Tuesday, August 13, 2002

I feel so... common. I have just had possibly the most downmarket foodstuff I've ever eaten: Walkers Chip Shop Curry crisps. Everything about these screams "housing estate" - the garish packaging, the size of the bag ("Max!") and, of course, the flavour.

When I moved back to England, I was really looking forward to my first visit to a traditional fish'n'chips shop. I didn't know that the traditional chippy has virtually disappeared - most are now run by Chinese families, and offer an Oriental menu alongside the 'English' one. The first chippy I went to was on a run-down estate in south-west London. The place didn't sell much fish, but it did a roaring trade in chips'n'curry sauce.

I ask you. What kind of meal is that? Where is the nutritional value? Where is the aesthetic, tempting quality in a pile of soggy deep-fried potatoes smothered in a lurid orange sauce? And just what the hell is 'curry sauce'? Curried what, exactly?

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