Saturday, May 22, 2010

Three-minute meal. What's the catch?

Wheat gluten flourImage via Wikipedia

It looks like meat. It feels like meat in your mouth. But these "beefless tips" are made from wheat gluten and soy protein, and come with Burgundy-wine sauce and vegetables, and rice -- in pouches. Sold under the Gardein label (garden protein), this refrigerated meal from Canada weighs a total of 10.5 ounces.

I plated the contents of the box, managing to squirt sauce on my shirt, pants, shoes and the kitchen floor. I microwaved the tips, sauce, rice and some leftover broccoli, carrot and red pepper for close to four minutes, but the rice remained hard.

I ate everything but the rice and put it back in the microwave for two more minutes, cooking it. The tips had a nice texture, but they didn't taste like any meat I have ever had. I was filled after finishing everything, but only because I ate a big romaine lettuce salad with slivered almonds a couple of hours earlier. I found Gardein's Burgundy Trio at Whole Foods Market in Paramus.

Click on the link below to go to the company's Web site and see other meatless meals that resemble chicken breasts, pulled pork and kabobs.

Garden Protein International

(Photo: Wheat gluten flour.)
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  1. I don't suppose they have a meatless meal that resembles Pepperidge Farm Milano cookies. Good thing you didn't microwave your shoes when you squirted the sauce on them. It probably would have tasted like shoe leather, which begs the question, is shoe leather meat?

  2. Shoe leather encased the meat when it was on the hoof, and vegans even avoid leather shoes. I guess that's why overcooked meat is often described as leathery. But so was Gary Cooper. Go figure.


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