Tuesday, September 05, 2006

Meals Which Should Not Have Been Invented

My Mum taught me a lot of things that would prove invaluable to me in later life, like, for instance, not to pick my nose while the Queen was on the telly; and that putting underpants on my head was not generally considered de rigeur at school, no matter how jolly I found it at home. Another thing she taught me was how to match my food on my plate, and eat a balanced diet while not putting weird food ingredients together.
I've come to the conclusion that there are a hell of a lot of diners in the world who could do with Mum's help. Like, for instance, those benighted diners who are hunching down, even now, to a meal of Chicken Parmagiana:

Here we have a positively devilish meal, composed out of several innocuous, if not charming ingredients: tomato sauce, chicken schnitzel, cheese, and spaghetti. (It tastes even worse with chips, if that's possible). I have nothing but admiration for these ingredients on their own; I have, indeed, spent many a happy hour with strands of spaghetti or chicken schnitzel. But these ingredients have no place in such an ignoble dish; they simply were not meant to go together.

This is a bacon-and-cheese croissant. You could hardly call this an adventurous meal; it is sold in diners and cafes and restaraunts from one side of this country to the other. But I am adamant in my belief that savoury ingredients have no place in what is, in fact, one of the most delicious sweet deserts on the face of this planet. Sacre Bleu, they bring shame to the name of Croissant!

This little meal is called a trifle. It certainly is trivial, though when we survey the ingredients of this particular trifle (and they vary), other words leap to mind. 'Technicolour yawn', for instance; 'disgusting'; or 'horrendous'. This begs the question, why did the chefs originally feel the urge to take a simple, delicious desert meal (fruit), and lavish upon it layer after layer of increasingly saccharine substances, draining out any instance of the original taste?

They were probably the same people to introduce the concept of 'banana porridge' to the world. Shun these culinary cretins, my blog-readers! Shun them and all their works!


Caz said...

I agree that most trifles are disturbing to look at and even more disturbing to eat, but an excellent trifle (such as my Mum makes) is not to be trifled with.

jo said...

Tim, are you kidding? Trifles are the best! I never make them myself, but I love it when other people make them for me - as long as they don't put nuts in it. I haven't had one for ages. I wish someone would make me a trifle right now. Ugggllll... (that's me drooling).

I don't like the look of that trifle in your picture though - the cream looks fake.

And ham and cheese croissants are delish as well. Although I have never tried bacon in one. That might be a bit more intense.

TimT said...

Why would you have ham and cheese in a croissant when jam surely goes much better? I'm very particular about these things, honey in a croissant would be just as bad.

I suppose it would be wrong to say that all trifles partake in the badness of some, but I still struggle with the concept; why add so many bizarre ingredients together for such an effect?

I also wonder why people eat such things as caramel and sultana buns; I love sultana buns, and I love caramel, but together? Or cheese and chicken pie - I really don't understand this; for starters, cheese shouldn't really be in a pie at all, though it's true that melted cheese can be delicious.

Food is such a subjective thing, but honestly, why do people have to make such unusual combinations of foods when all you really need to make a good meal is three or four simple ingredients combined artfully together?

Tony.T said...

In the interest of self-improvement, they* sent me to boarding school to learn how to deal with trifle. That, and creamed corn. In fact, I conquered ALL ghastly foods except for toad in the hole.

* Mum and dad.

TimT said...

From my brief two-years boarding experience, I carry away memories of steaming industrial-sized vats filled with minced animals and/or spaghetti, which was then ladled into large trays by fat women. (Why were they fat, I wonder?)

Toad in the hole sounds revolting.

Tony.T said...

They purposefully employed industrial strength fat ladies to lift the vats of minced spaghetti.

ras said...

My old housemate used to eat vegemite with everything.

One day I was having my morning coffee and reading the paper and she came out of her room,half peeled a banana and then began to spread vegemite on it.

I had a moutful of coffee when she bit into it and I swear I actually got up and spat it down the sink and walked out of the room. I was so disgusted.

TimT said...

We're happy little vegemites,
As bright as bright can be;
We all enjoy our vegemite
For breakfast, brunch, elevenses, lunch, afternoon snacks, supper, snacks, dessert, and tea;
It keeps us growing stronger
Every single day and night and day and night and day and night and day
Because we love our vegemite,
We all adore our vegemite,
We'll have some more of that vegemite
Yes, we are whores for vegemite,
We'll ingest it any possible way.

Don Quixote said...

I don't know which country serves chicken parmagiana upon a bed of spaghetti, but it isn't done that way in any Australian pub that I've been in.

TimT said...

Parmagiania with pasta - it's high-class arse. I looked for one with chips, but couldn't find it.

Email: timhtrain - at -

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