Kraft Dinner should be cooked in boiling water for seven minutes. Lightly salt the water just after it boils. After exactly seven minutes have passed, drain the water. Add about 2/3's of a tablespoon of margarine. Not butter. Margarine. Then add the cheese sauce. Finally, pour some milk in. Don't measure it. Pour it in. No, that's too much. Just enough so that you get it right. Now eat it right out of the freakin pot.

Happy Canada Day.

I contend that Kraft Dinner and Guinness are all that's needed to satisfy your nutritional requirements.

The former costs a dollar a day and the latter 5 dollars a hit1.

Kraft Dinner came about in 1937, when Kraft, trying to follow up on its success with processed cheese singles, marketed a new type of cheese. It was ostensibly cheddar, but dehydrated and powdered. It didn't sell very well, until a couple of stores in St. Louis Missouri got the idea of tying the packets together with boxes of noodles. This package deal caught on, and somebody at Kraft noticed. Thus was born Kraft Dinner. Kraft began packaging them together in-house, selling them as "Kraft Macaroni and Cheese Dinner" with the slogan "Make a meal for 4 in 9 minutes". Of course, here in Canada, we keep the original name intact. Or, if you look in the back, you can buy it as "Dîner Kraft".

Various other companies also make clones (Katelli comes to mind), but none can match the neon orange goodness of the original Kraft version.

It has become a staple for starving college students across North America, due to its price (89 cents Canadian per box, which will last a student all day, or longer) and the fact that it is easy to prepare and clean up (all you need is a pot and a fork... and they can both be re-used with only a quick swipe with a wet cloth).

While available in the US (as the aforementioned "Kraft Macaroni and Cheese Dinner"), it is most popular in Canada, where with over 100 million boxes sold every year, it is the number 1 ranked grocery item in the country. It is somewhat of an institution in Canada, with mothers often sending boxes to sons and daughters going to school overseas, living in inhospitable climes where Kraft Dinner is not always available.

(Of course, Kraft Dinner is not the only Kraft product that is a better seller in some markets than others).

It is thus appropriate that another Canadian institution has glorified Kraft Dinner. The rock group Barenaked Ladies, in their song If I Had A Million Dollars claims that if they had a million dollars, they wouldn't have to eat Kraft Dinner. But, they conclude, of course, they would still eat Kraft Dinner... they'd just eat more. Such is the overwhelming draw of this incredible food.

They go on to mention that they would buy all sorts of fancy ketchup brands (catsup to some Americans) to put on their Kraft Dinner. Unfortunately, this is a sad fact of life. Millions of people worldwide insist on putting ketchup on their Kraft Dinner, defiling the purity of the dish and marring the holy orange colour with rivers of red. Of course, these people are heretics (and I can say this because I used to be one of them until I realized the error of my ways).

Throughout time, Kraft has sold Kraft Dinner under under various promotions. For a long time, they printed collectible hockey cards on the side of the boxes. My brother has stacks and stacks and stacks of these hidden away. Some of the promotions have affected the noodles themselves; I remember when the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles were all the rage, it was possible to buy boxes of Kraft Dinner where the noodles were shaped like the aforementioned turtles. While this is truly shocking, it is only a minor transgression and due to its temporary nature, can be forgiven. Much more disturbing are more recent developments. On trips to the supermarket lately, I have noticed that standing alongside the stalwart Kraft Dinner boxes, are impostors! "Kraft Dinner Spirals". "Kraft Dinner Light". "Mini Kraft Dinner". GASP! "Microwaveable Kraft Dinner". And worst of all, the venerable Kraft Dinner has been relegated to the embarrasing position of "Kraft Dinner Original".


I pledge to you, my friends. I will not rest until these unthinkable wrongs have been righted.

1In Canadian Dollars, as of the Turn of the Century.

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