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Thursday, January 6, 2022

Trader Joe's Vegan Thai Green Curry

Well here's something I definitely can't heat in the air fryer. Looks like a tasty, convenient, work-friendly microwave meal, and fortunately, I have a hankerin' for some Thai today. Let's dive in.

Like I mentioned, this is a microwavable meal. No other heating options are given. And for the second time in a row, I'm looking at a product that took LESS time to heat than was suggested on the packaging. The instructions say to heat for 3 minutes, then stir, and then heat for 2-3 more minutes. At about the 5 minute mark, the product began to boil over the side of the tray and onto the microwave carousel lazy Susan thing. Our microwave is filthy at the moment. Will the wife even notice if I leave a few little pools of green curry in there?

The tray easily bends in the middle in case you want to try to simply fold the curry compartment onto the rice compartment. I was wary of spillage, so I mostly just flicked the curry over with my fork. Or you could be fancy and put the whole thing in an Asian-style bowl, of course.

It's a tasty product, for sure. If there's any difference between the curry they used here and the epic Thai Green Curry Simmer Sauce, neither Sonia nor I could detect it, flavor-wise, although I think this curry was a tad thinner in texture.

Swimming around in the curry were carrots, eggplant chunks, and tofu sheets. The tofu "sheets" are more like wads of tofu by the time they're heated, transferred to the rice, and scooped up by a fork or spoon. I've never tried tofu in this format before. It yields a less chewy texture by virtue of its thinness. I'm fine with it this way, while Sonia prefers tofu cubes. The veggies weren't chewy or rubbery or anything, so we were good with those, too.

99% of the flavor of this dish is coming from the curry. That's not a bad thing, because it's an outstanding complex, coconutty, salty, spicy, savory flavor. At $3.99 for the single serving, Sonia thinks it would be much wiser to grab a jar of the curry itself for half the price, heat up your own rice, and mix in whatever veggies or additions you choose. You're absolutely paying for the convenience factor here. Guess we can't punish it too harshly for that since that's apparently what TJ's is going for. You'll find it in the frozen section. Vegan.

So...something like three and a half stars a piece on this product.

Bottom line: 7 out of 10.

1 comment:

  1. I must respectfully (really, no snark, usernym notwithstanding) disagree.
    I give this product 4.5 stars [out of 5; ie, 9 out of 10], and the only reason I'm not going for 5 is that I wish each carton had a bigger serving; one is enough only to (as Ulysses Everett McGill said about "one third of a gopher" in "O, Brother, Where Art Thou") arouse my appetite without bedding it down.
    I'm in love with this dish -- the sauce is rich, subtle, warmly spicy without being overwhelmingly hot, and plentiful, and the veggies are firm and fresh-tasting. Real Jasmine rice.
    My points of comparison are:
    Amy's Thai Green Curry -- which I also love, and have been largely living on for the past few years, but this is two notches better
    the green curries that used to be served at Khao Sarn Cuisine in Brookline, MA, before they closed -- a superlative and apparently (I'm told by people in a position to know) highly authentic Thai place.
    And, of course, affirmation:
    I have no affiliation with Trader Joe's; any suppliers, distributors, or marketers thereof; or anyone in the grocery or food-service fields; and I am not compensated in any way for rec's like this.
    Just a fan.


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