Welcome to Delicious or Distressing, where we rate recent food memes, videos, and other decidedly unserious news. Last week we discussed Eleven Madison Park’s extremely expensive soup kits.
Rumor has it that the next big bid at the auction house is Subway—yes, the sandwich chain of record. Learning this, I thought to myself: “I hope any creative pivot under new ownership doesn’t produce something nasty like breadless sandwiches, a la crustless pizza.” Awkward for me, because they already did it, in the form of protein bowls. I’m dismayed, but I’m not surprised.
In the face of ongoing inflation, the Wall Street Journal tapped the mic this week and said, “We have something to contribute to the Discourse.” Flipping the tenet “breakfast is the most important meal of the day” on its head, the paper published a story bearing the headline: “To Save Money, Maybe You Should Skip Breakfast.” Thank you, WSJ. I’d forgotten—goods are cheapest when you just don’t buy them! Other food news this week largely trafficked in the realm of the absurd: A content creator is trying to make “carnivore bread” a thing, and a man across the pond heisted nearly $40k worth of Cadbury Creme Eggs.
No jingle is lodged into my subconscious quite like that of Subway’s Five-Dollar-Footlong. It’s snappy and alliterative and overall A-Plus marketing. This memory caused me to wonder: When did Subway’s footlongs stop being $5? Have we as a society ever questioned this? Its current owners, whoever they may be, will have to grapple with this moral dilemma no longer, because the chain is rumored to be optioning buyers. Will new leadership find the pocket change to herald a renewed era of the Five-Dollar-Footlong? Or will it debut a new trademark product in its place, jingle and all? Jury’s out. 3.6/5 delicious. —Li Goldstein, digital production assistant
I have seen a lot of ridiculous things on Al Gore’s internet. I’ve seen matcha made in avocados. I’ve seen the meteoric rise and tragic fall of the Negroni Sbagliato. I’ve seen myself, desperate for a dopamine bomb, post endless selfies over and over again (they say the definition of insanity is doing the same thing and expecting different results etc. etc.). But I feel confident in saying that I have never rolled my eyes more intensely than at a headline in the Wall Street Journal which bravely told its readers “To Save Money, Maybe You Should Skip Breakfast.” The article goes on to explain that many common breakfast foods are now strikingly more expensive due to inflation, and that perhaps skipping breakfast entirely is the most logical solution. The logic to this argument is spotty at best. Skip breakfast? Why stop there? Pants too expensive? Just don’t wear ’em! Healthcare too pricey? Why not consider dying! This kind of headline is not only tone deaf and unhelpful, but also reflects the kind of “avocado toast is the reason millennials can’t buy houses” thinking that faults personal financial responsibility above structural and institutional economic disparity. I’m rating this buffoonery a blundering, clownish 5/5 distressing — Sam Stone staff writer
As a #contentcreator in food, I know a fundamental truth about recipes: what’s often more important is the narrative you paint than the actual ingredients. Craft a new narrative—a new way to describe a dish—and boom, you get a new recipe. Today’s lesson is “carnivore bread,” a TikTok video from @hhhh_heather that’s been going around. It’s not the only instance of carnivore bread online, but it is one that went semi-viral because people who were clearly not the intended audience (me) were like “what in the living hell is this?” It features ingredients such as ground beef, eggs, and baking powder, and yes, people bake it, slice it, and in some cases, suggest eating it with butter for breakfast. Sound familiar? As many commenters noted, bro this is meatloaf! You are just eating toasted meatloaf. Perhaps the more shocking discovery was that this recipe is for people who purposely eat “animal-based diets,” aka almost entirely meat, and it doesn’t stop at “carnivore bread.” There are caramel apples with meat and cereal made out of dehydrated beef. God bless the bodies who can handle that, but even the thought of this is making my large intestine clench into fetal position. 4.7/5 distressing —Serena Dai, editorial director