Item Purchased: Trader Joe’s Chicken Vindaloo Rice Bowl
Location Purchased: Trader Joeâ€™s / 44 E. Ontario St. / Chicago, IL
Price: $2.49 + tax
Purchased on: 08/20/07
Review: I’ll be honest. I was quite wary of this product. In the past, frozen meat from Trader Joe’s has been extremely hit and miss. Also, I’m not a huge fan of frozen prepared meals to begin with. I am, however, a certified freak about Indian food, and I’ll be damned if I can find a decent Indian restaurant anywhere near work that fits into my lunch budget (maybe the bookstore I work in would consider opening a location up on Devon Ave.?). Long story short… this frozen rice bowl will have to do.
And do it does. On the frozen food level of eats, this rates pretty high. Not only is the variety of vegetables and spices true to the Indian cuisine I know and love, but the chicken is surprisingly tasty and relatively fresh tasting after a brief stint in the microwave. There is even a healthy helping of cauliflower (which I hate) that I eagerly scarfed down. The only complaint I have is the spice level. I understand convenience food like this needs to appeal to a wide audience of lunch-breakers, but when I think ‘vindaloo,’ I think constant water glass refills. I think “oh god, please apply asbestos to the roof of my mouth because it is about to melt out of my face.” TJ’s chicken vindaloo, however, isn’t spicy enough to even register on my palate. For this, I dock it a point. Still, since this is the only Indian cuisine I can find in a five block radius, I’ll take it. Even if it is frozen.
Rating: 3.5 / 5