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Christopher Hutsul is an illustrator, cartoonist, commercial director and storyteller extraordinaire. His studio is located in the heart of Kensington Market in Toronto, a bohemian melting pot of culinary finds. From time to time, Chris will report back from the area on the obscure, the classics and the downright mysterious.

“It looks like a dirty diaper.”

I was leaning against a brick wall, snacking on a beef patty when I heard a stranger say it. He’d just stepped out of Patty King (187 Baldwin Street) and was staring dubiously into a wax bag. Interest piqued, and I took a dubious look of my own.

The man had ordered a Double – a small but hearty snack consisting of a sloppy dollop of spicy curried chickpeas between two fried doughy yellow flaps. It happens to one of my all-time favourite snacks.

My studio is in the heart of Kensington Market, so I have a world of snack choices to pick from. But few satisfy like the simple Double. It’s too small to be a meal on its own, so I usually eat mine around 4pm in anticipation of a late dinner.

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Though it’s a vegetarian snack, the Double leaves me feeling like I just ate meat, which I like. Falafels have the same effect. I suppose chickpeas are good for that.

The nice lady behind the counter at Patty King told me the Double is a popular street food snack in Trinidad where they tend to be spicier and are served with tamarind sauce. I told her I’d pay a little extra for some tamarind sauce. She chuckled, but I was serious. God knows I can afford it. That’s the great thing about Doubles, They’re so cheap, clocking in at a cool $1.40. The lady also told me a few people complained when they raised the price from $1.25 last year, but c’mon, it’s still a hell of a deal for a warm snack that’s made fresh on-site.

The other awesome thing about the Double is its name, which manages to be both a literal and inaccurate description. While it does consist of two bready shells, the snack is quite clearly a “single” body of food. By this naming logic, a bagel sandwich should too be called a Double. So if you went to Tim Horton’s for breakfast, one might be heard ordering a “Double-Double and a Double.”

But as much fun as it is to call your snack a Double, it’s even more fun to call it a “Dirty Diaper,” which is what I’ve done since I overheard it a few weeks ago. Not only does it look (alarmingly) like a spent Huggie, it also feels like one: weighty, loose, warm but not hot. It’s not so much placed in the bag as it is plopped. Or kerplunked. But don’t let that discourage you from trying one. It might not look and feel savory, but it most definitely is.

Patty King / 187 Baldwin St Toronto / 416 977 3191

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