Monday, April 26, 2010

Sprouting in the City - From the Philadelphia Inquirer

Great article in the Philadelphia Inquirer highlighting the Piazza at Schmidt's and also a comprehensive list of this season's farmers' markets throughout the Delaware Valley!


Sprouting in the City
Besides good fresh food and Sunday hours, area farmers markets offer a chance to meet the folks who grow the eats.
By Dianna Marder
Inquirer Staff Writer

From inside a large gray trailer marked "M&B Fairview Farm," Bart Hill greets a stream of customers who line up for bacon from his heritage pigs and big brown eggs from his Barred Rock chickens.

Just outside the trailer, seated at her own small table, Hill's daughter, Heather, tends to a line of customers, too.

"Do you have cats?" Heather asks a woman considering the goat-milk soaps on display. "Because if you do, you need catnip, and we have it."

She is 8 years old, this small blonde in pigtails, clutching what appear to be the remains of a much-loved baby blanket. And she is the littlest farmer at the Piazza at Schmidt's in Northern Liberties.

On the farm in Hamburg, Berks County, where the Hill family raises pastured cattle, goats, and guinea hens, Heather feeds the barnyard cats and dogs. But on Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. (and Sundays too, in May) she works here at the farmers market.

The Piazza is among the newbies in this year's roundup of area farmers markets that we are listing today in honor of Earth Day. Aside from an expanding array of growers, the big news this year is the Sunday option.

In addition to the Piazza, and the Head House farmers market, which both offer Sunday hours, this year the Reading Terminal Market will feature actual farmers selling outdoors on 12th Street on Sundays. And Creekside, the yet-to-open food co-op in Elkins Park, is operating a Sunday-only farmers market.

Most of those markets will feature different growers.

Whimsical Farms in Delaware and Three Springs Farm in Wenksville, Pa., are at the Piazza, while the Reading Terminal lineup includes Cherry Grove Farm in Lawrenceville, N.J., and Steve Bowes Family Farm in Northumberland County, Pa. Creekside will sell hydroponic produce grown by students at Cedarbrook Middle School in Cheltenham Township.

Bob Pierson of Farm to City, which is working with Kyle Perry at the Reading Terminal, says there are no studies or surveys to back up the Sunday project, "but we can see the popularity of Sunday shopping growing."

The terminal's inside stalls are already open on Sunday, and Pierson hopes the outdoor venue will draw even more people.

"People love meeting the farmers - they love meeting the people who grow their food," says Paul Steinke, the Reading Terminal manager.

Sure, shoppers like knowing they're getting fresh-picked produce that has traveled the shortest possible distance. But there's something else that distinguishes a farmers market experience from an Acme or even Whole Foods.

"It's the social networking," Pierson says. "People don't talk in supermarkets. But farmers markets are like community centers. It's a democratic space - anybody can go into it and anybody can meet anybody else."

The Piazza at Schmidt's started its year-round open-air market in January. And as Bart Hill can attest, it has operated every snowy Saturday except on Feb. 6, when that big one shut down even the Schuylkill Expressway.

With nearly 20 vendors, the Piazza doesn't yet fill the 80,000-square-foot space that developer Bart Blatstein designed with classic Italian piazzas in mind.

But at this Piazza, which is surrounded by artists studios, boutiques, eateries, and apartments, the farmers market is more than the sum of its parts.

In addition to finding fresh asparagus and fingerling potatoes, this is where hip young couples with babes in backpacks come to entertain the grandparents visiting from suburbia. Here, singles of every sort linger over charcuterie and craft beer, and Swift Half Pub chef Jessica O'Donnell develops a different menu item every Saturday based on the produce sold outside her door.

It is perhaps the most relaxed meet-the-farmer experience you'll find.

Unlike Ninth Street's Italian Market, where some merchants have been known to growl if you seem poised to touch the tomatoes or burden them with a $20 bill, merchants at the Piazza act as if they came here to chat with you - and many accept Visa and MasterCard.

Last Saturday, the Food Network channel played (with the volume way down for ambience) on the huge, high-definition LED television screen mounted on the Piazza's brick wall. And Chad Allen, who lives in the neighborhood, picked up his usual order from Bart Hill: eggs, bacon, and sharp provolone.

"I love the bacon, in particular," Allen said, "It's thick and robust - not your average brand."

