The body burns calories at night when sleeping but just not at the same level.
The eating at night thing is a crock basically. To me it's conditional not absolute.
If you think about it, Carbs can potentially help you to sleep and amino acids like Tryptophan and Phenylalanine, induce hypothalamic responses, relating to mood hormone release and Argininr induses Nitric oxide production increasing vasodilation and therefore potentially providing the brain with more oxygen flow.
So having something like a Ham sandwich or a Low Fat Yoghurt could be good, not least for the muscle sparing actions of the protein and the Carbs inducing Insulin production, to aid the Protein synthesis, as around 40% of Protein is converted to Glycogen.
The problem is that there is a big discrepancy, between a something like a Ski Yoghurt pot and a Big Mac Meal. Eat one of either, about 30-60 minutes before bed on a regular basis and the effects on fat levels, both subcutaneous and viscerol, is going to be significantly different.
Ultimately it's not about eating nothing before bed, its about moderating what you eat if you do and making sure the calories are not excessive and the levels of bad fat and Sugar are minimal