Wednesday, June 22, 2011

On Doughnuts and Diets.

Just a few random thoughts wondering what my next writing project will be.

On this day in 1847, the doughnut is invented.  Actually, fried doughy bread-like treats have been around since prehistoric times.  Archeologists dig them up in sites around the world.  But in 1847, Elizibeth Gregory, the mother of a New England ship captain Hansen Gregory, made a deep-fried dough that used her son's recent cargo of nutmeg and cinnamon and added some lemon rind. She made them for her son and his crew so they could store the pastry on long voyages and to help ward off scurvy and colds.  Because she was afraid the dough might not cook through in the center and thus cause spoilage, Mrs. Gregory put hazel nuts or walnuts in the centers, and called them doughnuts.

Hansen himself claimed credit for the hole in the middle of the doughnut. Supposedly he was steering his ship is rough water but not wanting to get rid of the the doughnut he was eating, he jammed it onto one of the steering wheel's wooden spokes.  Instant hole!  But some folks claimed that he added the hole just to save on food costs for his crew.

I am not sure why it became a joke that police officers like donuts.  I don't know many people would turn one away.  Unless they are on a diet, then they'd still WANT it, just wouldn't eat it.  Not in public, anyway.  And by the way, my favorite kind still the cake spiced doughnuts.  Perhaps in a past life, I was a member of Hansen's crew!

For those of you who do not know this, I am a vegetarian; have been for a few decades.  Years ago, I created a diet for me that I refer to as "Chromodietetics".  The basic idea is that your plate should contain the basic colors of the rainbow so that the net color of your food is white.  White light actually contains all the colors of the rainbow, and your diet should, too.  The whiter your meal, the healthier it is.  My mother-in-law calls it "Eating the rainbow," as good a description as any.

In describing this to some friends and relatives, they said I should write this up as my next children's book.  So I am asking all of you: what do you think of that idea?  Would a children's book describing the diet and giving samples of foods of each of the colors be one that you'd buy for your kids?  Keep in mind that I would assign poor color values to meats because even if you are NOT a vegetarian, a healthy diet shouldn't contain nearly as much meat as Americans eat on average.

Yea or nay?