Tuesday, December 11, 2007
Different day, same old slop
…When you serve your family, do you talk up the food?
…In the Wayback, people used to have “nights.” Monday was hot dogs, Tuesday was store-bought pizza, and so on. Do you still do that?
…Of course, that is not the point of this post. Moving on…
…Brian Wansink, director of the Cornell Univ Food and Brand Lab, in his column on msnbc.com, says glorifying food with tasty descriptions helps people try and appreciate new things.
…This sneaky practice has a name, of course—confirmation bias.
…Wansink, author of Mindless Eating, says we can preprogram people to think something tastes good.
…HA remembers traveling once to her aunt’s goat farm and worrying all the way that she would have to drink goat’s milk. Her parents blandly said, “Oh, it’s Louisville
Dairy milk.” Years later, HA discovered—it WAS nanny goat product.
…Oh, there are reasons HA is bitter. But again she digresses.
…This researcher did a study of sorts. Wansink and his colleagues offered six different foods to cafeteria diners. Instead of red beans and rice, they said, “Traditional Cajun Red Beans with Rice” and instead of “seafood fillet,” they said, “Succulent Italian Seafood Fillet.” Guess which was gobbled up faster?
…Wansink says this is especially effective with kids (see? SEE? HA was a kid on the ill-fated Louisville run). Preschoolers will eat broccoli if you call it a Dinosaur Tree or peas if they are called Power Peas.
…Even adults, though—look at your next restaurant menu. Does it say, “Mystery Meat”?
No, it says, “Meat Loaf, delicious comfort food like your mother used to make.”
…Or you will see things like, “Tasty melange of fresh veggies.”
…Or “In a velvety, neon-orange sauce,” not Kraft Dinner.
…HA made that up. That seems to be the whole idea.