Friday, March 9, 2012

Winner Winner Chicken Dinner

 I'm raising gourmands.  The youngest is already a meat connoisseur.  Slap it on the heat until barely seared and very red on the inside and he's happy.  He's 8!  My oldest has created his own spice blend that we are bottling locally for sales to family and friends and hope to have it to a place to market regionally soon.

They know why we don't go to McDonald's and after viewing several Jamie Oliver productions and other food industry documentaries like "What's On Your Plate", they are totally good with that and in agreement about it.  They even report to me about the quality of food at school.

All this to say, it is rare for me to pick up any prepared foods from the freezer section and it makes a big impact when I do.  My meat boy noticed them right off as he looked in the freezer to see if any ice cream had appeared.  "Mom, why do we have Sweet Potato Tots?"  (The green monster was rearing its ugly head since he disdains savory foods that taste sweet.  The question he wasn't asking was "Mom, why did you buy these for you guys and nothing for me?")

I explained that we received a free coupon from Alexia foods as part of the Foodbuzz Tastemaker program to try out one of their products.  Since my oldest was eyeballing the sweet potato tots at a local fast food place, I decided why not try Alexia's Sweet Potato Puffs instead.  They were free and the tiny order of SP tots from the fast food joint would have been $1.75 at least.  The bag from Alexia was enough for 4 reasonable servings, so even at full cost of around $3-4 they aren't a bad deal.

So to accompany the tots, I grilled some drumsticks (with my son's spice blend) and made a quick coleslaw of shredded cabbage (from veggie box), lime juice (limes from a friend's tree)and kosher salt. 

Food Note:  Lime juice and sweet potatoes are such a great combination.  The lime cuts the sweetness of the tubers and ironically brings out the earthy nature of them.  I highly encourage you to try a squeeze next time whether trying out the Alexia sweet potato products or slicing up and roasting your own.

As for my peronal opinion of the tots, for a frozen product they were reasonable.  The outside was really crispy and the inside was soft.  With the lime juice component, I did find them a bit addictive.  Without the lime juice they would have passed for dessert in my book as they do have added sugar so for that reason I'm not a huge fan.  (I'm definintely a cheese for dessert girl.) Quality wise, they are not organic and potatoes of all kinds are on my "Buy Organic Always" list so that's a bit of a negative, too. 

As for the rest of the family, my oldest son loved them as well as my Swedish husband with the unrelenting sweet-tooth. (I think Swedish is misspelled...every Swede I've met has a giant sweet-tooth.  "Sweetish" would be more approppo.) Meat boy did not like them at all, as expected, but with an extra drumstick, he was happy, too! Win-Win!

So overall, I would have to say, if I were at gunpoint and had to have a frozen potato product RIGHT NOW, I'd choose Alexia over others.  (After all, moderation is my life-message about food to my boys.)

That said, whole sweet potatoes cut into wedges with my son's spice (or simply chili powder and salt) roasted at 400 degrees until crispy will always win over any prepared product.  (And the time difference is literally 5 minutes between cutting them up and cutting open a bag.) 

Don't forget the squeeze of lime.

Print Page Copyright 2011 Christi Flaherty, Cook What You've Got

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