Saturday, September 12, 2009

French Fry Diary 42: Sweet Patato Chips

My good friend Crystal and I share a love of things Asian and especially shopping in Asian food markets for new and interesting stuff. Recently (or not that recently, as you’ll see) she bought me something knowing of my love of all things potato – vacuum fried Sweet Patato Chips from Khoai Lang Say.

Now I’m not sure what exactly 'vacuum fried' actually means, but the little guy on the sealed foil bag sure looks happy, so how bad could they be? Well, I don’t know, and that’s the problem. As has been noted before here on French Fry Diary, I am a catastrophically picky eater, and sweet potatoes (spelled correctly or not) are not very high on the list – so I let them sit for a while.

Let’s not get into semantics and say how long 'a while' is, let’s just say I wasn’t worried as these things were in a sealed foil bag and apparently had no expiration date. Either I was wrong about their shelf life, or I was right about not liking them cuz I had quite a surprise when I opened the bag finally.

There were very much like what’s shown in the picture on the bag, giant orange potato sticks, similar to Andy Capp’s pseudo-Fries. I did not try one, because of the smell. The smell, the smell was, forgive me, but there’s just no other way to describe it – it smelled like ass. The chips/fries and bag were quickly disposed of.

Whether this was an object lesson in expiration dates or being a picky eater, I’m not sure, maybe both, but I really don’t see giving these things a second try any time soon. Sorry, Crystal, but thanks for thinking of me.

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1 comment:

Michael Dalena said...

Hey Glen! I just tries some Banh Phong Cua Dac Biet "Special Crab Chips" from a Viet Namese grocery in South Philly. Sure "crab chips", but they actually have crab in them. Made from Tapioca flour, crab, and mystery spices, they are little Pringles-like chips, but smaller, thicker, and hard as rocks. It seems they need to be cooked. Either the man in the pictures has really tiny hands or the chips in my box were much smaller then the examples, but I tried to cook them in oil as instructed: burned a few, failed to achieve the "brown yellow and swell" indicated. For no good reason, I put the still hard little jaw breakers in the microwave for 30 seconds. Not really expecting more than nuclear armageddon, I forgot about them. Later, when I went to use the microwave again, I found that, in very Red Dwarf fashion, the small plate of hard plastic poker chips had blown up into a huge bowl full of fluffy Crabby Poofs. Now very edible, the chips were refreshingly low in salt and only slightly tasting, and/or smelling of crab. Given the lack of sodium, I felt quite good about putting the chips to use doing the thing they were meant to do, act as a vessel for DIP and hummus. They tasted like potatoes and not at all like the Tapioca pudding with the little eyeballs that I had as a kid. I can imagine that a sealed bag of these fully realized seafood poofs might develop an ass bouquet in containment, but they go stale if left out.