Day 45: chicken patty

Today’s menu: chicken patty, peas, banana, garlic bread, milk

Definitely edible! The peas, banana, and even the garlic bread were good! Yum. The chicken patty was called “Chicken Parmesan” on the menu. I guess that’s why the sauce was there. I’m assuming parm was sprinkled on the patty or it was an ingredient in the breading. I did not taste cheese at all. The chicken patty is what it is.
This meal ranks high up there in comparison to what I’ve eaten before. I really can’t complain. But I’m wondering wouldn’t it be cheaper to send cooked whole chicken parts (legs, thighs drumsticks, etc) directly to the school, instead of a sending the chicken from the farm to the processing plant and then sending the patty to the school. Would it be possible/feasible to cut out the middle man?
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55 thoughts on “Day 45: chicken patty

  1. I came across your blog today and have skimmed over it. Very interesting. I'm 31 now but back in school our lunches were disgusting. They werent in little packages like you have – the lunch ladies actually took them out of vats and slopped them onto the lunch trays – but they were always bad for you and gross. Usually I brought my lunch. When I bought it, I got something from the snack line instead. Most of the kids did. Usually then my lunch was a container of popcorn, or one of those big pretzels. That was a typical lunch. The actual hot lunches didn’t look like real food at all. I don’t remember how long we had to eat, but it always seemed like plenty of time to me. Even in college our meals were pretty gross and I usually left almost everything on my plate because I just couldn’t eat it (having been spoiled by a mother who was a good cook), but I guess that’s another topic.

  2. Well, I didn't look through every comment to find out if someone said this but, I'm pretty sure they can't cut out the middle-man because that chicken patty isn't any of the parts you listed…

    Let's be honest, from one of the early posts that link to the USDA standards for beef for school food, we can imagine that everything sent for school food is less than sub-par, and made of… well, who cares.

    The problem with all school food is that hardly any of it tastes good, and even if it does, it's not healthy for you.

  3. I graduated high school in 2005 and can still vaguely remember elementary school lunches still sending a shiver down my spine. It was tasteless and extremely unhealthy. Both my parents worked full time and didn't have any time to prepare any lunches for me, so I ended up gawking at most of my lunches and eating a real meal at my grandmothers after school. However, the food that's being served in all these pictures looks exactly like what was served 10 years ago. Seems like nothing changes.

    In middle school and high school, it was even worse. Now we had options–but horrible options. Your choices at lunch were pizza (extremely greasy with hardened cheese), cup of noodles, gross burritos and grill cheese sanwhiches along with all you can eat candy/cookies/chips/donuts etc. I remember my lunch in 8th grade used to be 3 packs of m&ms because all the hot food ran out within the first ten minutes.

    I have to say that it's really scary to see what food we're putting into kid's bodies and what disorders might arise from this. I think a big thing here is to cut down on a lot of the carbs (there were many pictures where there's a bun and also 2 slices of bread with butter). Kids don't need all of that starch. Even sweet items- my mom used to incorporate wheat flour and flax seed into baked goods and it was still tasty.

    You never know, maybe one day the kids will start a food revolution on their own.

  4. The reason the chicken doesn't come straight to the school from the farm in recognizable pieces is that the part the school gets is made from the remains after the pretty parts are packaged up for grocery stores and restaurants. You're not eating ground and pressed drumsticks, you're eating, generally, some breast meat combined the "trimmings" from other cuts (like "rib meat," whatever that means), a bunch of flavor enhancers, shelf-life extenders, with glutens and starches that act as glue to hold the mush together. It's cheaper to send this to you because it's a nice way to repackage waste as food, replace expensive meat with cheap fillers, and use a single processing flow from farm to plate. Nearly all chicken in the US goes through the same processors, because the real volume in chicken production is in McNuggets and other fast food products, and they want consistency above all else. The parts you buy at the grocery store are a tiny fraction of the market, and their prices are marked up accordingly.

  5. I have to say that that garlic bread looks pretty yuumy! But I am partial to Texas Toast frozen garlic bread and this bread looks a like like it.

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