FOOD REVIEWS

From homemade holiday cookies to exotic meats in Kenya, we love eating adventures. And, of course, there is our annual trip to mecca (otherwise known as the Gourmet Food Show). Don't miss our musings on the foods we eat!


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The Search For The Yummiest and/or Healthiest Chips

Maybe it's because I love to snack, or maybe it's because my honey and I go to the Fancy Food Show every year, or maybe it's because of my obsession with getting Love With Food subscription boxes.

Whatever the reason, I love tasting and discovering new chips and snacks.

Because I have such good taste and refined taste buds (lol), I'm going to help you make it easier finding new and yummy chips.  

I also have included "by the numbers", so you know saturated fat, cholesterol, sodium, fiber, protein. I'm skipping calories because, really, counting calories is NOT about eating healthy. So I'm bucking the system.

Below I have thress categories: My Healthy Faves (taste good AND are reasonably healthy), So So (not a fan of the flavor) and Love Only Sometimes (taste yummy but rank low on the healthy scale). Let's get munching! 

SO SO

Avo Crazy Snacks - This is an avocado puff
I love the idea of these because I love avocados. Even before avocados became "a thing", I was eating them so it's a love affair for me. But not so much with these. I like that they are puffs (puffs are one of my fave kind of snacks), but the flavor isn't memorable and - to me - they are too salty tasting. 
The numbers: 
saturated fat 3%
cholesterol 0%
sodium 13%
fiber 0%
protein 1g

Cassasva Tortilla Chips: Siete Grain Free Tortilla Chips and From The Group Up Butternut Squash Tortilla Chips
I'm a big fan of tortilla chips - I'll take them over a potato chip any day. I love Siete's family story (the whole family went grain free when one of the kids had a health condition) and I love From the Ground Up's attempt at adding butternut squash into a chip, but unless I was forced into buying a no grain product, I don't think I'd buy these. The health benefits just don't outweigh the lack of flavor.
They both weigh in with these numbers: 
saturated fat 5%
cholesterol 0%
sodium 7%
fiber 10-11%
protein 1g
gluten free - yes
dairy free - yes

LOVE ONLY SOMETIMES
 
Whisps Cheese Crisps
There isn't a cheese crisp I've met that I didn't like. All brands. All flavors. Besides ranking high on yumminess, they tout a good amount of protein and they're gluten-free. But the fun stops there. Still, they are so good that I do indulge occasionally as a treat!
The numbers: 
saturated fat 45%
cholesterol 13%
sodium 10%
fiber 0%
protein 10g
gluten free - yes
dairy free - no

Country Archer Grass-Fed Beef Jerky
Ok, so this isn't a chip, but I'd snack on it the way I would with a chip. And, let me note, this jerky is somewhat controversial. The reason a lot of people don't like it is the reason I do like it: the jerky is tender. I'm not a fan of dry, tough meat so jerky isn't "my jam", but this jerky is tender with good flavorings. I try to avoid cholesterol, so I wouldn't snack on it regularly, but it's nice occasionally.
The numbers: 
saturated fat 0%
cholesterol 8%
sodium 9%
fiber 0%
protein 10g
gluten free - yes
dairy free - yes


Posted in snack foods | View Post
snack foods chips

One of My Favorite Chips: Lundberg

If you want a chip that isn't made from wheat (gluten), corn (GMO), or isn't chock full of chemically-sounding ingredients, try organic, non-GMO, whole grain, gluten free Lundberg chips. As part of the Sustainable Food Trade Association, this is a family-owned and operated business. So when you eat their products, you can feel good that you're supporting an eco-friendly organization committed to sustainability.

Of course, non of that matters if the chips don't taste good! Thankfully, that's not the case here: we LOVE them. They are made from a variety of whole grain, such as red rice, quinoa and brown rice, which makes them really crunchy. Add onto that the great selection of flavors including Cinnamon Sugar, Aged White Cheddar, and Sea Salt Rice Chips. Give them a try, we think you'll like them!











Posted in snack foods | View Post
lemongrass and blueberry tea

Teas Tea lemongrass tea and blueberry teaTeas' Tea Lemongrass Tea and Blueberry Tea with Pomegranate

I am a dedicated tea drinker and rarely a day goes by that I don't have a cup of tea. Most days I have several! The habit started long ago when I was in my 20's, inherited from my dad who also drinks tea daily. In my first job, I relished (especially working in a freezing air conditioned office) my hot cup of black tea with sugar. But as I got older and my quest for being healthy grew, I switched to mostly herbal teas and ditched the sugars. 

