Top 10 Highlights
Just so there are no misunderstandings, by “Junk Food” we mean food that comes from the multitude of restaurant chain stores out there. The food is mass produced and all the stores follow a regimented preparation and service process.
Junk food gets a lot of bad press but the demand for its products remains high, so they are clearly servicing a need. People are not forced to buy the products so there clearly must be something good about it.
We’ve dug deep and uncovered the very best things about junk food.
10. Junk Food Is Everywhere
Getting a quick takeaway meal hasn’t always been so easy, in fact it’s only a few generations ago that there wasn’t such a thing. And a few more generations before that and you were pretty lucky to get any food at all.
Now it’s absolutely everywhere. We have outsourced a large percentage of our cooking and who doesn’t want to do that. No matter what style of food we want, or what time of day we want it, there will be a takeaway store close at hand.
9. Junk Food Has Gherkins
The humble Gherkin never reached great culinary heights, nor a large audience, until the advent of the fast food hamburger. When pickled, particularly in the way that junk food places do it, gherkins become little flavor bombs that are perfect for all types of burger style dishes.
Bun, tasteless. Lettuce, tasteless. Cheese, tasteless. Meat, kind of tasteless. Gherkin? Flavor bomb! We love the gherkin.
8. Junk Food Leaves No Dishes
This may seem like a minor point but it’s certainly important enough to make the list. Remember, it’s not just the plates and cutlery that you use eating your own food, it’s all the damn frying pans and pots and mixing bowls and stirring spoons you use to make the food in the first place. And the frying pan oil all over the back of the stove and the wall.
A dishwasher helps with all this but it’s still an exercise.
Junk food only requires you to squash the packaging, if you want, and put it in the bin. Along with the plastic knives and forks you’ve used. Absolute gold.
7. Junk Food Has Some Nutrients
Junk food critics focus on the bad things in the food. The high levels of fat and so on. Fair enough, but let’s not ignore the good things in junk food. Gherkins are a vegetable and have important nutrients, tomatoes are good anti-oxidants, onion is a great anti-inflammatory and lettuce has… stuff. There would definitely be some fibre in there somewhere.
The critics might also argue that the quantity of nutrients in junk food is very small. We’re not arguing that point but still, there are some nutrients.
6. Junk Food Fills You Up
Nouveau cuisine, a French style of cooking that focusses on the presentation of the food, became popular in restaurants around the world in the 1960’s. The food sure looked great but there was generally not a lot of it. It’s hard to make visually appealing, delicate dishes when the plate is overflowing with food.
Presentation of junk food on the other hand is not a priority (except in the advertising). In fact junk food mostly comes in boxes so we don’t even see it until we are lifting it to our mouth.
But there’s plenty of it. A typical order might be a burger, perhaps with a double patty and extra cheese, a side of chicken nuggets, large chips, large drink and ice cream. It’s a feast. And if you want more it only takes a minute to get it.
Junk food is great for filling you up and who doesn’t love that feeling.
5. Junk Food Is Social
Going out is half the fun of getting junk food. You will often go with other people, take the kids or meet friends down there. You see what’s going on in the neighbourhood and might even decide to stop at the local park to eat.
Junk food is packed and ready to transport so you are free to move and be social.
4. Junk Food Is Predictable
Have you ever had junk food that didn’t taste like you thought it would taste? Or had an ingredient in it that you didn’t know was in it? Or was smaller than you thought it would be?
No, junk food is totally predictable. This can be a bad thing if you are looking for gastronomic delights, but it’s incredibly reassuring for all the rest of us. No difficult decisions to make.
3. Junk Food Is Cheap
When we say that junk food is cheap we’re not kidding. Of course it’s cheaper to buy real food and cook it at home, but that’s not we want to do.
To have someone else go shopping for us, cook our dinner for us, on someone else’s stove, wrap it nicely for us and give us some knives and forks takes quite a bit of time and effort. To do it all for the prices they charge just goes to show how efficient they are.
Junk food is cheap, particularly if you remember that you are outsourcing your time.
2. Junk Food Is Ready to Eat
If it wasn’t for hangovers this would be a clear number 1. Junk food is really, really easy to find, quick to order, quick to receive (don’t even leave the car) and packed totally ready to eat. No thinking about ingredients, going to the supermarket, unpacking stuff into the fridge and then, ahhh, cooking.
The hardest thing you need to do to have junk food is decide where to eat it. Will you eat it where you buy it, in the car, on the couch when you get home, in a park or on the beach perhaps? Deciding where to eat dinner is a much more pleasant experience than the horrific alternative.
1. Junk Food Is The Best Hangover Food
It’s bad enough that we sometimes drink more alcohol than we should, but on the way home from a night out, or the next morning, our bodies develop an insatiable craving for junk food. Talk about out of the frying pan into the fire!
Is junk food really the best hangover food? Our careful research provides overwhelming evidence in the affirmative. Of the people we surveyed, a huge 63% said they only eat junk food when they have been out drinking alcohol.
Whether it’s the trans fatty acids, liquid sugar, hormone and anti-biotic-fed meat, processed starch or high levels of salt we don’t know. Maybe it’s the gherkins? We hope so because those gherkins are just so damn good.
According to Forbes, the US restaurant chain Chick-fil-A had the highest average gross per store revenue of $3.1 million last year, ahead of McDonald’s at $2.6 million and Jason’s Deli at $2.55 million.
The average fast food outlet brings in $750,000 per annum on average across all chains.
That’s more than the local diner used to take. It’s huge business.