Horror meals served on airlines
It takes a special kind of cook to boil snow peas (and beans, and any green vegetable for that matter) to the point where they turn that interesting shade of khaki.
My grandma was particularly deft at it. The person who created this meal has that skill in spades - along with a fine eye when it comes to plating up.
The pasta bows look like they are fighting to come up for air. The sausage is so naked and devoid of any colour it is actually hard to look at. The least they could have done is provided some sauce to act as a cloak and give it a bit of dignity.
This was presented with a flourish on an Air China flight. Two dim sims, floating miserably in a sea of something that was maybe meant to be congee?
It all looks fairly watery - possibly diluted by the tears of the person who just landed this meal.
This reared its ugly head on a Philippines Airlines flight. It seems like some saucy eggplant (?) is trying to break up a fight between an imposing mound of starch and a wedge of tomato that has absolutely no business being there.
In supporting roles we have some watermelon that is wondering what it did wrong in life to end up here instead of on a buffet at a five-star hotel, and the most defeated looking bread roll we have ever seen.
This was presumably presented on the menu as some kind of charcuterie situation. How very Mediterranean!
But what turned up instead was a bread roll, a busted gherkin, a hunk of sweaty cheese and some mystery meat lurking in the background. Bon appetit.
Look, I like a white sauce as much as the next person. But as they say, you can have too much of a good thing and this meal really hammers that point home.
Every component of this meal is white, even the damn salad. It's like it was prepared to appease a fussy five year old.
There's nothing like being roused from a restless night trying to sleep in economy to be presented with a breakfast like this.
You just *know* the special rubbery consistency those 'eggs' have taken on. It's enough to make you crack the emergency exit and sail headfirst out of the plane, just to get away from it.
We can take a little national pride in this one. This was served in business class on a domestic Qantas flight a few years back.
It's six charming looking wantons, accompanied by a side of something charred and limp and … decidedly phallic. "I asked the server what it was … and he told me it was a root vegetable," explained the passenger.
I remember once in biology we put blood between two glass slides and looked at it under a microscope. And that is exactly what that dessert looks like.
Someone appears to have taken a tentative bite of the bread roll - the safest looking thing on that tray - and has made the call to leave the rest. Wise.
One would guess this was presented as a meatball sub. A snack that until now, you would have thought was pretty hard to eff up. But low and behold, we have four dry dry dry looking meatballs, huddling together, hoping they don't get found out.
The cheese looks like it congealed a few weeks back. There's just a *hint* of tomato sauce. A tease, if you will. Because god forbid anything with moisture was provided to help you choke down this dry mess of a sandwich.
Any good chef will tell you that a range of textures and a variety of visually appealing colours is a good jumping off point when creating a meal. The person who made this did not get that memo.
They have borrowed solely from the orange colour palette, and have created something that would work for pensioners with dentures. So, so soft. There is not a hint of crisp or crunch to be found here. You can eat this without making a sound.
Eating anything on a plane is a bit challenging. People are bumping your seat, your elbows are squished to your sides and turbulence is putting your stomach into your ears.
So we can only imagine how maniacally the chefs laughed when they decided to serve up the sloppiest, greyest, meat-mixed-with-watery rice for people to try and eat … presumably with the world's tiniest plastic spoon. You win this round, evil airline caterers.
Originally published as Horror meal served on airline