Friday, November 24, 2006

Our Daily Bread

Here's a movie I am looking forward to seeing, Our Daily Bread, or maybe not. It will not be a pretty picture, but sometimes that is what it takes to think about the systems we live with. Are they acceptable? Can we make decisions that will institute change? Is it affordable to make these decisions? Hmmm, the latter question is a big one, isn't it? Why can't we afford it?

Ok, enough! This is a light minded food blog, isn't it?

Here are some snaps from the studio.

Mark Forsythe, the host of Almanac
(Sorry Mark, I know you are eating in the photo, but it was the better of the two!)

Bread Jammed on to Studio Console

The Vultures Arrive


Anonymous AJ said...

The movie "Our Daily Bread" sounds like a provocative statement but based on the review I wonder if the shock value (note preponderence of slaughterhouse images in review) will overide the deeper questions about the industrial food system and what it does and does not do. Although inhumane, a day of stress, an hour of terror and a minute of pain somehow doesn't compare to mutations and exterpation caused by chemical intensive monocultures and loss of genetic diversity.

The fact is that even a quick and painless death of a farm animal, followed by skinning and butchering conducted with care and respect, could not be viewed dispassionately by 90% of the population. Don't let the blood obscure the real issues in our food supply

7:50 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I just wrote down yesterday...The Omnivore's Dilema, as a look for book from NYTs I'll probably see this movie. I loved Fast Food Nation(looking forward to the movie) and Supersize This.

I'm glad to see more and more books about totalitarian agricultures ethics exposed.

I'd rather eat game or wild animals...not only because they taste better, and smaller portions have just as much or more protein, but because knowing the animals had better lives is important to me.

Humans have always had to reconcile our need to kill what we love in order to eat...but it is easier to reconcile when the animals have had a fre and healthy life. Under agricultural economies all animals suffer barnyard and farmhouse animals.

Hey I love the photos of the studio...Mark you look great! It is a real treat to see behind the scenes, radio professionals don't get enough spotlight, nice to put a face and setting to the voice. Looks like a fun afternoon and must have been nice to have homebaking aromas in the studios.

Thanks for the cool photos!

2:20 PM  
Blogger Underground Baker said...

of course, sensationalism sells, and I think those scenes will have a sensational or shock value quality to them. I too have only read the review, but in my mind anything that makes people think even somewhat more critically about what they are consuming has some value.

I am hoping that Our Daily Bread will explore more than the tip of the iceburg that is slaughter of mass produced chicken, beef, pork, etc. They don't "compare to mutation and exterpations caused by chemical intensive monocultures and loss of genetic diversity", they are part of that food raising philosophy, (or perhaps more appropriately described as policy).
It is unfortunate that the reviewer couldn't get past the whole slaughter process, considering the photo associated with the review showed some kind of spraying of a crop, (I assume it is a pesticide).
I have serious concerns over any form of food production that chooses quantity over quality. I am looking forward to seeing how Our Daily Bread tackles these issues, or if in the end it does at all.
And Candy, just to be the devils advocate, is a life in the wild better than range land? I've seen, smelled, heard and been followed by predators, (much closer than I would have preferred), and I wouldn't like having to live all the time trying to out-think them.

Love the dialogue! Thanks!

5:15 PM  
Blogger Cynnie said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

7:58 PM  
Blogger Cynnie said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

7:58 PM  
Blogger Cynnie said...

okay..this has little to do with the post..
For tday i made some simple cuban bread..
It was nasty!..( tasted too yeasty..and not in a good way )

But it was my first attempt ..and i wasnt too disheartened..

I'm going to try again tomorrow ..

I think I did several things wrong..

But your beautiful bread is keeping me excited about trying !!..

7:58 PM  
Blogger Cynnie said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

7:58 PM  
Blogger Underground Baker said...

what is cuban bread?
And it has lots to do with the post - lets get your bread working.
What was wrong with it?

10:28 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well, Underground Baker, I don't think that the definition or measuement of "quality of life" is only defined by stess or not stress.

I think it is easy to imagine that an animal would prrefer to not be in a cage...although domesticated animals are more docile than most wild animals.

A predator and its prey live at utter relaxed and even co-operative states when they aren't hungry. How nature shows have we seen where the gazelles eat and forage while the full lion sleeps for days. Same with other cats and bears. The lion is a motif for Buddhists, because the lion is not afraid of any other being, which is a symbol for not rbeing reborn into sufferering future lives...but the other animals also have a way to make a living alert...but within the ecosystem. They spook, but not constaly, as they haver warning systems and as long as it's the days off of the lion heh heh, they are kewl.

