I had the pleasure of finally seeing Zombieland this week. For those of you who haven't seen this flick, I'm not sure how to justify my near constant laughter at a movie full of flesh-eating, blood-spurting, growling zombies. It was mildly disgusting and cringeworthy, yet I haven't so thoroughly enjoyed a film in quite a while. I recommend it, but bear with me…this is related to pop-tarts.
As the small band of surviving people seek safety and fend off zombie attacks, Woody Harrelson's ass-kicking character, Tallahassee, is on a hunt for one thing- Twinkies. He risks becoming the next zombie snack for one more bite of that moist yellow sponge cake filled with fluffy white cream. He believes that in the gloomy world of Zombieland, that little plastic wrapped treat will give him a glimpse back to his youth, innocence, and a time when life was happy and open to possibility.
I've always found Twinkies sickly sweet, but I sympathize with the craving and appreciate the sentiment. We all have those foods we've abandoned in adulthood, but as kids we were desperate to hide from our little brothers. That was Pop-Tarts in our house. Such sugary treats were a rarity, and everyone
found them irresistible. We typically went for cinnamon and brown sugar, strawberry, or plain, which were of course toasted to a golden brown and covered with a nice pat of quickly melting butter. Within a day of that box riding home from Dunn's (our local grocery), those shiny silver wrappers littered the kitchen counter and trashcan. We had six people and a steady stream of kids over to play, and those frosted little rectangles were a source of frenzy and fleeting glee. They didn't stand a chance.
I can't bring myself to take them off the supermarket shelf anymore, but I absolutely can make them at home sans preservatives, dyes, and high fructose corn syrup. So with Tallahassee in mind, I did. And he's right, for the briefest moment I can forget all the responsibilities I have and remember when my biggest
concerns were spelling homework and getting to the Pop-Tarts first.
For a recipe, see King Arthur Flour. For jam filling, I used 8 oz. of homemade berry jam thickened with a slurry of 1 T cornstarch and 1 T water. I recommend thickening the jam you use to help prevent extra ooze.