I noticed when I was grocery shopping last week that the boxes for my favorite Stouffer’s Homestyle (TV) dinners, those ubiquitous red box dinners, no longer claimed to include vegetables. “Twice as much meat!” they said, but on the vegetable issue they were silent. I bought the turkey dinner, one of my favorites largely because the vegetables were pretty good: Green beans with little bits of cranberry in them (I think it was cranberry). Granted, the Sorbonne would not grant diplomas to the Stouffer’s food engineers for their culinary achievement with these vegetables, but they were pretty good for a frozen dinner.
I ate the dinner tonight. The box was entirely correct: No vegetables. Just turkey chunks on stuffing with gravy, and mashed potatoes. Well, ok, there were a few celery pieces in the stuffing. I don’t think that counts.
What, was the Stouffer’s company going bankrupt because of green beans? Did their market research people talk to only 10 year old picky eaters? Is providing balanced nutrition conveniently just a fad whose day has passed? Sure, I could make my own vegetable serving. But if I’m going to that trouble, why not just make my own meat and potato servings too?
I just wish people would stop improving things that don’t need improvement.