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Does the World Really Need Oddly Flavored Potato Chips?

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I have a beef about potato chips.


I am fortunate enough to be living in the land that revers flavored potato chips and this fact boggles my mind. When I was growing up in Oregon, we had thin or crinkled salted chips or BBQ. That was that, and it was beautiful. As a teen, I’d go up to British Columbia Canada with my folks each year and I would indulge in an orgy of salt and vinegar chips. Slowly but surely, the repertoire of potato chips evolved in the States. I’m a purist though—thin and salted, please—so I never indulged. I might have a handful of sour cream ’n onion now and again and I think I remember something to do with cheese and sour cream (which was sort of delicious) but I turned my nose up at BBQ. Still do.


One day I noticed something shocking—“dill pickle” flavored chips. What? Yuck. I think there might have been a flavor called “Ketchup” too but the lines are getting blurry now between Oregon and Australia.


Australia is the land of funky chips. “Chicken” which doesn’t even taste like chicken—it’s based on a french-fry seasoning called “chicken salt.” (I will write another story shortly on my children’s awestruck reaction when they realized French fries are considered a whole meal here.) “Honey Soy Chicken,” which is just something nasty I can’t even describe. “Sour Cream and Onion,” which should be an old friend but somehow they just get it wrong. “Cheese” which is possibly good but I’m too afraid to try. “Tomato.” What? “Sweet Chili and Sour Cream.” Hmm. Might be good. Deep fried potato wedges served up with sour cream and sweet chili sauce is nothing short of delicious but this belongs in the French fry post. “Lime and Black Pepper.” This earns another “YUCK” right along with Chili and Lime Doritos from the States.


But don’t stand between me and a bag of Nacho Cheese Doritos or you won’t like what happens! There’s something called “Steakhouse” potato chips that are quite nasty. Remembering this has just ruined the way I was going to end this post—by snarking that no doubt there’d be a beef flavored potato chip. Ah well. A well-known brand of crinkle potato chip manages to mess up even their “plain” flavor by adding some funky seasonings. What’s wrong with just delicious salted deep-fried potato? I’ve missed quite a few of the weird chips on grocery shelves here. I think it’s a matter of ignorance being bliss.

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