Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Pumpkin Spelt Risotto - Aldi

Pumpkin Spelt Risotto - Aldi
Something is wrong with me. I can't stop sleeping! Am I trying to hibernate or something? For example, last night I came home from work, it was cold and rainy, so I snuggled up with a blanket to have a little nap....and I didn't wake up until 6 AM this morning. I slept for nearly 12 hours! This is completely unlike me. I'm a night owl, and I sleep maybe 5 hours a night on average, but the past few weeks I've been sleeping like a normal person or sleeping way too much. Am I getting old? This sucks! I like staying up late and getting things done, like writing reviews, editing photos, and doing commissioned work. I normally feel really focused at night, but now I'm sleeping all the time! To be honest, all this sleep is making me feel really awesome and rested, but I'm not getting anything done!
Maybe this is a sign that I need to start drinking coffee...but it's been a day or two since my last pumpkin-related post, so I'm going to review some Pumpkin Spelt Risotto instead. (Segways are hard.) 
Okay, if you saw this bag in your friend's freezer, would you ever think it came from a discount store like Aldi? It's so fancy! We've got textures, Instagram-worthy photo layouts, and educated typeface choices. Dare I say, this looks like something from Whole Foods?! Great job Aldi! Keep it up. There's not one negative thing I can say about this packaging, but it that true about the contents inside? 
This is a microwaveable, so cooking doesn't get much easier than that. Just open the bag, spread the contents into a casserole dish, heat-up and serve. Easy peasy! 
The first thing I noticed about this stuff was that it looks... like barf. Come on! I'm pretty mature and forgiving when it comes to ugly food-stuffs, but this? I bought it, and cooked it, but even I'm hesitant to eat it. Thankfully it smells pretty nice, like pumpkin, onion and herbs, but there was also this lingering "baby food" kind of smell that I couldn't shake. Still, it definitely smells better than it looks. 

I took a bite, and I really really wanted to like this stuff, but... I just... I can't get over this texture and flavor.  It's not bad, or inedible, but I feel like I'm eating some kind of gourmet baby food. Imagine making a bowl of unflavored oatmeal, and dumping a can of veggie soup on top, mixing it all up, baking it in a casserole dish, and serving it to your friends. That's this stuff, and if you really did serve it to your friends, I doubt you'll be friends for very much longer. 
On a positive note, I can taste 100% authentic pumpkin. This stuff is savory, which is a nice change of pace for American pumpkin products, but it doesn't taste finished. It needs some better texture, or stronger herbs, or more garlic (garlic makes everything better). As-is, I don't really care for this stuff. I wouldn't buy another bag, but I am happy to see there are more companies trying savory Pumpkin options.  
On a Pumpkin Scale of 1-5 (5 being the most pumpkin-y) I’d give this puff a 2! I really really wanted to like this, but it was just too bland and baby food-like for my tastes. It definitely tastes like pumpkin, which is why I gave it a 2, but I feel like it needs more garlic, onion, or something herby to make it really enjoyable. It just tastes kind of....sad. 
© Maria Smith http://poison-and-antidote.net
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  1. I am trying this tonight, as I seen it in my Aldi store recently. We shall see!

  2. This rissoto is delicious! If I had known how flavorful this was, I'd have bought every package they had! Perhaps it's more of a mature flavor.

  3. I had a bag of this lingering in my freezer for 2 years and finally cooked it up last night. I opted for the skillet preparation. Like gforceforever, I wish I had tried it soon as I would have bought all the store was selling. The texture of the spelt took me by surprise at first, but once I got used to it I loved it. I have the leftovers for lunch today. I thought of adding a dash of salt to enhance the flavors, but didn't want to alter an already surprisingly good nutritional profile. Hopefully this product will return this fall!

  4. Just made this…no it doesn’t look like barf…actually I added some parm Reggio cheese and a touch of butter.. was delicious 👍