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October 18, 2010

What on earth is this thing -- guess the mystery product

question markWhat is this?

“INGREDIENTS: Peanuts, Potato Starch, Sugar, Flour, Peanut Oil, Corn Meal, Egg Whites, Salt, Sodium Bicarbonate, Tomato Powder, Vinegar Solids, Dextrin, Worsestershire [sic] Sauce Powder, Corn Syrup, Carmel Color, Garlic Powder, Tamarind, Maltodextrin Powder and Silicon Dioxide, Horseradish Powder.”

With fond memories of Dining@Large's old Guess the Mystery Product challenge, poster/participant Returning Ecclesiastical Exile sent in this doozy.

Think of it as a group challenge -- I'll let you (pl.) know when you're getting warmer. There are one or two very specific elements to this product that need to be explicitly stated, and the game won't be over until they are.


No Prizes. Do Not Google.

Please visit Dining@Large often, and, remember, to minimize all of your active windows and show the Desktop, press the Windows Logo Key + D









Posted by Richard Gorelick at 8:25 AM | | Comments (51)
Categories: Contest


Planters dry roasted peanuts?

But the peanuts are still in "peanut form" -- that is, they have not been pulverized, pasted, etc.

keep going

Tamarind is the give away. Looks like some kind of instant pad thai.

Why would you want us to minimize all windows? BTW in Windows 7 the easiest way is to click on the blank button in the extreme southeast corner.

Good idea... maybe a thai peanut sauce?

Yeah but there is no noodles, and peanuts would not be the main ingredient of a pad thai sauce, would it?

It a savory, whole peanut...thing. Is it as obscure as it sounds or is it right in front of our faces?

First we are assuming that the ingredients are listed in order of mass abundance like American products. That might not be exactly the case. Who says there are no noodles? "Flour" = noodles. But you would expect them to be higher up.

Pad thai sauce or pad that
or some kind of satay sauce.
Maybe one of those sauces that TastyBite sells.

Instant kung pao mix?

Yeah but there is no noodles

But the ingredients for noodles are in that list.

noodles are very very cold.

this product would be found in the snack aisle (this one is wicked enough)

Do you see a giant talking panda when you eat it?

this product would be found in the snack aisle (this one is wicked enough)

Well, then the potato starch and the horsradish makes me think of wasabi peas. Maybe wasabi peanuts?

Thai fiddle faddle?

Kung pao Pringles?

Peanut Funyuns?

Chiang Kai Chex Party Mix?

Deep fried crap-covered peanuts?

Burt Cooper with his shoes on stumbled onto something up there....

My first thought was a satay sauce but I think it's Wasabi Peanuts

With my shoes ON? One of them Wan Chai Fairy meals? But those aren't crap snacks, they're crap dinners that make you hallucinate talking pandas with Detroit accents.

Fiddle-dee-dee, that must have been the oldheimer's kicking in.

Great Caeser's ghost! Now I'm all befuddled.

the product essentially is peanuts


1) what has been done to these peanuts (e.g., covered with chocolate)
2) what flavor are they

Pad Thai sauce

Barbecue-flavored peanuts?

Fiddle-dee-dee, that must have been the oldheimer's kicking in.

Great Caeser's ghost! Now I'm all befuddled.

For the love of Gene Rayburn, make it stop!

VIndaloo peanut puffs like my mother used to make in Rangoon.

Panda-flavored goober crackers.

Sweet & Sour peanuts

Is it something that one might find in a gentleman's sitting room?

Old Bay Peanuts. Final answer, Regis.

Heh heh heh... I don't know what's it's called but I'm sucking on one RIGHT NOW!

Wasabi Peanuts is my first thought but the caramel color knocks that out.

Oh, my pearls! Is it Mr. Peanut on a sex tourist junket to Bangkok?

Shrimpflavor crispy peanut delight crackerchip

Peanut Brittle? or Fishers Popcorn?

This is awesome!

I am going to get some lunch. I'll give some hints when I get back.

Isn't there something called Burnt Peanuts the kids get at Halloween? Or am I thinking of Boston Baked Beans.

I think it's significant that the #3 ingredient is sugar. Some sort of tamarind peanut candy? Vietnamese, maybe?

Maybe something from Emerald Nuts? Like one of their spicy trail mixes?

Heh heh heh... maybe General Tso's nuts?

Filipino cracker peanuts? (Peanuts coated in a cracker coating)

Hint: most of us have tasted tamarind in a far more domestic product, one that I'd bet 90% of us have at home. (I think I have three brands right now.)

Worcestershire sauce...right? Not sure how that helps though...

Tamarind is the key to Worchestershire sauce, everybody knows that. But W sauce powder is also an ingredient here. Is this some kind of Escher-like recursive Worchestershire sauce enigma machine?

Filipino cracker peanuts? (Peanuts coated in a cracker coating)


On the manufacturer's website, this snack is compared to Fillipino cracker nuts (Nagaraya) and to Scandanavian NicNacs. Now, you just have to figure out how it's been Americanized.

bloody mary flavored peanuts?

Beer Nuts.

Woo! Ketchup flavored?

bloody mary flavored peanuts?

Bloody Mary is THE flavor!!!

Excellent! Now, there is just one essential component missing...what are the peanuts "coated" or "covered" with?

Beer Nuts?

potato chips

Could the secret be the potato starch second ingredient? Are the nuts covered in potato and flavored like bloody mary? That would be strange, but maybe tasty.

Silicon dioxide. Yeah, yeah, I always hope that sand makes its way into my food supply...

Well, the potato starch has to be the starch component binder for the flavors, and they're fried in peanut oil. The 'sand' is nothing more than an anti-caking agent.


I will post about the product now in a few seconds, but ---

Alf sniffed out the Bloody Mary Flavor

Aaamandaaa figured out the potato chip gimmick

MC nailed it exactly

WAY too obscure. Bloody Mary Potato Peanut Chips? W.T.F.

I first ran into these at Wine World in Abingdon, where they were ... ahem ... palate cleansers at a beer tasting. There are several other flavors, but these turned out to be my favorite. Locally made too!!


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About this blog

You are reading the archives. For updated blog posts about the Maryland food scene, see Richard Gorelick's new Baltimore Diner blog.
Richard Gorelick was appointed The Baltimore Sun's restaurant critic in September 2010. Before joining the paper staff fulltime, he contributed freelance criticism and features articles about food to area and regional publications. Along the way, he dispatched for short-distance trucking companies, shilled for cultural non-profits, and assisted in cognitive neurology research – never the subject, always the control.

He takes restaurants seriously but not himself, and his favorite restaurant is the one you love, too.

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