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Hamburger Helper for Health

By | Food for thought, Health, History | 2 Comments

My 72-year-old mom loves hamburgers. She recently spent a month in the hospital and ate almost one per day, compliments of the hospital kitchen and I assume, Medicare. So after she had sufficiently rehabilitated and recovered from a severely broken ankle, I took her out to a new hamburger restaurant nearby with family.

When we sat down there was an iPad in the middle of the table that served as our menu. After activating the screen, I learned that this hamburger was truly personalized and there was no such thing as a “typical” hamburger here. All I had to do was select which combination of ingredients and toppings I wanted…and then repeat that process for the 9 other people at the table. It was a modern ordering system, complete with a touchscreen and on-demand fulfillment that let me express who I am through my choice of bacon or CANADIAN BACON, fried egg or HARD BOILED EGG, cheddar cheese or FETA CHEESE, and a sum total of 2.6313084e+35 possible combinations (32 different toppings to choose from, not counting sauces!).

I got excited by all the possibilities until I realized how much work it would be to create 10 different hamburgers. When I started to ask some order preferences of my mom, she was apprehensive. “Oh, I don’t know. You choose. That’s overwhelming.” Luckily for her, I have eaten green onions, raw onions, and caramelized onions. I can taste the difference between dried cranberries and golden raisins. I’m a food expert — I’ve eaten at least 40,000 times. I can do this!

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