Tuesday, October 31, 2006
Enter the veggie ball
So I finally took the plunge. Bought the veggieballs from Costco - garlic portobello imitation meatballs. Meh. I tried them just reheated in the toaster oven plain, then heated again in BBQ sauce. The BBQ sauce certainly helped, and I think if they were simmered in a sauce they would be better. The texture is O.K., but kind of mealy. And the mushroom bits inside are chewy which is bothersome. They are also a bit too salty and have a strong fake garlic taste. I won't throw the rest away, in fact will probably smash them into tomato sauce to eat over whole wheat spaghetti. But I won't be buying any more. The small package of no name chickenless chicken nuggets however, was an unmitigated success. DH and DD devoured four servings worth and were looking for more. I would say that means they were okay. The one I tasted was pretty chicken-nuggety without being overly fake or off-flavoured and baked up fine without being rubbery. I will certainly get the bigger package next time so that I might get to eat one or two LOL. After spending some time reading labels, I have to say I am becoming disappointed with "health food" companies. A few have gone main stream and include trans and hydrogenated fats in their products. Others have started using refined sugars and starches where before there were none. I bought a familiar brand of whole grain tortillas that had been "improved" and had to throw them out. They were so sweet, and the texture was mushy. A quick look at the ingredients list told the tale. Corn syrup was like the third ingredient and two dough conditioners were listed. The delicate, buttery, nutty flavour of whole grains does NOT need to be covered up with sweeteners! Pretty bad when I had to spit the bite I had taken into the garbage can. And what is it with that odd fake garlic flavouring? Does anybody really like that taste and smell? Go ahead and paint fake grill marks on my veggieburger, just keep the liquid garlic seasoning out. Going from health food to junk food in an unexpected plot twist, tonight is Halloween. We did not go all out. I was gone last week, our week-end was very busy. There just wasn't time. Our witches need redressing and reforming. One of them needs a head, which has been carved but did not get painted nor wigged. Frankenstein is slated for a face lift as well, and our wolf man (our halloween pride and joy) fell apart when we put him away last year. I looked everywhere but didn't find a latex wolf face make-up kit. Very few latex kits out this year, just the basic make-up sets with a few sticks, a palette of colours, and some glow in the dark cream. NOT what I was looking for. Our cardboard coffin disintegrated from rain last year, and a set of hands and head that had been with us for six years finally rests in pieces. No way did we have time to fix and replace all that, let alone add new stuff. So this year we got back to basics. Just the tomb stones and 10 pumpkins. It was 13 pumpkins, including a fake one DD decorated and two small pie pumpkins I wanted to carve. But they were so hard, I couldn't even use a dremmel to drill into them! Methinks somebody planted pie pumpkins too close to gourds last year and saved seeds. DD decided not to put out her pumpkin in case it got broken, and those two little pumpkins of steel never got carved. All the seeds got roasted. Regular unsalted (to put out during the winter for birds and what not), regular salted, sugar and cinnamon glazed, and seasoned. I didn't think I would ever say this, but the ones flavoured with Zatarains creole seasoning are so addictive I am eating them by the handful. They totally blow the regular salted ones away. As for the sweet ones? The jury is out. They are "okay". Certainly acceptable. But nothing special, and don't really taste like PUMPKIN seeds. Next time I would add dash of cayenne pepper. Or maybe a touch of five spice powder...something to perk them up a bit. I also found in all cases, roasting for much longer at a lower setting gave better results. DD dressed as a fairy princess, and went trick-or-treating with a friend from school and her family. Ruby was a princess too, but she wasn't allowed to go trick or treating. She didn't mind her dress at all, in fact she seemed to like it. I got it today on way-reduced-fully-marked-down-quick-sale because it was a toddler costume and it was missing the tiara, wand, wings, and tights. Heck, I only needed the dress anyway. It's one thing to put a dress on a dog. Putting tights on one is just wrong and even I have my limits. I am embarassed for Ruby to admit it was a little snug (a quick snip of the elastic on the waistband helped that). And of course I cut off the front of the skirt so she could pee like a lady and not have to hike her skirt up ;). She sat on my lap most of the night, looking quite adorable and sucking up all the attention and kisses and compliments. Once DD was done trick or treating and helped give out candy, the appearance of TWO princesses was too much cuteness to bear, I think. At least judging by the squeals coming from parents at the road. I of course, was a witch. One more year and I think I may have enough milage on that hat to consider it "paid". Then I can buy a new one ;). I am off to have a tea and knit a bit and watch tv. And to try not to think about another handful of pumpkin seeds.