Attention: Cream is Edible!
I was recently at a downtown health food store, which has a case of organic milk. There was a sign on the outside of the glass door that read:
HARMONY WHOLE MILK IS NOT HOMOGENIZED. THE SOLIDS AT THE TOP OF THE JAR ARE EDIBLE.
We are at the point in our culture’s separation from real food that people do not even know that cream rises to the top of real milk, and that, indeed, it is edible!! What a sorry state of affairs! It used to be that people would judge the quality of milk by the depth of the cream line. The more cream, the better the milk. Now, even “whole” milk is usually homogenized, which results in the consumer being unable to determine the quality of the milk (among other things – scary things happen to the molecules in the milk when it is subjected to pressures up to 14,500 psi – 1000 times atmospheric pressure). Before just a few years ago, I didn’t know anything about cream lines and milk quality, but at this point, it’s hard to remember being so oblivious.
When I get my milk, here’s what it looks like:
Can you see that cream line? There is usually even more cream, but at this time of year (the depths of winter), the milk is not as plentiful, and there isn’t as much cream in it. I also know now from talking with my farmer that eggs are less plentiful when the days are shorter in the winter. I think we often just assume that foods are made the same way year-round, even when they are made by nature and not in a factory, and we sometimes forget that everything that lives has a natural cycle of life.
I like knowing where my food comes from (especially the animal foods). I grow more and more wary of supermarket eggs, meat and milk as time passes. I know exactly where my milk, pork, beef, chicken and eggs come from. I can conjure the exact fields in my mind where my food grows because I have visited them many times. My farmers know my daughter’s name and ask after her when we speak. I feel extremely privileged on this account. (But, I assure you, I am not rich. My family lives on one modest income.) In fact, on that note, I must take a moment to say that it is a privilege to have access to a wealth of information and choices when it comes to food. This can be easy to lose sight of. I try to always be grateful for my food even if it’s not the ideal, perfect, most nourishing thing I can imagine!
What should that sign have read? I’m thinking something like: ATTENTION CUSTOMERS: CREAM MAY CAUSE HEIGHTENED IMMUNITY TO DISEASE. WE EXPECT MORE CREAM WHEN THE WEATHER IS NICER. PLEASE BE PATIENT.
(For an excellent post on the immunity benefits of butterfat, head over to Sarah’s post here.)