We’ve seen black-eyed peas made into everything short of cupcakes with sweet potato icing (don’t you dare!), and if I run up on one more gourmet recipe for fried green tomatoes, I’m going to take a skillet out and start swinging at anybody with a fork.
In the restaurant business it’s not unusual for chefs of one ilk or another to turn a hayseed staple into a Broadway entrée. Most basic recipes are open to elaboration, and every cook has a twist; a pinch here, a dash there, a pot for this, a pan for that.
If the cook’s intentions are honorable, meaning that his or her primary concern is with how a dish tastes, all the better. But if you’re putting a heap of crab ceviche over a batch of cold butter bean fritters just so you can charge six bucks more, that’s just wrong.