Sunday, August 31, 2014

The Best Thing I Ate This Month That Wasn't A Veggie Burger

I did a double-take when I saw these in Whole Foods the other day:
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COTTON CANDY grapes???
Did that mean they tasted like cotton candy? Or was it just a strange brand name? I had to try them.

And when I did - WOW! They really do taste like cotton candy! The first bite was disorienting, sweet and candy-like, just like the spun sugar itself. I couldn't believe that what looked like a normal grape tasted like something completely different. As I continued chewing it, it tasted more like a normal grape - but when I popped another one into my mouth, the first bite again surprised me with its cotton-candy flavor.

I had never heard of these, and only spotted them by chance in Whole Foods. But I'm glad I did - they're kind of awesome! I want to serve these at my next party and see my friends' reactions!

Cotton Candy Grapes
Purchased at Whole Foods in Manhattan (Bowery location)
Check the Cotton Candy Grapes website to see other locations where they are sold.

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

No Bull Sundried Tomato Burgers

Working my way through the care package of No Bull veggie burgers that my mother sent me…
Next up was the Sundried Tomato variety...
This flavor, unlike the Original flavor, is both gluten-free and vegan!

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I had some friends over for a barbecue, so it was the perfect chance to test out how these delicious patties would hold up on the grill.

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The verdict? Awesome! I brushed them with a little olive oil to prevent them from sticking to the grill, and they cooked up just fine. Even though they are rather soft, like the original patties, they held together well and not a single one fell apart on the grill, even when I flipped them a couple times!

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Served on a whole wheat bun with lettuce, tomato and mayo (those are the remnants of a delicious herbed potato salad which you see on the plate beneath the burger)

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Yum! Just as good as the original, but with a savory sundried-tomato kick. Still hearty lentils and big chunks of vegetables – especially spinach, which I enjoyed very much. The sundried-tomato flavor was strong, but not overpowering.

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I was really impressed by how a burger with such a homemade texture nonetheless held up so well on the grill! I am wary of which patties I choose to throw on the barbecue because I’ve had too many fall apart and slip into the flames in the past, but No Bull proved itself a winner in yet another way.

One flavor left to try: “Mama Mia Spicy Italian”. Can’t wait!

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ ★

No Bull Burgers (Sundried Tomato)
Purchased online and shipped to New York
Available in stores and served in restaurants in select states – check website for location
price: $10.00 for a pack of 4 patties

YumVeggieBurger review #141

Monday, August 11, 2014

No Bull Burgers

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My mother recently sent me the most amazing present in the mail:

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Veggie burgers!

These are made in my hometown of Charlottesville, Virginia. They are sold in stores in Virginia and several other surrounding states, but they aren’t available in New York (yet), so my mother ordered some and had them mailed to me in a freezer pack!

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She sent me three of the four different varieties that No Bull makes. The “Original” flavor seemed like a good choice to start with:

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I fried the frozen patty in a frying pan with a little olive oil. It cooked evenly, and browned to a nice crisp. Although the patty looked soft, it held together well as I flipped it with a spatula.

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Keeping it simple for my taste-test, I served it on a whole wheat bun with lettuce, tomato, and mayo.

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Wow. From the first bite, I was in love – the patty was a hearty, delicious blend of lentils and vegetables. This was definitely one of the best store-bought burger patties I had ever tasted! EDITED: Please note, the "Original" flavor and the "mushroom" flavor are NOT vegan (they contain egg). The "Spicy Italian" and "Sundried Tomato" flavors, which I review next, ARE vegan though.

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Actually, if I had not known better, I would not have believed it was store-bought. It was without a doubt the closest to home-made that any store bought patty has come. Aside from the fact that I had seen it in its frozen state only a few minutes ago, nothing about it seemed pre-packaged. I know a lot of burgers have whole lentils and pieces of vegetables in them, but these were extra large, hearty pieces that made it feel far more like something made in someone’s kitchen than on a factory line.

With how delicious it was, and how easy it was to cook, this has easily earned its spot as one of my favorite store-bought burgers. I’m so glad my mother sent them to me to try! And I can’t wait to try the other two flavors I got as well: Sundried Tomato and “Mama Mia Spicy Italian”.

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ ★

No Bull Burgers (Original)
Purchased online and shipped to New York
Available in stores and served in restaurants in select states – check website for location
price: $9.50 for a pack of 4 patties

YumVeggieBurger review #140

Monday, August 4, 2014

Veggie Burgers in the "News"

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The Onion recently featured an amusing article on The Pros and Cons of Going Vegetarian.