But yes, it is a different life and again I don't define freedom as being free from challenges. Just free. Freedom is its own reward and has a quality difficult to measure.

11:39 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi - I heard some of your Almanac show and I'm really interested in baking some bread. Can you tell us where you purchase your ingredients (I live in North Vancouver), Thanks. Great blog!

5:46 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hello all,

So excited to share in the love of bread! Have a buckwheat, rye, rice sponge goin right now...YUM! i LOVE buckwheat!

anywho, i saw Our Daily Bread at the International Film Fest. It was for sure stark...I didn't read the review you all speak of, but the animals were a part of the movie. The documentary on a whole was much bigger than those parts...from my point of view the movie was more about the disconnection we have from our food, how it is so industrialized. it portrayed how food is produced on such a large scale. how it is so not what they teach us it is...the people who raise the food also eat it and you can see the emptiness in their eyes as they absently put the bread in their mouth and gulp it down with their drink. it is profound and a good reminder to not eat mass produced food, whether it be plant or animal.

i, myself am not so much into the heirarchy of food. life is life and all life should be honoured. and this film shows how it isn't.

thanks for the advocacy and spreading the word on how fabulous bread is, underground baker! :D

Tammy Toad

9:11 PM  
Blogger Underground Baker said...

Hello New Visitors!
How exciting to have more people come on and talk about what they think about food - how we make it, eat it, sell it, throw it away...

Candy - hee, hee, we have had this conversation so often...I threw that out there knowing you would be on it like a scarab beetle to...

My next little project will be on the morning show in few weeks. I am thrilled and anxious at the same time. I'll be talking about cookbooks! More on that later.

Vivian, I don't know North Van that well, but most things you can find in grocery stores. When I post my "Know Your Ingredients" lists, I will try to give suggestions about were to find things in a fairly general way. I don't think you should have any problems - just pull out the yellow pages and start phoning stores. For some of your specialty flours health food stores are your best bet, and in Vancouver one of my favourite stores is Famous Foods on Kingsway. It is a great store to just go poke around and the prices are good, especially for organics.
I hope that is some help.

9:58 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thanks for the welcome!

It is exciting to share my passions with others! so psyched about some of the links and books you mention!

So...kneading...i love it, i have always found it to be such a sensual pleasure, sexy to watch and lovely to do...working up a sweat and feeling the dough become springy under my strong hands. i LOVE that! today as i got into the zone, i found myself pounding the bread...frustration was coming out in my loaf...(mind you it is rising great now ;))...but heres' the question, and here is where the frustration lies...

i am finding that i am needing to add lots of flour while i am this recipe called for 8 cups flour and i used an extra 2 in the kneading...every minute i had to keep adding more. i couldn't get into a proper flow...i am generally using a rye started and whole grain flours...this time it was buckwheat, wheat and a bit of pastry...any thoughts? is is bad to add so much more flour? is there anyway to deal with the stickiness differently?

frustrated ;)

12:37 PM  
Blogger Underground Baker said...

Hi tammytoad,
Does your recipe call for all those assorted flours? The first thing that comes to mind is that the some of the flours you are using are low in gluten, (the buckwheat and pastry). Gluten binds with water, so if there is less gluten, you may need less water.
What is your water measure to the 8 cups flour? This ration could also be the problem.
I would much rather have a wetter dough than a dry one, as you can always knead in more flour. Most doughs should be a little to quite sticky when they are finished. If you are doing a ciabatta type recipe they should be downright runny.

2:47 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

i guess the question is how do you knead it if it is runny?

the recipe is 2 C water, 2 C cooked grain...(rice in this case) 2 C starter and 8 C flour...whatever flour he says...

i am into making highly nutritious/sustaining breads, but i also want them to be cooked well...and look good ;)

i have recently been going through an old cherokee cooklore book...much on making bean bread in there, but with hominey and boiling it with ash/lye and all that stuff...know of anywhere i could get a good recipe for a corn/bean bread?

thanks underground baker! your name sounds like a super hero!

oh, and by the way, the bread did come out fantastic!


6:35 PM  
Blogger Underground Baker said...

Hi tammyt,
I wrote my answer to you under the yeast post. It is easier to keep up with running conversations if I keep moving them up to more recent comments.
See you there!

7:23 PM  

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