Culinary calamities

, posted: 14-Aug-2006 21:33

I love eating out, but every now and then things go wrong. Horribly wrong. Chefs snort the wrong spice and get creative with it, usually by having a fusion grand mal fit. Sadly, people are too bullied and tastebud numbed to say anything.

Here's my current list of horrors. What's yours?

Quail egg rolled in celery salt. Tactical nuke for your tongue it may be, but a starter it isn't. Ideal for anyone intent on not keeping the rest of the dinner down.

Grilled cod with polenta and a cabernet-miso reduction. Not even Mengele could've dreamt this one up.

Wasabi mayonnaise. Why? Was the chef horribly bullied as a kid and decided to take his revenge on the world with this?
Tapas. Now Tapas the way the Spanish do them are delicious. It's lots of little dishes, all lovely. However, your chance of getting anything resembling real Tapas outside Spain is zero. Hummus with cream cheese, guacamole with cream cheese, and mayo with cream something and chilli, together with oily, doughy "focaccia" bread is often sold as "Tapas". You have been warned.

Satay/Sate. This delicious Malaysian dish, cooked over charcoal hasn't travelled at all well outside SE Asia. It got sweetened to the hilt, and had mayo-peanut sauce added on top. Wall-to-wall vomiting ensued.

The catering in the World Trade Centre Expo, Taipei, Taiwan. The reddest sausages, the spongiest bread; potato that is only that in name; mayonnaise ejaculated all over everything, sugar galore and no discernible nutritional value. Your meal is served.

Japanese curry. Some war crimes are allowed to continue until this day.

Australian pasta/New Zealand "fresh pasta". Dried wallpaper glue for that Mediterranean zing in your kitchen.

Uncle Ben's Rice. When I was little, we used to call rice ants' eggs. That's because they served us Uncle Ben's rice.

Drizzled. Last time I looked, drizzling in public was punishable by a great many years in prison. So why aren't more chefs in gaol?

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