May 2011

Yogurt-Covered Pretzels

The "sweet/salty" blend is experiencing a huge revival these days. But certain sweet/salty snacks have been popular for ages. I submit for your consideration: the humble yogurt-covered pretzel.

I struggle with how to explain these to someone who has never heard of them. They are pretzels covered with a sweet coating, much like frosting, but we call it "yogurt," even though it isn't really yogurt. It contains some yogurt, to be sure. Typically the coating will include some "powdered non-fat yogurt solids" or some such nod to healthiness.

Caramels: Sticky, Annoying, Delicious!

So many things are annoying about caramels:

1. Unwrapping them is a real chore. I figure this is for the best when you're eating them one by one. It slows you down, the way that picking apart a sunflower seed or a pistachio nut does. It's the same reason why dieting programs encourage you to eat whole unshelled peanuts.

But those dieting programs don't have to vacuum up all the peanut dust off your floor. Nor do they have to dispose of a huge pile of sticky plastic wrappers. Both activities are equally annoying, if you ask me.

Parade Cotton Candy

I had to stop in at Rite Aid today to pick up another month's supply of allergy medicine. They put the Claritin in the farthest corner of the store - I'm pretty sure on purpose. It forces you to walk past all of the sale bins and impulse racks. And that is how I came home with a big plastic tub full of cotton candy. It was only a dollar! I mean, come on. How can you resist a deal like that?

I literally cannot remember the last time I ate cotton candy. It must have been at least twenty years ago. (I am old.) It may have been while visiting the Seattle waterfront with my grandmother when I was a little kid, 8 or 10 years old, which would have been in the early 1980s. At any rate, it's been long enough that it's impossible for me to compare this with "real" cotton candy.

Sweet Treats for Your Inner Child

Let’s be honest, being an adult isn’t fun sometimes.  Calorie counts, watching your sugar and getting cavities filled, paying bills.  But every now and then we need a little break and to check in with our inner child.  A sweet snack can bring back those happier times of swing sets, sprinklers, and a summer sugary snack.  Here are some of my favorite recent discoveries for yummy desserts that are simple and sweet.

Giant Gummy Bear

Nature's Path Organic Frosted Toaster Pastries: Brown Sugar Maple Cinnamon

Just looking at that title makes me contemplate one arena in which mass market processed foods are kicking the butts of the organic/healthy competition: product names. Compare that name to, say, "Pop-Tarts." It's short, it's snappy, and kids can remember it. Which is important, because kids are the ones driving the purchase of Pop-Tarts.

Everything about Nature's Path Organic Frosted Toaster Pastries screams, "My parent bought these." For one thing, they were on a relatively high shelf, at eye level for an adult. The box features a photograph of fall leaves, which is surely an abstract connection to "brown sugar maple cinnamon" that an adult is more likely to make than a kid. Kids like cartoon characters, and there aren't any.