As such, I have always made my own tea, often filling my stainless steel bottle with my flavor of the day. I've never wanted to buy bottled tea except for the occasional stop at a gas station. Mostly this is because I don't care for the sugary sweet flavor of Mr. Lipton and such. However, at this year's Jan 2020 Fancy Food Show, I got a couple of sample bottles of Teas' Tea: lemongrass tea and blueberry tea. And I love it! Here's why: they've ditched all (or at least most of) the sugar and brewed some flavorful, decent bottles of tea. 

My first taste of Teas Tea was their Lemongrass Green Tea. I've been fascinated with lemongrass ever since my trip to Vietnam a few years ago, but consistently when I try a "lemongrass" tea, I can't even tell it's in there. So, imagine my surprise when, instead of the insipid flavor often experienced, it has a distinct taste of lemongrass that I find absolutely delightful. Furthermore - and my favorite part - the tea is unsweetened! I also tried their "slightly sweet" Pomegranate Blueberry Green Tea. Usually not a fan of fruit teas or blueberry tea because they tend to be sickeningly sweet, I enjoyed this slightly sweet version with just the right amount of fruit flavoring. 

In short, if you're looking for a bottled, ready-made tea, I recommend this. And please recycle your plastic (the only thing I DON'T like about this tea is the plastic bottle)!!


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Posted in tea | View Post
best ice cream is jenis

Best Ice Cream at San Francisco Food Show

I confess it. I am an ice cream snob. As a kid, I was spoiled in the beginning by the amazing custard sold at this Washington D.C. institution. I see I'm not the only one with memories (read this!) of the creamy, delicious custard and the famous giant polar bears outside. 



I know what you're thinking ... wow! She grew up with the Model T. LOL ... this was the only photo I could find of the place during the 40's, but it was around a really long time after this photo was taken.

In any case, I graduated to Breyers. Not the yukky Breyers you get now which is an "ice cream dessert", but good old fashioned Breyers. There is ONLY ONE original Breyers flavor that they still make and it is STILL delicious: Breyer Natural Vanilla.

Also, second to none is Baskin Robbins Pralines and Cream. Maybe it's the southern girl in me, but pralines in ice cream is amazing. Yum.

And that's it. Those are pretty much the only ice creams that get me jazzed. Until now.

Meet Jenis ice cream - my FAVORITE vendor at the San Francisco gourmet food show.

What's not to like? Fresh, real ingredients, like Breyers used to be in the old days. Not all full of oil, pectin, corn syrup and "natural flavorings" in other brands. 

Seriously, I could rave for a really long time about this stuff. I kept going back to the booth getting sample spoonfuls. EVERY flavor was amazing. It is sooooooooo good.

And they sell an array of AMAZING flavors:
Bangkok Peanut
Juniper & Lemon Curd (my favorite, SO WONDERFUL, out of this world!)
Queen City Cayenne 
Gooey Butter Cake
and lots more!


You can order it online or find a store nearby.
And, last but not least, being the enviro-friendly crazy that I am, I LOVE that they send you a label to return the styrofoam container  - and they pay the cost. What's not to love?


 

Posted in desert | 1 Comment(s)
san francisco gourmet food show

2017 Trends at San Francisco Fancy Food Show

Are you a foodie? We are ... and we've just made our annual trek to the San Francisco Gourmet Food Show!

After scouring the show, here are some of the trends we're seeing:

Sriracha - Wow! Saw a lot of chips, crackers, candy and other foods flavored with Sriracha. It's definitely become quite popular! Even so, while I like it here and there, I'm not a big fan, so I don't have any amazing finds on this category.

Honey - There were quite a few honey companies. For me the problem is each bottle of honey I buy takes about 10 years to use (lol) so it's just not a product I get excited about. That said, I find the variety of flavor fascinating and would love to be a bit more of a honey connoisseur.

The Standards - There are always massive amounts of popcorn and chip companies (bean, potatoes, quinoa, etc, etc.). We'll be doing some tasting on what we brought home and will let you know if there are any winners.


Posted in trends | View Post
chimes toasted coffee toffee candy

Hard Candy I Actually Like:
Chimes Toasted Coconut Toffee

Let's kick off the year with some candy! Hey, you say you've had enough of late with the holidays? These are handy for withdrawals -- when you want a little bit of sweet without eating another big portion of pie.

These hard candies remind me of a healthier version of Werther's Caramel Hard Candies. They are a few less calories than Werther's, but beyond that they are gluten free (Werther's has wheat in them) and are made with coconut milk instead of cream. They are also vegan! 

I gotta say they are pretty yummy! I especially love the "sweet and salty" effect of the bit of sea salt added. Order them from Amazon and you even get free shipping!
Get Chimes Toasted Coconut Toffee!




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