L - Asia - Salty

Lay's "India's Magic Masala"


Taste: 2

Texture: 4

Novelty: 3

All scores out of 5

One of the things I've learned over the last few years is the definition of the words "masala" and "curry". I used to think that they were the names of particular spices, like jalapeno peppers or mint. As I became more educated on the subject I discovered that they were in fact spice combinations, but I thought they were a particular blend of spices. I now know that masalas and curries are in fact random blends of spices from the subcontinent, they vary as widely as ice cream flavours or potato chip flavours. All of this leads to this bag of potato chips.

There was certainly something uniquely Indian about these chips. It was the heat, or the way the spicy flavour affected me. Indian food doesn't just blast your mouth with intense heat most of the time; instead it creeps up on you with every bite. Then when you stop eating the spicy food the heat cools down fairly quickly. It means that the most intense part of the heat happens during your last bite, and these chips did pretty much that. These potato chips are a great way for anybody that wants to up their spicy heat threshold without blasting their socks off.

The problem with these chips, and it's a big one, is that there wasn't any definition in the spices used. Indian food is very measured and balanced with the spices they use, and it produces unique flavours, these didn't really have any spice flavour at all. It was sort of like an unsweetened barbecue flavoured potato chip, and not like any particular India spice combination.

While the heat and crunch of these chips were dead on, they need something else to up the flavour.