TNB Night Owl – Snack Cakes

Hostess Twinkies. Photo by Evan-Amos.

It’s time for a break from the oddity, and a nod to our youth.  Or maybe it’s just the whole “wedding” story from last night, because one of the food items available at my Dallas-area wedding was Tastykake pies, flown in from Pennsylvania.

Not the large, thickly glazed pies that are available throughout half of the country, but the smaller rectangular pies available only within a few states’ drive.  The Tasty Klair, the French Apple with its band of frosting and raisins with the apples, the Blueberry.

Or it could be that I mentioned a chocodile to someone today and received a questioning response.  Just because I remember something doesn’t mean everyone does, apparently.  Although, really, how could I be expected to forget this irritating commercial?

“Hey, Al… we dropped some Twinkies into the chocolate.  What do we do with them?”  “Just ask marketing to put together the dumbest commercial they can think of, something that tells kids that they won’t want to eat this thing enough to scarf it down.”  “But they’re Twinkies and chocolate, kids will like them.”  “You asked me what to do, I told you.  Go see marketing.”

Then there were Drake’s Cakes.  Another in the regional favorites, they produced some of the best packaged coffee cakes around, with a thick crumb on top.  Kids who weren’t old enough to really drink coffee ate them.  But they weren’t the king of the Drake’s Cakes line, nor were their ubiquitous Devil Dogs.  No, what earned Drake’s Cakes the most attention were their Funny Bones.  

Devil’s food cakes with a chocolate robe and a center of peanut butter cream, Funny Bones were an indulgent sugar bomb which matched only Jolt Cola for the chosen food of 1980s computer programmers.  They even found their way into an Infocom game (The Lurking Horror) as a usable item.

There are also a multitude of snack cakes from Bimbo, which recreate Mexican snack cakes for America.  They’re comparatively new on the scene in the Northern states, but they’ve been available in some of the Southwest states for decades.  And before anyone wonders about a Mexican company making American snack cakes, it’s worth noting other brands which are owned and produced by Bimbo… specifically including Thomas’ English Muffins, Sara Lee, Mrs. Baird’s (Texas), Beefsteak Bread (NY) and the deservedly beloved Entenmann’s.

Regional or not, there are some tasty baked goods available on the shelves of convenience stores and gas stations throughout the country.

Question of the night: What was/is your favorite snack cake?

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About AlienMotives 1991 Articles
Ex-Navy Reactor Operator turned bookseller. Father of an amazing girl and husband to an amazing wife. Tired of willful political blindness, but never tired of politics. Hopeful for the future.