Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Jump's Lightly Carbonated Peach Ice Tea

ג'אמפ תה קר מוגז עדין בטעם אפרסק 
Tempo; one of the leading beverage companies here in Israel, have a new Jump product on the market that they're calling a "Lightly Carbonated Peach Ice Tea".

I may have mentioned in past reviews of say Schweppes and Kinley's Mandarin Drinks and Kinley's Pear-Apple Soft-Drink that I'm not a huge fan of carbonated drinks so I waited to taste this Jump Carbonated Ice Tea together with my friend so I can give you her opinion as well.  

Jump's Lightly Carbonated Peach Ice Tea comes in a tallish thin tin can. I think I mentioned in my review of Illy's Cold Coffees that I don’t love drinking out of tin cans, to me they somewhat affect the taste of the drink. Therefore I poured my ice tea into a glass, but my friend preferred to drink it from the tin.

When I handed the ice tea tin to my friend she mentioned that on her recent summer vacation in Europe she noticed a few such carbonated ice tea drinks.  She thinks it’s a trend of sorts that Tempo must be "copying" from Europe but she can't compare them because she didn’t actually taste any carbonated ice teas during her travels.

The first thing to hit me as I was pouring my ice tea into the cup was the strong inviting peach aroma I recognized from Jump's regular Peach Ice Tea.

Next I noticed quite a bit of carbonation so much so I thought it looked like a beer.

My friend enjoyed the drink VERY much and thought it was exactly what Tempo said it would be a "carbonated Jump peach ice tea". She liked the strong peach flavor and thought it had a nice sweet peach tea taste. She found it very refreshing and a change of pace from regular sodas or other ice teas she normally drinks.

I, on the other hand, really didn’t enjoy it. Firstly I'd say it was very sweet but almost all the ice teas I've tasted and reviewed (like say Nestea's Exotic Flavored Ice Tea with Green Tea and Vitaminchick Peach Ice-Tea) seemed too sweet to me.

More importantly, I thought it was far from lightly carbonated as they'd "promised" it would be. I just could not get passed the heavy carbonation.

I tasted more peach than ice tea, but I can't say that bothered me all that much.

Jump's Carbonated Peach Ice Tea has no colorants and no preservatives, but sugar is its second ingredient after water.

Bottom Line: Although I like peach flavored ice tea I didn’t enjoy it carbonated. Still, I give Tempo/Jump credit for trying something new, even if they are just copying something they saw overseas. My friend summed it up saying "if you enjoy carbonated drinks and you're looking for something a little different; this Carbonated Peach Ice Tea might be right up your alley".

Four 250 mL tins – 15.00 NIS

Kosher Badatz and OU

Disclaimer: All items were purchased by me. No one is paying me for this review. All opinions are my own.

Monday, August 29, 2011

MamaOf's Panko Coated Chicken Schnitzel

MamaOf's latest addition to their long line of chicken schnitzels is a chicken schnitzel covered in Japanese style Panko bread crumbs.

I had no idea what Panko bread crumbs were but a quick Goggle search taught me a lot Source
Panko bread crumbs are "Made from crust-less bread. Panko is widely used in Japanese cooking although it is no longer found exclusively in Japanese cuisine as it has become a popular coating for fried food all over Asia and even in non-Asian countries."

Panko breadcrumbs are larger than the regular breadcrumbs we are used to and they look more like flakes than crumbs. The fact that it's made from a crust-less bread keeps these breadcrumbs much lighter and airier. Somehow this softer texture is meant to produce a crispier coating than regular breadcrumbs.

מאמא עוף שניצל אמיתי בציפוי פנקו
I was sure this new Panko coated Chicken Schnitzel would be very different to the MamaOf Kosher for Pesach Schnitzel I reviewed but, all this interesting information about Panko breadcrumbs made me wonder if the coating on this schnitzel would taste different to the MamaOf Crunchy RitzuOf Schnitzels I reviewed a few months back. The short answer is yes, in my opinion it was fairly different.

The first time I tasted MamaOf's Panko Coated Chicken Schnitzel I warmed it in the microwave. I found that the coating was basically disconnected from the chicken itself and it was very soft and airy.

The taste and texture of the coating reminded me of the batter coating you might get on say a (Western) General Tso's Chicken dish. Seeing as it had been warmed in the microwave the Panko Schnitzel was not at all crispy. It was enjoyable enough but I knew that in order to write a proper review I would have to taste it warmed in a toaster oven as well. That way I can judge how crispy I thought it was.

A few days later I did just that, after a few minutes toasting, it was crispy and ready to eat. I did think it was more oily than I anticipated, it needed to be patted down with a paper towel to remove the extra oil.

