QOW: Guilty Pleasures

What do you eat when no one's looking?

When no one’s looking, what do you eat?
We’re talking hide-the-wrapper, destroy-the-evidence, eat-a-breath mint kinds of foods that you don’t want anyone else to know you secretly crave. Guilty pleasures so to speak.
Perhaps its a unyielding addiction to Taco Bell’s Nachos Bell Grande or an unrequited love for the McRib. Or it could be a “bad day” run for a Double Double, or my personal weakness, Pho Vietnam’s #36. Maybe its a childhood comfort like strawberry Jell-O or just a craving for Martini Prawns at Gary Chu’s.
From fast-food and midnight grocery runs to favorite local restaurant dishes (one friend we know has a secret rendezvous each week at the Cheese Steak Shop), what are your guiltiest of pleasures. Just between friends, of course…
Someone naughty among you just might win a copy of Simple Comforts: 50 Heartwarming Recipes. It’s an easily-concealed-sized book filled with warm, comforting recipes for everything from 3-cheese polenta to chili, chocolate banana bread and tomato soup and grilled cheese. Yum. Just the stuff for guilty pleasure.
What’s your guilty pleasure?


50 thoughts on “QOW: Guilty Pleasures

  1. Cheetos….and for some reason, a combo plate at Tandoori Express on Mendocino Ave. I have never been there with anyone else! I go when I need some good hangover food and am by myself! Always get an order of samosas with the combo!

  2. Soul food: peanut butter on a slice of bread, folded in half. Dunk in Nestle’s chocolate milk. Will solve any problem. Binge = four half sandwiches. Before they invented Reese’s, my brother made this up.

    1. Actually, I read somewhere that people who eat their boogers have better immunity to common cold and flu viruses. Just a little something to chew on.
      Now if i need something salty, give me a bag of Kettle salt and black pepper chips. Heaven, but not heart healthy.

  3. hormel canned tamales, totally agree with their greatness
    chex chipotle snacks mix
    carl’s junior tacos…soo good
    health bars
    if it makes you feel good..eat it..if you must do it in moderation, so be it.

  4. Guilty pleasures:
    Canned Tamales smothered in Cheese, Frosted Flakes with half & half instead of milk, popcorn
    smothered in a ton of salted melted butter!!!

  5. Canned salmon…….cold….right out of the can…….and not the wimpy skinless, boneless stuff.
    Brown sugar sandwich…..soft white bread spread with lots of butter and about 1/4 inch of dark brown sugar……nothing else on it….just that.

  6. Has to be MacRibs from MacDonald’s when they ever have them, which is seldom. Nice boneless pork ribs on a bun with lots of barbeque sauce and raw onions and sour pickles……oh, yum! I’ve tried to tell MacD that they should have them as a regular menu item, but they won’t listen to me!

  7. Two taco bell tacos, and a double decker taco, eaten in my car at 11 o’clock at night before a big test while listening to NPR.

  8. -A whole package of Keebler Grasshopper cookes (they taste like Girl Scout Thin Mints, are cheaper, and are available year-round).
    -Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups

  9. Street food, stuff off of a cart of questionable provenance: German sausages, shwarmas and gyros, hot dogs boiling in water, steamed pretzels. Just don’t look under the hood.

  10. Hands-down, street food. All sorts of it. When I lived in NYC, there was this astoundingly broad array of very high quality truck and cart food (well, very high flavor, I’m not sure what was under the hood). Devastating indulgences included the shwarma brothers and the German sausage guy.

  11. liverwurst on rye with mustard and onions (good rye but yellow mustard and fresh onions if possible)
    Some people had a poached egg moment with their mothers
    this was the sandwich we shared

  12. TOP Guilty Pleasures:
    ~ Farmer’s Market: Lata’s Indian Every Wed: Lata’s Indian Food stand: Samosas with 2 kinds of chutneys cilantro coconut and tamarind
    ~ Jollibee at Seafood City, Sonoma Blvd., Vallejo: (a Filipino eatery, just like McD’s in the US) pancit palabok (rice stick noodles w/ shrimp sauce) AND/OR crispy milkfish breakfast w/ side of garlic fried rice and egg.
    ~ Goldilock’s bakeshop/Ongpin restaurant, Sonoma Blvd., Vallejo: ONGPIN: fresh lumpia (crepes w/ stir fry vegetable drizzled with peanut garlicky brown sauce), ‘lechon’ or roast suckling pig w/ its crispy skin and sauce////////////// Goldilocks Pastry corner: SANSRIVAL!!!
    ~ Tapioca Express in Sonoma Blvd, Vallejo: taro, avocado, milk tea etc. w/ small or large tapiocas yum
    ~ McDonald’s chicken nuggets with all the dipping sauce, ranch, sweet n sour, honey mustard.
    ~ Octoberfest 2nd Sat annually at the Resurrection Parish: Pulled pork sandwich
    ~ Tra

