Thursday, September 29, 2011

Sophie's Kitchen Breaded Vegan Shrimp

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Believe it or not, Sophie's Kitchen Breaded Vegan Shrimp is not the first vegetarian shrimp product that I've had. I think the tricky thing with fake shrimp products is the texture. Shrimp has that weird texture naturally that is difficult to imitate. I'm not sure that any fake shrimp product can ever come close to the real thing. But Sophie's Kitchen Breaded Vegan Shrimp is an interesting attempt at an dairy-free and soy-free imitation shrimp. This is made in Taiwan (yay!) with konjac. For those who are not familiar with konjac, it is a starchy root that solidifies into choking hazard jelly that ends up in various sweet tea and fruit drinks. It has a slightly crunchy texture that is just a bit firmer than jello. In Taiwan, konjac gets turned into various different kinds of fake seafood, including fake sashimi (of all the things that you think would be impossible to imitate...).

The jelly texture is really not similar to shrimp at all, but once the clever folks at Sophie's Kitchen breaded these crescent shaped konjac jelly, you don't notice the difference in texture as much. That said, no one can really confuse this with the real deal. But in the end, I didn't really mind them, especially after dipping them into cocktail sauce. As for the taste, you guessed it, it didn't taste like shrimp... or much of anything else for that matter.

Taste: 1 out of 5 stars
Texture: 2.5 out of 5 stars
Overall: 2 out of 5 stars

In A Nut Shell: It doesn't get high marks for similarity to real shrimp, but it didn't taste bad. I rather enjoyed it, actually. But I definitely wouldn't mistake it for real shrimp, which I'm sure is a good thing to some vegetarians out there.

Our Bounty

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Remember a long time ago, we planted some tomatoes? Well, we finally have some fruit to show for it. And they are good lookin'! These are called pineapple heirloom tomatoes and they come in vibrant yellow and orange. We still have a couple on the vine (and one got stolen... it looked that good!) but this is the bulk of our bounty. Oh yeah, a couple of green zebras snuck in there.

Look at the pretty colors! I kept this really simple. Whole wheat pasta tossed with gently cooked tomato, some garlic, red pepper flakes, salt, sugar and chopped parsley. And we have stunningly fresh and simple dinner.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

I haz a blog?

Pin It Okay, I neglected the blog, which three of you in the world read. Hope you all didn't start a search and rescue mission (*cue laughter*).

Moving on. We have been subsisting on frozen pizza, veggie burger and one bad food experiment after another. I attempted a vegan moussaka, which was awful. It was just meh on the first day. I thought the soy bechamel cheese sauce, made of soy milk, Earth Balance, soy ricotta and more soy cheese, tasted very soy-y (shocking! who would've thunk?), but it was alright. Then the next day, the whey separated and we had disgusting looking tofu on top and a pool of liquid at the bottom. Not one of my best vegan experiments. There are days when I think, "Hey, this isn't bad! I can go vegan tomorrow!" And then there are days like these where I think, "Man, butter, eggs, cream and real cheese sound mighty fine right now."

I also attempted to make a black bean soup. You'd think that's pretty fail safe, but you'd be wrong. Because my beans did not cook. At all. For 3 hours. VB ate the soup quietly so thankfully I didn't have to chew crunchy beans with my soup. Unlike that moussaka that's staring at us with its ugly tofu and pool of liquid every time we open the refrigerator. Remind me to throw that crap out.

I promise some real cooking soon. In the meantime, please feel free to laugh at (not with, I'm not laughing yet) my culinary failures.