Sweet and Savoury Collection Celebrates Anniversary with More Than 50 Fan Contributed Recipes
Marking 85 years since the Twinkie danced onto America’s sweet stage destined for snack cake superstardom, Hostess Brands has introduced The Twinkies Cookbook, Twinkies 85th Anniversary Edition – a sweet and savoury collection featuring more than 50 recipes created by Twinkie aficionados and notable chefs throughout the country. Published by Ten Speed Press, a division of Random House, the cookbook’s colourful concoctions range from the wonderfully wacky – Twinkling Turkey – to the sublime – Deep-Fried Bacon-Wrapped Chocolate-Covered Twinkies and Chicken & Winkies – and everything in between.
“We thank the legions of fans who made their voices heard to pave the way for the return of the iconic Hostess brand and especially those who channelled their creativity and culinary wizardry to make this cookbook possible.”
The book debuts two years after Hostess Brands mounted “The Sweetest Comeback in the History of Ever,” returning to store shelves from the brink of extinction following a groundswell of fans determined not to let their beloved Twinkie twinkle off into the sunset.
“Hostess is a brand rooted in innovation – and nowhere is that spirit more embodied than in the Twinkie, the crème filled, sponge cake sensation that has set the gold standard for snack cakes for 85 years,” said Ellen Copaken, Senior Director of Marketing at Hostess Brands. “We thank the legions of fans who made their voices heard to pave the way for the return of the iconic Hostess brand and especially those who channelled their creativity and culinary wizardry to make this cookbook possible.”
Hostess shut down all of its plants after filling for bankruptcy in 2012. The Schiller Park bakery reopened in 2013, after private equity firms Apollo Global Management (APO) and Metropoulos & Co., paid $410 million for the Hostess brands, paving the way for the return of Twinkies returned to store shelves in 2013.
The remarkably colourful history of the Twinkie dates back to early 1930. Hoovervilles were sprouting from state to state, the Chrysler Building neared completion in New York and bakery manager James A. Dewar was embarking on the “best darn-tootin’ idea” he ever had. Ten years after starting his career driving a horse-drawn pound cake wagon for the Continental Baking Company outside Chicago, Dewar was at the frontier of almost unimaginable fame. Continental was looking for a new, inexpensive product that would appeal to frugal consumers in the tight economy. Why not use the company’s stockpile of shortcake pans to create a treat that could be sold year-round? Dewar thought.
Blending a dry mix of necessity, practicality, and ingenuity, he whipped up the celebrated recipe by injecting smooth and creamy banana filling into the oblong golden finger cakes. Unlike strawberries, which were only in season for six weeks during the summer, bananas were readily available year-round.
As for the name, a St. Louis billboard advertising “Twinkle Toe Shoes” provided all the inspiration Dewar needed. He was quoted as saying he “shortened it to make it a little zippier for the kids.” Dewar’s new two-for-a-nickel treat was an instant hit.
Today, nearly half a billion Twinkies are sold each year, while it takes 10 minutes to bake a Twinkie – which was invented in 1930 by James Dewar. It takes seven minutes to make the Patriotic Twinkie Pie recipe in the original Twinkies Cookbook, while 121 is the number of Twinkies eaten in six minutes by Major League Eating’s top-ranked eater, Joey “Jaws” Chestnut. Today, Hostess has 1,113,353 likes on Facebook.
The introduction of The Twinkies Cookbook, Twinkies 85th Anniversary Edition comes on the heels of a Hostess-sponsored summer promotion that celebrates the Minions movie in theatres now. The “Ultimate Twinkie Minion Sweepstakes” invites consumers to take a Twinkie Minion selfie for a chance to win a trip to Paris. In addition to the promotion, Hostess has introduced limited-edition Minion Decoration Kits, available in both Classic and Banana flavors. Each kit contains 16 Twinkies and four sheets of edible Minions stickers, allowing fans to create their own Minion masterpiece.