Monday, February 21, 2011

Foods that snuck over the border, eh!

Swiss Chalet Rotisserie chicken, those fries and that famous dipping sauce! Unfortunately the last of the US restaurants (2 remained in Buffalo as of last year) closed their doors for good, leaving the closest ones over the border. The good news is you can buy packets of sauce mix; the bad news is that you can’t duplicate their chicken. “Swiss Chalet, Okay!”

Tim Horton's Founded by hockey player Tim Horton, this donut and coffee chain knocks the socks off Dunkin Donuts any day! Our favorite, the elusive Canadian Maple, seems to only be available in Canadian stores. In the US we settle for the Maple Dip (same frosting, except just a hole in the middle rather than cream filling). As they continue expanding further into the US interior, I say “Bring on the TimBit!”

Smarties Not the sugary tablets rolled in a clear plastic wrapper. (See “Fizzers” below) These Smarties are candy-coated chocolate akin to M&Ms yet unique in their own right. Sold in tubes or boxes, and popular in Europe as well, Smarties come in an array of pastel colors. I swear that each candy shell tastes slightly different based on its color, but Don doesn’t. Guess you’ll have to experiment to find out.

Fizzers These were the Canadian version of our Smarties. Why didn’t they call them Smarties? Well, see the above description of Smarties. Fizzers looked just like the US Smarties and if you took them both out of their wrappers, you’d be hard pressed to find a visual difference. Pop them in your mouth, however, and you’d find out why they were called Fizzers!

Aero Bar Take a creamy milk chocolate bar and add air bubbles. Behold the Aero Bar. Its beauty is in its simplicity. These candy bars were lost for quite some time, but they have staged a comeback and I have seen them available in the US!

Hostess and Humpty Dumpty Chips Known for odd flavors, Hostess and Humpty Dumpty were the original pioneers of creatively flavored snack chips. Canadians LOVE their ketchup, so it stands to reason that chips would be flavored with their beloved condiment. For some reason dill pickle was always a popular chip flavor as well.

Kraft Dinner In the US we call this Kraft Macaroni & Cheese. The stuff in the blue box. In Canada, they are passionate about their Kraft Dinner. Same food, though north of the border it’s most likely enjoyed with- you guessed it- ketchup. All the fanciest Dijon ketchups…

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