All posts tagged: butter

Browsing the Grocery Store Butterscape: A Photo Essay

Unlike most foodies, I more often than not zoom through my trips at the grocery store like a crazed contestant on Supermarket Sweep. Last month in Montana, however, while spending a few relaxing days at home with my family, I allowed myself to get lost in the imagery of the butter aisle. [Imagine my husband’s embarrassed horror as I snapped all these photos. Perhaps it was a suitable and just revenge for taking me to Walmart.] Bizarre iPhone photography sessions aside, butter bears a complicated identity in the grocery store. In her poetic ode to butter Margaret Visser (a Canadian Michael Pollan predecessor) explains the “butter mystique,” proclaiming it simple, rich, golden, and pure, as well as “irreproachable, unique, and irreplaceable” among both ancient and modern foodstuffs (chapter 3 in Much Depends on Dinner, 1986). While beyond reproach for some, heart health recommendations often shun butter for its saturated fat content, instead championing margarine, a food product with its own mixed identity, including everything from a healthy alternative to a butter impostor, a Frankenstein-esque food terror created in a lab …