Let the chips fall

Mostly I eat disgustingly healthy stuff. No processed food, prepared foods or fast food. No candy, cakes, cookies, chocolate bars or soda. I don’t chew gum or eat ice cream. I make my own lunches to bring to work and spend time in the evening preparing a real supper.

And I’m okay with all that. I’m not a big fan of all that sugary, fake stuff. I do have one secret crap food weakness though, and that is potato chips.

Crunchy, salty, delicate orbs of oily potato goodness.


Who can resist?

That’s why I don’t keep them in the house; because I can’t resist. I hear them calling from the pantry cupboard. I can taste them; feel them crumble between my teeth; melt on my tongue. They don’t stay in the cupboard for long.

There are some there right now – left over from the teenagers junk food fest the other day. I haven’t been able to think of anything else, only chips. I can’t haven’t fully enjoyed any of the food I’ve eaten today because the chips are there, in the background, tantalizing my taste bud imagination. The chips seduce from behind the cupboard door, quietly, confidently. They know it’s only a matter of time.

I must stay away from the cupboard.

They’re Lay’s Classic. Shiny yellow, red and white bag. The King of Chips. Every one perfection. No brown rims of leftover peel. No green aliens. No overcooked freaks. Just the right amount of bubbly ones to make them special — a treat. No weird flavours or ripples. No pretense to healthiness.

I don’t care about kettle-cooked chips, baked chips, hardbite chips, Pringles – pretenders to the chip throne. I don’t want onion flavours or vinegar or ketchup, barbequed, ranch or chicken flavoured chips. Just plain salty potato-flavoured chips.

Remember when they made orange and grape flavoured chips? What were they thinking?

Other countries also have some interesting potato chip flavours I don’t care about:

  • Argentina has Steak with Onions and Sweet Peppers; Patagonia Lamb or Grilled Provolone Cheese.
  • New Zealand, I’m told, has Honey Soy Chicken, Mature Cheddar & Caramelized Onion, Roast Chicken, Sage & Onion and Smoked Salmon & Capers
  • The UK (who are pretty innovative when it comes to potatoes) boast the most flavours including:Black Olive & Garlic, Black Pepper & Ginger, Horseradish & Sour Cream, Marmite Yeast Extract, Pickled Onion and a long-time Coronation Street favorite – Prawn Cocktail.
  • The Japanese (and who knew they even had chips?) love Caesar Salad chips, Caramel Butter, Tofu in a Spicy Pork Sauce and Tandori Chicken flavoured.

I couldn’t find any comprehensive information on US favourites. I’m sure they’re interesting, though. Most American stuff is.

The top three best selling flavours in Canada are: Regular, Salt & Vinegar and Sour Cream & Onion. We’re plain, regular folk. We like our potato products with normal,  potato flavourings, apparently.

Plain, boring old salty potato crispiness….

Well…. I have to go…um…er… do something now….


36 responses to “Let the chips fall

  1. Ah I’m seeing XUP leaned up against the corner of the couch, a glazed look in her eyes and chip crumbs all over her shirt as the little XUP tries to get through to her and call 911 at the same time. Don’t go to sleep stay awake, you can walk it off. Wait a minute. The local grocery store is 24 hrs and I think they have Chiiips there too. Try to get better now I have to go.

  2. I remember when for some reason, Doritos made Taco Bell and Pizza Hut flavors. For all the hype, they still tasted like normal chips to me.

  3. HOLY CRAP. I think I might sell my soul for the ability to eat and eat and eat chips and have them never make me fat. I think that alone might be worth an eternity of lapping flames. Especially if those lapping flames helped cook me some BARBEQUED CHIPS. (Which aren’t may favorite – I’m an equal opportunity chipper – but seem the most logical where lots of fire is involved.)


  4. What? I’m sorry my brain stopped working after horseradish and sour cream. Horseradish and sour cream. And all these years I’ve said I didn’t want to go there because I wouldn’t like the food. Horseradish and sour cream. Mmmmmmmmm

  5. A bag of chips can hang out in my house without calling me too much, although those regular Lay’s are awfully good. It’s when there’s a container of Bison’s french onion chip dip around that all bets are off (probably a Buffalo thing, but it’s sold online). Interestingly enough, I wouldn’t touch the stuff when I was younger. Just as well.

  6. Bandobras – I’t okay. I always carry my own defibrillator just in case. And also I am very proud to say I resisted the siren call of Lay’s today. Tomorrow is another day.

    Chris – Eeewww

    CP – No eating allowed at the computer. House rules.

    Lesley – I know. They tried that once by cooking chips in that weird oil that slipped right through the digestive system without taking up residence in human fat cells, remember? But the oil took everything else with it as well when it went sliding through, so I guess it wasn’t too popular.

