Zhadi's Den

Random essays on wine, writing, moving to San Francisco, surfing, cats (exotic and otherwise) and zombies...depending on my mood.

Monday, February 20, 2006

Dietary Suicide

I was teasing one of my co-workers about his dietary habits; specifically lite beer and Snickers bars for dinner (you find out very interesting thing when you do people's expense reports, especially those itemized hotel bills). He not only defended this particular combination, but asked me if I'd ever tried a fried Mars bar. I thought he was having me on, but he told me to Google deep fried Mars bar and see for myself. The following is just one of the various articles I found on the subject. I can hear arteries hardening in Scotland even as I type this...

Deep-Fried Mars Bars Myth No More
LONDON, Dec. 17, 2004
(AP) Like the Loch Ness monster, the deep-fried Mars bar has often been regarded as a Scottish myth. But a study published Friday in a medical journal confirms that Scots consume thousands of the battered bars each week, and that more than a fifth of fish and chip shops — which specialize in deep-fried food — sell the strange sugary delicacy. The study was conducted by Dr. David Morrison, a consultant in public health medicine in Glasgow, and Dr. Mark Petticrew, associate director of Glasgow's Medical Research Council Social and Public Health Sciences Unit. They decided to investigate after the treat was mentioned by television host Jay Leno on NBC's "Tonight Show." "We live in Scotland but we'd never actually seen deep-fried Mars bars for sale," said Morrison. "We thought they might be fictitious. But the Scottish diet is a major health issue and it's important to know what the facts are. We can now confirm that there is no doubt — the deep-fried Mars bar is not just an urban myth." At more than 400 calories per bar, the snack isn't health food. But then, Scotland isn't noted for healthy lifestyles. Parts of Scotland have the highest incidence of heart disease, cancer and strokes and the lowest life expectancy in the developed world. Morrison and Petticrew, whose report appears in this week's issue of The Lancet medical journal, called nearly 500 chip shops across Scotland to inquire whether they sold the bars and discovered that 22 percent are proud to offer them, and another 17 percent have done so in the past. One shop reported selling up to 200 a week. Children are the main consumers and some shops reported being asked to deep-fry other candy bars, including Snickers and Cadbury's Creme Eggs. Reports of the deep-fried Mars bar emerged in 1995, when a chip shop in the northeastern Scottish fishing town of Stonehaven said it was selling the delicacy. News reports said the bar was the result of a bet between the shop's owner and his portly best friend. The original shop, The Haven, is now the Carron Fish and Chip Bar, run by Calum Richardson. "They are not my cup of tea but some weeks we sell as many as 300," he said. "I suppose people like them because they are different. At first it was a novelty but not any more." The Carron charges $1.35 for a deep-fried Mars bar. Or for $3.29 you can have the supper: deep-fried Mars bar with French fries. "

12 Comments:

  • At 3:16 PM, Blogger ardlair said…

    At least we deep fry them in vegetable oil.

    I understand the SF version is done in duck fat.

    Maybe I'll get to try that some day.
    If I live that long.

    Yours

    Hard Artery
    Edinburgh
    Scotland

     
  • At 8:00 PM, Blogger zhadi said…

    I've found many culinary suprises in San Francisco, but deep fried Mars bars haven't been among 'em yet. Deep fried chocolate TOFu maybe...

     
  • At 7:03 AM, Blogger ardlair said…

    Lovely with a nice sauternes like chateau climens 1994

     
  • At 8:54 AM, Blogger Peter said…

    You can get deep-fried snickers bars at the Del Mar fair.

    In Glasgow, my friends took me to a chip shop, where we had deep-fried blood sausage and deep-fried haggis. Then again, you can also get vegetarian haggis at the grocery store.

     
  • At 9:22 AM, Blogger zhadi said…

    Deep fried blood sausage (that's black pudding, right?) I can understand. I'm semi addicted to black and white pudding since I started dating an Irishman. But deep frying a Snickers...that's SO guilding the lily...

    On the other hand, if someone gives me a wine and food combination recommendation, I feel the need to try it...

     
  • At 9:23 AM, Blogger zhadi said…

    You're not getting me to eat haggis, Irish boy...

     
  • At 9:23 AM, Blogger Dave Fitzgerald said…

    The scary thing is that they deep fry them in the same batter as the fish! They were doing this back in the early 90's, so it's older than the reporter realizes. Scotland has a bad rep for food - largely deserved IMHO, but they also have some awesome food: Black and White pudding, Haggis, and those Scottish meat pies that are so good. Can't wait til Robbie Burns night at the Edinburgh Castle here in San Francisco...Mmmm....Haggis...

     
  • At 10:30 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Just the tought of deep-fried anything hurts my aging plumbing, but deep-frying a Snickers bar is a sin against chocolate--and nuts--and caramel----

     
  • At 11:52 AM, Blogger ardlair said…

    Haggis is not a difficult food to match alcohol with

    I recommend either

    a) a big up front shiraz preferably australian

    b) a single malt; preferably from Islay such as Lagavulin

    Be brave, you only live once.

    If you've ever been to a Vietnames restaurant you'll have already eaten more crap than there is in a haggis.

     
  • At 12:54 PM, Blogger ardlair said…

    Have a look at

    www.angelfire.com/bc/ joeysonly/images/marsbig.JPG

    looks like a deep fried shit to me

    now that would be a real challenge to match a drink to.

     
  • At 2:56 PM, Blogger zhadi said…

    With enough Laphroig, I suppose haggis wouldn't seem too awful. I do love Laphroig...I don't think I've tried Lagavulin, but I love those Islay single malts.

     
  • At 7:32 AM, Blogger Peter said…

    Haggis is a fairly inoffensive food in terms of taste, especially when it's homemade. I once had something called "haggis" at a highland games in Oakland, CA and it was vile, like warmed over liverwurst. But a real one--"O what a glorious sight, warm-reekin, rich!"*

    *Burns, obviously

     

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