This time I didn’t think it tasted anything like General Tso's Chicken but it was crispy and enjoyable. Still I would not say it was crispier than schnitzels made with "regular" breadcrumbs.

I was pleasantly surprised that even after being warmed in the toaster oven the coating seemed lighter and more airy than other MamaOf chicken schnitzel I've eaten in the past. I really enjoyed the airiness.

The 100% chicken breast itself was perfectly soft and tasty just like all of the other MamaOf 100% chicken breast dishes I know.

MamaOf's Panko Coated Chicken Schnitzels have no artificial food colorings and no preservatives.

Bottom Line: Even though it tasted quite different I enjoyed MamaOf Panko Coated Chicken Schnitzel warmed both in the microwave and the toaster oven. I liked that the coating was light and airier than other coated schnitzels. Still I don't think the 43.00 NIS suggested price tag is justified. I should mention I bought it on sale for 21.50 at Rami Levi the other week. Personally I would only buy this Schnitzel if I can find it for a reasonable price.

Bag of 700 grams – 43.00 NIS (I got it on an introductory sale for 21.50 NIS)

Kosher Mehadrin
הרב צפניה דרורי קרית שמונה

Disclaimer: All items were purchased by me. No one is paying me for this review. All opinions are my own.

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Café Elite's Ice (Milkshake) Egozi Drink

A friend and I were out and about the other day when the heat got to us; we both needed something cold to cool us off. I went for a Lemon-Nana Ices (which I may review in a post some other day). My friend wanted a non-coffee blended ice milkshake drink.


We were not far from an Elite Café stand so I suggested that since summer is (sadly) coming to an end we should checked out Café Elite's limited edition summer Egozi Ice Milkshake Drink before they stop selling it. I had read that this Ice Milkshake Egozi Drink was one of the products that came about via the "My Strauss" campaign which I mentioned in my review of the White Chocolate Kif Kef Bar. Being a big fan of the Egozi bar and the newer Dark Chocolate Coated Egozi Bar my friend thought it was a great idea and we went to check it out.

The Egozi Ice Milkshake Drink is meant to be an ice milkshake version of a
deconstructed Egozi bar.

First thing to go into the cup was a generous amount of melted milk-chocolate. Followed by a few swirls of caramel syrup added to the sides of the cup (I actually hate when they do that because you see the syrup but it doesn’t really integrate into the drink and I think you don’t really get to taste it). The cup was then filled most of the way with their blended vanilla flavored ice milkshake. Next they added a bit of foamed milk and finally they sprinkled it with a few sugar coated chopped hazelnuts.
My friend kindly let me taste some of the drink. I liked the combination of the melted milk-chocolate together with the vanilla ice milkshake. I loved the sugar coated hazelnuts they sprinkled on top. I thought the nuts added so much to the drink and I actually wish they would have put more nuts on top than they did.

Not surprisingly I didn’t taste the caramel syrup but my friend said she did taste a hint of it as she came to the end of the drink.

קפה עלית משקה אייס אגוזי

We both thought the milk foam they added on top was a waste and it didn’t do anything to improve the iced drink in any way.

Had I not known it was meant to be a deconstructed Egozi bar ice milkshake drink, I don’t think I would have made the connection on my own but in actuality it did have all the components that an Egozi bar has.

Bottom Line Even though we liked the drink and we enjoyed both the melted milk-chocolate and the sugared hazelnut, I thought, as a whole, the drink was sweeter than it needed to be. My friend disagreed and said it was the perfect amount of sweetness. She pointed out that I often think food and drinks are sweeter than they should be; she might be right about that :)
All in all we both agreed that Café Elite's Ice Milkshake Egozi Drink was a nice treat but really it's just a glorified vanilla ice Milkshake which doesn't really resemble an Egozi bar but it gave Elite an excuse to hike up the price and charge way more than they should have for an ice vanilla milkshake drink.    

Kosher Dairy

18.50 NIS
Disclaimer: All items were purchased by me and my friend. No one is paying me or my friend for this review. All opinions are our own.

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Thursday, August 25, 2011

Osem's Thousand Island Chili Dressing and Silan (Date Syrup) Vinaigrette

Osem has two new (limited edition) dressings on the market. One is a Thousand Island Chili Dressing and the second is a Silan (Date Syrup) Vinaigrette.

 I was only going to try the Silan Vinaigrette because it seemed more unique and different to me than a Thousand Island dressing with added chili. But when I saw that Mega Bul was having a special on all the Osem dressings; one was 11.90 NIS but you can get two for 15.00 NIS, so I thought it was worth trying both new dressings.