  13. If I am in need of a totally naughty guilty pleasure, I will choose one of the following favorite options, not necessarily in order of preference:
    1) an ENTIRE line of premium saltine crackers spread with creamy skippy peanut butter
    2) 4 slices in a row of cheese pizza from Mombos or NY Pie, plus the crusts left over from my son’s 2 slices
    3) 3 McDonald’s regular hamburgers minus the pickles and a super-size fries
    4) A toasted bagel from Homegrown Bagels in Sonoma, slathered in salted butter….and maybe another one if I’m still hungry
    5) A minimum of 6 California brittles and a minimum of 3 caramels w/almonds from See’s.
    6) 4 homemade corn tortilla tacos – asada, carnitas, el pastor, and fish – from La Texanita

  14. I LOVE boiled peanuts!!! They are soooooo addicting!!! If you havent tried them you should. You see them being sold on the corners in the south but I found a recipe online and enjoy them often.
    Of course you cant enjoy a bunch of boiled peanuts without washing them down with an ice cold beer!! 🙂

    1. Okay, here’s my take on boiled peanuts — i think you have to grow up with them. They taste like beans, which isn’t horrible, but very unexpected when you think they’ll taste like…uh…peanuts. I kind of gagged when I got them in Tennessee.

      1. I was so excited to try them when I was in Georgia – found a little roadside stand selling them. My mom and I pulled over to try them and said the same thing you did – they tasted like beans, and were very unusual. It sort of grew on us when they were piping hot, but as they started to cool I thought they were pretty nasty – plus the car stunk from the boiled peanuts until we could get rid of the uneaten ones. Definitely an acquired taste I think!

  15. Sunflower seeds and shelled peanuts..for some reason i just think people think its weird..also I broil steak when no ones watching and eat it plain..mmm

  16. Heather, you nailed it! Philly Cheese Steak from Italian Delite in Novato… OH damn.
    Whole steak, everything, extra hot sauce please!
    Check them out!
    RCHS Alumni is the new owner and now accepts Credit Cards (on orders over $10)

  17. I think a fun subject to have would be “where do you HIDE your stashes”? I have found nobody lifts the lid on a ricotta chees container that is in the fridge, a great place to hide good cookies, nobody looks in a cottoge cheese container in the freezer, a good place to hide the really good ice cream. Oatmeal containers on the shelf are a great place to hide the real good chocolate. From a mother of four. LOL

  18. Hormel tamales, paper coats taken off and smashed into a baking casserole, topped with canned chili (no beans, thank you), and topped with lots of shredded cheddar cheese and crumbled up tortillas chips. Take at 350 for about 25 minutes.

    1. My kids and I used to love the Hormel canned tamales when they were too young to read the label. They are such good junk food, but they make a Big Mac look healthy.
      Right now my favorite guilty pleasure is a Chocolate Chip Cookie from the Cookie and Coffee place on Main Street in Sebastopol. Really good cookies.

  19. Once a year I make a red velvet cake with the richest, most decadent butter cream frosting I have ever tasted – anywhere. (My mom’s recipe and it will probably die with my daughter who is not planning on having kids…..)
    You may laugh because it’s a once a year deal but trust me, I do not share and when the cake is gone, I have to embark on a two week program to get back into most of my wardrobe……

    1. I have so many little stashes of food I won’t share. It’s mean, but come on…I don’t see them sharing their Goldfish with me. And really, they’re just not going to appreciate the Scharffen Berger chocolate like I do.

  20. Would have to be that big chocalate cake at Costco with the shavings on the side. Some one brought it to a BBQ we had and when no one was looking I took three slices and put them in the freezer. Well, ok……I took FOUR slices.

  21. Whoopie pies. Yeah, the ones that they sell at Pacific Market in SR. I am secretly addicted to the chocolate chip cookie version. I don’t know why, because the frosting is so sugary they make my teeth hurt, but I will grab one with my salad or whatever when I don’t feel like cooking for myself. And I always hide the evidence.
    They remind me of soccer games when I was a kid. I think Little Debbie or Entemann’s made a version back in the ’80’s and some parents would bring them as the after-game treat.
    I do know that they were a regional specialty back East back in the day.

  22. Fish sandwich at McDonalds. I’m a total foodie now and I KNOW that that sandwich is… well scary but I love it still. Total comfort food from my childhood. I have a friend who is a commercial fisherman and he heard that I liked these and couldn’t believe it. He said “do you have any idea what kind of fish parts go into that?” Nope, and it doesn’t matter.

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