"I guess I should be a vegetarian. But I only eat bacon once a week. And you get what you pay for, so let it be the best."

Joel Zuercher and Jill Bazelon, his wife, bought asparagus, leeks, and cheese from Birchrun Hills Farm and discussed making an omelet for lunch. The family lives in Logan Square, and, since they get in the car every Saturday morning to drive their 5-year-old, Harper, to dance class at Fourth and Locust, they just keep driving and come to the Piazza, where the parking is free and plentiful.

Kale seemed to be the biggest seller Saturday. Bazelon bought some for Harper because it's her fave. Moira Rosenberger of Chestnut Hill planned to make kale chips.

And Christine Eriksen, who started the food blog this year in the hope it would inspire her to attain some cooking skills, bought kale from the Weaver's Way farm stand and planned to search for a recipe.

John Doyle was at the Piazza selling the artisan chocolates he makes with his wife, Kira. Because John & Kira's Chocolates are otherwise sold only online, farmers markets are a way to connect with customers and try new concoctions, Doyle said.

This week he was sampling a heavenly batch of Pistachio Toffee, and squares of Root Chocolate, which put the flavor of a chocolate root beer float in the palm of your hand.

"Farmers markets are really successful for us," Doyle said, "so much so that we're doing 11 [different markets each weekend] this year."

Farmers Markets in the Region

Key. FTC: Farm to City

FT: The Food Trust

BCFA: Bucks County Foodshed Alliance

For information on Pennsylvania farmers markets, visit For information on New Jersey farmers markets, visit


Center City and South Philadelphia

Fitler Square (FT), 23d and Pine Streets, Sat. 9 a.m.-1 p.m. year-round.

Head House (FT), Second and Lombard Streets, Sat.-Sun., 10 a.m.-2 p.m. starting May 2 for Sundays and May 15 for Saturdays.

Jefferson (FTC), Chestnut Street east of 10th Street, Thu. 11 a.m.-3 p.m. until end of October.

Italian Market, South Ninth Street, between Fitzwater and Wharton Streets, Tue.-Sat. 9 a.m.-5 p.m., Sun. to 2 p.m.

Love Park Farmers' Market (FTC), 15th Street and JFK Boulevard, Wed. 11 a.m.-3 p.m. until end of October.

Reading Terminal Market, 51 N. 12th St., 215-922-2317. Mon.-Sat. 8 a.m.-6 p.m.; Sun. 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Closed holidays. Pennsylvania Dutch stands are open Wed. 8 a.m.-3 p.m., Thu.-Sat. to 5 p.m. The Fair Food Farmstand in the market sells humanely raised meat, eggs, dairy, produce, and more, Mon.-Sat. 8 a.m.-6 p.m., Sun. 9 a.m.-5 p.m.

Farmers Market at Reading Terminal (FTC): Outdoors at 12th and Arch Sts, Suns 9 a.m.-2 p.m.

Rittenhouse (FTC), Walnut and 18th Streets, Tue. 10 a.m.-1 p.m. until Thanksgiving, Sat. 9:30 a.m.-3 p.m. May-Nov.

Schuylkill River Park (FT), 25th and Spruce Streets, Wed. 3-7 p.m. starting May 19.

South & Passyunk (FTC), east of 5th Street, Tue. 2:30-7 p.m. until Thanksgiving.

South Street (FT), Broad and South Streets, Wed. 2-6 p.m. starting May 26.

Suburban Station Farmers Market (FTC), 16th Street concourse near elevator between Market Street and JFK Boulevard, Thur. 2:30-6:30 p.m. year-round.

North Philadelphia

Cecil B. Moore (FT), Cecil B. Moore Avenue between Broad Street & Park Walk, Thu. 2-6 p.m. starting Mid-June.

Fairmount (FT), 22d Street and Fairmount Avenue, Thu. 3-7 p.m. starting May 6.

Northeast Philadelphia

Greensgrow Farm Stand, 2501 E. Cumberland St., Tue.-Sat. 9 a.m.-5 p.m., Sun. 11 a.m.-4 p.m.; check web site for starting date.

Oxford Circle (FT), Oxford Street and Summerdale Avenue, Thu. 2-6 p.m. starting June 10.

Palmer Park (FT), Frankford Avenue and Palmer Street, Thu. 2-6 p.m. starting June 3.

