Wednesday, January 29, 2014

January 2014 Gourmet Taste Trunk {Unboxing and Review}

Time to unbox my January Gourmet Taste Trunk.  For those who are new to my blog (you can see my other Taste Trunk posts here) or haven't heard of Taste Trunk, let me briefly introduce the subscription.

Each month Taste Trunk offers four main trunk themes: the Gourmet Trunk, the Health Trunk, the Sweet Trunk, and the BBQ Trunk which each retail for $29.00 (plus $5.99 shipping) and include "5-10 products, discount coupons, backgrounds on companies and amazing recipe ideas."

Additionally, they also offer two mini trunks: the Mini Sweet Trunk and the Mini-Healthy-Sweet Trunk which cost $13.99 (plus shipping) and include "3-5 handpicked items from our favorite brands."

I love Taste Trunk for the unique opportunity to try out products that I wouldn't normally have access to and to try out new brands.  The company includes really thoughtful recipe cards along with the products in the monthly trunks which makes trying out new ingredients, recipes, and techniques a delight!

My January Gourmet Taste Trunk included the following products:

"Sticky Fingers Bakeries offers the irresistible taste and aroma of fresh-baked goods in just minutes.  Our quick and easy premium mixes contain no artificial flavors, colors, preservatives, trans-fats or saturated fats."

These were delicious!  The mix was quick and convenient to use and the muffins rose beautifully, had a lovely texture and a bright, fresh flavor.  I was really impressed with this mix!

Kozlowski Farms - Apple Butter ($6.25/10 oz.)
"No refined sugar is added to our Apple Butter, only the natural sweet flavor of apples is used for sweetness.  This smooth butter spreads delightfully over crackers, toast, pancakes, french toast, waffles or bagels and cream cheese.  Try over smoked sausage or pork, too."

I really appreciate the all-natural, quality ingredients in this product.  I imagine this will be delicious spread on homemade biscuits and I'm curious to pair it with pork as well.

"Our family has a long tradition of cooking with sweet red raspberries.  When we discovered how perfectly they paired with the mild heat and rich smokiness of chipotle peppers, we knew we had a grill sauce worthy of the best wine country cookouts."

The recipe card included to accompany this sauce is for Chipotle Meatballs, which sound like a unique and delicious appetizer!  I'll probably set this aside for use while entertaining.

Cucina & Amore - Potato Gnocchi ($1.85/14.1 oz.)
"These delicate potato pasta dumplings have been a staple of northern and southern Italian cooking since the 19th century.  Incredibly versatile, gnocchi can be enjoyed with thick cream and cheese-based sauces or light tomato and oil-based sauces."

Hubby and I both love gnocchi, so this is sure to be a hit.  I do tend to prefer splashing out for fresh gnocchi when possible, as I find the texture of packed gnocchi to be a little gummy at times.  I'm curious to try this offering from Cucina & Amore to see how it compares to other brands I've tried.

Himalayan Salt Block - 4" x 8" x 1" (approximately $18.00 in value)
"This is a fabulous tile made of Himalayan Salt that can actually be used for enhancing the taste of hot or cold foods."

I've been curious about cooking with salt blocks, but haven't never tried it myself.  They aren't something I would be likely to splurge on, so I'm excited to see one included in my Trunk this month.  While the size of this block is fairly modest, it'll be good for experimenting with one or two portion sizes of meat, etc.  I'm most excited to try this on the grill once the weather warms up.

Total box value: approximately $39.04

I think this is one of my favorite Taste Trunks I've received to date.  I'm really happy with the size, variety, and quality of products in my January trunk.

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