On the Cereal I eat

Comment: I eat Grape Nuts 3-4 times a week. In the Winter time, we have oatmeal twice a week. In the non-winter months, we have oatmeal one a week. We have buckwheat pancakes every Saturday and eggs, grits and English muffins every Sunday. On the cereal days, Kathee always eats Cheerios and I always eat Grape Nuts. (Some call it a routine .... others a rut!).

Joke: Question: What do Grape Nuts and Christian Science (the religious denomination) have in common? Answer: Grape Nuts are neither made from grapes nor are nuts. Christian Science is neither Christian nor science.

Oh well ... below is a WSJ article on this boring cereal.

No Grapes, No Nuts, No Market Share: A Venerable Cereal Faces Crunchtime


For 111 years, over breakfast, Americans have wondered: What's a grape nut? A grape nut looks like a kidney stone, but the name, unlike shredded wheat's, isn't self-descriptive. This raises many reasonable questions: Is it grapes that haven't developed? What part of the grape do they use? For those who have read the box and learned what Grape Nuts are made of (flour), a denser issue arises: How does a cereal with the mouthfeel of gravel get manufactured?


[How Grapes Nuts are made:]

The Grape Nuts ingredients stood in silos outside: wheat (red and white) and barley, wet and malting. Maltose is the only sugar in Grape Nuts. Mr. Post may have called it grape sugar, or thought Grape Nuts looked like grape seeds, or that grape seeds looked like nuts, or that malted barley tasted nutty. Nobody seems to know.

The grain was tipping into mills that ground it into flour. Until five years ago, the mills spat out the husks for cattle feed. Now they stay in, so Grape Nuts can sell as "whole grain." That is one change in Mr. Post's formula. Another is a spray of vitamins and minerals. It qualifies Grape Nuts for food-stamp programs, and adds an element -- zinc -- that enables Dana Johnson, in Arvada, Colo., to make home-brewed Grape Nuts beer. ("Light and drinkable," he says.)

Mixed with yeast (one cup per 2,000 pounds) and water, the flour turns to dough, gets chopped into 10-pound loaves and sent into a huge oven -- 1,610 loaves at a time. "Now it gets interesting," Mr. Vargas said at his workstation, watching the loaves emerge from the oven and catapult into the darkness. An instant later, they hit the fan -- a whirling high-speed shredder that rips them to smithereens.

In a nearby control room, Julius Larriva, who has overseen this process for 33 years, said: "Bake and destroy, bake and destroy."

1 comment:

  1. JP, not sure if I can be your friend anymore now that I know you eat a competitor cereal. Your wife on the other hand is my newest best friend.
    Don't tell anyone, but I think we just bought our first box of General Mills cereal over the weekend, but only because it was on clearance. Otherwise, we rarely eat cereal. I think we had bought maybe two boxes ever since being married.


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