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Happier meals
May 25, 2011 6:33 AM   Subscribe

Happier meals: four Toronto chefs reimagine the Big Mac combo. Behind the scenes.
posted by shakespeherian (46 comments total) 6 users marked this as a favorite

 
And I bet the original Big Mac tastes better.
posted by symbioid at 6:42 AM on May 25, 2011 [1 favorite]


Wow. Those look absolutely terrible.
posted by item at 6:51 AM on May 25, 2011


All these servings seem really small.

I don't know about you, but I eat fast food because I'm starving, haven't eaten all day and am far from home, and fast food is quick, ample calories.
posted by dunkadunc at 6:51 AM on May 25, 2011


All of these are pretty horrible, and miss the entire point of a "happy meal" - it's the toy. That being said, mashing up a McD burger and re-serving it doesn't make it any better.

The Drake's entry made me want to puke from the coke-cola reduction sauce alone, and the "light the fries with a blowtorch" made it worse.

Side note: happy meal time for my daughter when she was a kiddo? Making bread together and getting flour everywhere. Worth the cleanup time.
posted by Old'n'Busted at 6:52 AM on May 25, 2011 [1 favorite]


Finally I can take friends and family to McDonald's for fine dining.
posted by Foci for Analysis at 6:54 AM on May 25, 2011


A pretty good example of "Just because you can, doesn't mean you should."
posted by Kitteh at 6:56 AM on May 25, 2011 [1 favorite]


From the Behind the Scenes: 'We were looking for the prettiest dish, not the tastiest.'
posted by shakespeherian at 6:57 AM on May 25, 2011


Oh, you're no fun any more, people.
posted by theredpen at 6:57 AM on May 25, 2011 [3 favorites]


Deconstructacular!
posted by The Giant Squid at 6:59 AM on May 25, 2011


I actually thought the charcuterie plate looked pretty great. I'd try that.
posted by padraigin at 6:59 AM on May 25, 2011


> I don't know about you, but I eat fast food because I'm starving, haven't eaten all day and am far from home, and fast food is quick, ample calories.

"Ha ha, Dennis knows the score! “Mom, this $2 patty of Grade F meat smeared with American cheese and non-fancy ketchup certainly isn’t anything that would be improved if I savored it. You’re supposed to wolf it down as fast as you can so the fat triggers all the pleasure centers in your brain extra hard! That’s what it’s for!”
posted by The Card Cheat at 7:00 AM on May 25, 2011


Nothing makes food look more appetizing than a view from 40,000 feet.
posted by DU at 7:01 AM on May 25, 2011


There's some fairly creative attempts here and I appreciate the motivation to try to re-purpose the humble burger combo into something loftier but... I think this is an obvious case of garbage in, garbage out.

Seriously, every last one of these looks like a toddler mangled a partially chewed happy meal and then fingerpainted with the remains. I have literally eaten food out of a dumpster that appeared more appetizing.

I'd be much more interested in a good chef's take on making a Big Mac meal from scratch, with better ingredients. I bet even good chefs would have a hard time actually nailing the bland but temporarily satisfying zeitgeist of a Big Mac and fries.
posted by loquacious at 7:03 AM on May 25, 2011 [1 favorite]


After the recent Paula Deen English peas post, I think this is great.
posted by hanoixan at 7:03 AM on May 25, 2011


I'd be much more interested in a good chef's take on making a Big Mac meal from scratch, with better ingredients

Well, there's this.
posted by uncleozzy at 7:06 AM on May 25, 2011 [7 favorites]


theredpen: "Oh, you're no fun any more, people."

We never were!
posted by symbioid at 7:09 AM on May 25, 2011 [3 favorites]


You know what? We're falling into their trap by talking about it. We're basically being trolled, and they're getting our eyeballs and clickthroughs.

This happens on about 30% of Metafilter posts. Over at Reddit it's more like 60%.
posted by dunkadunc at 7:13 AM on May 25, 2011 [1 favorite]


Sad meal.
posted by unSane at 7:16 AM on May 25, 2011 [1 favorite]


Well, now I don't need breakfast.

Unappetizing food made even less appetizing.
posted by Seamus at 7:17 AM on May 25, 2011


That last one might make some kids cry.
posted by longsleeves at 7:18 AM on May 25, 2011


Metafilter: falling into their trap by talking about it.
posted by kozad at 7:19 AM on May 25, 2011 [3 favorites]


Yowza! Some of that food is presented directly ON THE TRAY. I don't know about you, but I certainly don't trust the cleanliness of the dirty rag the McDonalds employees use to wipe those trays. Always keep the wrapper in between your food and anything in the restaurant.
posted by blue_beetle at 7:31 AM on May 25, 2011


Lipstick on a pig.
posted by pianomover at 7:32 AM on May 25, 2011


The first one looks like something I would want to try. The rest, not.
posted by 23skidoo at 7:58 AM on May 25, 2011


I may have been too cynical earlier. PS.

