12:53pm

Mon August 19, 2013
The Salt

Sandwich Monday: PB&J Fries

Originally published on Mon August 19, 2013 2:55 pm

Canadians have given us so much, from the BlackBerry, a kind of phone your parents' older friends used to use, to Leslie Hope, the lady who played Kiefer Sutherland's wife in Season 1 of 24. But perhaps towering above all is poutine, which translated from the Quebecois is "stuff poured onto french fries." Usually it's some variation of cheese, meat and gravy, but I was told that in Portland, Ore. (naturally), at a food truck (naturally), you can get peanut butter and jelly on fries. So I went, naturally.

Mike, proprietor of the Potato Champion food truck, says a customer suggested the dish after tasting Satay fries, which have a Thai-style peanut sauce. So now Potato Champion offers PB&J fries, which is, well, a big mess of french fries with peanut sauce and "Chipotle raspberry" sauce dumped on top of it.

It is, to use a phrase, a hot mess. The peanut sauce and sweet raspberry sauce melt onto the fries, which are already pretty damp to begin with from the dripping fresh oil. You look at it with something combining confusion and fear: Are you supposed to eat this? How? It's as if somebody coated the Gordian knot with condiments.

I pulled at a french fry, and it came out of the mess with goop sticking to it. Yummy. Sweet, salty, peanutty and greasy. The one thing that was missing was any crunch; the fries were on the limp side, so the whole thing was rather damp, like it was stuck somewhere between being a solid and a liquid. You could eat it with fork, spoon or funnel.

I couldn't come near to finishing it; or rather, I probably could, but I knew finishing it would have the same deleterious effect on my future as, say, trying meth. Mike says he sells about 75 orders of PB&J fries a day. I wonder how many of them are sold either to drunk people or to people who immediately decide to go get drunk as soon as they're finished, because they know they have no future.

[The verdict: Delicious, because peanut butter, jelly, and french fries are delicious. But some things are better next to fries than on top of them.]

Sandwich Monday is a satirical feature from the humorists at Wait Wait ... Don't Tell Me.

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