Wednesday, August 18, 2010

The Heavy Vending Machine: Not So Diggity

If fools rush in, then I essentially take it a step further by rushing in, dropping my pants, closing my eyes, and waving my privates toward anything that sounds remotely animal-like or metallic. Or in this case, anything that smells of marginally food-grade beef or beef-like substitute. Such was the case when I purchased a Hot Diggity Italian Beef Charbroil from our break room vending machine. The Hot Diggity line (yes, it is a product line) is grown in a dampened plastic Igloo brand cooler behind a radiator by Pierre Foods, whose logo is a surprised chef who lost an eye in a spattering hot grease incident.

Given past reviews of microwave sandwiches here, it almost goes without saying that a mere 45 seconds of radiation caused the curiously phallic bread to turn into a porous vinyl seat cover purchased out of a JC Whitney catalog. I could have just as well wrapped the greasy compressed meat slab in an imitation ShamWow. It probably would have tasted better and absorbed far less of my precious internal liquids (trust me, they're precious). The meat itself was typical of microwaved sandwiches of convenience -- solid enough to pass for seared animal flesh, but with a level of cohesion similar to moist pencil shavings, allowing it to be easily chewed by mandible or slate clapboard.

The sauce on this mess confused me greatly. Both the flavor and texture of patty and faintly orange sauce reminded me of a cheeseless elementary school pizza burger. I checked the wrapper, and sure enough, the second ingredient listed was pizza sauce, clarified as consisting of primarily tomato puree, diced tomatoes, and tomato juice (really, I think just listing "tomatoes" or "tomato stuff" would have given us the idea, guys). I'm not really sure how pizza sauce makes this an Italian beef charbroil. For truth in advertising, I would consider calling this the Hot Diggity Elongated Cheeseless Pizza Burger Mark IV (the last part just makes it sound kick ass). In the future, please leave so-called Italian beef to expert chefs, food stands, and Jersey Shore cast members.

Product: Hot Diggity Italian Beef Charbroil
Price Paid: $1.25 + eternal damnation
Splashback Factor: Trail of tears
Rating: 2 out of 5 stars (for fond pizza burger memories of yore)

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