Sunday, October 3, 2010

Fast times in Highland

Highland is the Denver neighborhood where we live. We’re near to just about everything we need (or want).

Prepare to sneer. Peter left for 48 hours in San Fran yesterday afternoon. I was left to my own devices for the first time in nearly a year. Yes, I could have done what I had planned: more ham burgers (from yesterday’s post), but I have had a hankering for some KFC chicken for a while. Turns out the nearest one to our house is also a repository for Long John Silver’s fish. What was it going to be? I knew the fish would be salty, but I just wanted a piece for old time’s sake.

So, shameless pig that I am, I got 2 pieces of chicken, sides of cole slaw and baked beans, 2 fish sticks with fries, and a Dr. Pepper. Eat your heart out. I have never noticed any one of you mentioning fast food, but that did not deter me. Look, I’m 66 years old, I take cholesterol meds every day, and I was entitled!

When I was 18, I worked at one of the early McDonald’s. My first assignment was making French fries. Most of you have never tasted the originals. I started with a bag of Idaho’s, which went into a peeling drum. Then they were put through a fry cutter into a sink full of water, rinsed three times, well drained, par-fried in lard for a few minutes, and hung (in baskets) on a sort of peg board rack. When you needed more fries they went back into the lard for a few minutes. They were incomparable, and can be reproduced at home at great expense of labor. A serving of fries cost 19 cents in those days (only one size was available). The basic burger was 19 cents, the cheeseburger 29 cents (I think). The only other things we sold were soft drinks and shakes. How times have changed!

So, enough of that. Just look at that photo and tell me your mouth is not watering. (If it’s not, don’t tell me.)

Turned out the fish wasn’t salty at all. It was light, delicate, and delicious. As for the chicken, well, what can I say? It was that KFC taste that I was lusting for. The fries were cold by the time I got home. The cole slaw was crunchy goodness, and the beans warm and inviting.

Needless to say I didn’t eat everything. I’ll reheat the other piece of fish, the chicken thigh, the leftover fries, for my lunch. It probably won’t be as good as last night, but it will give me one more frisson of nostalgia. Have another look...


Unknown said...

I used to live right across the street from a Long John Silver's...let's just say that I gained the freshman 40 in about 2 weeks! lol And can't find chicken like that anywhere...their coleslaw is KING!

Bo said...

These is something so wickedly good about LJS! Around here we call them Taco Sliver's since they are always in the same building as Taco Bell...and with KFC I'm always an original recipe guy.

megan @ whatmegansmaking said...

Loved the inside look at mcdonald's! Those fries sound seriously good :)

Pam said...

Way to go! I agree and I feel entitled many times. I am so jealous though! I loved Long John Silver's for the fish and most of all the hush puppies. The one here closed many years ago and it's a long hike to the closest one. Original KFC, had that recently for the first time in ages ~ the best!

Love McDonalds; those Big Mac attacks and FF! I indeed remember about the fries back then as a friend worked there when we were young. The first restaurant for the franchise was opened in 1955 not far from me, Des Planes, IL.

Sounds like to me you were in fast food paradise while Peter was in SF!

Create. Snap. Eat. said...

Goodness! Salty foods. I can totally relate. I am looking forward to Tucson Meet Yourself this weekend. Yum -- salty catfish.

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