It’s Friday afternoon, and that means it’s time for me to give you a little weekend reading from around the web. Here are a few food related items that I thought might interest you.

The Sustainable Food blog has a thoughtful post that defends frozen vegetables, as opposed to local, fresh and organic vegetables, as being an acceptable option, sometimes.

Part of being an advocate for a cause is to constantly push for more change. It means never being quite satisfied with victories, no matter how small or large. But it's also important to put things into perspective every once in a while.

Recently, editor Sarah Parsons criticized a White House video in which a chef suggests that buying frozen, non-organic vegetables from big box stores is an acceptable way to purchase affordable, healthy ingredients. "Frozen veggies, and big box stores, and non-organics — oh my!" she wrote. Certainly the antithesis of any sustainable foodie's mantra, myself included.

But as I thought more about it, I tried to put things into perspective.
Click here to read the full piece.


Culinate has some advice for those that want to host a canning party. If my tomatoes keep producing like they have been, I just may need to use this advice.

With national Canning Across America events, a stack of new preserving cookbooks, and runs on jars, canning can no longer be described as a lost art. Chances are, you’ve made a batch of jam in the past year or so.
Click here for eight canning party tips.


Over at Slate, there’s a very interesting article about how it’s culinarily unacceptable to cook meat until it is well-done and how the definition of rare has changed over time. I had no idea that chefs took such offense to having to meet a diner’s preference for having food cooked safely.

I prefer my meat cooked through, gray, no trace of pink. Shoe leather? To me that signifies "food safety." Mine is the hockey-puck, the charcoal, the hunk of tuna that is still on the grill. Gourmands consider well-done timid, even cranky. It's the gradation of people who don't really like to eat. So at a restaurant, I wouldn't humiliate myself by ordering seared tuna, well-done; I just wouldn't order the seared tuna at all. Nor would I choose hanger steak or even a really thick fish like halibut that might come out still glistening. My pride is not the only issue: If the chef thinks the dish should be rare, far be it from me to suggest an edit. Also, I've read enough kitchen dirt—waiter blogs, Anthony Bourdain memoirs—to know that diners who ask for well-done are answered with filets that have been loogied on. So I gravitate toward entrees that will fall off the bone: short ribs, osso buco, pork shoulder. That these dishes are substantial proves my culinary cred—shows that I'm not the skinny girl who nibbles and picks.
Click here to read the full piece including what happened when the author actually ate a rare stake.


And, and speaking of food safety, one of MNN’s expert advice team, Chanie Kirshner, has some tips on keeping summer food safe. She’s got some great advice for packing a cooler, handling raw meat in transit to the beach BBQ, and how long you can leave food out before it needs to be thrown away for safety reasons.

Enjoy your weekend!

Image: Matt Callow


Robin Shreeves ( @rshreeves ) focuses on food from a family perspective from her home base in New Jersey.

Weekend reads: Defending frozen veggies, out of fashion well-done meat, and more
Food news and items of interest from around the Web for your weekend reading.