LifestyleShe shares her in-flight dining experience: "I wasn't left hungry"

She shares her in‑flight dining experience: "I wasn't left hungry"

Eating on the airplane - Delicacies
Eating on the airplane - Delicacies
Images source: © The translation is "private material".
12:41 PM EST, November 18, 2023

The longer the flight, the stronger the hunger becomes. This can lead to grumpy passengers. Airlines are acutely aware of this and strive to serve meals during flights. One of our readers shares her in-flight dining experience on a trip to New York.

Travel isn't just about sightseeing and discovering famous landmarks. It also offers opportunities to explore new flavors. Before stepping onto foreign soil, one must endure several hours of flying. Our reader, Zuza, embarked on an autumn trip to New York. Prior to indulging in a world of burgers, pastrami-stuffed bagels, and salmon, she spent over 8 hours on a flight. While the London-New York route is routine, airlines strive to make it interesting by serving a variety of dishes. Zuza shared her impressions with me through a brief discourse.

In-flight dining

Preparing food for airline passengers offers a unique challenge. During flight, our ability to taste sweet and salty flavors diminishes by roughly 30%, with other tastes remaining unaffected. Additionally, the ambient noise within the airplane can affect the perception of taste. As such, chefs must artfully balance these aspects to ensure the meal is neither bland nor overpoweringly salty. Not everyone succeeds, as evidenced by passengers who refer to their meals as unpalatable mush.

Beverages are also served on airplanes - Delicacies.
Beverages are also served on airplanes - Delicacies.© private materials

While airline meals may compare less favorably to restaurant dishes, passengers do have some control over what is served.

I was not confined to only selecting dishes, but also the diet type. There was a "low carb" option likely suited for diabetics, kosher, and halal meals. I chose not to complicate things, since I was wary of being served something lacklustre. A fellow passenger nearby opted for kosher meals, which smelled incredibly sumptuous, prompting me to try them for myself.

Unexpected in-flight food quality

As a snack, Zuza received cheese-flavored pretzels. She noted that she hadn't had such delicious pretzels in a long time and would have happily eaten several packets.

The main course was a satisfyingly warm pasta dish with tomato sauce, lentils, and onions. It was accompanied by a fresh, fluffy roll and high-quality butter. The presence of cheddar cheese hinted at the flight's origin from London, as it was unlike any cheese I had eaten before. As an accompaniment, there was cheese with beets - a unique pairing, yet it worked well with the roll," recounts our reader.

The dessert was a chocolate cream with salted caramel. According to Zuza, it was simply delicious and notably sweet. The pasta, too, was well-spiced and quite flavorful.

Perhaps such spicy dishes are served to ensure the flavours come through," Zuza amusingly guesses.
Food on board the airplane - Delicacies
Food on board the airplane - Delicacies© private materials

Reality isn't as bad as perceived

Contrary to common perception, the in-flight meals were quite good. The crew ensured that no one disembarked hungry.

I had feared the worst. My husband opted for a dinner of chicken and rice with a vegetable sauce, instead of the pasta, and he was content with his meal too. Most importantly, we weren’t hungry when we disembarked," Zuza concludes.
Zuza's husband opted for chicken with rice - Deliciousness.
Zuza's husband opted for chicken with rice - Deliciousness.© private materials
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