November 23, 2011

Is pizza a vegetable? Depends on the pizza.

By Anna | 4 Comments »

Well since I had so much success with my last rant, I thought I would add another to this week’s posting.

I get regular emails from the Center for Science in the Public Interest. I have no idea how I got on this list, but this week’s notice was about how pizza (tomato paste actually) is considered a vegetable in school lunch. You might have heard this news from other sources; I also heard commentary on it via Wait Wait… Don’t Tell Me! (WBHM represent! I listen to a lot of NPR, because I’m a communist).

Elisa and I are both as passionate about food as we are about cycling. Pizza is probably one of our most favorite foods -it’s got all the items that make up a “balanced meal” and it’s downright delicious. We were both members of a local Birmingham CSA last year, and I cannot count the number of times our vegetables ended up as pizza.

However, when I dream about pizza, it usually looks something like this:


This is my favorite pizza to make, from Bon Appetit – Asparagus, Fingerling Potato, and Goat Cheese. It is amazing. AMAZING. You should stop what you’re doing, get to the store, rush home, and make this delicacy. I’ll wait.

Anyway, I would certainly consider the asparagus pizza a vegetable straight from heaven. This, however:


This is pizza straight from hell, as documented on Fed Up with Lunch – The School Lunch Project. Should the tomato sauce on this pizza be considered a vegetable? I don’t know, maybe. Should it be served to any living being? Most definitely not.

So…why is this post on Bikeskirt? Well like I said we love pizza, and it’s a great cycling fuel. It should be at the destination of rides to be worshiped as the perfect combination of carbohydrate goodness, melty calcium and protein wonderfulness, and vitaminy fibery deliciousness. Pizza should not be demonized!

Processed foods that don’t even resemble whatever they’re supposed to be is the problem. No one should be putting that food in their bodies, particularly if they are persons working to live intentionally healthy lives. I understand processed foods cheaper, more convenient, and stimulate those happy receptors in your brain sure, but for gods sake lets just say no to this mess. We live life in the admittedly slow but enjoyable bicycle lane, so we should also take time to allow our food to join us on that journey.

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  1. On November 23rd, 2011 Jim said:

    Amen, sister. Our CSA went belly up about 2 years ago, but with careful shopping and becoming a real PITA to our local produce store clerk we have succeeded in obtaining nearly all of our veggies from locally grown and organic sources. There is just nothing like a homemade pizza made with veggies that were in the ground just hours before.

    You make excellent points about the use of processed foods, but until and unless the general public becomes aware and accepts how bad it is, despite the convenience and taste, I see little hope for change. Meanwhile, we need to keep getting the word out (and enjoying the delicious benefits of fresh locally grown eating)

  2. On November 23rd, 2011 Elisa said:

    I am loving the Anna rants. Can we make a page just for them? :)

  3. On November 25th, 2011 Bliss Chick said:

    Yay, NPR commies! Yay, pizza snobs! Applause for the rants, baby.

  4. On November 28th, 2011 lowrah said:

    Ew!! That last photo almost made me lose my lunch.

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