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Does pineapple pieces belong in a pasta?

Michael Haase16. September 2018


On 14th September, I shared a seemingly booring food picture on Twitter. It included a half-interesting pasta dish that my programmer had made, with pineapple on-top. What happened next, I wouldn’t have expected in my wildest dreams…

The dark side of Twitter emerged. Examples of comments I received:

  • “In Italy you’ll get shot, shall I say more…”;
  • “McFuckingKillYourself”;
  • “You just committed a war crime”;
  • “I’m calling the police”;
  • “You will answer for this on judgment day”;
  • “The punishment is death, by fire”;
  • “You’re sick”

… along with a plethora of REALLY agressive gifs:

At first, I laughed and shrug these comments; but as they kept pouring in they left me a bit sad. Harsh words are also violence. The responses are perfect examples of a genre Gordon Ramsey has made popular: ‘Food Bashing’.

Why Gordon Ramsey is bad for our food culture

Food bashing is violence, and as fun as it might seem it has dangerous repercussions.

Personally, I do not like pineapple on pasta, but one of our programmers does and I wanted to share her dish for a very particular reason:

No one should dictate what’s ‘RIGHT’ food, whether they are Italian, French, Gordon Ramsey, or even my own mother… (sorry mom)

We all agree that food should be simple, tasty, nutritious, and sustainable. The fastest route to that is experimentation in the kitchen.

However, every time people do ‘food bashing’ like they did to me on Friday, we move one step further away from that:

The result of that ‘fear of failure’ is waste: 90% of people in the Western world cook less than 10 different dishes per year. The victim is food waste, health, and overconsumption of processed foods. Let’s do something about it!

So, what to do about it? More jamming!

I decide to give a voice to people who likes pineapple on pizza or soy sauce in porridge; not because I like it myself, but because we should stop being fundamentalists about food. We should instead start ‘food jamming’.

So, we developed an app for food jammers. Plant jammer empowers ANYONE to cook tasty, simple, nutritious, and sustainable meals with ANYTHING. Try it, it’s free:

So, when is something delicious? And does pineapple pieces belong in a pasta?

In Plant Jammer, we did machine learnng on 3 mn recipes and build an algorithm for ‘good taste’. We learnt that people can cook delicious with almost anything, as long as they know a few rules. In particular, we developed ‘The gastrowheel’ – a framework that identifies when something is tasty:

Your dish should fill out the gastrowheel with as few ingredients as possible.

If we apply the Gastrowheel to pineapple on pasta… pasta is already quite sweet due to it’s starch, so there is no need for pineapple on top… Unless YOU like it! 🙂