Canned Spaghetti on a Pineapple Pizza: Not As Bad As It Sounds?

After New Zealand Prime Minister Bill English sparks faux outrage over his dinnertime choice, a reporter tries it herself (and wishes she had a spoon).




Many say canned spaghetti on a pineapple pizza is a “1980s rural Kiwi classic,” while others say it’s a distraction from possible war crimes.

 

Canned spaghetti on a pineapple pizza—boldly innovative or just plain vomitous? Voters in New Zealand were split on this pressing issue after their prime minister, Bill English, posted several photos of just such a pie—which he’d made at home with his family—on Facebook.

Predictably, many people with too much time on their hands took the whimsical post seriously and slammed the PM for his atrocious tastes in quick-dinner fare, while others accused him of using the controversy to detract attention from more serious issues in the news, including allegations of war crimes by New Zealand soldiers serving in Afghanistan in 2010. His defenders pointed out that the pairing of pineapple pizza and canned spaghetti is a “1980s rural Kiwi classic” and a “nostalgic staple” for anyone who grew up in New Zealand’s South Island region.

In the interest of hardnosed, objective reporting, Eleanor Ainge Roy, a reporter for The Guardian, decided to try the combo herself. “This correspondent is not unfamiliar with tinned spaghetti,” Roy wrote. “For two weeks on a remote cattle station in Australia’s Northern Territory, I ate tinned spaghetti sandwiches three times a day.”

Roy asked a local Domino’s to create a “PM Special” with pineapple chunks, bacon and spaghetti. “It was sloppy and lacked texture, immediately falling to pieces in my hands” because she’d forgotten to drain the spaghetti can first, she wrote. “But it was good. Really good. Good in the way straightforward crowdpleasers often are. Unpretentious, with immediate, uncomplicated flavours (cheese, tomato, bread) and a surprising ‘yum’ factor. Ravenous, I gobbled it up. I could have done with a spoon.”

Her conclusion: “It is a pizza to be eaten quickly, sans tablecloth, sans cutlery, sans fuss. In my view, it’s just fine.”

 

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