School food is underrated


Aspen Cotton, Staff Writer

A food critic’s job may seem easy, yet I find that, as the pickiest eater on campus, I am the person best suited for this position of extreme importance. Without me, the average student would not know their Flamas from their Baked Spicy Cheetos, their Uncrustables from their homemade PB&J’s. 

I am here to give my honest critiques and opinions on our dear cafeteria food. I will hold nothing back, and what I find may surprise you.

To start off, I have to comment on the blue raspberry applesauce. The infamous neon blue goop has split student opinion in half. Some say it is “the worst food in existence,” while others say,  “eh, it’s alright.” Well, I am here to inform you that the students who say “Meh” and the Blue Raspberry ZeeZee haters are both incorrect.

 Somehow our chefs have managed to put the unique flavor of a blue-raspberry jolly rancher into applesauce. Those with braces can now rejoice, no longer having to fear the sticky, hard-as-diamond consistency of the beloved treats. 

The blue raspberry ZeeZee brings color and spark to the monochrome sea of cafeteria food, the color also carrying  into students’ next visit to the bathroom. 

In summation, the eye-catching blue sauce is the perfect addition to any school lunch.

For my next critique, I must comment on the lack of salads at our school. According to PUSD requirements, school cafeterias should provide “calories based on the age of students and meals that focus on limiting the amounts of saturated fat, trans fat and sodium.” (7 CFR 210.10 and 220.8). (This is basically a fancy way to say that the school can’t provide Dr. Pepper and Domino’s for lunch.)

Why then, were Caesar salads taken off of the menu? Salads are the go-to health food, the O.G. if you will. 

Anyway, of all of the so-called “healthy” foods at our school, I found that the salad was quite tolerable. It was simple, made of food, and tasted green; all the things you look for in a salad. 

While it may not have been the most popular delicacy on the school menu, it was not worth the contempt it was shown when it was thrown into the trash. I say, bring back the salad, and let this leafy green dish once again grace the palates of Westview students. 

One of the greatest tragedies of our school cafeteria, the most damaging loss, is the lack of Flamas. These spicy little pieces of heaven have been sadly cut from the school menu, with no notice on whether they will ever return. The future students of Westview will never know that first bite, the lime flavor exploding over your tongue, and the ensuing, “tssssss that’s hot, Oh my god, whyyyyy? Stop laughing guys, it’s not funny!” Flamas build character, strengthening students’ tolerance to spice, and to ridicule by their peers. 

In place of Flamas, the school has decided to add SunChips—Garden Salsa. While they are no doubt a step up from Baked Spicy Cheetos, when the type of food they sell in school is not a modified version of what you can get in stores, you know there’s a problem. The reduced-fat stickers on the various bags are reassurances that better versions of the food exist somewhere in the ether.

One other food that caught my attention were the Big Daddy’s. Yes, you heard me right, these pizza pocket-like delights are one of the most favored items on the school menu.

Come Tuesday, greedy hands snatch them all up, with a speed and ferocity that can frighten the helpless cafeteria workers. The staff manically toss them out the window, frantically trying to sate the students’ demanding need for these piping-hot “stuffed sandwiches” (Just call it a hot-pocket. Wait, that’s probably copyrighted, nevermind.)

When I say piping hot, I mean it. Big Daddy’s usually give students what feel like third degree burns on the roofs of their mouths. While the cheesy, pizza-y, goodness is delicious, it’s hard to focus on that when your mouth is on fire. 

Even with this slight drawback, Big Daddy’s (and Flamas) are the culmination of highschool cafeteria excellence

Now that we have considered a few key foods in cafeteria culture, I can come to an absolute verdict. I find that the cafeteria food, from careful observation, is “eh, pretty good.”