I think if anything, this should be a lesson to us to make our food from actual ingredients.
posted by dunkadunc at 8:01 AM on May 25, 2011


Now, do it for the same price as the Big mac combo.
posted by Thorzdad at 8:15 AM on May 25, 2011


That being said, mashing up a McD burger and re-serving it doesn't make it any better.

It would be interesting as a social experiment to take fast food, dress it up with good presentation and serve it in an up-scale restaurant. Even if the food doesn't objectively taste any better, the context in which someone is eating something probably does have a lot of impact on the perceived quality of a meal.
posted by burnmp3s at 8:30 AM on May 25, 2011


Penn and Teller's Bullshit did that by serving only food you could buy at a convenience store, just with fancy plating and nice atmosphere.
posted by dunkadunc at 8:32 AM on May 25, 2011


See also: Fancy Fast Food
posted by gwint at 8:58 AM on May 25, 2011


> $2 patty of Grade F meat

Can you tell me how you know it's grade F and what grade F means and how it compares to supermarket minced beef that I buy to make burgers at home?

Genuinely curious.
posted by Dragonness at 9:22 AM on May 25, 2011


Dragonness; you could start by watching Food Nation, which includes a lovely* segment on processed meat patties.

* not lovely.
posted by odinsdream at 9:33 AM on May 25, 2011


Now I kinda want to try this! I bet the insides, roughly chopped, could be turned into a sort of paste, and the bun could be flattened and sealed on the outside edges. Then, you could deep-fry the whole thing, like an empanada. Which, dipped into some extra Big Mac sauce, could indeed be damn good.
posted by Greg Nog at 9:39 AM on May 25, 2011 [2 favorites]


I'm holding out for Happiest Meals.
posted by owtytrof at 10:03 AM on May 25, 2011


Greg Nog: "I bet the insides, roughly chopped, could be turned into a sort of paste, and the bun could be flattened and sealed on the outside edges. Then, you could deep-fry the whole thing, like an empanada. Which, dipped into some extra Big Mac sauce, could indeed be damn good."

That really holds true for just about anything, doesn't it?

I actually have a friend whose whole philosophy of cooking is pretty much this: for X item, you can form X into a patty and fry it up (where X = mustard, cheese, Big Macs, unidentified refrigerator container, Golden Grahams, tomatoes, and so on). In his defense, we were in college when he formulated said philosophy.

Also I believe the insides of a Big Mac are already a sort of paste.
posted by theredpen at 10:16 AM on May 25, 2011


That really holds true for just about anything, doesn't it?

Oh my goodness, yes. Many a drunken night have I stared at the frying oil, then looked into the fridge, then back at the frying oil, then my eyes turn into pictures of makeshift falafel balls while the Pee Wee's Big Adventure breakfast theme starts playing in my head.
posted by Greg Nog at 10:24 AM on May 25, 2011


The deep-fried ranch dressing is not all it's cracked up to be.
posted by shakespeherian at 10:27 AM on May 25, 2011


Strongly reminiscent of Fancy Fast Food blog. (previously on the blue)
posted by Freon at 10:43 AM on May 25, 2011


Oops, sorry gwint. Had that preview window open far, far longer than I thought.
posted by Freon at 10:44 AM on May 25, 2011


Can you tell me...what grade F means

There's no such thing. It's just an insult.
posted by Dasein at 11:26 AM on May 25, 2011


"Can you tell me...what grade F means"

These cuts are seldom sold in retail stores.
posted by lemuring at 11:28 AM on May 25, 2011


symbioid: "theredpen: "Oh, you're no fun any more, people."

We never were!
"

I was. Once. Just once.
posted by Splunge at 12:46 PM on May 25, 2011


> These cuts are seldom sold in retail stores.

Lemuring, that's a very helpful link, thank you. As I suspected, 'store brand' ground beef is right down there with the worst of them. Ie. my home-made burgers likely aren't any better than what I'd get at McDonald's if I just buy store brand meat.
posted by Dragonness at 1:33 PM on May 25, 2011


These chef's seem to have missed the point of why people eat fast food. Because it's fast, cheap, filling tasty, and reliable.
posted by jonmc at 4:43 PM on May 25, 2011


I think the original Big Mac looks better than all the other dishes. Of course, what you actually get when you order a Big Mac looks nothing like the picture.
posted by pguertin at 5:30 PM on May 25, 2011


I agree with what most of of you are saying

The Fancy Fast Food blog has more projects

The Big Mac in photograph form is beautiful indeed
posted by J0 at 10:32 AM on May 26, 2011


Garbage in, garbage out.
posted by unSane at 12:58 PM on May 26, 2011


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