Of Egg Nog and Parts of a Hog
Of Egg Nog and Parts of a Hog
Q: Thanks for chatting with me! Can you share your recent buyer’s journey or cooking journey?
A: I LOVE to bake things! And I love to make my own versions of things, like marshmallows. A few of my cousins are Muslim and some of my best friends are Jewish, so eating marshmallows that people buy from the store can be tricky.
Q: Why can’t your friends eat marshmallows from the store?
A: So regular marshmallows usually include an ingredient called gelatin which is extracted from pig skin, and a lot of the other brands also use gelatin from pig snouts or lard (source).
Q: Hmm. That’s crazy. I had never heard about that before. What else is in marshmallows that we don’t know about?
A: Uh…Blue #1 which is made from Coal Tar.
Q: Really!? Yikes.
Now, I know that marshmallows are hardly the highest form of quality good food. I know they are mostly made of sugars and gelatin. But, I was surprised to see artificial coloring- Food dye Blue №1.
There is a growing movement in this country to ban many of today’s commercial food dyes. Most are purely synthetic and made from some scary stuff. Blue №1 is made of coal tar. Coal tar is about what you’d expect: a very thick by-product of turning coal to coal gas or coke. According to Wikipedia, it smells like naphthalene. Naphthalene- the primary ingredient in mothballs. (Coal tar is also used in certain anti-dandruff shampoos and in the making of acetaminophen (Tylenol)).
Of the artificial food colorings currently in use in the United States, Blue #1 has a better reputation than some of the Yellow and Reds. Blue #1 is not linked to behavioral problems in children however it has caused cancer in lab rats- no doubt in extremely large amounts. There is a large group of parents who believe that excessive consumption of artificial food colorants and certain preservatives causes hyperactivity in children. And there are some studies, mostly from England, that seem to support such a finding. Time Magazine recently published an article about one such consumer advocacy group’s efforts to ban food coloring in the US.(source)
Q: Okay. Thanks for letting me know. I’ll avoid those in the future…but you said you like to make your own versions of thins like marshmallows?
A: Oh, yeah. So A few weeks ago I made some egg nog- flavored marshmallows with gelatin.
Q: Great! So how much egg nog did you use in tit, like how strong was the egg nog flavor?
A: I actually didn’t use any egg nog in the marshmallows because all the milk and eggs would have made my marshmallows have the wrong consistency — they’d end up more like pectin which is used in fruit jams and jellies and I didn’t want to give people some weird type of slimy jello/half-marshmallow as a gift. And, my little sister and my Dad are Lactose-intolerant so it would have been Lactaid Egg Nog and if we had used soy egg nog, that would have screwed up the consistency even more — last Christmas we tried to make egg nog ice cubes to put in our hot chocolate. We used the soy version of egg nog and the liquid never fully froze; it was weird.
And if we used Pumpkin Spice Egg Nog which is like $0.70 cheaper than regular egg nog at Safeway, it would have changed the color of the marshmallows and orange might have been less appetizing to the eyes, so I didn’t use that either.
Q: That makes sense. What did your friends think about them?
A: They loved my egg nog marshmallows when I used gelatin! And since we gave them to some friends at a Christmas party, a lot of other people were like: “Hey, next time you make some can we have some? Bring some over to our place.”
Q: I can see why. You brought some here for me to try and they’re delicious. Plus I don’t have that white filmy powder on my hands and clothes, and I’m not eating Coal Tar in Blue #1, and I’m not eating somethign made from pork or any other animals.
A: That was actually harder for me to do. On my buyer's journey, as you call it, Safeway, Aldi’s, Target — none of them have what’s called Agar Agar powder which is Kosher, Halal, and Vegan-friendly.
A: That powder usually includes Stevie extract which is also a lot more healthy than regular sugar.
A: Whole Foods had it but you know what they say — Whole Foods, Whole Paycheck. It was as expensive for 0.3 ounces as 1 ounce of gelatin is..and it’s funny, when you look at the ingredients of gelatin it reads: “Ingredients: Gelatin.” That’s all! Ha, ha! Either they don’t know what’s in it or they don’t want you to know, and that doesn’t sound like a relationship of trust for someone who’s preparing an item I’m going to eat and give to my friends to eat.
Q: Okay. And so what did your friends think of the egg nog marshmallows you made that did not have gelatin, Blue #1, and that kind of thing?
A: They really liked them. Several of my friends asked me to make more or send them the recipe so they could make more and give them as gifts to their friends and family.
Q: Awesome! Did you post any pictures of your marshmallows on social media?
A: I did post a few. All my friends who aren’t local asked for some.
Q: Cool! Did you send them some?
A: Not yet. With the holiday rush and everything else, kids out of school, Christmas shopping, singing in the church choir — too busy right now but I’ll send them some soon. Not sure how the marshmallows will keep in the mail, like being shipped and all that.
Q: Great! Can I get some more in the mail also?
A: Of course! Happy to.
Q: Thanks! Last question, if there was a way you non-local friends could buy those marshmallows from you, would that help you and them?
A: Definitely because some people have a lot of kids, other couples have no kids. Some of my friends — both spouses work, other friends, have one spouse work and the other spouse is the homemaker, I think mainly due to childcare costs which are all after taxes, so…
THE BOTTOM LINE
HOMEMAIDE helps you sell your style and buy the things that make you smile, seamlessly.
Any item you pass in your daily routine (say for example an artificial color-free or dye-free marshmallows, or if you are a farmer or rancher and you have livestock to sell to gelatin producers, or you’re a manufacturer of coal tar (for industrial not cooking purposes)) — ALL you have to do is upload a picture or paused video screenshot of that to your existing social media sites and Homemaide will send you a commission for every purchase your friends make.
AND — they don’t have to buy a luxury car for you to earn a commission (but if they do, YOU will earn a commission from Homemaide on those larger purchases(!!!). Reach out to us today to learn more about how YOU can empower your shoppers to buy what they want, when they want, on their terms.