The Nutritional Value of Ice

You would think everyone would know the nutritional value of ice after all it’s just frozen water and water has ZERO nutritional value.  Apparently that thought was lost on some government bureaucrat in North Carolina.  I offer as evidence a photo of the bag of ice I bought just before Thanksgiving.

Zero – Zero – Zero – Zero – Zero and Zero

What the ? !  Nutrition Facts for Ice? !  This is too much!  Has our nation’s education level sunk so low that consumers need to be told that ICE has ZERO calories?  ZERO – no fat either, or sodium. Potassium and carbohydrates are ZERO too, and let’s not forget protein, a solid ZERO as well.  Did some overzealous nutrition nut call the state and complain they weren’t getting enough information about the ice they bought.  Water that is “purified water from the mountains of western North Carolina” according to the bag.  I won’t go on a tangent discussion of what might have been purified out of the water – let’s just leave it as “purified.”

It was great ice – as ice goes – but truthfully I wasn’t expecting a lot.  Cold and tasteless is my favorite type of ice. I didn’t expect to have stronger muscles from protein or higher blood pressure from too much salt.  I was just buying ice for the holiday.

If you actually took time to read the Nutrition Facts above your sharp eyes and keen intellect might have wondered how there was 56 servings in one bag of ice.  It was a 20 pound bag!  I had never seen a 20 pound bag of ice before but when I need ice I’ll look for it again.  The bag had EZ grip handles at the top for carrying the bag home and as an added bonus the bag is 100% recyclable; just what you would expect from a company that distributes purified water with no calories from fat.

What’s Next for Nutrition Labeling

What lame-brained government official decided that ice needed a nutrition label and wrote that law into their regulations?  What’s next?  Nutrition labels on kitchen faucets?  However will we know if the water we drink can make us fat (Hint, it’s not the water it’s what we put in the water that’s making us fat.)  A shot of bourbon does tend to add to the enjoyment of ice but even after several shots of bourbon I can still tell you it’s the alcohol not the ice that’s causing me problems.

Grow up legislators! Ice is not the enemy of America.  Assume we consumers have a bit of common sense.  I don’t mind being reminded by an ice cream container that there’s lots of fat and sugar.  I will have fewer and smaller scoops if I take the time to read  the label; but ice, get real.  Requiring  the nutrition facts about ice to be printed on a bag; that’s government intervention gone too far.  It’s time to revolt and take back our frozen water and our sanity.

I’ll stop ranting by the next blog – if you’re not already being notified when new blogs are posted fill out the Follow This Blog box in the right column.  In the meantime, do you have a pet peeve about labeling – or water?



Thanksgiving Food for a Small Family


(Photo credit: gvgoebel)

This year there will be 6 of us eating turkey.  Seven people will be at the table but the youngest member is what some people might all a picky eater.  I have other words for a child that passes on mashed potatoes, and pumpkin pie.  The problem of cooking for a small family is that if we served everyone’s favorite our dinner would consist of: deviled eggs, turkey, dressing (traditional, cornbread and oyster), gravy (one with giblets and one without), cranberry sauce (Ocean Spray I love you fresh stewed with oranges and red wine), mashed potatoes, potato salad, rice, macaroni and cheese (or as the granddaughter said “the good kind, homemade not out of the box,” green bean casserole, sweet potato casserole with pecan topping, sweet potato casserole with marshmallow topping, dinner rolls, butter, some type of green salad, a bottle of wine or maybe a Mimosa, pecan pie, coconut cake, key lime pie, pumpkin pie, apple pie, and chocolate cake.  Do you see a problem?  As much as I like food even I can see that’s too much food.  We may live in a land of plenty but that menu is plenty too much.

