Round up the usual suspects….

Added fats and sugars are in the news again, and as usual, the message can be summed up very simply: cook and eat whole foods in moderation; avoid highly processed foods with lots of fats and sugars.

A few pieces worth checking out:

Civil Eats: Where Do Americans Get Their Calories? – a super-cool interactive graphic looks at our collective plate from the 70s to today.

The Civil Eats chart is dissected a bit on Grist: The American diet in one chart, with lots of fats and sugars.

And more on the role of sugar in our diets (looooong but very worth the read!): NYT Magazine’s Is Sugar Toxic?

Baked Cod

Like a few other recipes on this site, this one qualifies as Chinese only because of the ingredients used – it’s really a fusion dish, a tweak of a recipe I found on the website of Lummi Island Wild. I am lucky enough to co-manage a buying club that purchases sustainably caught fish directly from this Washington state fishery – seafood is not exactly local to Michigan, but by buying in quantity directly from the fishermen gives us fantastic fish at a reasonable price and gives the fishermen a larger profit margin.

Serves 4


  • 4 black cod steaks, approximately 5 oz each
  • 1 T kosher or sea salt
  • 1 T brown sugar
  • 2 T Shaoxing wine or dry sherry
  • 1 T light soy sauce
  • 1 T pineapple juice
  • 1 T brown sugar


  1. Rinse the fish steaks and pat dry.
  2. Combine the salt and 1 T brown sugar, then rub the fish well with this mixture and refrigerate in a covered dish for 2 h.
  3. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Combine the wine, soy sauce, pineapple juice, and 1 T brown sugar, stir to dissolve sugar completely.
  4. Brush the salt/sugar mixture off the fish, sprinkle with the wine mixture, then cover the dish.
  5. Bake 15 m, turn the steaks, bake 15 more m or until fish flakes easily – do not overbake, or it will be very tough!
  6. Set the fish on a serving plate, then bring the liquid to a gentle boil in a heavy saucepan or sauté pan and let it boil gently until it is the consistency of thin syrup. Pour over the fish and serve.