Nurse concocts (nearly) winning chip flavor
The first note that hits you is the spicy wasabi, which is quickly balanced with a cooling ginger finish. But while it recalls a piece of maki sushi, it’s actually a potato chip: Lay’s Kettle Cooked Wasabi Ginger.
The addictive chips—not exactly health food—are the creation of a registered nurse, Meneko Spigner McBeth, who submitted the flavor combination to Lay’s annual Do Us a Flavor contest.
McBeth, who works in the clinical decision unit at Temple University Hospital in Philadelphia, was inspired by her Japanese maternal grandmother, who used to whip up scrambled egg and cucumber sushi for her grandkids.
She chose wasabi, ginger and soy sauce as the three ingredients for her chip flavor proposal, and her idea was one of four chosen out of 14 million submissions.
Invited to the Lay’s flavor kitchen to taste the results, “I’d say it’s a hundred times better than what I was imagining,” she said. “I was dumbfounded by how well it translated.”
Wasabi Ginger is competing against Cheddar Bacon Mac & Cheese, Cappuccino and Wavy Mango Salsa. Voting— which is via Twitter, Instagram, Vine and/or text to 24477 (CHIPS)—will take place through Oct. 18, with the winner announced in November. The Wasabi Ginger hashtag is #SaveWasabi.
As for what she’ll do with the $1 million prize? McBeth says she has three young daughters who will be set for college and weddings. And, after driving them around in a minivan, she also wants a work car all to herself.
Meneko Spigner McBeth’s Wasabi Ginger chip flavor gets some promotional time in New York’s Times Square.