Monday, April 14, 2014
Trader Joe's Roasted Butternut Squash, Red Quinoa and Wheatberry Salad
I'm changing my ways, though. These days, I'm a semi-regular salad sneaker. If there's not enough leftovers for lunch and I have the time in the morning, it's not uncommon for me to run over to TJ's to see what's there. I've had some decent ones, and while I still miss my favorite of all time, the $4 or so I drop on them are very rarely ill spent. Want a good way to help drop 40 pounds? That won't do it all, but it'll point you in the right direction.
Well, it sure is. There's a lot that goes into this particular salad. There's squash. And quinoa. And wheatberries. And arugula. And cranberries. And toasted almonds. And goat cheese. And a host of other stuff, all topped with honey sesame vinaigrette. It's everything except the ampersand. I'd think it'd be hard to pull off a cohesive-tasting salad with all of that in there, but in actuality, almost all of it tastes like it belongs. This was my first experience with wheatberries, which kinda taste how they look (like soft, chewy popcorn kernels, except wheat-y), which I took a few bites to warm up to, but by the end was pretty happy with them. Between those and the quinoa, there's a lot to help fill you up, and the almonds add a great little occasional crunch to the mix. All ingredients were pretty fresh, which isn't always the case with prepackaged salads, of course. Also, not all of the dressing is really needed - I put maybe half on and was pretty happy with the coverage,
they need to learn that lesson. I would have voted out the rosemary and cranberries, but asked for a little more sesame in the dressing.
Regardless, while I may dabble in some other salads before hitting up this particular jumble again, I am almost certain to make it a repeat buy, despite the ribbing from the guys at my lunch table. At least we started a scintillating conversation about ancient grains that lasted like 30 seconds before going back to sportssportssports as usual. Though I'm not exactly sure if anything here really is an ancient grain...meh. Since I snuck this without the wife's knowledge, we're going strictly on my score here. All in all, not a bad pick-up.
Bottom line: Trader Joe's Roasted Butternut Squash, Red Quinoa and Wheatberry Salad: 7 out of 10 Golden Spoons