Thanksgiving Past

Personally I would be happy going to a restaurant, that is until Friday arrived and there was no leftover turkey to make into a sandwich.  Normally I prefer multigrain bread but for a down home true leftover turkey sandwich you can’t beat plain old white bread – slathered with mayo and heavily salted.  It’s an eating sin I live with during the holidays:  too much fat and  too much salt. Some people top their post-Thanksgiving sandwiches with dressing and cranberry sauce but that’s too much; make it plain and simple for me – reminiscent of my childhood.  Years ago we had traditional Norman Rockwell holiday meals with grandparents, aunts, uncles and cousins around the table.  All the food spread out on a table with the turkey as the crowning glory at the table’s head.  Whether he carved or not my memory recalls my grandfather carving the perfectly roasted bird for the assembled family members.  Was wine served?  With the adults involved it should have been but I don’t know; I, after all, was just a child and intent of stuffing my face not observing what the old people at the big table were doing.

English: A small plate with a serving of mashe...

Remembering my grandmother’s kitchen it’s amazing she could amass such a feast.  I’m sure every family brought something and it must have gone immediately to the table as each group arrived.  There would have been no room in the kitchen.  Many modern homes have closets larger than that kitchen.  Yet the best food in the world came out of that tiny room.

More Food, Why Yes I Believe  I Do

One Thanksgiving tradition never changes.  I’ve been grocery shopping once and even with a pared down menu I still have my 2nd list of things that were forgotten on the first trip.  Will there be a third trip?  Probably, even though it’s a small family I want my grandchildren to remember a festive and full Thanksgiving.

What is your favorite holiday food?  and no fair saying “dessert.”


To Raisin or Not to Raisin

English: A pile of Sunmaid raisins.

Let me be truthful and admit right here and now and be up front about this issue.   I’m on the “Not” side of putting raisins in food.  As I was preparing my list of foods that taste better without raisins I asked a friend for confirmation.  She listened to my list and was shocked, yes shocked, that I thought oatmeal cookies were better without raisins.  Obviously we can’t be stranded on a desert island together if she is going to have such outlandish food tastes.  I shudder to think what she must put in her sweet potato casserole.

Best Comfort Food (Without raisins)

Creole Bread Pudding with Vanilla Whiskey Sauc...

What got me thinking about raisins was actually bread pudding; the ultimate comfort food. It’s so sweet and loaded with carbohydrates; any who reads this blog regularly knows those are my two favorite food groups.  I once had a bread pudding made from Krispy Kreme donuts.  It was too light and fluffy, like the donuts but something was missing.  Bread pudding should be able to stand on its own.  Sure it’s called pudding but that’s a misnomer actually it should be called “bread with some pudding to moisten and sweeten it” but I guess that name’s too long for most cookbooks and restaurant menus.  Back to the main topic:  I’ll dine on a bread pudding with raisins swimming among the bread because those tiny dried grapes are easy to spot and scoop out as I’m eating but oatmeal cookies that’s another thing.  Raisins in oatmeal cookies are harder, in fact it is near impossible to not eat the raisins.

Too many bakeries ruin what should be a morning treat of cinnamon toast by pouring in the raisins.  What, do I look like I need more fiber?  No my brain is attuned to pleasure not pretending by eating a few raisins in my French toast I will have a healthy day.  Oatmeal is for healthy days. Cinnamon toast is for delightfully sinful days.

OK Food (With raisins)


(Photo credit: huppypie)

I’m not anti-raisin.  There are a few foods I like that raisins make better.  Carrot salad is one that comes to mind especially if the carrot salad has chopped up pineapple as well.  Celery is ok for crunch but it needs to be finely chopped and added with a light touch. It is almost lunch time and needless to say my mind is wandering.  When I finally head out the door it will be a strange combination of foods that I’m craving.  First though I need to finish my thoughts.

Trail mix; you can’t have a decent trail mix without some raisins.  That seems to go back to the idea that raisins go best in foods that appear to be good for you.  Apparently the flavors of raisin and pineapple meld because it’s not trail mix for me without those two ingredients.  For a midday snack a small box of raisins does hit the spot.  It’s convenient and doesn’t leave powder sugar all over my blouse or cherry stains on my fingers.

And the Winner is!

What’s the score? Three food ideas for raisins, three against.  In my electoral college the “Nots” just won.  It’s a rather complicated voting system – too long to explain here just accept the fact that raisins do not belong on my list of sweet treats.

Join the conversation – are you for or against raisins?  Leave a comment below.