Spam In A Can: A Love Story

Many people have yet to try the godsend of Spam in a can. Just the mere mention of the word Spam to some people will bring on an over exaggerated mimicking of vomiting. To these people I say, don’t knock it ’till you try it, and as much as I don’t understand it, a few people just happen to not care for processed meats in general like hot dogs, and bologna.

Except for Philippine and Hawaiian cultures, who inhale the stuff because it has been integrated into their world for one reason or another, a lot of people feel this processed block of nitrates is beneath them. But a lot of those same people (from my experience) will shove a hot dog down their throat like a competitive eater. As a matter of fact if you compare the ingredients on some hot dog packages to a can of Spam the canned meat wins. Now if you compare with an expensive uppity brand of hot dogs, it won’t fair as well. A cheaper dog has up to 15 different ingredients, 2 of which make me look like an idiot in front of my 8-year-old. I have to sit here and sound them out like an illiterate trying to read for the first time. Spam on the other hand says: Pork w/ ham, salt, water, modified potato starch, sugar, and sodium nitrite.

So when you have to pinch pennies maybe hide the fact it’s Spam from your picky family. Maybe fry it up, stick in between a hamburger bun, with a load of condiments (like the picture above, doesn’t it look pretty), and perhaps they won’t ask any pesky questions like, “What the hell is this!”

When I was a kid we were quite financially handicapped for a while, so when I saw that gold or silver sheen followed by a dark blue rectangle come out of a brown paper back, (hell, I was just happy to see a brown paper bag, because that meant someone went to the grocery store) I thought it must be freakin’ Christmas! I’ll never forget the actual thought that flashed through my head as a little girl, we are going to eat sooo good tonight! I couldn’t wait for my mom to unroll the metal top. Nowadays it’s a pussified pop top. Back in my day you had to work for that shit!

We would totally eat it “raw” too. None of that frying it up crap. I hadn’t even heard of eating it any other way until I was an adult, and didn’t really touch the stuff anymore. My mom would simply slice it up like a Christmas ham, and we made our smoke flavored, salty, moist sandwiches with lots of mayo.

Until about six months ago, I hadn’t purchased a can of Spam in my adult life, and the only reason I did (and the only reason my husband let me) is because we live in a tsunami zone on the west coast. So we try to keep a supply of food that can be used in emergencies. It went straight into our catastrophe food supply. Who knows, it might even become currency in a crazy apocalyptic situation.

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