Monday, November 08, 2010

Smile and say, "I've got a burning sensation in my chest and I can't feel my left arm"

There was a story in the Times on Sunday about how Dairy Management, part of the U.S. Dept. of Agriculture, is working with restaurants to encourage more sales of cheese. The results are rather alarming as well as somewhat puzzling:
...In a series of confidential agreements approved by agriculture secretaries in both the Bush and Obama administrations, Dairy Management has worked with restaurants to expand their menus with cheese-laden products.

Consider the Taco Bell steak quesadilla, with cheddar, pepper jack, mozzarella and a creamy sauce. “The item used an average of eight times more cheese than other items on their menu,” the Agriculture Department said in a report, extolling Dairy Management’s work — without mentioning that the quesadilla has more than three-quarters of the daily recommended level of saturated fat and sodium. ...

On Oct. 13, Domino’s announced the latest in its Legends line of cheesier pizza, which Dairy Management is promoting with the $12 million marketing effort.

Called the Wisconsin, the new pie has six cheeses on top and two more in the crust.

Just eight cheeses in the pizza? Pikers. They need to think bigger--really go all in. Remove the tomato sauce--it's just taking up valuable real estate on the crust--and replace it with a nice Velveeta sauce. Perhaps take an extra step to support our farmers and replace the crust with meat.

In short, I'm concerned that the Dairy Management folks just aren't thinking big enough:
“More cheese on pizza equals more cheese sales,” [Thomas] Gallagher, the Dairy Management chief executive, wrote in a guest column in a trade publication last year. “In fact, if every pizza included one more ounce of cheese, we would sell an additional 250 million pounds of cheese annually.”

True, Mr. Gallagher, but why stop there? If every pizza had a pound more of cheese, you could sell 4 trillion more pounds a year.


ChefNick said...

I just ordered a pizza from a local place that had so much cheese on it I just wanted to vomit. There was little else. The "dough", such as it was, was soaked in cheese goo, but the true tragedy was that the cheese was completely tasteless, kind of like warm plasticine.

My nine-year-old has been known to make better pizza than that . . . yes, a real heart-warmer.

Make that a heart-stopper. I can put together a healthy pita pizza in ten minutes, not this doughy, fat-laden crap that these people love to put out.

But then again, there are people who stock up on 20 2-liter Coke bottles at Costco . . . . said...

I think they got to the bagel people a long time ago. It's ridiculous how much cream cheese they put on a bagel, and every bagel place does it.

Jim Donahue said...

Yeah, agreed on both counts.

When I make a pizza at home (OK, I cheat and use prepared dough or a Boboli crust), I go heavy on the sauce and light on the cheese. Love caramelized onions on a pizza, so usually make those.

Great, now I'm salivating, and I only finished lunch about half an hour ago.

Jim Donahue said...

Also, correct me if I'm wrong, but wasn't there a time when a bagel wasn't larger than your head? I dimly remember this.

ChefNick said...

Just a simple pita with some grated cheddar, red onion, maybe a jalapeƱo and perhaps some prosciutto kicks ass over the crap these people put out. Prepared in ten minutes. I'm salivating just thinking of it.

Knatolee said...

Canadian bagels are still smaller than your head.

"if every pizza included one more ounce of cheese"... we'd all be 50 lbs heavier at the end of every year!

I have to make my own pizza. No delivery to the farm and the local pizza is CRAP. said...

I haven't found any good gluten-free pizzas.