennsylvania National Guardsmen assigned to watch over Saddam Hussein in 2004 prior to his trial before the Iraqi Special Tribunal in October 2005. The prisoner reportedly preferred chicken over beef, marinated his olives with Italian dressing and drank all his beverages at room temperature. Also, “he was nuts about Cheetos,” writes Ms. DePaolo. “One of the guardsmen turned him on to them, and before long he would get grumpy if they ran out (so they started to order extra from the mess hall).” Then he discovered Doritos and “he never went back.” He called them “doris” and would devour a family-size bag in 10 minutes.
Not even a fearsome dictator could stop at just one. But why? Mark Schatzker, the author of “The Dorito Effect: The Surprising New Truth About Food and Flavor,” compares our need to eat chip after chip of artificial goodness to addiction—“a disease of craving” not so different from nicotine or narcotics dependency. “Salt, sugar, and fat are what psychologists call reinforcers,” he writes. “They trigger bursts of the potent neurotransmitters and activate the same brain circuitry as heroin and cocaine.”
Doritos started out in the 1960s as a taco chip with a mere 11 ingredients. Now such varieties as Jacked Ranch Dipped Hot Wings list 34. (This calls to mind the Onion headline: “Doritos Celebrates One Millionth Ingredient.”) Each chip is specifically engineered to contain as much of that irresistible flavor as possible. But, as we all know, that irresistible flavor lacks much nutritional value.
This is the problem that Mr. Schatzker addresses: “In nature, there is an intimate connection between flavor and nutrition,” he writes. In other words, what tastes good is good for you. Take fruit, for example. In nature, if you see a sign on the “highway of nutrition” for grapes, “you’ll get to a place with lots of vitamins C and K, some thiamin and riboflavin and potassium, fiber, sugar, and all manner of plant secondary compounds,” the author writes. On the other hand, “at the supermarket, the same sign—grape—takes your body to Grapeade, a place with no fiber and a bit of vitamin C, but that packs a serious hit of sugar.”
Whole thing here.
$295 prix fixe menu.7:01 AM, Jan 2, 2015 • By DANIEL HALPER
President Barack Obama and his wife, Michelle Obama, spent the first night of the new year at Vintage Cave, an upscale restaurant in Hawaii.
7:49 AM, Jun 13, 2014 • By GEOFFREY NORMAN
The administration has found at least one fight it is willing to make right to the end. Whatever that end should be. The first lady is rallying supporters to:
10:04 AM, May 29, 2014 • By DANIEL HALPER
First Lady Michelle Obama plays a sideline reporter in a video with NFL star-turned White House chef Richard Sherman in a video promoting healthy eating:
"Well, let me tell you," Sherman shouts at Obama. "We the best chefs in the game. So when you try us with an easy meal like salmon cakes and succotash, that's the result you going to get."
"Wow, Richard, where'd you learn to do all this?" Obama asks. "I mean, corn, succotash, salmon cakes."
11:50 AM, May 23, 2014 • By DANIEL HALPER
In Chicago this morning, President Obama made sure to let everyone know that he'll was paying for his breakfast with Illinois governor Pat Quinn. "I don't take free food," Obama said at the food counter.
Via the White House pool report:
7:01 AM, May 21, 2014 • By JERYL BIER
Just a day after House Republicans introduced legislation to roll back some Department of Agriculture (USDA) regulations on school meal programs, the USDA
One reaction to anti-Israel protesters yesterday at Zabar's.5:50 PM, Apr 23, 2014 • By KATE HAVARD
Yesterday, on the last day of Passover, protesters surrounded the doors of Zabar’s—the iconic Upper West Side grocer famous for its knishes and lox—to demand the store stop selling the carbonated beverage maker SodaStream. The roughly 40 protesters, carrying guitars and signs decrying “Apartheid Soda,” represented a coalition of volunteers from Adalah-NY (meaning “justice” in Arabic), Jewish Voice for Peace, and m
8:25 AM, Feb 27, 2014 • By DANIEL HALPER
First Lady Michelle Obama wants to make changes to the Nutrition Facts label. It is all "part of an effort to help families make healthier choices," according to the White House.
7:44 AM, Feb 21, 2014 • By DANIEL HALPER
First Lady Michelle Obama joined Jimmy Fallon and Will Ferrell, who were both dressed in drag, for a sketch last night on the Tonight Show.
Michelle Obama uses the comedy skit to talk up exercising--and they also talk about the Olympics. Then they discuss unhealthy foods, and she makes Fallon and Ferrell eat kale chips instead of potato chips, which they all act like they enjoy eating.
11:02 AM, Dec 11, 2013 • By GEOFFREY NORMAN
The team plays badly. The coach coaches badly. The owner owners badly. The fight song is revolting and the name is an offense against the laws of political correctness. But other than that …
11:15 AM, Nov 28, 2013 • By GEOFFREY NORMAN
It is the pièce de résistance in feast that includes, in my family’s case: smoked turkey with oyster stuffing, Smithfield ham, Brussels sprouts, green beans, mashed potatoes, sweet potatoes, and various other basics. For desert there will be pies: pecan, apple, pumpkin, shoo fly, and coconut cream. All manner of good things. But the fried turkey is the star of this show.
1:41 PM, Oct 14, 2013 • By DANIEL HALPER
President Obama stopped by Martha's Table food pantry in Washington, D.C. and put on a green apron: