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Book Chat – May

Posted by jenskitchen on May 31, 2009

Last month, Noëlle at Simmer Down! (A Food Lover’s Blog) put out the idea to read a book and then review it/discuss it/make a recipe inspired by the book, etc… I feel like a bit of a slacker because I really wanted to read this particular book, but I just ended up running out of time to buy it or get one from the library.
So, next month, look for the new book and in the mean time, check out some of the other reviews of what looks like a great book: How to Pick a Peach by Russ Parsons.

Added June 2, 2009 (I’ll be answering these as I go):

Whether you’ve read the book or not, what are your thoughts?

Discussion questions: (please feel free to answer one, a few, or all!)

  1. Why do you think Parsons selected a peach as his title fruit, rather than a pear, plum, or some vegetable?
  2. Generations ago, a book like this probably would not have been necessary.  The smaller amount of items available would have meant that the average person would not have needed the breadth of knowledge that we do when we go to the supermarket. We now have a disconnect from many items because they are not local and thus less familiar, and therefore we find ourselves in a position of having to “re-educate” ourselves as consumers.  Is the greater variety worth the trade-off?  How much time and effort are you willing to spend to ensure that you are selecting the best possible produce?
  3. One of the topics discussed in the book is the supply chain and how it affects what varieties are propagated.  How important is it to you to have a wider variety of items, some shipped from across the country or imported, versus having better quality items that can be found locally?
  4. It stands to reason that if consumers stopped buying flavorless peaches, tomatoes, etc, growers would be forced to adapt.  Why and how did people become disinterested about the flavor of their food?  How much blame, if any, should be placed on the average consumer (or the farmers) for the quality of produce found in our grocery stores today?
  5. What do you think the future holds for the flavor of fruits and vegetables, the way the supply chain functions, and for the overall quality of our food?

2 Responses to “Book Chat – May”

  1. Valerie said

    I love this idea. I’m in a book club and each person tries to cook dinner based on the book. Sometimes that works, sometimes it’s a bit difficult. But it’s always fun to try.

    • jenskitchen said

      I think that’s a great idea! I love finding new sources of inspiration and I love to read… makes perfect sense to me.

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