You can tell a lot about a culture by the food that fuels it — and in the annals of culinary progress, 2017 has not been an altogether glorious year.
If you thought 2016’s avocado toast was bad, take a look at these horrors:
Charcoal pizza bases, buns, ice creams
Actually, charcoal in anything that isn’t a barbecue. Not only does it taste awful, but there’s no evidence of any health benefits unless you’ve already been poisoned, in which case you probably shouldn’t be eating pizza. In fact, so effective is charcoal at absorbing chemicals that it can affect prescription medication, too. But hey, if it looks good on Instagram...
Hotly tipped to be the next big health craze about this time last year, but so far seen only in Waitrose and on the social media accounts of people who probably then fed them to the dog. We can all give thanks that they didn’t produce a kale version.
I’d like unicorn with that
Unicorn food aka anything dressed in rainbow pastels with a shedload of sprinkles. It’s rare I agree with Gordon Ramsay on something these days, but “unicorns are meant for children’s tales, not foods”. If it looks better than it tastes, step away.
Standard baked eggs, but for the fact that the whites are whisked up to a meringue-like consistency to give them the appearance of a cloud emoji. Lauded in the press as “popular among health nuts due to coming in at just 161 calories”, despite the fact that either poached or boiled eggs have slightly fewer and are considerably quicker to make.
Smoothie, Buddha and breakfast bowls
It’s an inescapable fact that smoothies are more easily drunk from a glass (yes, I said glass, not jam jar — and don’t even get me started on salads or chia puddings in those) and anything requiring the use of a knife is better served on a plate. Doesn’t photograph as well, of course.
Yorkshire pudding wraps
A rare home-grown food trend, but that doesn’t make it right. Yorkshire puddings are great. Roast dinners are great. They don’t deserve to be squashed together in a soggy wrap and eaten on the hoof, let alone made into a burrito.
This Japanese delicacy was the ultimate edible example of emperor’s new clothes, with one reporter claiming: “I’ve never tasted something that is inherently, well, tasteless. Not even normal water”.
That yellow thing you’re snapping in your cutely mittened hand has been around for centuries on the Indian subcontinent as haldi doodh, prescribed by mums at the merest hint of a sniffle. It didn’t need rebranding by big multinational corporations. On the plus side, the avolatte — an avocado latte — turned out to be a joke.
On everything, from coffee to crisps and even chickens (probably reduced for a quick sale around about now). Made from sugar and food colouring, this one is likely to continue into the new year, which is yet another reason to hibernate until spring.