Northwest Philadelphia

Chestnut Hill, 8229 Germantown Ave. (behind Chestnut Hill Hotel), Thu.-Fri. 9 a.m.-6 p.m., Sat 8 a.m.-5 p.m., year-round.

Chestnut Hill Growers Market (FTC), Winston Road at Germantown Avenue, Sat. 9:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m. until Thanksgiving.

Cliveden Park (FT), Chew and Johnson Streets, Wed. 2-6 p.m. starting June 23.

Germantown (FT), Germantown Avenue and Walnut Lane, Fri. 2-6 p.m. starting May 26.

Manayunk (FTC), Canal View Park on Main Street near Gay Street, Sat. 10 a.m.-2 p.m.

Mount Airy (FTC), Lutheran Theological Seminary plaza, Germantown Avenue at Allen Lane, Tues. 3-7 p.m. through Thanksgiving.

West Oak Lane (FT), Ogontz Avenue and 72d Street, Tue. 2-6 p.m. starting June 1.

West Philadelphia

Clark Park (FT), 43d Street and Baltimore Avenue, Thu. 3-7 p.m., starting June 3; Sat. 10 a.m.-2 p.m., year-round.

Girard Farm Stand (FTC), 27th Street and Girard Avenue, Wed. 10 a.m.-1 p.m. through end of October.

Haddington (FT), 52d Street and Haverford Avenue, Wed. and Fri. 1-5 p.m. starting July 7.

Overbrook Farms (FT), 63d Street between Sherwood Avenue and Overbrook Avenue, Sat. 9 a.m.-1 p.m. starting May 29.

University City District Farmers Market, in front of the Radian, 3925 Walnut Street, Fri. Noon-2 p.m. June-July.

University Square (FTC), 36th Street at Walnut Street, Wed. 10 a.m.-3 p.m. until Thanksgiving.

Bucks County

Delaware Valley College, 2100 Lower State Rd. (at New Britain), Doylestown, 215-230-7170, Mon.-Sat. 9 a.m.-7 p.m., Sun. 9 a.m.-5 p.m. year-round.

Doylestown (BCFA), W. State Street and Hamilton Avenue, Sat. 7 a.m.-noon, through Nov. 20.

Langhorne Farmers Market (BCFA), Jesse Soby American Legion Post, 115 W. Richardson Avenue, Tue 3:30-6:30 p.m. June 1-Sept. 28.

Lower Makefield (BCFA), Edgewood and Heacock Roads, Thu. 3:30-6:30 p.m., May 20-Oct. 14.

New Hope (BCFA), Solebury High School, 180 W. Bridge St, Thu. 3:30-7 p.m., May 6-Nov. 18.

Newtown, 2150 S. Eagle Rd., Thu. 9 a.m.-6 p.m., Fri. 9 a.m.-7 p.m., Sat. 9 a.m.-4 p.m.

None Such Farm, 4458 York Rd. (south of Rte. 413), Buckingham, 215-794-5201. Market and working farm. Mon.-Fri. 8 a.m.-6:30 p.m., Sat.-Sun. to 6 p.m. year-round.

Ottsville Farmers Market at Linden Hill Gardens (BCFA), 8230 Easton Road (Rte. 611 between Rtes. 113 & 412), Fri. 3-7 p.m. May 28-Oct. 29.

Plumsteadville Grange (BCFA), Rte. 611 North, opposite Kellers Church Road, Sat. 9 a.m.-noon, May 29-Oct. 30.

Rice's Market, 6326 Greenhill Rd., New Hope, Tue. 7 a.m.-1 p.m., year-round, and Sat. March-December, 215-297-5993,

Shady Brook Farm Market, 931 Stony Hill Rd., (Rte. 332 at I-95), Yardley, Mon.-Sat. 7 a.m.-7 p.m., Sun. 9 a.m.-5 p.m.,

Springtown (BCFA), Springtown Firehouse, 3010 Main Street (Rtes. 412 & 212), Thur. 4-7 p.m., May 20-Sept. 30.

Warrington Farmers Market at Valley Square (BCFA), Rte. 611 and Street Road, Fri. 3-6 p.m. beginning May 14.

Wrightstown (FT & BCFA), 2203 2d Street Pike (Rte. 232), Sat. 9 a.m.-1 p.m., May 1-Nov. 20.

