March 28, 2013

In the '80s, we lived off the fads of the land

By Meredith Goad
Staff Writer

Some '80s food fads have stood the test of time. Here are five of them:

Half the population sneered at Quiche Lorraine – a French dish made with eggs, bacon and Swiss cheese – as too girly in the 1980s. But today, "real men" scarf down this fancy version of bacon and eggs with no worries at all about losing their manhood.

Ranch dressing was invented at a dude ranch called – yes, it's true – Hidden Valley in 1954. At first, the tangy condiment was sold as a packaged seasoning. In the 1980s, it was bottled, and the flavor spread like wildfire through the grocery aisle and restaurant world. It started with Cool Ranch Doritos in 1987; today, we have ranch-flavored french fries, chicken wings, pizza and (the latest iteration) taco shells.

Admit it: You've heard at least a couple of friends during the past year say they're sick of tiramisu. This Italian dessert – made with lady fingers dipped in coffee and layered with a mascarpone custard – was all the rage in the 1980s, and had plenty of staying power through the '90s and early 2000s. At the end of the world, it will be hanging around with the cockroaches.

Remember when serving a wheel of brie at your cocktail party meant you were a culinary force to be reckoned with? And you had to tell people that it was OK to eat the rind?

The public flocked to frozen yogurt in the 1980s because it was low fat and better for them than ice cream. Then they proceeded to load up their cup of strawberry FroYo with all kinds of sugary toppings.


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