    Geewits – Ah, the UK has a love affair with horseradish. They put it on and in lots of stuff. I’ll bet if you check out one of those British shops they might sell you some horseradish and sour cream crisps.

    Becky – There’s something primal about salt and fat that few humans can resist.

  7. Coyote – I’m only using them as an easy-to-relate-to blog topic which has the potential to generate any number of comments about favourite and least favourite chip flavours, fattening food vices and soft bunnies.

  8. Oh I think you’re allowed the odd lapse in your healthy eating regime. I am a complete pig for crisps (chips- sorry chips are something else to me) with Marks and Spencer dip. I growl like a dog with distemper if anyone tries to dip theirs in.

    The UK flavours are getting ridiculous- at one point we had Hedgehog crisps (but I am yet to find out if any real hedgehogs were involved or it as just a gimmick)

  9. Prawn cocktail … now why isn’t that made more readily available here?

    Interestingly, my mouth is still stinging raw from scarfing down a bag of lightly seasoned with black pepper and lime chips. Would I do it again? In a flash.

  10. I just got a semi-clandestine delivery of Hawkins Cheezies from a friend who was going to Bellville on the weekend. These are the kings of the cheezie world. Hard and crunchy, with REAL cheddar cheese on them, not the fakey stuff on Cheetos. They are like sunshine in your mouth.

    The monopoly of the big brands means that they don’t get any shelf space in the grocery stores around here, showing up only as tiny bags in the Halloween haul each October. There were none this year.

    But, they’re made in Belleville, and I have a connection, er, friend who travels there to see family regularly. I am a happy woman.

    I understand your connection to your Lays. I’m not a snacky person either, but the Hawkins get me every time.

  11. Coyote – Thank you

    Nat – I think they have chocolate covered chips in the US – I saw some once on King of the Hill

    Dr. Monkey – Those baked chips always seem to have so much additional crap in them, I guess to give them extra flavour to make up for the lack of oil

    Loth – yes, dill pickle chips. I never said we didn’t have some strange flavours, just that they weren’t the national bestsellers

    MisssyM – I looked up Hedgehog chips. Here’s the dope: Hedgehog Flavoured Crisps : In the UK in 1981, Hedgehog Foods Ltd decided, as a joke, to produce Hedgehog flavoured crisps (potato chips). To everyone’s surprise, the crisps were a huge success. Hedgehog flavoured crisps were actually flavoured with pork fat and no hedgehogs were used in the manufacturing process. Consequently, it wasn’t long before Hedgehog Foods Ltd was in court (1982), up against the Office of Fair Trading, on a charge of false advertising.
    Bizarrely, a settlement was finally reached when Mr Lewis, of Hedgehog Foods, interviewed gypsies who actually did eat baked hedgehogs, to ascertain the flavour of hedgehogs. Mr Lewis then commissioned a flavourings firm to duplicate the flavour as closely as possible and changed the labels from “hedgehog flavoured” to “hedgehog flavour” and all interests were satisfied!

    A&J – Have you tried them or just imagining they’d be good? And if so, where did you have them?

    Violetsky – Maybe they did focus groups and people all went – ewwwww. I don’t like eating stuff that has long-term effects like that. Salt & Vinegar chips do the same thing and Sour Cream and Onion leave that weird slimy oniony residue in your mouth for days.

    Jazz – I resisted this time. It was getting late.

    Alison – Don’t they sell them at Costco? I remember people at work having bags of them and I thought they got them at Costco. I’ll have to check it out and get back to you.

  12. I do remember the fruit flavoured chips (yuck btw) Any time I would mention them though no one else remembered so I thought maybe I had just imagined them. But I recall buying a bag in the basement kiosk of the Chateau II apartments on Fisher Ave! (why do I remember things like that??)

  13. I’m a plain chips girl myself. I like chocolate and everything, but I can have a bit of the sweet stuff and call it a day…chips are irresistible. I have many, many long years of trick-or-treating chip booty to look forward too — guess I better keep those one-size-larger pair of pants!

  14. I don’t have a Costco membership, so I wouldn’t have seen them there. But good to know.

    Now I’m hungry for some hedgehog flavour chips.

  15. There is no way I could bring chips into the house. They would last maybe 10 minutes. I’m a crunch girl, a salt girl. I love me some chips. I’m not so much into the Doritos and things like that (yech!); I prefer good old-fashioned plain Lay’s or Lay’s Limon. Oh my holy hell, they rock. They’re salty with a little sweet.

    Excuse me…must run to the store in my office. Need chips. Stat!

