Monday, August 31, 2009

wheat is out to get you

Shhh...don't make any noise or sudden movements - it will find you.

I made Mediterranean Risotto for dinner tonight, but I'm not posting any pictures because it didn't look any different than it did when I made it with barley. Here are the main changes:
1 cup of arborio rice (vs. 1 cup pearled barley), cooked in 2.5 cups broth added 1/2 cup at a time and allowed to absorb before adding more. 1/3 cup chopped sun-dried tomatoes (packed dry, no oil, vs. 3/4 cup) added with the third addition of broth. I also completely left out the white pepper and didn't add the chopped peppers and olives until the last addition of broth.

The thing about wheat is this: Despite my alterations, this risotto is still way too intensely flavored, so we ate it with bread as scoops. Wheat bread. But we might not have known that wheat bread contains wheat if it weren't for the very helpful label on the back, letting us know that there is wheat in the wheat bread.
It's blurry, but the little white tag at the bottom says:
"Allergan Information: This product contains wheat."

What I want to know is this: are there really people that stupid? What did you think would be in wheat bread?

In other news... today I gave in to myself and ate my beloved Clif Nectar bar, flavor: lemon, vanilla & cashew. Again, the packaging itself makes me happy - it's a very mellow shade of I can imagine painting a future kitchen.

This bar is absolutely sublime. I could just sniff it (and normally do, just before nibbling tenderly at it) and be happy because it smells SO good. All 5 ingredients (dates, cashews, goji berries, lemon juice concentrate, and vanilla) are certified organic. That may or may not mean something, but it makes me feel more like I'm ingesting pure sunshine.

Nutritionally, the price is right for a snack - 160 calories, only 6g fat, yet providing an equal 6g of dietary fiber and 4g protein (which isn't much, but you look for stuff like this after too many people ask how on earth you can possibly get enough protein without eating animal corpses *gasp!*). Also, this little 1.6 oz bar claims to provide 2 fruit servings in its delectable little self. The thing that really gets me about this bar is how creamy it is in texture, which I think is primarily owed to the velvety cashews. The ratio of vanilla to lemon is also perfect. I can't recommend this bar enough - I love, love, love it!

But here is my puzzle:
A Nectar bar is 1.6 oz.
A Larabar is also 1.6 oz.
A Nectar bar lays claim to 2 servings of fruit,
but A Larabar only claims 1 serving of fruit.
Both bars are made up of fruits and nuts.
All I can come up with so far is that Nectar bars are more concentrated on the fruit aspect of the bar, where Larabars depend heavily on nuts to texture their bars, therefore leaving less room for fruit. If you have a better answer, though, I'd love to know it - leave me a comment!

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