Every year I go to a friend's holiday party. This friend has many wonderful qualities. She is smart, decent, and funny, but not only is she a Republican, she's a vegetarian Republican. And she cares not a whit about food. But this post is not about her vegetarianism or her political beliefs, which don't concern me in the slightest. It is about a couple of things she serves at her holiday party.

Unapologetically, unashamedly, my friend serves frozen pigs in blankets and Totino's Pizza Rolls (she doesn't eat them herself, she just serves them, like the gracious hostess she is). And you know what? Those suckers hit the spot. They're good, in that good/bad way the tastiest processed, politically incorrect foods are. They satisfy in that way that only crunchy, doughy, salty, and hot bad-for-you foods can. The hot is key, I think. Hot is what separates a fine guilty pleasure snack like potato chips from an inspired one like tater tots. If my friend served tater tots as well, I would camp out at her door waiting for the clock to strike eight, when the party begins.

So, Serious Eaters, there you have it. My own personal holy trinity of frozen, guilty, and hot pleasures. What are yours?


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