Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Trader Joe's: Eggnog Emporium

You may have noticed a surge of eggnog-related posts on this blog recently. That's because I love it, and although I'm aware that not everyone shares my enthusiasm for all things eggnog, I'm also aware that in a couple of weeks, the cheery little cartons will disappear from the shelves and I won't be able to get it in the stores until next Christmas. So, until that time, you'll have to bear with me and my shameless eggnog-chugging ways.

Trader Joe's Eggnog Almonds and Cookies!

Since we're away from home for the holidays, I haven't been spending very much time in the kitchen; I did, however, spend some time at Trader Joe's yesterday, where I found not one, but two eggnoggy treats (in addition to their Premium Eggnog)!  With no recipes to share at the moment, I thought I'd review these festive finds.

Photo courtesy of traderjoes.com

Trader Joe's Eggnog Almonds ($1.99 for 11oz. box)
These almonds have a thick eggnog-flavored, white chocolate coating (it's even flecked with nutmeg!) that really complements the savory flavor of the nut. The coating melts in the mouth, leaving the distinct taste of eggnog. These would make a great hostess gift or a fun snack for holiday parties. At this price, they're some of the cheapest coated nuts at Trader Joe's and a definite bargain (the website lists the price as  $3.95, so you may or may not be able to get quite the bargain we found). Of the two eggnog treats we discovered, these were my favorites - rich and creamy, and, hey, the almonds make it healthy, right?

Yes, the box is open - for ease of snacking!

Chewy Eggnog Cookies ($0.99 for oz box)
I have to admit, I initially picked these up because, at 99 cents for the whole box, they're easily the cheapest treat in the store. Lucky for us that they're also incredibly delicious! They may be small (about the size of an Oreo) but they're packed with flavor and just as soft and chewy as the box promises. The white chocolate drizzle on top is a nice addition, but it does melt very quickly when touched - which just gives you more incentive to eat these little cookies quickly!

The flavor is definitely eggonggy, with a little hint of something else...perhaps oatmeal or Nutri-Grain bar?* I know that sounds crazy, but that's what the texture reminds me of! Still, don't let that description put you off: these cookies are still plenty decadent and will fool even the most anti-health-food taster. Matt was skeptical at first, but I caught him sneaking a few from the package while we were wrapping presents last night - and for all you cookie-lovers and eggnog-skeptics, that's a very good sign. Good work, Trader Joe's!

*It turns out that my wild guess wasn't so far off: a look at the ingredients reveals 'fruit juice & natural grain dextrine' and 'date paste.' Health food lovers will be glad to note, however, that the cookies are without a lot of the additives you'll find in the big name bars - so you can indulge with (near) impunity. Just be careful - these little guys are addictive!

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