Chester County

Kennett Square, 100 block East State Street, Fri. 2-6 p.m. through October,

Pete's Produce Farm, 1225 Street Road, Westtown, Mon-Sat 9 a.m.-6:30 p.m., Suns 9 a.m.-6 p.m.,

Phoenixville (FT), Bridge Street and Taylor Alley, Sat. 9 a.m.-1 p.m. year-round.

West Chester, North Church and West Chestnut Streets, Sat. 9 a.m.-1 p.m., through November,

West Grove, Harmony near Guernsey, 610-869-2792, Thu. 2-6 p.m.

Delaware County

Ardmore, Suburban Square, Coulter and St. James Place (off Montgomery), 610-896-7560, Wed. 9 a.m.-7 p.m., Thu.-Fri. 8 a.m.-7 p.m., Sat. 8 a.m.-6 p.m., Sun. 9 a.m.-4 p.m.,

Lancaster County, 389 W. Lancaster Ave., Wayne, 610-688-9856, Wed., Fri.-Sat. 6 a.m.-4 p.m., year-round.

Lansdowne (FT), Lansdowne Avenue parking lot between Baltimore and Stewart, Sat. 9 a.m.-1 p.m. starting May 29.

Linvilla Orchards, 137 W. Knowlton Rd., Media, 610-876-7116, daily 9 a.m.-6 p.m., to 8 p.m. Sept. 20-Nov. 2,

Oakmont (FTC), Darby Road west of Eagle Road, Havertown, Wed. 3-7 p.m.

Swarthmore (FTC) Town center parking lot across from Swarthmore Co-op, Sat. 9:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m. until Thanksgiving.

Montgomery County

Bala Cynwyd Farmers Market (FTC), GSB lot, City and Belmont Avenues, Thur. 3-7 p.m.

Bryn Mawr (FTC), Municipal Lot 7 on Lancaster Avenue by Bryn Mawr train station, Sat. 10 a.m.-2 p.m. May 8 through Thanksgiving.

Conshohocken (FT), Fayette and West Hector, Fri. 10 a.m.-3 p.m. starting mid-May.

Creekside Farmers Market, High School Park at the intersection of Montgomery Avenue and High School Road, Elkins Park, Sun. 10 a.m.-2 p.m., April 11-Oct.,

Lansdale (FT), Railroad Plaza at Main and Green, Sat. 9 a.m.-1 p.m. starting May 29.

Norristown (FT), Swede & Main, Thu. 11 a.m.-5 p.m. starting June 3.

New Jersey

Berlin Farmers Market, Route 541 At Clementon Road, Thur.-Sat. 10 a.m.-9 p.m., Sun. 10 a.m.-6 p.m., year-round,

Bordentown City Community Farmers Market, city parking lot on Farnsworth Avenue next to Farnsworth House Restaurant, Wed. 4 p.m.-dusk, June 9-Oct. 27,

Burlington County Farmers Market, 500 Centerton Road, Moorestown, Sat. 8:30-1 p.m., May 15-Oct. 30.

Camden Area Health Education Center Farmers Market, check; locations, dates and hours to be posted on Web site in May.

Collingswood, High-Speed Line, Irvin to Collings, Sat. 8 a.m.-noon, May through Thanksgiving,

Duffield's Farm Market, 280 Chapel Heights Road, Sewell; spring hours are Mon.-Sat. 9 a.m.-6 p.m.,

Haddonfield, First Presbyterian Church parking lot, off Kings Highway, Sat. 8 a.m.-noon May 1 through Oct. 23,

Mood's Farm Market, 901 Bridgeton Pike Mullica Hill, 8 a.m.-8 p.m. Mon-Sat. June-Labor Day,, after Labor Day to 6 p.m.; closes after Thanksgiving; 856-478-2500;

Our Lady of Lourdes, 1600 Haddon Ave., Camden, Wed. 2-5 p.m., July 8-Nov. 4.

Springdale Farms, 1638 South Springdale Road, Cherry Hill, Mon.-Sat. 8 a.m.-7 p.m., Sun. 8 a.m.-6 p.m. year-round,

Westmont Farmers Market, Haddon and Stratford Avenues, Haddon Township, Wed. 4-7 p.m., May-Oct.,

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Food Trust Farmers' Market Schedule

Hot off the presses, the 2010 Food Trust Farmers' Market Schedule for the city and the suburbs. I will be updating this list throughout the summer and fall so be sure to check back periodically.

