Alisa Fleming ~ After realizing that my once relaxing grocery shopping trips had turned into quick in and out visits, I decided to slow up the pace a bit, and enjoy the scenery. It seems I became caught up in the hurried pace of life. Thankfully, I am now back to perusing the aisles for new and interesting foods.
My most recent target has been Trader Joe’s. I was amazed at the number of foods, which had suddenly appeared, and have spent the last few weeks trialing several of them. Unfortunately, I was a bit dismayed by the quality of some of their offerings. Most of the new samplings have just been okay. The veggie bisque was over-sweetened, the chicken ravioli bordered on bread crumbs in pasta, and though I have become a regular customer of the gluten-free brown rice tortillas, they certainly aren’t award winning.
Nonetheless, I have discovered two gems, which will be making many repeat appearances in our cupboards:
The first is their Raw Almond Butter. I know, it isn’t a new concept, but this stuff is great and insanely priced. Peanut butter has been a staple in our house for years, offering some creamy indulgence in cooking, extra flavor and glue in baking, and a nice spread on toast or rice cakes. But honestly, I was getting bored. I just couldn’t choke down the $10 to $15 a jar to purchase the “fancier” nut butters. When I discovered almond butter at Trader Joe’s for just $6, and then saw the raw version, I was excited to say the least. Full of little almond bits, and a rich creamy flavor, this is my personal favorite from Trader Joe’s. The light sweetness makes it a great spread sans honey.
The second is their (new?) Mint Creams. The main reason I like them, is because my husband loves them, and I don’t have to hear him whine about looking for sugar when these are in the house. Of course, I think they are pretty tasty too. Like mini dark chocolate bon bons (well, it is more of a semi-sweet) with a creamy mint filling. Two thumbs up!