Tuesday, November 30, 2004

Giant sized portions

Waddling Thunder discusses what sounds like a re-education camp for obese kids and takes issue with the substance of the curriculum. I am reminded of my recent sojourn to the second fattest city in America and must conclude that these kids, even if they learn to cook healthy and tasty food, will be undermined at every turn if they dine out.

I met my mom and sister for dinner at Jay Alexanders, a chain steakhouse that my family recommended. I was only moderately ravenous and decided before perusing the menu that I would probably just have the filet. That was listed as $23.95: reasonable, I thought.

However, I was to be surprised. The filet itself was ten ounces - 20% larger than what I was accustomed to eating at a steakhouse, and substantially larger than the deck-of-cards-sized portion the government recommends for meat. This was to be accompanied by a side order, a salad, and a croissant (not a roll - why, I don't know). The salad, which I ordered with vinagrette, was literally the size of my head and full of croutons and cheddar cheese. I had about two bites - it was bland and tasteless. The crossaint was fist-sized and puffy, but drizzled with honey.

The giant steak (the smallest one on the menu) was accompanied by over two cups of orzo and wild rice, served cold and liberally dosed with purple onions and corn (?!?). I ate the steak, which came to the table with a barely melted half-tablespoon of butter plopped on top, and the appetizer we ordered (a spinach queso that would have been just as good as a spinach and artichoke dip).

If this is common, these kids are doomed. Or at least they'll never get to eat out.
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