In Philadelphia

West Oak Lane
Ogontz and 72nd avenues
2 p.m. to 6 p.m.
Opens June 1st.

Broad & South
Broad and South streets
2 p.m. to 7 p.m.
Opens May 26th.

Cliveden Park
Chew Avenue and Johnson Street
2 p.m. to 6 p.m.
Opens June 23rd.

52nd Street and Haverford Avenue
1 p.m. to 5 p.m.
Opens July 7th.

Schuylkill River Park
25th and Spruce streets
3 p.m. to 7 p.m.
Opens May 19th.

Clark Park
43rd Street and Baltimore Avenue
3 p.m. to 7 p.m.
Opens June 3rd.

22nd Street and Fairmount Avenue
3 p.m. to 7 p.m.
Opens May 6th.

Oxford Circle
Oxford and Summerdale Avenues
2 p.m. to 6 p.m.
Opens June 10th.

Palmer Park
Frankford Avenue and East Palmer Street
2 p.m. to 6 p.m.
Opens June 3rd.

Cecil B. Moore
Cecil B. Moore Avenue between Broad Street and Park Walk
2 p.m. to 6 p.m.
Opens mid-June.

Germantown Avenue and Walnut Lane
2 p.m. to 6 p.m.
Opens May 28th.

52nd Street and Haverford Avenue
1 p.m. to 5 p.m.
Opens July 23rd.

Clark Park
43rd Street and Baltimore Avenue
10 a.m. to 2 pm.
Open year round!

Fitler Square
23rd and Pine streets
9 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Open year round!

2nd and Lombard streets
10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Opens May 15th.

Mill Creek
49th and Brown streets
11 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Opens June 26th.

Overbrook Farms
63rd Street between Sherwood Road and Overbrook Avenue
10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Opens May 29th.

2nd and Lombard streets
10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Open May 2nd.

And in the Suburbs 

Swede and Main streets
11 a.m to 5 p.m.
Opens June 3rd.

Fayette and West Hector streets
10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Opens mid-May.

Pine Street between Front and Railroad streets
10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Opens mid-June.

Historic Eastern Market
308 East King Street
9 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Opens May 29th.

Railroad Plaza
Main and Green streets
9 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Opens May 29th.

Lansdowne Avenue Parking Lot
between Baltimore Pike and Stewart Avenue
9 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Opens May 29th.

Bridge Street and Taylor Alley
9 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Open year round!

2203 Second Street Pike (Route 232)
9 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Open May 1st.

West Reading
500 block of Penn Avenue
10 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Opens May 30th.

Monday, April 19, 2010

Awesome Site

Check out this site I found - Food In Real Life. It compares food on the box or advertisement to a picture of what it actually looks like in real life. Take a few minutes to check it out.

Some More "Good News" About the Double Down

KFC's Double Down Sandwich, an in-your-face collection of bacon, cheese and something called Colonel's Sauce betwixt two fried chicken "buns", is making waves for its unapologetic gluttony, compelling reviews out of everyone from the New York Times's Sam Sifton to the Onion's Nathan Rabin. But is it really the caloric monstrosity that it appears?

To get this out of the way: I haven't eaten a Double Down. I probably will. And I'll probably like it. But there are so many much tastier ways to clog your arteries here in New York that it's not high on the priority list.

So instead, let's start with the Double Down's calorie count: 540 calories for the crispy "Original Recipe" version and 460 for a grilled variant. Those seem like big numbers, but by fast food standards, they're pretty mild: the Burger King Chicken Tendercrisp weighs in at 800 calories, for instance, and Jack-in-the-Box's Ranch Chicken Club will set you back 700. Calorie counts for burgers are even higher: 1,320 for a Hardee's Monster Thickburger, and 1,350 for a Wendy's Triple Baconator. Even the humble Big Mac, a lightweight by modern standards, contains 540 calories, exactly the same number as the Double Down.

But calorie counts are overrated. We all need to eat, to the tune of about 2,000 calories per day for a healthy adult. It's not the calories so much as what you do with them. Are you getting a lot of fat, cholesterol, and sodium (bad)? Or lots of fiber and vitamins instead?

