Cooking Creme

  • Article by: AL SICHERMAN , Star Tribune
  • Updated: March 23, 2011 - 2:36 PM

Want to spend more for a slightly altered version of a familiar product? Then new Philadelphia Cooking Creme is for you. It's a version of cream cheese that, according to the label, you "simply stir in for creamy skillets and casseroles." It comes in four flavors: "savory garlic," Santa Fe, Italian cheese & herb and -- always Mr. Tidbit's favorite in a new product -- original.

Instead of buying or making some other sauce, you just stir a 10-ounce tub of one of the flavors into whatever you're making. An entire 10-ounce tub -- said to be four servings -- is maybe just a bit too much for the pasta in a 7-ounce three-serving box of Kraft macaroni & cheese (skipping the cheese sauce), but it certainly is easy.

It would be almost as easy to stir in an 8-ounce box of cream cheese, around 1/4 cup of water and some garlic (or some spices or some herbs or some "original"). Water is the next ingredient after "pasteurized nonfat milk and milkfat," and there's none in regular cream cheese.

At one store, where an 8-ounce package of Philadelphia cream cheese is $2.39, a 10-ounce tub of Philadelphia Cooking Creme is $3.29.

What's new?

Mr. Tidbit needs to decide whether he's puzzled, entertained or just annoyed. Two weeks ago he wrote himself a note that at some store he saw several flavors of Kraft deli-sliced cheese -- the rectangular packages -- in two versions, both 8 ounces: One was marked "Now with more slices." It contained 12 slices. The other was "New Big Slice." It contained 10 slices. Huh? Did they used to contain 11 slices?

When he went back to all five stores he normally visits, trying to verify his note, he struck out: Only one had any Kraft deli-sliced cheese at all: two kinds of "Now with more slices" 12-slice packages. He only found "Big Slice" on the web. But at a store he rarely visits he found two kinds of Kraft deli slices in packages marked "One more slice." They contained 11 slices! And they weighed only 7 ounces!

AL SICHERMAN

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