In CHUBBY BOUNTY HUNTER 033, it’s the launch of a new segment called “Chubby Wolf & Cub” whereby Eton Zootine joins me for food adventures. In this episode, it’s Eton’s choice, one of his personal favourite snack items, Hostess Hickory Sticks. For me it’s a nostalgic trip aboard this crunchy treat, with smoky hickory flavour and tangy seasoning upon potato chips in matchstick form. Now produced by Lay’s Canada, it’s the only snack left with the old Hostess name on the bag; a certain throwback to the heyday when “nothing else will do”. Luckily, Eton leads a new generation into the snacking fray with these addictive little morsels.
In CHUBBY BOUNTY HUNTER 032, it’s a snack break with Mistercee as we dig into a bag of Uncle Ray’s Cheese Puffers. Essentially, a cheesie, the puffers are pleasantly crisp with a cheese coating that does not overwhelm. I could snack on these any day without thinking. Great for all you cheesie lovers. And the bonus is that every Uncle Ray’s snack food comes with another chapter from his autobiography on the back of the bag. Enjoy the snacking and the storytelling alike.
In CHUBBY BOUNTY HUNTER 031, I’m at another grocery store hot table for lunch in the van with Mistercee. Zito’s Marketplace on Toronto’s Marlee strip is as authentic Italian as you can get in Toronto. The shelves are chalk full of house-made products and that goes for the takeout items as well. Today, I go with the server’s suggestion of lasagna with a generous side of veggies. The pasta is perfectly cooked and the meat gravy is simple and tangy with nice dimension and depth. The side veggies – a mix of green and yellow beans, carrots, and a choy-style leaf – are sauteed gently in garlic, herbs, and oil to make for tasty times. All in all, I felt like I was having dinner at Mistercee’s Nonna’s home and Mistercee agreed.
In CHUBBY BOUNTY HUNTER 030, it’s another snack-sized installment as I gobble up a Big Turk candy bar. The chocolate-covered Turkish delight is a classic Canadian treat from the fine folks at Nestle. It is a polarizing food with most people I know deriding the Big Turk as one of those sweets that NOBODY likes. But here I am and the chocolate and gelatin combo is my favourite of all the bars as well as being my ticket to the afterlife.
In CHUBBY BOUNTY HUNTER 028, Mistercee and I sample a large Chicago Deep Dish pizza from Da Venezia, a relative new-comer in the Toronto pizza scene. Tasty to start but doughy to finish, our experience is middling as the pie is actually a bread pizza and far from it’s “Chicago Deep Dish” claim. Still, we were sated, and the Brio was good.
In CHUBBY BOUNTY HUNTER 027, I take on Swiss Chalet’s rotisserie beef kaiser. The sandwich is part of the Canadian classic chain’s newer foray into slow-cooked beef. And yes, it holds up and continues the Chalet’s solid offerings. Paired with the iconic restaurant’s fries, topped with the beef’s au jus, it makes for a delicious, albeit overpriced, lunch.
In CHUBBY BOUNTY HUNTER 026, I sample McDonalds new holiday offerings. The rosti bacon burger is in need of some extra saucy zing with the rosti merely a repurposed hash brown. The burger patty disappears in the flavour profile, dominated by the meaty, smoky bacon and bright raw onion. The waffle fries are a nice and simple addition, eclipsing by far the much-touted McDonalds staple side. As always, I applaud the use of proper poutine sauce and curds on their poutine. In all, the meal was pretty much an expected variation on the fast food giant’s fare — decent but unspectacular.