Pretension Is the Enemy of Great Cooking

I like cooking. I like eating. I like trying new things. I also find this recent nose to tail culinary trend to be repulsive and absurd. If I am going to spend my hard earned money at an overpriced fancy restaurant, I am not going to be spending it on any noses or tails. When I go to a restaurant, I want to be impressed by what I eat; I am not looking to impress others with what I am eating.

The fact is that 90% of those who pay through the nose to eat noses are doing so not because they truly enjoy it, but to show others how sophisticated they are. The taste of the food is secondary to the prestige that comes from eating it, much like the enjoyment that one gets from the use of a Louis Vuitton handbag pales in comparison to the satisfaction one gets from letting the rest of the world know that you have a Louis Vuitton handbag.

Valuing image over substance is perfecting fine for things like handbags, perfume, and wine, but there is something distasteful about it when applied to food. Food is not a luxury item; it is something every human being needs to survive. The purpose of great cooking is to take something that everyone has to do out of necessity and turn it into something exciting and enjoyable.

The faddish trend to treat cooking and dining as a way to broadcast one’s sophistication of one of the motivations behind this website. I believe that people should be adventurous and creative with how they eat, but they should do so for their own enjoyment of the food, and not because of how they wish others to view them. Pretension has no place in the world of cooking.