Peeved at Cook's Illustrated....looking for a help-out.

Despite my several emails and a letter to Cook's Illustrated, they continue to refer to aluminum foil and pans as "disposable" every time. Apparently the word recycle is not in their kit.

I am not into the hugging of trees, but neither have I ever messed up a piece of foil so badly that it could not be folded in on itself and sent off properly for a new life somewhere.

If you subscribe to one of their publications or services would you help me persuade them that this is the twenty-first century, and that we need this planet to live on?

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boulangere
boulangere May 24, 2011

We use lots and lots of "disposable" aluminum hotel pans for catering. They go through the dishwasher and get reused again and again. Saves us money, saves resources, saves a bit of the earth.

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boulangere
boulangere May 24, 2011

Interesting, now that you mention it. They're located in the heart of a "reduce, reuse, recycle" area.

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bugbitten
bugbitten May 24, 2011

Thanks to both of you. Oh wait, it's just one of you! What a great way to illustrate recycling!

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Sam1148
Sam1148 May 24, 2011

I used to work in a foundry..and my brother did Aluminum recycling in the furnace as a side biz.

Some thoughts: In my experience it's so thin when the heat required to melt it back into usable metal, It actually just vaporizes. Granted this was a 'home brew' biz, ages ago. And there might be better technology today. But the original problems of sorting, cleaning..etc would remain. So, it would really depend on your municipality and what recovery techs they use..which IMHO would involve sorting the foil out,cleaning and compressing it into 'blocks' with a press. Would would be practical if you had tons of it.

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boulangere
boulangere May 24, 2011

Seriously, I am very surprised at what you say. Cooks Illustrated is located in , I hope I am not too far off, Vermont, which is essentially the Berkeley of the East Coast. Full disclosure, both the son and the daughter were born at Alta Bates Hospital in Berkeley, and my favorite sister-in-law lived in the NE Kingdom of Vermont. Recycling is not rocket science in either place. In Montana . . . . . more of a moveable feast.

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bugbitten
bugbitten May 24, 2011

Sorry, boulangere, I guess you're doubting that I've read Cook's Illustrated correctly, or were you doubting another thing? I'm not clear. I have nine years of the bound CI recipes and it's "disposable" every time. It wasn't my intention to start a debate, but to stop irresponsible verbiage by a very influential media company, wherever they may be in our country.

BTW, If I ever get back to Billings, will you cater and re-cater an event for me and the Crow Nation?



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boulangere
boulangere May 24, 2011

Oh no, not at all! I don't doubt your word one bit. I'm simply surprised at CI, given where they are, and there is no reason whatsoever that they shouldn't be called out on the disposable issue. Bravo!

I'll cater anything any time for you. BTW, on tonight's news, Crow Agency is seriously under water. We're experiencing 2" of rain per hour today and tonight. They've been granted a state of emergency, and I work for an agency which is coordinating collection of relief goods (disposable foods, diapers, etc.) for them.

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bugbitten
bugbitten May 24, 2011

TO ALL: The best address I have for Cook's Illustrated is: America's Test Kitchen, 17 Station Street, Brookline, MA 02445. Thank you if you give up some of your time on earth to write to them. Ted May, retired director, Sesame Street (bugbitten).

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susan g
susan g May 24, 2011

I like your use of the term 'disposable foods,' boulangere. If we eat them are they disposable, or simply recycled?
Seriously, CI should be ashamed of themselves. Try Eating Well: much more conscious.

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boulangere
boulangere May 24, 2011

Oh yeah, Susan G!

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wssmom
wssmom May 24, 2011

Reduce, reuse, recycle .. been our mantra for decades!!!

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bugbitten
bugbitten May 24, 2011

But will any of you act?

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bugbitten
bugbitten May 24, 2011

Okay, that's enough time. You're blank. Next...

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boulangere
boulangere May 25, 2011

Yes, indeed, bugbitten. Promise.

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Sam1148
Sam1148 May 25, 2011

You might want to check your local curb side recycling services. Many do not accept foil, pie tins, etc.
While they are reusable in your home, some centers do not accept them for reclaiming, mine does not accept 'tupper wear' plastics, juice boxes..etc. Also some foil has coatings on it that make it unsuitable for a 'blanket word' other than 'disposable'.

Yes, there should be better attention to recycling Aluminum. But with many different 'disposable' aluminum products, some are not suitable for recycling in some locations. due to coating on the product, or their previous use for cooking food. Almost all accept drink cans--which simply need to be rinsed (something to be aware of in areas where water is also resource).

YMMV according to your location and recycling services available to you in your area.



So it's not quite as nation wide as you might think. And CI audience is mostly aware of these issues, while I appreciate your 'good fight', It would be difficult for a nation wide statement on foil, pie tins, etc to be characterized as 'recyclable'; as in many communities it is not an option for curb side service, and your fortunate if yours accept those items.
There would be far worse harm to environment driving 10 miles, washing the product at home, to drop off at a location that would accept those items in a misguided attempt to conserve resources.




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Sam1148
Sam1148 May 25, 2011

I'm more peeved at CI for sending me paper editions of their "best recipes" collection--which I did not order or sign up for, And attempting to bill for such items..and shipping them in self destructive packing, which can not be reused for the 'request' to ship them back'. Considering if I did that, the books would take a nice cross country flight back to CI. After three month of 'pay us' I simple wrote "I did not order, please do not bill' on the bill/Receipt and sent that back and they finally stopped pestering me.



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sarabclever
sarabclever May 25, 2011

Slightly tangential, but if you've ever watched the old Julia Childs, she reuses her aluminum all the time! She's always pulling some crumpled foil out of a drawer and flattening it out as best she can for use in whatever the recipe is.

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boulangere
boulangere May 25, 2011

I grew up with my mother doing the same with aluminum foil, sarabclever.

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wmnofoz54
wmnofoz54 May 29, 2011

While I feel that this discussion is much ado about nothing, I agree that we should recycle everything we can. The aluminum pans you talk about are sold as "disposable" and anyone who recycles will recycle them if possible. And who says that the term "disposable" is mutually exclusive to 'recyclable"?

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