Pot Noodle for starters and for dessert…

Findus crispy pancakes. Do these things still exist, and if so, what shops sell them? Clearly the world’s most earnest review site believes so.

Not that I’d want to eat them now. But I remember my Gran serving these as a treat when I went round to hers on Saturday afternoon. Two of them to be precise, often with a tinned frankfurter either side. And, that addition no meal could do without, the rapturous mushy pea(s).

Given that it was, essentially, a pie but in pancake form, you’d have thought this product would have lasted forever. Not only was it frozen, and thereby accessible at any time, but also had a touch of exotic in the name. All they had to do for the new Millennium was to re-brand them as Findus Crispy Crepes and introduce salsa, Tex Mex and BBQ steak flavours and they’d have been laughing all the way to the boulangerie. Chic and ready for New Man.

Not now. Had Granmother served up the dish now she’d have been arrested for child cruelty while her erstwhile grandson dispatched to Fat Camp to shed that extra pound around his stomach.

However, at least they’re GM free. So while the excess salt levels slowly killed him, at least the child could die in the knowledge he’d expired in an ethically and environmentally sound manner.


3 Responses to “Pot Noodle for starters and for dessert…”

  1. 1 Charissa January 22, 2007 at 12:02 pm

    If we’re going to question the extinction of old-school delicacies, I would like to bring our attention back to Smiths Salt ‘n’ Shake crisps, which you mentioned in your previous post.

    Although they are in fact still around, they’re very easily forgotten about and are probably on the verge of extinction. I can’t say I’m surprised; they were possibly the dullest, blandest snack I ever had the displeasure of finding in my lunchbox. After the ‘novelty’ of shaking the bag around violently, there was always that massive anticlimax of finding most of the salt piled onto one or two heart attack-inducing crisps, while the rest stayed as tasty as cardboard. This whole experience was, of course, reliant upon you being lucky enough to have one of the bags they’d remembered to put the salt in.

    Now that I’m a bit older, however, and living in a world of panics, fat kids and Jamie Oliver, I feel a bit sorry for Salt ‘n’ Shake. For some strange reason, their big selling point was never how (potentially) healthy they could be; they never really told us that they gave children the option of limiting their salt intake. And even though in reality this wouldn’t happen anyway (I remember a classmate pouring one of the two sachets she’d found in her packet directly onto her tongue), I’m rather surprised that their ‘look at us, aren’t we healthy’ comeback never happened.

    Then again, should they try it, there would inevitably be a downside. Just as Findus Crispy Pancakes could discover a whole world of new flavours (a la pot noodle) and reinvent themselves, there would come a time when Salt ‘n’ Shake would have to bring out sachets of cheese & onion, salt & vinegar, and perhaps a ‘posh’ range featuring the likes of succulent turkey with cranberry. By which time, their sole quality of having optional salt would just not work in the same way with sachets of preservatives and e-numbers and shite like that.

    And so it’s just obvious that, sooner rather than later, Salt ‘n’ Shake will take the pancake route and just wither and die, and that fantasy will never happen. Crap though they were, I do think it’s a rather big shame.

    I really never knew I could write so much about crisps.

    Good to have you back, Gary đŸ˜‰

  2. 2 Linda January 26, 2007 at 3:26 pm

    I loved the crispy bacon ones and could probably tell you how many calories were in each type – which shows how long I have been “dieting, sadly. Have French Bread Pizzas gone the same way?

  3. 3 garyandrews January 26, 2007 at 4:00 pm

    Charissa: I always used to find Salt and Shake terribly exciting. I’d finish school each day, and if I’d been good my mother would walk to the village Spar (which also doubled up as the local butchers) and while she’d buy some bacon, ham, tounge or belly for the evening meal I’d also get a bag of Salt n Shake. I remember the excitement and antipication of ripping open the blue sachet, giving the bag a good shake then the anticlimax as the salt all landed at the bottom. I still asked for them every time as I wasn’t allowed everlasting gobstoppers (which latest all of 5 minutes), strawberry bootlaces or hundred and thousands.

    This Spar also sold home cooked fruit pies by the shop owners. They were delcious. So much so that for a period my mother stopped baking pies all together and we brought them from the Spar. They were that good.

    Of course today they’d be cooked in Basingstoke, sent to Dundee to be tripled packed, then sent out to the Westcountry with ‘Nana Pie’ branding all over them, of which you could bring a claim under flase advertising as they were clearly put together on a production line by migrant workers.

    Not that the village Spar would take them. That’s gone too, shut because the butchers bit didn’t conform to health and safety regulations and it would have cost the couple who ran it too much to refit, so they shut.

    We now have a Happy Shopper-cum-Post Office. That’s probably going to shut as well.

    Linda: One of my old flatmates at university used to eat French bread pizzas, but that was over five years ago now, so they may have also become a victim of entropy.

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Yes, this is my name. And my email. Use it wisely or you're not getting a biscuit with your tea: garyllewellynandrews [at] gmail [dot] com

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