The 10 foods you always regret

1. Greggs

I love puff pastry and will eat pretty much anything if it’s wrapped in this flaky duvet of calorific joy. Greggs, with its myriad pastry wares, should be my snacking Shangri-la – but it’s not. Its overpriced steak bakes fail to hit the spot and its signature sausage rolls are salty, pastry heavy, flaccid affairs which make you wonder how they can get it so wrong.  Somehow they have managed to convince the British high street that they sell high quality, freshly baked goods, when in reality they are shorthand for disappointment.

2. Chocolate fudge cake in restaurants

Neither fudgy, nor chocolatey – it’s always there, lurking at the bottom of the menu; usually titled with a pun relating to the name of the eatery. The description may change but the dessert remains the same – a wedge of fridge cold cake, with a sponge the texture of an actual sponge and an icing that is overly cloying. Served with a scoop of grainy vanilla ice cream and some sort of sub-par raspberry coulis.

3. Nachos

How could something so simple be cocked up by so many eateries? The trick to nachos is balance – not authenticity. I don’t care if you’ve made and fried your own tortilla chips if you are going to skimp on salsa, cheese and jalapenos! Stop with the lake of plastic cheese sauce, enough with the small portions and if you have to pollute my Dorito-fest with anything containing avocado, at least have the decency to make sure I can scrape it of with minimal pollution!

4. Fanta

Sometimes you feel so thirsty that you convince yourself you want a Fanta. You don’t. What you think will be a fine balance of fruit and acidity; sparklingly refreshing and thirst-quenching is in fact sweet, cloying and only serves to make you more thirsty!! Even if it is the superior lemon variety! Listen, you’re not on holiday now – put down the Fanta and just have some squash.

5. Multi-pack crisps

Oh look I can get all my favourite flavours in one bag! No you can’t. You can get two of your favourite flavours in bags that are too small to really satisfy your crisp craving and a whole load of that other flavour that your don’t really even like that much! Surely they only invented these packaging fiascos because they had loads of beef and onion flavour they had to get rid of?!?

6. Onion rings

As we all know ‘if you deep fry it, I will come’. But the ‘Bacon sandwich syndrome’ – where one bite removes the insides – befalls most orders of onion rings. And whilst being left with batter to munch on is normally not a problem (i.e. fish and chips) onion rings are always made of the most insipid and greasiest of coatings. Even with a cold sparkling beverage to cut through it, that oil slick will stay as a reminder to why it was never a good idea in the first place.

7. Served with salad

With thousands of edible plants to choose from, isn’t it odd that most
‘salad’ consists of cucumber, lettuce, raw onion(!) and a couple of cherry tomatoes? I don’t have a problem with salad (contrary to what my nearest and dearest may tell you) just the way in which people use the term and the tired and clichéd ingredients they use.

8. Salted caramel

A new kid on the disappointment block – you can’t move through the aisle without wading through ‘salted’ caramel spilling out of every dessert variant. Sadly when they say salted caramel they mean just caramel, the lack of any salty counterpoint is always missing. (Whilst it seems food manufacturers have to be careful with salt content, they can obviously use as much sugar as humanly possible.)

9. Pulled Pork

Every bloody menu bloody well has bloody pulled bloody pork bloody on it. I’ve bloody well had e-bloody-nough.

10. Nandos

It’s just chicken! And given it’s the most populous bird on the planet is the chicken it’s not as though you paying for anything novel. Just chicken people, just chicken.