Tuesday, July 11, 2006

Bread of Affliction?

Have you ever been tempted to buy Ezekiel 4:9 Bread just because of its name? I haven't.

When God tells Ezekiel to make bread from wheat, barley, beans, lentils, millet, and spelt, He's describing the type of food that the Jews would be forced to eat in exile. Normal bread would have been made from wheat flour alone, as it is today. This bread, in contrast, is made from all kinds of garbage. It's supposed to taste like crap. Ezekiel even cooks it over crap (though in those days, that was considered normal). The bread is actually supposed to be cooked over human crap, but the prophet manages to wriggle out of that one and upgrade to bovine crap.

At any rate, it isn't supposed to be good.

The producers of Ezekiel 4:9 bread explain why we should be expected to eat this stuff:
We discovered when these six grains and legumes are sprouted and combined, an amazing thing happens. A complete protein is created that closely parallels the protein found in milk and eggs.
Of course, they could have created the same whole protein from any combination of grains and legumes. But never mind; they decided to follow God's recipe, and the result is, in fact, quite nutritious, with a full 4 grams of protein per slice in addition to three grams of dietary fiber. So when a friend left town and gave me her leftover Ezekiel 4:9 bread, I was willing to try it.

Truth be told, it doesn't taste like crap. It tastes pretty much like bread. There's a mild sourdough-like flavor in the background and a hint of sprouts that I think I might even develop a taste for over time. Or not. But I'll certainly finish the package.

This experience has led me to reconsider Ezekiel's so-called ordeal. He got to lie around for a year and a half and eat reasonably decent, high-protein bread that he didn't have to cook over human dung after all. Compared to marrying a cheating prostitute (Hosea) or walking around wearing yoke-bars (Jeremiah), that really doesn't seem so bad.

Cross-posted to Kosherblog.

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