Twinkie

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Twinkies

A Twinkie is a "Golden Sponge Cake with Creamy Filling" created by Hostess, and baked by Continental Baking Co, which is owned by Kansas City-based Interstate Bakeries Corporation.

Twinkies are oblong in shape, approximately 4" x 1" (10 cm x 2.5 cm), and marketed in packages of two. They have a shelf life of 25 days due to their lack of dairy based ingredients. Various urban legends have stated that Twinkies have shelf lives anywhere from several years up to one century in duration, but there is no evidence to support this. The Twinkie is often derided by unattributed critics as the quintessential junk food. Each Twinkie contains about 150 calories. Five hundred million are produced each year.

Contents

How twinkies are made

The Twinkie was invented on April 6, 1930 by bakery manager James Dewar, making thrifty use of shortcake pans that were usually only used during the strawberry season. Twinkies originally contained a banana filling, but this was replaced with a vanilla filling during the great banana shortage of World War II.

Most people believe that Twinkies are baked because of the coloring of the bottom of the treat (looks brown as if it was baked in an oven), Continental Foods itself has never revealed the process of the making of a Twinkie. However, the Washington Post reported on April 15, 2005 that "the cakes are baked for 10 minutes, then the cream filling is injected through three holes in the top, which is browned from baking. The cake is flipped before packaging, so the rounded yellow bottom becomes the top." Hostess was the implied source of the information.

Fried twinkies

According to the Hostess website, Christopher Sell invented the "fried twinkie" at the ChipShop, his restaurant in Brooklyn, New York. It was described by the New York Times in this way: "Something magical occurs when the pastry hits the hot oil. The creamy white vegetable shortening filling liquefies, impregnating the sponge cake with its luscious vanilla flavor. . . The cake itself softens and warms, nearly melting, contrasting with the crisp, deep-fried crust in a buttery and suave way. The shop adds its own ruby-hued berry sauce, which provides a bit of tart sophistication."

By 2002, the Arkansas State Fair had introduced the fried Twinkie to great popular acclaim, and the notion spread to other state fairs across the U.S., as well as some brick-and-mortar shops that specialize in fried foods.

Twinkies in popular culture

The Minnesota Twins are nicknamed the "Twinkies" by fans, a joking reference to the team's tradition of ineptitude dating back to their days as the Washington Senators.

The twinkie defense is a derogatory term for a criminal defendant's claim that some unusual factor (such as allergies, coffee, nicotine, or sugar) entered into the causes or motives of the alleged crime. (Compare Chewbacca Defense.)

Twinkies are featured in the Family Guy episode where Y2K occurs and Peter and his community have to find a Twinkie factory in Natick, Massachusetts in order to survive - a joke that Twinkies can even survive nuclear radiation. However, the aforementioned Washington Post article implies that the only Twinkie factory is still in Chicago.

Slang use

The shortened form of the word twinkie, twink is commonly used slang. In its most common use, in gay circles, it is used for a young, slender, clean-cut man/boy.

Far less commonly, the term "twinkie" might be used disparagingly for an Asian-American who emulates Caucasians (yellow on the outside and white on the inside), similar to the term "oreo" for African Americans.

In MMORPG-gaming, the term can refer to a low-level character whose weapons and armor give him ridiculously good stats, suggesting that the character has been "twinked", that is, given the goods by a high-level friend or another character belonging to the player.

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