Thousand Island Chili Dressing

I cut up some vegetables to have with dinner and I drizzled some of the Thousand Island Chili Dressing on top. I think I put more dressing than I would have for the first time I was tasting it but, because I wanted to get a decent photo for this post I ended up pouring more than I think I should have . After I realized how much dressing I added I was worried that if it was too spicy I would not enjoy the salad. I do like spicy foods, to a degree, so in the end I wasn't too worried about giving it a try.
אסם וינגרט סילאן לסלט
Yes, the dressing has a kick to it. It was actually exactly what I expected it to be; Osem's Thousand Island dressing with added chili. If you don't like chili or spicy foods I don't think this dressing is for you. It's not the spiciest dressing I have ever tasted but it's absolutely hot and spicy.

I don’t normally buy ready-made dressings, I prefer to make my own. If I ever do use store bought dressing I always go for the low fat version. So to start with I didn’t really care for the full fat Osem Thousand Island dressing. Had they added the chili to their 5% fat dressing I may have enjoyed it more.

Bottom Line: 
I thought the chili in this Osem Thousand Island dressing added a nice extra touch and gave the salad a strong pop of hot and spicy flavor. Even if I didn’t love it, I would say this dressing lived up to exactly what I thought it would be; chili/spicy Osem Thousand Island dressing.

Silan (Date Syrup) Vinaigrette

אסם וינגרט סילאן
To me this dressing tasted very much like a honey mustard vinaigrette. I checked the label and low and behold it has mustard in it as well. On second thought, I'm not sure what I really expected it to be. It makes perfect sense that a Silan Vinaigrette would be a "takeoff" on a honey mustard vinaigrette.

I can't say I would have known on my own that they used silan as the sweetener and not honey but maybe people who regularly use silan or those that normally put honey mustard dressings on their salad will be able to tell the difference.

I thought this Silan Vinaigrette was a little peppery; it seemed like a lot of black pepper to me. I think maybe they used a coarse ground black pepper and as I bit into pepper "bits" it gave a slightly stronger black pepper taste than I anticipated.      

Bottom Line: I don’t normally go for honey mustard dressings but I enjoyed this dressing on my salad. I thought it was a decent dressing. If you like store bought honey mustard vinaigrette dressings I think you will also enjoy this Osem Silan (Date Syrup) Vinaigrette.


All of Osem's dressings (and many of their sauces) are now in a bottle with a different cap. I found the new plastic bottle (as opposed to the old glass one) to be both convenient and easy to use.

I liked that the new cap stays on the bottle and you just flip it up to open it.

It has a "tear" shaped opening that I thought was a perfect sized pouring "spout". It makes it somewhat easier to control how much or how little dressing you want to drizzle on your salad.

Sadly glass is not easily recycled here in Israel, so I was very happy that these new dressings are in a plastic bottle and they will be very simple for me to recycle. That’s just one more plus to the new bottles.

290 mL bottle- 11.90 NIS I got them on sale, two for 15.00 NIS    

Kosher Parve Mehadrin Badatz
הרב יעקב משה חרל"פ

Disclaimer: All items were purchased by me. No one is paying me for this review. All opinions are my own.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Five's "Evolution" Sugar Free Gum

Five, who not too long ago gave us the Watermelon Flavored Gum, have now put out their next new gum called "Evolution …a sour to sweet citrus pear gum"

 מסטיק פייב בטעם אגס וליים 

Considering that I didn’t love the watermelon flavored gum I wasn’t sure if I should even taste this new Five gum. But when I read that it's a "sour to sweet citrus flavor" I was intrigued. I wasn’t sure how I would feel about the pear flavor they added at the end; I don’t really care for sweet fruit flavored gums, but I do like sour/lemon flavors, so that convinced me to give this gum a try.

When I opened the package and the strong "sweet" pear aroma hit me I was worried that I wouldn’t like it but I was pleasantly surprised that the Five Evolution Gum actually lived up exactly to what the label said it would be. It started out as a sour lime tangy flavor, which I really liked, and then slowly as I chewed it I noticed a hint of sweetness and just a drop of pear. The sweet and sour (tangy) flavors "took turns" popping in and out but as a whole I thought it was more sour than sweet, I really liked that.

I actually looked at the clock when I first put the gum in my mouth so I can see how long the flavor lasted, problem is I got busy with something else and I forgot to check the clock when I threw the gum out, but it was roughly half an hour, so I would absolutely categorize this Five Evolution Gum as "long lasting".

Bottom Line: I thought Five chose the perfect name for this new gum. "Evolution" precisely describes this sour to sweet stick of sugar free gum. I enjoyed the "sensation" and mix of flavors that I tasted while chewing it. It may not become my new "go to" gum but I think I will pick it up from time to time when it's on sale and I want something a little different than the mint I normally go for.

12 sticks of gum – 6.50 NIS

Kosher Parve Badatz KF London approved by Chief Rabbinate Israel

Disclaimer: All items were purchased by me. No one is paying me for this review. All opinions are my own.

