First appeared on Food Riot, by Susie Rodarme
Food buzz seems to go in cycles, and sometimes, I sit back and watch the food media circling around something like, say, kale, and I have to scratch my head. I mean, if you like, kale, rad. I personally prefer other members of the cruciferous family (broccoli, come to mama) and don't really see why it's become a GIANT FOOD TOPIC.
But this post isn't about foods that I think are maybe a little overhyped. It's about foods that, flavor-wise at least, are totally worth the hype. Because some foods get the hype for various factors other than flavor, and other foods are just that damn good. Of course, YMMV.
1. Nutella, speculoos spread. Sorry, Rioter Brett, I gotta disagree with you (partially) about Nutella. While I of course have to cede your point that it is basically a candy bar in a jar, that's what I fucking love about Nutella. I put speculoos spread, or spread made of those Biscoff cookies they serve on planes, in the same category: dessert in a spread. They're the most unhealthy, and so damn tasty I can't keep my spoon out of the jar.
2. Brussels sprouts. Part of why Brussels sprouts made this list and not kale might be that 'sprouts are less hyped than kale, and therefore I think they are worth the (smaller) level of hype that they get; if everyone were having continuous multiple foodgasms over Brussels sprouts, I might have to be like, let's slow down a minute guys. But they are delicious, underrated, and worth a little hype.
3. Whiskey. Yeah, every hipster and their mom is suddenly "into" whiskey, but whiskey is still fucking great. In a hundred years, when all of the trendy whiskey bars are closed, whiskey will still be great. And on that note,
4. Artisan gin. Have you ever had cheap gin? It tastes like Pine Sol. Good gin, on the other hand, is vodka's refreshing, slightly exotic cousin. More good gins, please.
5. Figs. Are figs hyped? I'm not sure. They feel hype-y; I'm seeing them in a lot more things than Fig Newtons, which used to be just about the only time you talked about figs if you didn't move in fine dining circles. I love figs, so, bring it on. (See also, figgy facts you should know.)
6. Sweet potatoes. I'm stoked that sweet potatoes are finally sharing some of the spotlight hogged by their starchy white brethren. They shouldn't be relegated to the Thanksgiving table or weird dinner-dessert casserole hybrids. Sweet potatoes do taste amazing with maple syrup and marshmallows, but they also taste amazing roasted and dusted with paprika and chili powder, and in other, non-mallow preparations.
7. Tacos. If you haven't had a legit Mexican taco, you probably think tacos are overhyped, but they're fabulous. Tacos are not soupy ground beef piled into stale taco shells, they're fresh and flavorful and simple and just so. good. I love tacos so much that when one of the readers at my blog once told me she had never had a taco, I immediately wrote an emergency taco post (at a book blog, mind you; that is how strongly I feel about tacos) to explain why tacos are the best food and how to properly prepare a taco.
8. Bacon. Does this really need explaining? It's bacon. Bacon is like the girl who is both pretty and popular and has a great, sweet, kind personality. You can't hate her, even though you kinda want to when you see everyone swarming to her. Bonus pro bacon tip: Bake your bacon.
What would be on your list of foods that are totally worth the hype? What have I left off that should be here? Let me know in the comments!