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I meant to make a laudatory post last week to the effect that, where other than The New Yorker might you find a smart, funny, informative article on a literary figure as obscure as Alfred Lord Dunsany

I took that test when we applied to adopt! Picture was from the 30's: any idiot could tell that you were supposed to translate the stallion and the shirtless man in the picture into something sexual.

Mitchell is right on this precise point, though: as a classical music fan, I find its use in classical venues to be an outrage.

The current edition of the New Yorker is their annual food issue. Thankfully they didn't devote an article to kale but they did cover gluten extensively.

 

Against the Grain

 

It's a pretty good article as far as it goes. It summarizes the anti position pretty well and extensively covers the main stream scientific view that gluten phobia is overblown. The writer seems like an intelligent guy who is perfectly capable of parsing the arguments right up until the final paragraphs when he says he's going to stop adding extra gluten to his home made bread. It's almost as if he didn't read his own article.

 

I don't know if I agree with your assessment, though maybe it's because I don't understand? He'd been adding vital wheat gluten to his homemade bread for the last few years, because he couldn't get his whole-grain breads (made from flours that he was grinding at home) to rise properly.

 

And then, when he met that "famous baker," who taught him the secret that real, wholesome. whole-wheat bread takes time, in addition to the four other ingredients, he dumped his vital wheat gluten and started baking the old-world way. (I'm guessing the famous baker was perhaps Reinhart or Ortiz).

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hasn't it already been established (most recently confirmed in the katz's thread) that lex doesn't read?

 

Read this.

 

I have been baking bread for more than thirty years, and there are few things I find more satisfying than turning a pound of wheat into something that I can feed to my friends. But it’s not always easy to believe in gluten these days. A couple of years ago, having learned that the nutrients and vitamins in wheat berries begin to degrade soon after they are processed, I bought a home mill and began to make my own flour. I started ordering wheat, in fifty-pound buckets, from places in Montana and South Dakota. I bought books that explained the differences between hard red winter wheat, which is good for whole-grain bread, and soft white wheat, which has a lower protein content and is used mostly for cookies, cakes, and pastries. I acquired sourdough starter from a friend, and treat it like a pet.

 

I have run into a couple of problems, however. The first was technical: I couldn’t make the wheat rise. I decided early on to bake only whole-wheat bread, but there just wasn’t enough protein in any combination of the grains I used. The bread often looked like brown matzoh, so I began to root around the Internet, and soon stumbled on the solution: vital wheat gluten. (“If you want to keep your bread 100% whole wheat, vital wheat gluten is your new best friend,’’ a message on one bread forum said. “This stuff is super-concentrated gluten flour, and it really helps to give low-gluten doughs better structure.”) That turned out to be true. It was like pumping air into a flat tire. A few tablespoons mixed into my flour, and the bread became elastic and chewy, and it looked like a normal loaf of bread; vital wheat gluten became my magic wand. Gradually, another problem arose, as more and more of my friends began to say, “Thanks, but I am staying away from gluten these days.”

 

 

He did it for his friends and ignored all those scientists and doctors he interviewed.

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hasn't it already been established (most recently confirmed in the katz's thread) that lex doesn't read?

 

Read this.

 

I have been baking bread for more than thirty years, and there are few things I find more satisfying than turning a pound of wheat into something that I can feed to my friends. But it’s not always easy to believe in gluten these days. A couple of years ago, having learned that the nutrients and vitamins in wheat berries begin to degrade soon after they are processed, I bought a home mill and began to make my own flour. I started ordering wheat, in fifty-pound buckets, from places in Montana and South Dakota. I bought books that explained the differences between hard red winter wheat, which is good for whole-grain bread, and soft white wheat, which has a lower protein content and is used mostly for cookies, cakes, and pastries. I acquired sourdough starter from a friend, and treat it like a pet.

 

I have run into a couple of problems, however. The first was technical: I couldn’t make the wheat rise. I decided early on to bake only whole-wheat bread, but there just wasn’t enough protein in any combination of the grains I used. The bread often looked like brown matzoh, so I began to root around the Internet, and soon stumbled on the solution: vital wheat gluten. (“If you want to keep your bread 100% whole wheat, vital wheat gluten is your new best friend,’’ a message on one bread forum said. “This stuff is super-concentrated gluten flour, and it really helps to give low-gluten doughs better structure.”) That turned out to be true. It was like pumping air into a flat tire. A few tablespoons mixed into my flour, and the bread became elastic and chewy, and it looked like a normal loaf of bread; vital wheat gluten became my magic wand. Gradually, another problem arose, as more and more of my friends began to say, “Thanks, but I am staying away from gluten these days.”

 

 

He did it for his friends and ignored all those scientists and doctors he interviewed.

 

 

proves my point.

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Because I grew up in the same country as Liverpool.

Different point, you know.

 

I was saying that Billy Joel may be sufficiently inconsequential as to be subject to disregard in most places -- but not on Long Island. I'm not saying you have to dislike him if you're from Long Island: lots of people there love him. Only that you can't not have an opinion of him.

 

No one is saying that people in the US are able to disregard the Beatles, whereas you in the UK can't. All I've been saying is that we in the US view them differently from you and the Johnsons -- in a way that, if anything, makes them harder to disregard here (and more subject to rejection as a matter of fashion there).

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Because I grew up in the same country as Liverpool.

No one is saying that people in the US are able to disregard the Beatles, whereas you in the UK can't. All I've been saying is that we in the US view them differently from you and the Johnsons -- in a way that, if anything, makes them harder to disregard here (and more subject to rejection as a matter of fashion there).

 

yes

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I'm too lazy to dig out the post where Wilf said that the Beatles were successful by chance and their place could have been filled by the Pacemakers or the Dave Clark Five. It was extraordinary.

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What I would have said, entirely accurately, was that bands like the Pacemakers and the Dave Clark Five once contested The Beatles' popularity. The Pacemakers went to number 1 in the UK with their first three singles (The Beatles didn't), they also toured the States and appeared on the Ed Sullivan show in 1963, and both the Pacemakers and the Dave Clark Five released feature films hard on the heels of A Hard Day's Night.

 

It's easy to dismiss those competitor bands with hindsight. I would have been discussing the contemporaneous view of events.

 

ETA: Think of The Sex Pistols and The Damned. From our present perspective, the latter were a fun band of relatively minor importance (and a couple of immortal songs). Back in 1975-77, they repeatedly beat the Pistols to career landmarks (first live gig, first TV appearance, first single, first album, etc).

 

(Any more should go on The Beatles thread, I think.)

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the problem with your pistols/damned analogy is that the beatles proved to be both more culturally significant and influential than their peers (as the sex pistols have over the damned) and more musically accomplished than almost all of them (as the damned were over the pistols).

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