A quick note to say: what is going on with airline food today?
I didn't take my first flight until I was nearly twenty years old. By then my expectations had reached mammoth heights, and I spent weeks before my trip imagining the glories of air travel. Turns out there isn't a single glamourous thing about winging your way from one coast to another, and the least glamourous thing seems to be the food. I mean, honestly, what's going on? Bankruptcy, for one, meaning that United (and other airlines, I'm sure) now make you pay for boxes of snacks with kicky names like "The Jumpstart" which contains a whole bevy of overprocessed, under-vitamined, overpackaged garbage.
But I think there's a bigger problem here. The setting: a boardroom somewhere. The players: Airline execs in power suits. The lunch served in meeting: Vitamin water, anemic cookies, wrap sandwiches. The subject: what food translates well to the friendly skies.
In a situation like this, the only meals you would expect them to dream up are salisbury steak and vegetarian meals that consist only of fruit and bottled water. In my fantasy I imagine that once Alice Waters finishes her worthy crusade against shitty school lunches (www.edibleschoolyard.org) she wields her influence against the good people at the FAA, demanding that they improve the quality of plane food. Unfortunately, unlike the school lunch initiative, there's no government funding for our inflight dinner, so I suspect my fantasy will remain just that.
In the meantime, I encourage savvy jetsetters to pack their own bento boxes filled with fresh and delicious treats, guaranteed to make those sitting near you very, very jealous.