'portion control' on Serious Eats

Last Week's Poll Results: Do You Clean Your Plate?

Last week we asked: Do You Clean Your Plate? The winner was "Every last drop. Gone. Slurp." with "Maybe I'll leave the garnish" not far behind. (I, too, eat to the last drop, but really need to work on training myself to eat less.) Thanks for participating in our poll!... More

Poll: Do You Clean Your Plate?

That's a pretty clean plate. [Photograph: Robyn Lee] Those three words ("Clean your plate!") were heard many times during childhood and if you wanted ice cream later, you better believe you listened. But over time as smaller portions have become more important and with parental units no longer reminding us that there-are-starving-people-in-X, some of us have left the Clean Plate Club. Maybe for self-discipline reasons or just because the last bite doesn't taste as good as the others. Or, you still have issues seeing those last scraps get ignored. Take the poll! »... More

Ed Levine's Serious Diet, Week 22: Restaurant Portions May Destroy My Diet

"Eight ounces of steak? An amuse bouche in my eyes." Until very recently I was obsessed with the bigger-is-better school of eating. I would always look for what I thought would be the biggest appetizer, the biggest main course, and the biggest dessert. Half a rack of ribs? Not enough. A four-ounce burger? Child's play--or at the very least a child's portion. Half portions of pasta were for wusses. Eight ounces of steak? An amuse bouche in my eyes. Now that I'm trying to change the way I eat and live, I'm really trying to cut down on my portion size. It's easier to do this at home, and much more difficult to do so at restaurants, where many chefs... More

The Incredible Shrinking Edibles

Along with the shrinking value of the dollar come shrinking plates of food, as restaurateurs learn how to sneak smaller portions under your nose. A consultant at one food wholesaler has his customers doing the following: Using smaller plates (so reduced portions look the same size as before)Using lighter-weight utensils (so food feels heavier on a fork)Cooking shrimp skewered (so it doesn't curl and therefore appears larger) While nobody wants to see his buck bang less, portions at many restaurants are already so large that this may be a blessing in disguise for people trying to lose weight. Besides, isn't one age-old dieting tip to use smaller plates so that, psychologically, you feel you're getting more? [via Lara R.]... More

'Mindless Eating' Maven Strikes Again

The New York Times has been giving a lot of coverage to Brian Wansink's Mindless Eating: Why We Eat More Than We Think. First Kim Severson covered it in the paper's food section last fall. Today David Leonhardt tries to apply Wansink's findings to retirement savings. Coming up next: Mindless Eating: The Musical. That's one vehicle sure to propel me to stardom.... More

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