Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Trader Joe's Meals

I've had a few Trader Joe products recently. Here's the scoop.
Trader Joe's Rice & Vegetable Bento Box

First up, TJ's Rice and Vegetable Bento Box. It looked fascinating on the cover and I'd never had a bento box before. Just based on the image, my only lament was there were three rices, and I wanted at least one of those to be noodles. As far as reviews of the actual taste, eh, I was not really a fan. I probably wouldn't get this again. I don't know if it was because it just plain sucked or if the items are just not to my personal taste. For example, several of the ingredients were mushroroms, pumpkin, and eggplant, of which I like none. 

Trader Joe's Rice & Vegetable Bento Box, Cooked

Here's what the Bento Box included (left to right, top row to bottom row): Pumpkin with Shiso Seasoning, Spicy Long Beans, Eggplant with Miso Paste, Soba Salad with Oyster Mushrooms, Shitake Mushroom with Edamame and Carrot, Baked Tofu with Teriyaki Sauce, Brown Rice with Seaweed & Sesame Seed, Curry Flavored Brown Rice, and Teriyaki Flavored Brown Rice with Vegetables.

Trader Joe's Masala Dosa

I also tried Trader Joe's Masala Dosa. I am a big fan of masala dosa in general. I love the potatoes, corriander, chiles, and crepes. Mmmm. These were pretty good. I'd totally get them again. This one came with coconut chutney sauce, which I am just as content to ignore. I'm just not into the chutneys.
Trader Joe's Masala Dosa, cooked up with the chunky coconut chutney

And lastly, I tried my first ever green papaya salad. It was quite an interesting taste. Fresh and crisp with some spice. I did NOT eat the red peppers you can see there at the bottom. It's my general M.O. to avoid whole peppers, though I will eat them crushed up and in things. But I've been burned before. Pun intended. Haha. Anyway, this was a decent little salad. And particularly handy, because you keep it frozen until you are ready to eat it. I'd eat this again. But really, what I'd rather do, is go somewhere I can order this dish fresh. I know Fresh Mint serves this...

Green Papaya Salad

Before I go, I just wanted to mention the new Trader Joe's cookbook. Cooking With Trader Joe's: Skinny Dish is reportedly a vegan cookbook, though it doesn't state such in any of the advertising. But the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine indicated that it is. Which is great and it sounds promising. It just came out, so someone needs to procure one and report back on the recipes.

Cooking with Trader Joe's Cookbook: Skinny Dish

Trader Joe's Rice & Vegetable Bento Box
Rating: **

Trader Joe's Masala Dosa
Rating: ***1/2

Trader Joe's Green Papaya Salad
Rating: ***

***** awesome! Highly recommended.
**** hey, this is pretty dang good.
*** not bad at all.
** eh.
* bad. Keep looking for alternatives.

[Obviously, these are only found at Trader Joe's. And the products they carry tend to be seasonal and random, so you never know if your item will be in stock, though some products tend to be regulars. In other words, shop at your own risk.}


Carrie said...

Yay Trader Joe's!

I had foot surgery 6 weeks ago and my husband went to TJs and bought a bunch of the frozen meals for me since I couldn't really cook (he liked that he could just look for the "V" and know it was okay for me to eat). I really liked the dosas, I think they were my favourite! The panang curry was pretty tasty, too.

Kenike said...

Oh wow. I can imagine how helpful that would be. I always have a few days when I need some meals for lunch at work, and many of these do in a pinch.

I also love the "V", makes life so much easier than trying to decipher ingredients lists!