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November 18, 2014

A people that cannot chop is rootless and doomed.

ONE OF the relatively recent innovations in supermarkets, at least in my area, is pre-chopped and pre-peeled and pre-washed vegetables.

Our supermarkets don’t have the room for produce from local farmers, but they do have the room for hundreds of packaged “fresh” vegetables and fruits that are all ready to cook or eat without any prep work. They even have pre-sliced onions and brussels sprouts. I realize these chopped vegetables are a great convenience for certain segments of the population, such as old people who live by themselves, but is it possible that so many people don’t have the time to wash their own carrots?
The Thinking Housewife - The Decline of Chopping

Posted by gerardvanderleun at November 18, 2014 9:47 PM. This is an entry on the sideblog of American Digest: Check it out.

Your Say

Those pre-everything veggies are those that haven't sole, are starting to blemish and go limp. So they take them back inside, trim away the ugllies and slice and dice, process and package.

Margins are too tight in food sales to toss away anything that can be salvaged. Of you're buying that stuff, you're buying OLD FOOD.

Posted by: Vermont Woodchuck [TypeKey Profile Page] at November 19, 2014 5:06 AM

I have to admit that I fell into that pre-cut phase for a very long time, and about half of it was always thrown away as that stuff goes bad faster than uncut. When you live in a metropolis it's easy to over look the downside of convenience.

Now a days it's nothing but scratch built around these parts, stuff lasts longer, tastes better, and saves a little coinage too. The only down side is that it takes a little longer to prepare but it's well worth the investment.

"The less it's handled the safer it is."
--gs, 2099

Posted by: ghostsniper [TypeKey Profile Page] at November 19, 2014 9:25 AM

I had never bought anything pre-chopped until this year. Mainly because the expense seemed silly for the amount of potential time savings.

Shopping for a camping trip I bought several items for the convenience factor. Sure I had the time to chop, but what was at a minimum was prep space.

It sure was convenient, but the one stand-out item was chopped scallions. That little container turned out to hold the equivalent of about three standard bunches, so not only was it easy, it was actually cheaper.

In my house we put green onion on everything and I may never buy them whole again.

Posted by: ThomasD [TypeKey Profile Page] at November 20, 2014 7:19 AM

In the 20-million strong metropolis of Mexico City, there are traveling tent markets that set up in different neighborhoods. You shop almost daily at one or the other of them.

Some little Aztec Indian woman from the Huasteca sits and dices veggies (in her hand, not on a board) for your soup-- cabbage, cactus or chayote, onions, carrots, a bit of celery, some kernels of corn-- puts them in a small plastic baggie and sells it to you for 10 cents. The chicken was just slaughtered that morning. Would you like it with the head or without? With the beak or without? With the feet, yes? Toenails too? People there hardly have a kitchen, much less a nice knives or chopping blocks.

A few dollars, a quick stroll and all you have to do is go home and throw it in the pot. We we never so trim and healthy before or since.

Posted by: Joan of Argghh! [TypeKey Profile Page] at November 21, 2014 5:02 PM

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