The Federal Bureau of Prisons today defended itself against a culinary jab from Martha Stewart, who this week posted a message on her Web site saying she had plenty of time "to not eat the bad food" in Alderson, W.Va.

Share story

NEW YORK — At least it’s not bread and water, Martha.


The Federal Bureau of Prisons today defended itself against a culinary jab from Martha Stewart, who this week posted a message on her Web site saying she had plenty of time “to not eat the bad food” in Alderson, W.Va.


“We think the quality, service and cleanliness at any of our prisons is more than appropriate for a correctional setting,” said prisons spokesman Dan Dunne.


But it has yet to receive its Zagat rating, and there’s still little doubt that the Alderson cafeteria won’t be up to the homemaking maven’s usual holiday standards.


The government spends a little more than $2 per day feeding an inmate, and that “prix fixe” figure doesn’t rise just because a holiday meal is on tap.


On Christmas Day, Stewart and the 1,000 other inmates at the Alderson Federal Prison Camp will chow down on turkey, ham or chicken, depending on what is procured by local providers. Preparation will follow military recipe standards, Dunne said.


A typical military portion of roast turkey is 4 ounces and contains 193 calories. Prisoners would typically get two slices, prison officials said.


There won’t be any wine pairings, either.


Contrast with Martha Stewart Living’s December suggested Christmas menu, including roasted turkey breast with fennel herb stuffing or a maple-glazed smoked Vermont ham.


As for the decor, minimal “Happy Holidays” decorations will be strung up on the cafeteria wall, but there won’t be much else decoration-wise because of fire hazard issues, said Dunne, who used to work at Alderson.