Wednesday, February 08, 2006

Hot Pocket Virgin No More

The Croissant Pocket

A few weeks ago, or maybe it was a couple of months ago, some friends and I were chatting and the subject of Hot Pockets came up. They discussed the ones they liked and the ones they hated, and when it came to me, I came up short.

I've never eaten a Hot Pocket in my entire life.

They looked at me like I was Brother From Another Planet. How could the modern 21st Century Man exist in the world without eating a Hot Pocket? Didn't I watch Robotech, Star Wars and Ferris Bueller? I wasn't living under a rock. I wasn't a refugee from some Third World nation, I was an American dammit and how come I never had a Hot Pocket before???

I just never did.

I mean, I've seen the tv commercial hundreds of times but nothing about it appealed to me. While I'll sit down with a plate of McDonald's french fries on any fourth hour, the notion of eating frozen processed foods just isn't appealing to me. Maybe I had one too many bad experiences with Hungry Man tv dinners when I was younger or the nightmares of Swanson Salisbury Steak, but I just didn't have it in me.

Fast forward to Monday.

It's early Monday morning and I'm searching through the local Super Fresh trying to figure out what I want to eat this week at the shop. George Foreman and his Grill are waiting and I'm trying to find something more creative than sausages. I failed. So, in addition to the milk, croissants and hot bar breakfast (eat THAT Wegman's), I spied the frozen food section and noticed the Croissant Pockets in Philly Cheese Steak stuffing. I decide that I'm going to try that for lunch this week and rid myself of the stigma of being the last of my generation to eat a Hot Pocket.

It's now Wednesday evening and I've just finished the last (there were only two) of the Croissant Pockets.

Unfortunately, I feel ill.

That same ill feeling you get whenever you eat heavily processed foods. Maybe it's too much sodium or too much preservatives, but it's never very satisfying or fulfilling. I'd much rather have gone to Hooter's and gorged on Mild Wings.

The meal wasn't horrid. I shared it with some Snyder's of Hanover pretzels and washed it all down with a Coke. I decided to go the slow route by sticking it in the toaster over and baking it at 350 degrees F for 30 minutes. The bread came out nicely brown, crusty/crunchy and flaky like a good croissant should when heated in a toaster oven. But that's all it is - mostly bread. The meat and cheese part is a disappointment. Light on both and just not very tasty at all. If I'm poisoned by sodium and preservatives, it was in the meat and cheese.

Time for a serious meal at Hooter's.