Wednesday, May 3, 2017

Trader Giotto's Misto Alla Griglia

A couple things about this product mystify me. The first is the defrosting instructions. They say to defrost from frozen at room temperature for two hours, and then to serve. I'm not sure if we just keep our home a little on the chilly side, but after two hours, these vegetables were still very much on the cold side of room temperature. Even at the two and a half hour mark, they still wanted to crunch a little from the ice crystals left within them. 

Another thing I don't get is that they recommend serving these at room temperature in the first place, rather than hot. After having tried them both ways, I still greatly prefer them heated—while Sonia preferred them as the instructions specified.

Sonia thought maybe that heating them in the microwave would be detrimental to their texture—that they might get more leathery or chewy in the microwave. And while I wasn't a fan of this product's texture in either case, I must admit the veggies, most notably the eggplant and zucchini, were slightly less chewy when not heated in the microwave. But something about eating them hot, particularly when served with pasta, made them just barely palatable. My gag reflex wanted to kick in when attempting to consume them lukewarm or cold.

The best thing about this product was the marinade of vinegar, oil, and spice, which gave the mixture a nice savory flavor and enhanced the natural flavors of the grilled vegetables. When eaten with pasta, the herby tang of the misto alla griglia spread out beyond the vegetables and served as a nice subtle dressing for our linguini noodles as well. No other sauce was needed—although we did throw in a bit of the 21 Seasoning Salute.

But still, I preferred each bite to contain very small bites of the veggies and plenty of pasta, because otherwise I found the texture unbearable.

There's always the possibility that we got a bad bag and that your eggplant and zucchini will simply melt in your mouth. We've already seen eggplant from Trader Joe's go both ways. Click here for a big eggplant win, or here for a big eggplant fail. At $3.99 for the bag, Sonia thinks it might be just as cost effective to buy and grill your own vegetables. Of course, it would be a bit more work, but grilling your own eggplant, zucchini, and peppers might be more fun than thawing this nonsense for a full day in your fridge or half a day on your counter and still not knowing if it's the right temperature. I'm pretty sure this won't be a repeat buy for us.

Three stars from Sonia. Two and a half from me.

Bottom line: 5.5 out of 10.


  1. they just don't look appealing

  2. I've found that many of TJ microwave options to better on stovetop (meats, lentils) or in the oven (veg).

  3. I love these grilled veggies. I also thought it was strange for the instructions to suggest serving them cold. I heat them up in a super, super hot nonstick skillet and I let them get a little well done before turn them over. I put them in a bowl with brown rice and it makes a wonderful, flavorful vegetable rice bowl

  4. OMG I wish I had read this review before trying these! "Leathery" is an understatement!

    1. Hey, my maiden name is Mansfield and my mom and sister have the middle name Jane. Where are you from?

  5. OMG... Why would anyone nuke food instead of heating up in a skillet, oven, or grill? These are delicious skillet-heated as a side to steak or chicken. Low carb, keto friendly, and easy.

  6. heating them up any other way besides skillet and maybe oven makes no sense