Indian Food Snobbery

“Snobbery is a global phenomenon,” according to Alain de Botton. I agree. I’ve noticed over the past few years that one new acceptable form of snobbery is food snobbery. The plain, old meat and potatoes–these are snubbed by food snobs. This remains true until you throw in an interesting twist, maybe add some arugula or goat cheese to that meat and potatoes. Now we’re talking class. The easiest way to make a dish acceptable to your food snob friends (and we all surely have them!), though, is to add an “ethnic” twist. Chicken wings may sound a bit ordinary, but turn them into Thai chicken wings, and you suddenly have an impressive dish. Over the past few months I have fallen into the trap of food snobbery myself, namely with Indian food. You may ask, how can I be an Indian food snob if all I ever order is chicken Tikka Masala? Well, it’s because I’m that much of a food snob that I feel the need to compare different restaurants’ dishes. And using the scientific method, I must control for the type of dish, right? So chicken Tikka Masala it is. It wouldn’t be fair to my research to order anything else. The results, however, have been depressing. My favorite chicken Tikka Masala dish so far was a frozen meal sold at Whole Foods. Hey snobs, at least it’s Whole Foods! This means that every time I’ve gone out to experiment since then, including today at lunchtime, I’ve been disappointed. So disappointed that I’ve decided to take matters into my own hands and try to make the best chicken Tikka Masala I’ve ever had. It’s a big challenge, I know, but I feel that it distinguishes me from other food snobs. Instead of continuing to complain about the poor selection of Indian food we have here like any good food snob would do, I’m actually going to cook my own Indian food. This may sound hippyesque, but please don’t confuse the two. This is a whole new class of food snobbery, the upper crust, if you will. Things sure are looking bright from up here!


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