Posts Tagged ‘food’

Poutine

Posted: March 14, 2013 in Food
Tags: , ,

poutineAs a Canadian, this particular guilty pleasure kind of goes without saying. As a reader from another country, you may not have much of an idea of what I’m talking about (or “aboot”, as it may be).  So here it goes…

Poutine is French fries covered with cheese curds and brown gravy.

Now right off the bat, that might not sound like the most appealing or tasty food you’ve ever heard of. However, if you’ve ever had the chance to eat it yourself then I think you know just how awesome it actually is.

poutinePoutine originated in the Canadian province of Quebec in the late 1950’s. While many may claim to have originated the idea, there is no definitive proof of who, exactly, came up with the idea. The name (supposedly) came from Fernand Lachance of Warwick, Quebec, who is said to have exclaimed, “ça va faire une maudite poutine” (“it will make a damn mess”), hence the name.

Poutine is such a staple in the Canadian food industry that not only can you buy it at local fast food restaurants such as McDonald’s and Burger King.

Burger King poutine

Burger King poutine

McDonald's poutine

McDonald’s poutine

You can also find restaurants that are 100% dedicated to creating variations on the fry/cheese/gravy theme.

Smoke's Poutinerie

PoutineIt’s absolutely NOT healthy. It’s probably a billion calories. It looks disgusting. At the end of the day, however, it is one of the most popular food items in the entire country of Canada and has pretty much become the unofficial national food over the past 50+ years.

If you haven’t tried it yet, you NEED to at least once.

Kraft macaroni and cheese

Or as it’s called to us Canadians…KRAFT DINNER (which is what it shall be named for the remainder of this post).

Kraft Dinner

Oh where to begin on the awesomeness that is Kraft Dinner? How about a history lesson?

Classic Kraft Dinner packageWell…the first incarnation of this guilty pleasure delicacy was introduced back in 1937. Not a whole lot about it has changed since then as it’s still a dry macaroni pasta and powdered cheese mix. But there’s just something about this “mix” that makes it absolutely “must have comfort food” by legions of fans.

It initially took off in popularity because of World War II, as families considered it an easy and inexpensive meal for an entire family. Plus it had a shelf life of ten months, which was a huge benefit for those who didn’t own a refrigerator.

Kraft Cheesy PastaSo as time has gone on, children everywhere have continued to eat Kraft Dinner (also known as “KD” in Canada and “Cheesy Pasta” in the UK) as a “right of passage”. And it doesn’t stop with just kids, either. I remember (vividly) eating KD throughout my university years…not just out of want but a lot of times out of need, too.

Is KD timeless? Sure…but it’s done its best to keep up with a modern society looking for healthier choices.

Wait…is Kraft macaroni and cheese actually healthy? It is if you believe their packaging!

Kraft Dinner Smart

Omega stuff and fibre boosts and vegetables, too? It’s gotta be healthy!!

Kraft Organic Mac

Organic dry macaroni?  Sure…why not?

KD Smart

You gotta be kidding me…

Kraft Macaroni & Cheese SpongebobBut it’s not all just about the “healthiness” of this incredible edible item. It’s about the marketing, too. I don’t know about you, but I will buy ANY pasta that’s got a tie-in with Spongebob Squarepants. Or Pokemon. Or Scooby Doo. Or Fairly Odd Parents. Or Rugrats. Or the Flintstones. Or NHL teams. Or Bugs Bunny.

Well…I think you get my drift here. They do a LOT of children’s tie-ins.

Kraft Dinner AlfredoBut it’s not all just about the children’s tie-ins, either. Oh no, my friends…it’s the flavours and types of KD that are available that make it just that much more amazing. You’ve got the regular, the spirals (my personal favorite), the veggie pasta, the white cheddar, the hearty four cheese, the parmesan alfredo, and even the “tomato” style that resembles pouring ketchup all over your KD (a Canadian “gourmet” version).

If none of those float your boat, then you can try microwavable “instant” KD in a variety of flavours like alfredo, white cheddar, and “extreme pizza”.

Kraft Dinner Extreme Pizza

No…I’m not kidding.

KD FacebookWhile Kraft macaroni and cheese may not be quite the staple of a balanced diet like its Canadian counterpart, it’s still considered a heckuva popular comfort food. Don’t believe me? Try arguing with the over 1.2 million fans they have on Facebook. Of course, Canucks aren’t ones to ignore KD when they have the chance, with over 400,000 in the Great White North taking up the mantle of liking Kraft Dinner on Facebook, too.

There are Kraft Dinner recipe websites (both official and unofficial). There is a Kraft Dinner Wikipedia page. Burger King restaurants in Canada offer it on their children’s menu. You can use Kraft Dinner to analyze your relationship. You can watch (seemingly) endless Kraft Dinner commercials on YouTube.

At the end of the day, it’s a dry pasta and “cheese powder mix” that combine to make enough food to feed at least two people for about a dollar. That, in and of itself, should be all that’s required to make this a guilty pleasure.

Kraft Dinner products

Häagen-Dazs

Posted: November 15, 2010 in Food
Tags: , , ,

You know you love it.

Häagen-Dazs is the ultimate in ice-cream. From Bailey’s Irish Cream to Vanilla Fudge Brownie, Häagen-Dazs is widely considered to be the ultimate in self-indulgence (at least from an ice-cream perspective).

The company was established in the Bronx, New York back in 1961 with only three basic flavors (vanilla, chocolate, and strawberry) and has continued to grow exponentially into an international ice cream phenomenon. Häagen-Dazs produces not only ice cream, but ice cream bars, sorbet, and frozen yogurt.

The indulgence comes not only in the sense of OH MY GOD THIS IS SO F’ING GOOD, but also from the price. Let’s face it, Häagen-Dazs ain’t the cheapest ice cream in the world…and that only adds to the guilty pleasure of knowing you spent way too much on something oh so good.

If you haven’t indulged, then why not? It may be hard to justify the price tag on something so insignificant as ice cream…but you’ll find it’s worth it in the end.

The Baconator

Posted: September 27, 2010 in Food
Tags: , , ,

There aren’t too many hamburgers out there that have their own Wikipedia page, but the Baconator is definitely one of them.

Two all beef patties, two slices of American cheese, SIX (count ’em!!) slices of bacon, mayonnaise, and ketchup all in one gloriously unhealthy burger of mouthwatering goodness.

Introduced back in 2007, the Baconator has quickly won its way into the hearts of many a bacon-lover to become a staple of the Wendy’s menu. It almost lives and breathes on the notion of being unhealthy…like a moth to a flame.

Yes, it’s a heart-attack on a bun…but why would you want it any other way?