  16. A guy at work brought in some organic chips from Costco last week. Very good — and I’m not a big chip fan.

    By the way, Shania Twain says one thing she likes about coming back to Canada is to get ketchup-flavoured chips. Some sources say it’s actually dill pickle chips that she prefers, but you get the point.

    My weakness is ice cream. If it’s in my freezer, it calls me until I do the humane thing and eat it.

    As for horseradish, I have a joke — not about horseradish, but about hollandaise:

    A guy was at the dentist for his checkup, and the dentist was astounded at the terrible condition of the guy’s teeth. He said, “Do you think hollandaise sauce could have something to do with it, Doc?”
    Doc: “What do you mean, hollandaise sauce?”
    Guy: “Well, I can’t get enough of it. I eat it with everything. I even eat it by the spoonful right out of the jar.”
    Doc: “Well, then I guess we’ll have to pull all your teeth and replace them with chrome plates (dentures)”
    Guy: “Why chrome plates?”
    Doc: “Haven’t you heard? There’s no plates like chrome for the hollandaise!”

    Bah-doom-boom! Thank you, you’ve been a great audience. I’m here ’til Thursday…

  17. Bonnie – Man, you’re old! Those fruit flavoured chips were back in the 60s weren’t they?

    Lynn – Ack – those Halloween chips are kind of bargain basement. If I’m going to indulge in junk, it has to be the very best junk money can buy. That motto also helps keep down my indulgences in junk

    Alison – Who knew hedgehogs tasted like pork? Everything else creepy tastes like chicken

    Dave – Not that I know of, but I see a niche market here for some enterprising person.

    Mo – Limon? What’s that? Is it chips with lemon/lime flavour? Because that does NOT sound tempting. At all. Very occasionally I do get a yen for Nacho Cheese Doritos.

    Guillermo – I tossed Argentina in there just for you. There’s a list on the internet of favourite chip flavours by country. So, that’s what they tell me is popular in Argentina.

    Bob – Gee. Believe it or not, I’ve heard that very ancient joke before. But thanks for sharing. And what do you mean, “not a big chip fan?” I don’t understand. How is this possible? I am confused and befuddled.

  18. No no. you’re X and UP. you’ve been using too much brain power avoiding the chips. Give in, give in, before it’s too late.

    Obviously with this topic you can’t just give in once.

  19. Potato chips are the universe’s gift to sad pathetic mortals. A taste of heaven.

    Oh, but none of that crap flavoring. Potato chips have three ingredients: potatos, oil, salt. Amen.

  20. What’s that old commercial: “Betcha can’t eat just one?”

    As I said, XUP, I’m more of an ice cream kind of guy, that’s all. It’s genetic. My Grandpa Beaulieu was also an ice cream aficionado, and passed along that gene to me, his favourite of all sixty-odd grandchildren.

    Back in my high school drinkin’ days, we would go to the local watering hole (the Capitol Tavern — sometime I’ll tell you about going there during my three spares on Friday afternoons, and be back at school in time for 3pm attendance), quaff back a few ales or pilseners, and eat Porky’s deep-fried pork rinds, and put mustard on ’em. Yumm.

  21. BBQ, sour cream & onion and salt & vinegar are all pretty popular here in the States. I have a horrible sweet tooth, but I must confess I do loves me some good old salty, greasy chips now and then. Mmmmm.

  22. True story:

    Once, at summer Jew camp, one of the kids opened a bag of Lays to find some soggy chips and a whole peeled potato. It was the weirdest thing. So instead of logging a regular complaint, the whole camp made a ten minute long video about the incident and even composed a song about the soggy chips and potato in a bag.

    I don’t know if we ever heard back from Lays.

  23. wow, i had no idea there were chips like that in the world. blah! i’m a slave to the crispy yellow chips too 😉 and i admire your commitment to not putting crap in your body, that’s very cool.

  24. Pingback: Dave Knows Canada

  25. the actual year I bought the fruit flavoured chips was, I believe, 1978. (the chips could have been sitting around in that store for 10-15 yrs though)
    But yes…I am old.

  26. Bandobras – I wait until the feeling passes. If it doesn’t then I give in.

    Ellie – Precisely. People wouldn’t put all that other weird crap on potatoes, so why do they want it on potato chips?

    Bob – I can’t wait for your memoirs. Pork rinds and ice cream genes. I think that should be the title, in fact.

    Kimberly – You mean you don’t have any really weird chip flavours?

    Stella – Ewww, that’s weird. Where they special kosher chips or something. Do you still have the video? Can you put it on your blog so we can all see it?

    DP – Thanks. It isn’t even something I have to think about really anymore.

    Bonnie – Old is good. Unless it’s chips. Old chips are not so good.