Yes, Virginia, the Amish eat pizza

Over the past two years, I’ve had occasion to become involved with a group of traditional Amish in our county. They’ve done some work for me, and I’ve done some work for them, and it’s been a delightful association.

When I travel to the community, I’m always struck by the slower pace of their lifestyle, and the healthy, homemade nature of their tablefare. Would I like my children to have natural foods grown from my garden?  Sure, and we do that for as much of the year as we can. (And the rest of the year, as we’ve canned.)

Of course, I also see that the men and women work long hours to accomplish the same tasks we can do in minutes, thanks to our machinery, grocery stores, and dare I say it, Wal-Mart. We visited one day when it was noodle-making time. Two long tables were covered in white paper and small piles of hand-cranked noodles graced every few inches, drying in the sun. The Cabana Boy and I were both fascinated with the small pasta making device and just watched in amazement. Could we do that? Sure. But where would we find time for so much else that has taken over our lives?

(We are growing our own sprouts and baking our own granola. It’s a start.)

Our family is too hopelessly tech-i-fied at this point, I’m afraid, to ever consider a switch to the Amish life. The Cabana Boy’s head would explode away from his cable modem line, and I’m so entrenched in the word processor and Internet at this point, it’s the only place my girls can find me on a regular basis. A life without cartoons for my scripted ones?  Perish the thought.

Our friends in the community are generous to a fault. Whenever we stop out, we never leave without a basket of fresh fruit, or a crisp cookie for the children. Imagine our surprise recently when we uncovered the plate sent home with us to reveal–pizza?

Now I have to tell you this was no Papa John’s stuffed crust extravaganza, piled high with gourmet toppings. But a thin bread crust, topped with a tomato sauce and homemade cheese?  What else could it be?

Pondering this earth-shaking revelation as we headed home, we considered what other modern wonders might still be hidden behind those painted Amish doors.  Are there  hand-whipped mango-peach protein pack smoothies shared by giggling girls in the larders?  Do the elders sit on the porch of an evening  by candlelight with hand ground lattes and biscotti? Are there…briefcases?

Some things we’ll never know. It could be better that way.


10 thoughts on “Yes, Virginia, the Amish eat pizza

  1. Hello Barb,

    Maybe the Amish were trying to tell you something: there’s more to their community than meets the eye.

    Of course, I wouldn’t look for any Amish bloggers anytime soon. (Famous last words, maybe?)

    In any event, do you think Aspies and autists may especially favor technology, or on the other hand especially favor a much less technological life like the Amish lead, or neither?


    Jeff Deutsch

  2. That’s an interesting question, Jeffrey. I often think my autistic daughter would be much better served by a community where there weren’t so many things she had to learn (she’s overwhelmed by school) and the pace was slower. And heaven knows there’s no autoflush toilets!

    On the other hand, my Aspie son would go mad without the constant tech stim he gets from computers, tv, video games.

    Like everything else, it’s very individual. One of the reasons I find raising these children so interesting.

    Thanks for commenting!


  3. Why would you grow your own sprouts? Who actually likes brussel sprouts?

    More importantly, how was the pizza?

  4. I love it!! I would love to venture to the armish country. I have always been intriqued. I’m intriqued by farms too, not sure why because I can’t imagine milking a cow!!

    Thanks for sharing a bit of their life. I would be wondering the same things. And unfortunately it would be the same for my family–my son said the other day if he didnt have T.V or video games, he couldnt imagine life!! And my lifeline is with my laptop and iphone–terrible as it is!!

  5. they hybrid lifestyle may suit you… i still get great satisfaction from the act of making bread, but never seem to do it. noodles? made, then added to chicken soup? with homegrown veggies? wonderful! but don’t ask me to kill the chicken…

  6. Eeek! No killing chickens for sure!

    b, dear, alfalfa sprouts, not Brussels. We buy American. 🙂

    The pizza was..well, dull. No real Italian spices or cheese, but probably much healthier than the commercial version.

    Pasta makers are fairly easy to operate. Little Miss would in fact, get a kick out of it. The more I read about what’s in prepared foods any more, the more I feel like we need to make our own. Too many polysyllabic chemical ingredients!

  7. Sounds like the experience a friend of mine had with her British mother’s pizza, which was biscuit dough, plain tomato sauce and a sprinkle of Kraft grated parmesan. when my friend had real take-out pizza at a classmate’s hosue in town, her mother was hurt that she preferred the real thing, and not the homemade kind.

  8. Oh you’d be quite surprised to see what the not so traditional Amish are up to. I personally know of a whole bunch of them that are packin’ cell phones. Yup they are coming around to some technology. The first time I saw it I was astounded. I asked him about it and he said that his church decided that they are ok because techincally they are not connected to the grid by anything. All I could do was laugh!!! Talk about a loop hole!!! I also know of quite a few that have computers too! Wireless internet connection of course. So Amish bloggers may not be that far away.
    Most of the Amish I know use thier computers for keeping books and that type of thing. They are becoming much more progressive in business while still remaining very traditional in their home life. The Amish I’m talking about are in Indiana. From those that I know in Indiana and Ohio Indiana is definately the most progressive and “liberal”.

    Wait till you see an Amish buggy going through the mikey D’s drive through. I about pee’d myself I laughed so hard.

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