Here, the Double Down's credentials are more impressive. Those 540 calories contain 145 milligrams of cholesterol (more than twice that of the Big Mac and about half of the USDA's daily allowance) -- along with 1,380 milligrams of sodium (the USDA recommends no more than 2,400 per day) and 32 grams of fat (65 will keep you slim, says the government). So, for getting only about one-quarter of the calories that you need in a day, you're exhausting about half your budget of "bad stuff".

We can, of course, be a bit more exacting about this. I've created an index based on the amount of fat, sodium and cholesterol that the Double Down and a variety of comparable sandwiches contain as a portion of the USDA daily allowance. (In the fat category, saturated fats are counted double and trans-fats are counted triple.) The index is scaled such that the Original Recipe version of the sandwich receives a score of 1.00, a measure of gluttony that will hereafter be known as The Double Down (DD).**

By this measure, the Double Down is indeed quite unhealthy, but some other sandwiches are just as bad. The Burger King Chicken Tendercrisp (1.00 DDs), which has less cholesterol but more fat and sodium, is comparably unhealthy to the Double Down on balance. The chicken ranch sandwiches from Sonic (0.94 DDs) and Jack-in-the-Box (0.98 DDs) are close. And surprisingly, some sandwiches from "fast casual" restaurants that have a reputation for healthy food do even worse. Panera's Chipotle Chicken checks in at 1.49 DD's -- it has almost 50 percent more bad stuff than the Double Down -- and Boston Market's Chicken Carver at 1.14. So do some products that stretch the definition of "sandwich". A chicken burrito from Chipotle with rice, black beans, cheese and corn salsa will cost you 1.16 Double Downs: load it up with sour cream, guacamole, and picante salsa as well and you're up to 1.69. A pack of five McDonald's Chicken Selects with a side of ranch sauce is worth 1.23 Double Downs.

But it's the burgers that dominate this category, with Wendy's Triple Baconator (2.45 DDs) and Hardee's Moster Thickburger (2.24 DDs) in a league of their own and more than twice as bad-for-you as the Double Down. Even an ordinary Whopper with Cheese (1.10 DDs) is slightly worse than the Double Down.

All of those products, however, contain more -- often substantially more -- calories than does the Double Down. They have lots (and lots and lots) of bad stuff, but some good stuff like protein, iron and fiber as well. Their calories aren't quite so empty, and they damned well ought to leave you full.

So suppose instead that we re-calibrate our metric by dividing by the number of calories that each sandwich contains. This alternate measure, which we'll call Double Downs per Calorie (DDPC), gets at the idea of how bad each product is for you on a bite-by-bite basis.

And here, things don't look very good at all for the Double Down, since for all that crap you're taking in, you're only getting about one-quarter of the calories that you need. On this basis, not only is the Double Down worse for you than any of the chicken products (Chick-Fil-A's Chargrilled Chicken Club, at 0.91 DDPCs, is the next-worst), but also all of the burgers as well -- even the Triple Baconator (0.98 DDPCs) and the infamous Thickburger (0.92 DDPCs). In fact, the only thing that beats than the Original Recipe Double Down is the supposedly healthier grilled Double Down (1.19 DDPCs), which is almost 20 percent worse for you than the signature version on a per-calorie basis.

Things would look even worse for the Double Down if we also punished it for its lack of fiber (the original recipe version has just 1 gram and the grilled version has none) and other nutrients. But fast food restaurants are inconsistent about publishing this information, so it's getting a break.

So, is the Double Down the most gluttonous fast food sandwich ever created? It depends on how you measure it. At the margins, consuming one Double Down almost certainly isn't as bad for you as a Triple Baconator, a Thickburger, or even a fully-loaded Chipotle burrito. But while those products should, in theory, fill you up for at least half the day, the Double Down might leave you hankering for seconds. It's a high bar to clear, but it's the closest thing to pure junk food of any "sandwich" being marketed today.

** To calculate Double Downs for your own favorite sandwich, apply the following formula: divide the number of mg of cholesterol by 469, the number of mg of sodium by 3,754, the number of grams of total fat by 133, the number of grams of saturated fat also by 133, and the number of grams of trans-fat by 66. Then sum the result.

To calculate Double Downs per Calorie (DDPC), take the above result, divide by the number of calories, and multiply by 540.