Trader Joe’s Chicken-Less Strips

Hi everyone. It's Jane writing tonight. Lane and I realized that he's hogging all the spotlight, so tonight I'm getting the byline. To tell the truth, we often collaborate on these posts. I tend to spend time in the morning researching what we'll write about (time permitting), and put together an outline, and then Lane will flesh it out.

2008 03 - TJs ChickenLess StripsThings were hectic around here today, so I just threw something together for dinner. As I rummaged around the fridge I found the Trader Joe's Chicken-less Strips I'd purchased in the recent past (sorry, the box got trashed, so no image). There are always onions on hand in our house, and I had asparagus spears and orange pepper. Perfect. I could make a dinner out of that. Plus we always have salad with any dinner I make.

I chopped the veggies, added a little olive oil to the pan, and sauteed my onions. When they were translucent I threw in the peppers, and after they'd cooked together for a bit in went the chicken-less strips and the asparagus. For some reason (could it be that I didn't read the package?), I thought the strips were seasoned. Imagine my surprise when I tasted the concoction brewing in my frying pan. It definitely needed something. And I had moments until everything was done. Thankfully, my pantry is fully stocked. I threw in a few pinches of sea salt, a squeeze of lemon juice and about a half teaspoon of ground ginger. It came together quite well.

Lane and I would definitely recommend this product. It has good mouth feel and seems to be very versatile. Best of all, it cooks up in moments. It took me under 15 minutes to throw tonight's dinner together. Next time I think I might try throwing the chicken-less strips in a light broth, or even pasta.

These strips might even compete with the prepared Gardein chicken products we get at Whole Foods, specifically the Vegan Chicken Sonoma Salad and Vegan Chicken Curry Salad. The "chicken" in the salads is cubed, and this "chicken" is sliced, but otherwise, the taste and texture seem to be the same to us. Since Gardein doesn't advertise where their products are sold, I'm wondering if this is a private label version packaged for Trader Joe's? Anyway, we'll be keeping this stuff on hand.

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