Hello. My name's Nathan, and I love Trader Joe's. My wife Sonia does too. She's a great shopper, has excellent taste and knows good value when she comes across it. As many of you know, Trader Joe's is unsurpassed in the world of good-value grocery stores, so we spend a lot of our time and money there. Although the store fairly consistently delivers great taste with its own unique line of food products, there are definitely some big-hits, and unfortunately, there are some misses...

After doing a couple of internet searches for reviews of TJ's food items, Sonia discerned an apparent dearth of good, quality reviews for the store's offerings. So, at her suggestion, we decided to embark on a journey of systematically reviewing every Trader Joe's product, resulting in the blog you are about to read...

A couple of months into our Trader Joe's rating adventure, an old college friend, Russ, who unbeknownst to me had been following our TJ's blog, decided that I had been slacking in my blogging duties (which, of course, I was) so he decided to contribute his own original TJ's reviews to the blog, thus enhancing it, making it more complete and adding to it a flavor of his own. He and his wife Sandy are also avid TJ's fans and, as you will soon discover, he is an excellent writer and is nearly as clever, witty and humble as I am.

Seriously though, Russ: You go, boy!

So here it is: "What's Good at Trader Joe's?"

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Tuesday, September 6, 2016

Trader Joe's Semi-Dried Green Figs

There's really not a whole lot to Trader Joe's Semi-Dried Green Figs. Nothing added or subtracted, but simply a fig, partially dried, and frozen. That's it. That could be the end of the review pretty much right there. But that's not how we roll...because while they do "taste...similar to fresh fruit" they do feel a little different. Had to leave out the "amazingly" because that's a bit too strong of a statement.

Anyways, if you're already familiar with their tried and true semi-dried formula first tested out on apricots, you can expect something similar here.  Those particular fruity tidbits have become a family snacktime favorite around here for 75% of our clan - I don't care about them one way or another, but Sandy, and particularly the kids, can polish off a bag for lunch. In fact, it was those apricots we were looking for when we found the figs and figured to assess them instead.

For taste...yes,  a fig. What we you expecting, a rutabaga? Tastes like a fig. The feel, though? I'm a dried fig aficianado - everytime we go to Costco I need to get me a bag, it lasts me maybe 10 days. I'd say these are much more similar to fresh figs, except I had those recently...too soft, too fleshy, too wiggly, too...I don't even know the word. That was another Costco purchase, and we made our way through the Montana-sized package, but with much less gusto. So I guess these fall fairly squarely in the middle. There's not the tough, chewy, fibrous bite of dried, but not the super soft mouthfeel of fresh. The seeds maintain their crispy qualities as well for a nice textural variant.

Sandy prefers these semi-dried guys straight from the freezer, because she's a little odd, but even when thawed a bit they retain a lot of their middlin' qualities. The kids seem to like them to, maybe not as much as the apricots, but their little chompers have less work to do than with dried, and I couldn't get them (or Sandy) to eat their fair share of fresh. Not a bad purchase for $2.99, we bought two bags and will happily finish them and likely go back for more.

Bottom line: Trader Joe's Semi Dried Green Figs: 7.5 out of 10 Golden Spoons


  1. I really love these in a basic smoothie with plain yogurt, a bit of honey and almond butter.

    Fresh figs I really like better roasted- just split in half and dribble with a little olive oil and salt, bake at 400 for 20min, add a bit of basalmic just before serving. It gives them a chewy texture and intensifies the flavor. Great mixed into a rice pilaf with sliced almonds or ontop of a salad

    1. Unknown: you've got my taste buds going. I like your ideas.