What do professional chefs really think of TikTok food trends?

Illustration for article titled What do professional chefs really think of TikTok food trends?
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One of the great things about TikTok food trends is that they are by the people for the people. Forget cheffy nonsense like fancy knife skills or chiffonading. TikTok cooking is all about ingenuity and making do with what you’ve got. And isn’t that what America is all about? No wonder we love these trends so.

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Nevertheless, Huff Post asked a panel of chefs to evaluate some of the most popular TikTok cooking trends of the pandemic: the egg-cracking challenge, cocoa bombs, baked feta pasta, and the tortilla wrap hack. (But no dalgona coffee???)

Their opinions were varied, although no one really supported the egg-cracking challenge, which “proves” that an egg dropped into a hot pan cracks perfectly. “Typically you’d want your pan to be somewhat hot, just to create some sort of barrier between the pan and the egg with some fat,” one said. “But then you’re picking the shell out of the pan. I’m not sure I understand the idea of doing that versus just cracking it on the flat surface.”

They were also unimpressed with cocoa bombs, which, they pointed out, produce a similar result to plain old Swiss Miss—though they are more aesthetically pleasing.

The quality of both cocoa bombs and feta pasta depends on the ingredients. “Feta, I think, is a little bit of a divisive cheese because it can be really intense or it can be really flavorless and kind of waxy and tacky,” said one chef, who was bewildered by the trend’s popularity. “So it’s surprising that so many people were gravitating to it.” Another chef suggested ditching the pasta altogether and making a feta-tomato dip.

But no one had anything bad to say about the tortilla wrap hack. Being chefs, of course, they could not resist the impulse to suggest improvements, though. Namely, leave the cheese and proteins in the outer quadrants. It’ll melt better.

Associate editor of The Takeout. Chicagoan. Owned by dog.

DISCUSSION

Dr Emilio Lizardo

Made the feta pasta last night. It was incredibly easy and delicious. I used 12 oz of tomatoes, 4 oz barrel aged (strongly flavored) feta, 2 garlic cloves, a pinch of crushed red pepper and a lot of basil for 8 oz of pasta to serve 2 people. Next time I will use more tomatoes, like at least a pound. I also stirred in some pasta water which I do with almost every pasta.  Less strong feta would be fine, but more creamy than flavorful.  A good chevre would probably work pretty well too.