Jump to content
  • Welcome to the eG Forums, a service of the eGullet Society for Culinary Arts & Letters. The Society is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit organization dedicated to the advancement of the culinary arts. These advertising-free forums are provided free of charge through donations from Society members. Anyone may read the forums, but to post you must create a free account.

Mass-Produced Rarities


Recommended Posts

I miss Grandma Brown's Beans, which we ate while growing up in Western New York - I've never seen them in the Midwest.

I'll have to see if they have a web site.

This is actually a variation on the original topic, one that has been raised in other posts: products that are common in a given region and unknown elsewhere.

One of the items I mentioned at the start is a good example of this--Campbell's Pepper Pot Soup.

Campbell's soups are found on almost every pantry shelf in America. It's one of the best-known and oldest national food brands. (By way of contrast, I doubt many of you have heard of Bookbinder's soups. These are produced by a company somewhere in Wisconsin, I believe, for the owners of the historic Philadelphia tourist trap/seafood restaurant, and are all but impossible to find outside the Mid-Atlantic region.)

But pepper pot soup is a decidedly local specialty, specific to Philadelphia and environs. Campbell Soup Company probably gets enough demand for canned pepper pot soup in the Mid-Atlantic states to justify their producing it, but it would make no sense for them to distribute it through their normal supermarket channels elsewhere, as most other Americans have no idea what it is.

Those who do know what it is, but are not fortunate enough to live near Philadelphia, may now take advantage of retailers like the Vermont Country Store to satisfy their cravings.

Sandy Smith, Exile on Oxford Circle, Philadelphia

"95% of success in life is showing up." --Woody Allen

My foodblogs: 1 | 2 | 3

Link to post
Share on other sites
Taylor Ham. 

I never knew it was a local/regional thing until I moved from NJ to St. Louis.  I tried ordering it in a diner in St. Louis shortly after I arrived and the waitress looked at my like I had a third head.

Getting most of my breakfast sandwiches out of a literal hole in the side of a building in Elizabeth, NJ there is no shortage of Taylor Ham in my life. Isnt it called pork roll outside of The Jerz..

Link to post
Share on other sites

Grandma Brown's Beans! I haven't eaten those since I was a kid visiting my mother's family in central NY. They were terrific.

What about Quisp cereal? I understand it can still be had -- for a price.

I miss Grandma Brown's Beans, which we ate while growing up in Western New York - I've never seen them in the Midwest.

I'll have to see if they have a web site.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Flaky Flix! I loved those as a kid, too. But I think that Mother's has stopped making them. Next time I'm at the giant megasupermarket (where I only go when I can't get something at Trader Joe's), I'll have to take a look.

"I just hate health food"--Julia Child

Jennifer Garner

buttercream pastries

Link to post
Share on other sites
Grandma Brown's Beans!  I haven't eaten those since I was a kid visiting my mother's family in central NY.  They were terrific. 

What about Quisp cereal?  I understand it can still be had -- for a price.

I miss Grandma Brown's Beans, which we ate while growing up in Western New York - I've never seen them in the Midwest.

I'll have to see if they have a web site.

Quisp is a funny thing around here... you can't find it in our big chain markets, but there is a closeout type place (Marc's) that has it once in a blue moon. It's gotta still be made somewhere. I hope it's still being made somewhere... otherwise I've eaten some really old cereal!!

Link to post
Share on other sites

The Nabisco guy at the grocery said the other day that they don't stock Stoned Wheat Thins in my zip code. So, some companies at least must be doing some sort of research on what will sell. Of course, they ignore me.

But, I can get those marshmallow chocolate cookies year round. And B & M beans. Can't get Go Go Clusters except very occasionally, and they are usually stale, so somewhat disappointing.

Susan Fahning aka "snowangel"
Link to post
Share on other sites
My fiancé went to a conference where they brought Tastykake products to San Antonio...they were advertising Philadelphia as a location and you can't get those goodies down in the Lonestar State.

From what I understand, it was mass produced baked good mayhem!!!   :biggrin:

Simple! That's because...

<jingle>

"Nobody bakes a cake as tasty as a Tastykake."

</jingle>

I don't think they taste the way the used to - ever since they were bought out by Phillips Chemical Co. :shock:

"Half of cooking is thinking about cooking." ---Michael Roberts

Link to post
Share on other sites
Taylor Ham. 

I never knew it was a local/regional thing until I moved from NJ to St. Louis.  I tried ordering it in a diner in St. Louis shortly after I arrived and the waitress looked at my like I had a third head.

Getting most of my breakfast sandwiches out of a literal hole in the side of a building in Elizabeth, NJ there is no shortage of Taylor Ham in my life. Isnt it called pork roll outside of The Jerz..

I have searched far and wide and have come up with nothing. While I was still in school in St. Louis my parents would ship it to me packed in dry ice.

Now I'm up in Chicago and it is still nowhere to be found. It's hard to even describe to someone who has never had it.

-Josh

Now blogging at http://jesteinf.wordpress.com/

Link to post
Share on other sites
Taylor Ham. 

