Thursday, March 3, 2011

Tasty Bite Is Indeed Quite Tasty

Months and months and months ago, Tasty Bite sent me a few packs of their instant Indian meals for review. I blogged about two of those meals shortly after the package arrived, but the other two packs hung out in my pantry forever. I know, bad blogger!

Anyway, I've been really busy lately after work with meetings, social obligations, and such. And quick heat-and-eat Tasty Bite meals have really come in handy. I tried the Bengal Lentils a few weeks back, and they were pretty damn good for something cooked in the microwave for two minutes.

I really enjoyed the toothsome (yes, I used that word!) texture of the chickpeas in the dish, and the savory tomato-based sauce was perfect. Well, it did lack salt and heat, but that was easily remedied with a dash of sea salt and plenty of sriracha. I served the dish over some leftover brown rice.

Last night, I used the package of Tasty Bite Rogan Josh Simmer Sauce for a quick stovetop meal. Unlike the ready-to-eat packs, Tasty Bite's Simmer Sauces do require a little work. You chop a cup or two of veggies and tofu, saute until tender, and then add the simmer sauce. The veggies really soak up the rich flavor of tomatoes, chilies, ginger, and fennel in the hearty sauce. Beats the hell out of making a homemade sauce when you're in a hurry.

The package also promises "a daring fire dance," but I didn't detect even a hint of spiciness. So naturally, I added lots and lots of crushed red pepper. I like it when my tongue burns with every bite.

I used a combination of cauliflower, white potatoes, carrots, onions, and fried tofu for the Rogan Josh dish. I served the veggies and sauce over brown jasmine rice with whole wheat roti and tomato chutney. The roti (an Indian flatbread) and the chutney were from Passage To India, a local Indian food market.

It's safe to say Tasty Bite makes some of the best instant meals and meal starters, and they're made with simple whole-food ingredients. My only complaint is the lack of heat, but I can always add red pepper and hot sauce to taste.

Are you a spicy foods person? If so, what's your hot poison of choice?

14 comments:

Nichole said...

I really like the Bengal lentils; I love their eggplant punjab too! That one is actually a bit spicy, which is nice.

Dianne said...

I really liked these when I tried them, too! I thought they were perfectly spiced, but I don't have much of a hot tolerance. I only wished they had more vegetables, although I suppose you could add your own. Ergo the sauce packet seems like an awesome idea :-)

Tiffany said...

I agree, Tasty Bite makes some decent instant meals. I like spicy food, so my remedy for lack of heat usually involves gobs of sriracha!

Melomeals: Vegan for $3.33 a Day said...

I am definitely a spice addict! I get soo irritated when something says it's spicy and it isn't.

James said...

I used to hate spicy food. When my grandmother threw a dash of cayenne on the cauliflower when we visited for dinner, it would ruin the whole meal for my sensitive buds. But then I just changed. Now its spicy or die. I'm a fellow sriracha lover. The brand I get in Japan comes in a smaller plastic bottle that I purchase 2 or 3 at a time so I never run out. I put it on EVERYTHING! Even a slice of bread with Earth Balance, drizzled in sriracha, YUM! My saddest moment over the holidays was getting my travel sriracha tossed out at the Beijing airport by their ruthless security (thankfully I didn't have to look too hard to replace it)

Jess of Midwest Vegan said...

There's gotta be heat when I eat! Most of the time I add sriracha (I love that stuff), but I also sometimes add habenero pepper sauce to food. Kinda depends on my mood!

Kari said...

I'm definitely not a spicy foods person, so this review makes these even more appealing. I remember you writing about these way back when. Maybe it was good to separate eating them so much, that way you don't get sick of the flavors and it sounds brand new to us, the readers. Never "bad blogger". :)

Alan Roettinger said...

I'm mostly familiar with northern Indian food--for which I have a particular fondness--but I don't think I've ever had Bengali dishes. I'll have to try these (since you raved--I trust your recommendation!).

For added heat with a genuine Indian flavor, try using the "fresh green chutney" on page 52 of Speed vegan. It's fast, you can make it as hot as you want (by adding more green chiles), and it adds several layers to the flavor profile of just about anything to put it on.

Melissa said...

I'm not a spicy foods person, but my boyfriend is... and he's the cook, so that makes it interesting for me at times. Is Tasty Bite available in regular grocery stores, or would we need to go to a specialty Indian food store?

Now that I think of it, I love wasabi. Love love love. So maybe I do like a little heat :)

morganbb said...

Where can you buy this stuff? As for heat, I'm not a spicy person AT ALL. What's typically mild to most people is spicy to me, I have a very sensitive palate so I'm sure this stuff will be just right for me.

theotherjen said...

Where is Passage to India? I've never heard of it.

Bianca said...

Hey guys! Tasty Bite is available at Whole Foods, but maybe other health food stores too. I'm sure you can also order it online. As for Passage to India: It's at 8100 Macon Station in Cordova, off Germantown Pkwy.

sfw said...

We love these; eggplant punjab is one of our favorite ones too! Great for lazy dinner nights.

Kelsey said...

I love the Madras Lentils!