I recently had negative feedback on Twitter over my photo of mince stew, which is one of my favourite meals. The mixture goes down great on a bed of buttery mashed potato and could be seen as an upside-down cottage pie. I also received a similar comment on Facebook after posting a picture of baked beans on toast with cheese sprinkled on top. Before anyone mocks the dishes they should at least try them, and they might be pleasantly surprised.
The snooty comments on social media got me thinking, though. Broadly speaking, I know my palate is unsophisticated in comparison to supposed ‘foodies’, but after forty years on this planet, I reckon I’ve nailed down what’s good in comfort food domain. “But kebab meat is ground up eyeballs, testicles, and sphincters,” they cry. Who cares after a few beers when the meat shavings are smothered in chilli sauce? Not me.
Surely where you fit on the food scale is matter of personal taste. However, if I’m being determined by an invisible standard, perhaps I should return a judgement based on this simple set of questions:
- For breakfast you prefer… A. Eggs Benedict surrounded by blobs of pesto. B. A bacon sandwich.
- For lunch you prefer… A. Steak tatare with a side of roasted dill puree. B. A Big Mac meal (large).
- For dinner you prefer… A. Lobster roulade with pickled daikon. B. Battered cod and chips.
- At the pub you prefer… A. Amuse-bouche appetizers. B. A packet of cheese and onion crisps.
- For supper you prefer… A. Tea and scones. B. Hotwings smothered in Frank’s hot sauce.
- For a midnight snack you prefer… A. A selection of cured meats and artichokes. B. A leftover pizza slice.
If you answered mostly A: I’m mildly jealous of you. Your taste is considered more exquisite and superior to mine in official circles, but I take comfort from the fact that your food is usually expensive, and in some countries a slightly larger waistline is viewed as a sign of wealth. Don’t sneer at me sitting on a park bench while I munch on a cheeseburger, and I won’t peer through the window of your French restaurant and laugh at your inadequate nouveau cuisine.
If you answered mostly B: To me, you’re clearly a person who enjoys the finer things in life, despite what the likes of Ramsey and Oliver say. I’m willing to bet when the cameras stop rolling on their shows they jump in a car and speed for the nearest KFC. I also like how ‘foodies’ are forced into our world at sports stadiums and entertainment arenas, just like how we are hurled into theirs when invited to functions or conferences in hotels.
If you answered with a 50/50 split: You’re far too reasonable to have made it this far through the blog post.
Anyway, whatever your taste, I hope you have a great festive period and all the best for 2017.