I never knew it was a local/regional thing until I moved from NJ to St. Louis.  I tried ordering it in a diner in St. Louis shortly after I arrived and the waitress looked at my like I had a third head.

Getting most of my breakfast sandwiches out of a literal hole in the side of a building in Elizabeth, NJ there is no shortage of Taylor Ham in my life. Isnt it called pork roll outside of The Jerz..

It sure is known as "Taylor Pork Roll" on the west bank of the Delaware. ISTR it's made in Trenton--one of a few items left that "Trenton Makes, The World Takes." (Okay, not much of the world in this case.)

As for its taste: About the closest analogue I can think of, both in composition and taste, is Spam. But the texture of Taylor Pork Roll is different from that of Spam, and it has a heartier flavor to boot--imagine what pork sausage might taste like if it were made of ham rather than other parts of the pig.

Sandy Smith, Exile on Oxford Circle, Philadelphia

"95% of success in life is showing up." --Woody Allen

My foodblogs: 1 | 2 | 3

Link to post
Share on other sites

Maybe this one should be cross-pointed on the trashy comfort foods thread --

Fried Spam + slice o' Velveeta + toasted English muffin.

Pure sodium and cholestrol infusion.

I have never had Spam.  It's not really a snob thing... I don't come from snob stock.  Mom couldn't get past the jelly and I guess that got passed on.  Hubby says that it's "salty and delicious".

Link to post
Share on other sites

Well, since we're cross-pollinating topics here, I might as well add another of my childhood faves to this list, since it falls into my second category (products that are common in one part of the country and unheard of anywhere else):

Brooks Rich & Tangy Ketchup, which I mentioned on the Mrs. Dash thread.

Magazine ads for this product touted it as "The ketchup for cooks, from Brooks. To be used in foods as well as on them." It's a great ingredient for any chili recipe. Growing up as I did in the Midwest, I'm familiar with the product, as it is widely distributed throughout the central United States. I don't think anyone on the East Coast has ever heard of it.

In looking this item up, I found an interesting discrepancy, though.

Hometown Favorites' Web site carries it in two sizes, 28 and 40 ounces. The 40-ounce bottle is a very reasonable $3.49.

You can also get Brooks Ketchup from Hometown Favorites through Amazon.com.

Take a look at how much Amazon's charging for the same 40-ounce bottle.

I don't think that all the difference is due to incorporating shipping costs, for Amazon has those too.

Edited by MarketStEl (log)

Sandy Smith, Exile on Oxford Circle, Philadelphia

"95% of success in life is showing up." --Woody Allen

My foodblogs: 1 | 2 | 3

Link to post
Share on other sites
12/ 24 0z bottles....?

Oops--missed that detail. :wacko:

12 28-ounce bottles. The price isn't all that outlandish, then.

But you can get it in less than case lots from Hometown Favorites directly.

Sandy Smith, Exile on Oxford Circle, Philadelphia

"95% of success in life is showing up." --Woody Allen

My foodblogs: 1 | 2 | 3

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 2 weeks later...

Over in the casseroles thread I reported on a casserole I used to make with Campbell's Cream of Poblano soup. Years ago you could find it all the time, well at least around here. Then it went away. Then, a few months ago it came back. Now it is gone again. I checked the Campbell's web site and no luck. I tried to e-mail them through their "contact us" link but got an error message. I will try again. I am thinking that it may be a seasonal and/or regional thing.

This is great stuff to have around. From time to time, the poblanos that we get in the market don't have any flavor. This is a great back up for casseroles and such.

Linda LaRose aka "fifi"

"Having spent most of my life searching for truth in the excitement of science, I am now in search of the perfectly seared foie gras without any sweet glop." Linda LaRose

Link to post
Share on other sites
I have found stuff, that I thought wasn't being made anymore, at Hometown Favorites.

Interesting site, Bigbear.

I cannot find my fave mustard, Mister Mustard (or it's relative, Sweet Hot Mister Mustard) anywhere in the Washington DC area. I always buy a couple of jars whenever we go to Charlotte NC because I can reliably find it at Harris Teeter.

My mother uses Campbell's Cream of Shrimp for a seafood casserole that she and my sister love and I think is vile. It was the one food that I absolutely refused to eat as a child. The stores here quit carrying it years ago, thank goodness, but when she moved to Charlotte she was excited to see it's still on the shelves there. Gah.

Heather Johnson

In Good Thyme

Link to post
Share on other sites
Paging through another discussion on this forum ("Slummin' it!"), I ran across a post that mentioned a product sold at The Vermont Country Store -- My-T-Fine pudding mix.

For years, our trips down to Florida to visit my aunt in Jacksonville, included a supply of MyTFine pudding. She ran a cake decorating business and loved that mix for her fillings. Of course nowadays, she can order it in bulk, but I was always wondering when we'd get held up in airport security for pudding smuggling. :huh:

"Give me 8 hours, 3 people, wine, conversation and natural ingredients and I'll give you one of the best nights in your life. Outside of this forum - there would be no takers."- Wine_Dad, egullet.org

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 2 weeks later...
  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×
×
  • Create New...