If I’ve seemed a tad quiet of late, it’s because I’ve been wearing my reviewer’s cap for Gourmet Traveller and the Good Food Guide. It’s not quite faux moustaches and clandestine meetings at midnight, but I do have to steer clear of social while I’m eating for the man. While I’m taking a breath between bites, I’ve been thinking about current food trends and other dishes I could do without. In no particular order, here are 10 things I hate about food.
1. The 63° egg
As someone who’s always been averse to runny eggwhites, these slippery suckers are high on my hit list. It’s bad enough when they’re served for breakfast, but now they’re popping up on dinner menus, too. An egg is not a dressing. It belongs, scrambled or fried, with its one true love: bacon.
2. Bone marrow
I don’t care if you give it to me in a taco, smear it over toast, or serve it with a straw so I can suck it out of the bone, that gelatinous marrow is essentially a blob of hot, meaty fat. And I don’t need that in my life.
I feel like I’ve paid my dues when it comes to eating insects. Way back when I was living in Thailand, I dated an Icelandic dude who lived in a neighbouring village. The specialty of that town was ant egg soup, so every time I paid the viking a visit, I’d have to knock back a bowl of his host mum’s tom yum laced with ant larvae. It was full on. So for now, please keep the bugs off my plate (unless they’re of the Moreton Bay persuasion).
A life without cheese and bread isn’t worth living. The same goes for calorie counting and all fad diets: keep your preaching to yourself please. Balance, as in all things, is key.
5. Toasted grains as a garnish
I can see what you’re trying to do here kids, but all too often that scattering of toasted rice, quinoa and amaranth just makes the finished dish seem gritty. In my version of #cleaneating, there is no room for this dusty addition.
6. Hot cross buns
Yeah, yeah, yeah. What’s wrong with the hot cross bun, I hear you say? Doughy, dense, and all too often studded with bullets of candied citrus peel, to my mind the hot cross bun has no redeeming qualities. It’s basically just a shit, slightly stale cake. Which brings me to my next foodie foe.
Now, I know this is a controversial inclusion, but I could happily go the rest of my life without eating cake. Tarts, yes. Saucy puddings, hit me. But your run-of-the-mill, iced and sliced cake does nothing for me. I think my hatred of cake comes from the fact that you’re guilted into eating it. Decline a slice at the office morning tea and you become ‘that girl’. I’m not trying to watch my weight; I just don’t like cake – but watch me eat my body weight in brie. (There are two exceptions to this cake-free decree: Sara Lee frozen banana cake, slightly warmed, and any kind of carrot cake with at least an inch of cream cheese frosting.)
Raw kale has no place in a salad – it’s tough, stringy and near impossible to chew. I feel that we’ve been fooled with this one, and we’re all munching away like cows and their cud.
9. Meat with fruit
I’m the first to admit I have some weird food hang-ups: I’m not a fan of hot meeting cold (ice cream on pie, etc), and I generally run for the hills when I see meat teamed with fruit (apricot chicken is the worst thing you could do to me). Thanks to prune-dotted tagines and some duck-and-plum numbers, I’m starting to see the error of my ways. Let’s put this one on standby.
Let’s chalk this one up to too many devon and tomato sauce sandwiches, with the bread dry and curling at the corners by lunchtime.