As a food blog reader, I especially enjoy discovering communities of reviewers who are incredibly analytical about esoteric, “low-end” types of cuisine. Take diet-food-review blog IateApie, for example. On Tuesday, it posted the results of an informal reader poll on favorite frozen-food brands. The clear winner? Quarter-century-old stalwart Lean Cuisine, garnering almost 36 percent of the 844 votes, about 12.5 percentage points ahead of the more foodie-sanctioned, organ-i-licious brand Amy’s Kitchen (which came on the scene six years later).
The critics at HeatEatReview—a blog dedicated entirely to picking and panning frozen meals—aren’t as keen on Lean, as editor Abi’s snarky, funny review of the brand’s Sesame Chicken attests:
I learned [on the company website] that this is Lean Cuisine’s number one seller. I attribute this fact to the meal’s amazing imitation of take-out chinese food in a diet form. Also, it contains breading, which makes women on diets a little insane, even if the breading is soggy. Reading about 30 of the 193 reviews on Lean Cuisine’s website had me thinking that the eaters of these meals are not nearly as discriminating as the writers here on HeatEatReview.com. I would post some of their comments, but the egregious misuse of apostrophes had me twitching after a few pages.
Pa-pow! Clearly there’s a certain hierarchy of taste in this community, just as there is in the fine-dining and farm-fresh-cuisine worlds; Abi and her crew just happen to be dedicated to value as well as deliciousness. (Ousted Top Chef contestant Emily Sprissler might have done well to think about these things in last night’s episode and ditch her snobbery about cooking a dish for the TGI Friday’s menu.)
What about you—does frozen or “diet” food ever show up on your plate?