Today it seems like fewer and fewer people understand what “homemade” or “made from scratch” or “fresh” mean. These terms describe how people ate back in the 1950’s and earlier.
One could almost refer to this time in food history as the “pre-Wonder Bread” era. I remember in the early 1960’s when we first saw Wonder Bread- it seemed an amazing novelty because it was incredibly light and fluffy. We didn’t stop to think about how it got that way- that it had been stripped of all its natural nutrients.
Homemade used to mean more than just “assembled” in your kitchen- by combining pre-fab mixes and spice packets. Cookies are not homemade or made from scratch if you simply baked them in your kitchen using a refrigerated roll of factory made dough.
Made from scratch meant that no ingredient- no component of the recipe was pre-made in any way. Every single component of the recipe was a singular food item. Food made from scratch has disappeared from most kitchens today. russian grocery store
Today fresh seems to mean either not frozen or not rotten. Fresh is defined by those of us who grew up back then as just picked off a tree, straight out of the ground, or straight off a vine. That’s the highest meaning of fresh.
The study of linguistics tells us that language is a living breathing entity and that if people decide to change or adopt a meaning, then doing so makes that adaptation acceptable. Apparently the original definitions of the terms “made from scratch,” “homemade,” and “fresh” are outdated. Maybe these terms have met the fate of the dinosaurs. Let’s hope not.
Why is any of this important? It’s important because we don’t know all that we’re really eating or how the edible chemical ingredients are affecting us when our food is factory made rather than made from scratch.
Factory made foods have all sorts of considerations that homemade and made from scratch foods don’t have.
Factory food must have mass appeal. Artificial ingredients are added to make food appear more attractive and to extend shelf-life. Flavor enhancers- flavor potentiators are added to ensure that the fat, sugar, and salt doesn’t fail to excite and ignite the taste buds of the consuming majority.
What’s wrong with that? Now food tastes so unnaturally good that the taste rather than hunger is driving the eating and we’re able to eat inordinately large amounts of food. Appetite distortion happens.
Having an appetite used to mean that you were hungry. Now it means you’re in the mood to eat.
Eating when you’re hungry and stopping before you’re stuffed is no longer a guiding concept for eating. We end up eating more than we need to eat before we’ve realized it.