My next stop is usually Target, Walgreens, or a grocery store, like Rays, Eureka Natural Foods, or Grocery Outlet.
Tonight, it was Grocery Outlet. I love Grocery Outlet on the nights I'm lingering. Their stock changes frequently, so there is always something new to look at. They have a great wine selection, their beer selection is improving, and so are their organic products. Their cheese selection has always been impressive. I've always found little oddities there - like Hellman's Mayonnaise - the East Coast version of Best Foods - and things like "whole grain" pop tarts. Just things I'm never going to find in a Safeway on the coast of Humboldt County. So I tend to roam up and down every aisle taking my time knowing there are no humans in my house to come home to.
So tonight's adventure through Grocery Outlet ended up being a nice little foodie adventure. First I found these:
The thing that grabbed my attention with these interesting little packets of mystery was that they were Indian food, which I LOVE! But how good could it be in a little plastic packet that resembles something you would take back packing? (These would be awesome to take camping by the way - no refrigeration required - just throw the package in boiling water for 5 minutes and pour in a bowl and eat! Easy Peasy!) I figured at 99 cents a piece - I could take one of each home. The only one I didn't buy was the basmati rice. I have basmati rice at home that I can cook in 15 minutes - but if I were camping - I'd probably buy the Veetee packaged rice, especially at 99 cents a package. (Each package is 3 servings - at 100 calories per serving) I will let you know at the end of this post if it was really worth buying any of these.
The next bizarre thing I saw tonight - and this really grabbed my attention after making my own ketchup - I started thinking, "Now why didn't I think of that when I was making my own? Damn!"
And this one. Yeah this one. I never thought I'd see this in any small town Northern California grocery store. We have more than our fair share of crazy vegetarians and vegans - as in zealots - - and just plain queasy city folks who don't get what some folks, especially small town/ country people see in eating this stuff (It's called using the whole animal - not wasting any of it - it's a GREEN thing to do. ) And believe me - I'll eat most of any animal - I've eaten brains, liver, heart, kidneys...... but I haven't done this one....
I have to say, I'm not willing to take that particular food item on. As far as cooking it anyway. There you have it folks - you've seen my limit. Don't get me wrong - I'd eat them - that is if someone else - who knows how to cook this stuff - cooks them for me. Chitterlings - I just don't think I can bring myself to buy a 4 lb bag of them and cook them up into a tasty meal - I don't know how and I'm not sure I could keep from vomiting while trying to do so - and I know my co-workers don't want me bringing this stuff to work to share - .......wait a minute - what a great Halloween idea........... Ok.... no.... stop.....bad idea!
So I finally got home sent a few texts to my love and my cousin, threw in a load of laundry walked my dog and wrapped my youngest one's birthday present. Finally time to eat. I had originally planned to do this whole baked dish thing for diner, but by the time I got done with all of my lingering and distractions it was way too late for that, so what to eat? what to eat?.....hmmmm
Let's try one now.....
Palak Paneer. Part of the Veetee collection of Indian Food. Spinach and paneer flavoured (that's how they spelled it) with fenugreek leaves. This is what it looked like after boiling in the package for 5 minutes and putting it into a bowl:
Not too appetizing huh? I agree - but the smell! The smell was incredible! My mouth was watering the second I opened the package. It was very easy to get past the disturbing green color. The smell wasn't a let down. It tasted as good as it smelled and the texture was a pleasant surprise. Velvety, and the cottage cheese was not rubbery. It was really hard to believe that what I was eating came out of a little "boil to taste" package. I was expecting drab, dry, gross backpacking type food. Creepy, cheesy, wanna be Indian food in a package. But I should have known it would be ok and the instructions said:
" Cooking Instructions"
"On the Hob......"
One good thing I got out of having been married to a Brit - I know what that means. Do you?
So I do not regret buying the little Indian packets of food and cannot wait to try the other packets. I highly recommend them.