The crack marketing team at Kellogg's recognized that with summer quickly approaching, a warm Pop-Tart fresh out of the toaster isn't necessarily appealing to people in warmer climates. As a means of keeping the toaster pastry relevant during those sweltering summer months, the company has introduced a new commercial into the American consciousness.
While none of the culinary options presented by the commercial look particularly appetizing (and most of them simply look like an even cheaper rip-off of a Semi-Homemade with Sandra Lee episode - a Pop-Tart on a stick? Really?), the most appalling is the dessert we're offered halfway through: a Pop-Tart ice cream sandwich.
You're probably thinking to yourself, Actually, an ice cream sandwich made with Pop-Tarts doesn't sound too bad! Gimme a scoop of chocolate ice cream and two raspberry Pop-Tarts and we're talking gourmet, baby! Alas, this commercial isn't directed toward your demographic, Dean and Deluca. This is targeted toward children (and I know this because I was watching cartoons when this commercial came on; don't judge me).
So let's calculate exactly what you'd be feeding your child if you - as an irresponsible and perhaps mildly retarded parent - were to construct a Pop-Tart ice cream sandwich made with two frosted strawberry Pop-Tarts and a scoop of Blue Bell vanilla ice cream:
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• 457 calories • 13 grams of fat • 363 milligrams of sodium • 81 grams of carbohydrates • 40 grams of sugar
Breaking that down into simpler terms, we're looking at one-third of a child's daily recommended caloric intake, about one-fifth of their daily fat intake (most of it saturated fat) and the entire daily recommended intake of sugar - which equates to roughly ten teaspoons of sugar when you convert from grams. As far as calories go, that was the equivalent of one entire meal for a child - almost all of it made of sugar and fat. And people wonder why the rampant epidemics of childhood obesity and diabetes are killing our kids.
To blow all that on one meal - or, more accurately, on one snack or one dessert - the thing must at least taste good, right? A taste test at the Houston Press headquarters confirmed that, indeed, vanilla ice cream sandwiched between two frosted strawberry Pop Tarts is damn tasty. It was so tasty, in fact, that three of us consumed the entire sandwich...at our own peril.
Within a few minutes, the sugar rush kicked in. Our assistant web editor reported that his head and side hurt. My teeth became sore towards the end, and my stomach was angrily complaining at me afterward. And when I told our music listings editor - more than halfway through his sandwich - that he was eating 10 teaspoons of sugar, he abruptly threw the rest in the trash, but admitted as it sat there melting, that it did taste good.