Monday, August 22, 2011

Milka's Choco Moo Cookies

I recently reviewed Milka's Choco & Rice Chocolate Bar and before that their Milkinis Chocolates so now I have a Milka cookie to tell you about. It's called Choco Moo.

 עוגיות מילקה שוקו מוו 

This new cookie is shaped like Milka's "mascot" a cow, and it has a layer of Milka's milk-chocolate on the bottom, hence the name Choco Moo.
The cookie itself is crunchy and somewhat dry, kind of like a tea biscuit but much thicker. In my opinion they were much tastier, than say Osem's Petit Beurre biscuits. I thought they were sweet but not overly so. I also liked the shiny top layer of the cookie. I'm guessing it came from a thin brushed on egg wash, but I don’t know for sure. All in all, I thought the cookie was the perfect base to let the rich creamy milk-chocolate, which Milka is so known for, be the real star of this treat.
These cookies nostalgically reminded me of chocolate digestive biscuits that I ate quite a few of when I was in Britain, but the cookie part of this Choco Moo is more "plain" and closer to a tea biscuit rather than a "richer" , more whole grain, classic digestive biscuit. With all due respect to chocolate coated digestive biscuits, I thought the quality of Milka's milk-chocolate absolutely elevated these Choco Moo biscuits for me. I would even go so far as to say, these Milka biscuits surpassed any and all of the chocolate digestive biscuits I so fondly remember.  

When I first opened the packaged I was kind of surprised to see that so many of the cookies were cracked. It's possible that it was my fault, and they cracked in transit from the supermarket to my house, but given how thick the cookies are and that the package is sectioned into three; I was a little surprised that they cracked so easily.    
I liked that the top of the wrapper has a re-closable "lid". "Surprise surprise" it actually works! It seems to have a good quality adhesive. Even though I opened and closed it quite a lot, it still stuck and stayed "glued" time and time again. I also thought that the width of the "tape" on the sides of the part that you lift open was perfect. Even if I didn’t close it exactly the way it was originally wrapped there was still enough of the tape to "catch" the side of the wrapper and seal up nicely. I think all cookie companies should take a lesson from this Milka wrapper.   

Bottom Line: I read in the press release that these Milka Choco Moo Biscuits are geared toward children but, regardless of their fun cow shape, I think that kids of all ages will enjoy this cookie, I know I did :)

200 gram package 12.90 NIS

Kosher dairy triangle K D
לאוכלי אבקת חלב נוכרי, אפייה ישראל, ללא חשש חדש, השגחת הרב אריה רלב"ג ארה"ב

Update: Winner of 2012 Product of the Year Award Israel

Disclaimer: All items were purchased by me. No one is paying me for this review. All opinions are my own.

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Friday, August 19, 2011

Strauss's Tamkor Ice Cream Sandwich New Packaging

Strauss's Tamkor Ice Cream Sandwich

 has a new wrapper

טעמקור גלידת סנדביץ' של שטראוס בטעם וניל ושוקו

It seems that many people contacted Strauss

and asked them

 to indicate on the wrapper of their popular

 Tamkor ice cream sandwich

which side has the

 chocolate ice cream and

 which side has the

 vanilla ice cream

 Strauss actually listened to the suggestion

and it is now written on the wrapper

 which side is which

I personally much prefer the

over Strauss's sandwich

 but I think it’s a nice extra touch

on Strauss's part.

  I'm sure there are people that prefer the

 "mini surprise"

 not knowing if they are opening

 the chocolate or vanilla side of the sandwich

I guess u can't please all of the people all of the time

While they were at it Strauss also enlarged the

 Tamkor ice cream sandwich

 by 25%

that should please many

Disclaimer:. No one is paying me for this post. All opinions are my own.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Post's Mini Cinnamon Churros Cereal

צ'ורוס דגני בוקר של פוסט
Because of the price of most imported cereals, I hesitated buying this new Post cereal that I found on the store shelf called Mini Cinnamon Churros. When I saw it "on sale" for 17.00 NIS instead of about 24.00 NIS I decided to give it a try.

I never had the opportunity to taste an authentic freshly fried Churro so I can't compare this cereal to "the real thing" but as with say Post's Waffle Crisp Cereal I'm assuming it's more that they took "inspiration" from the Churro to make this cereal and not that they tried to "box up" the Churro itself.

Dry without milk, I thought Post's Churros cereal was exactly what the box described it to be "Crunchy sweetened wheat cereal with real cinnamon".

They compare it to Cinnamon Toast Crunch Cereal, but given that the Churros cereal is made up of fairly large, round, 3D shaped cereal pieces, I find it hard to compare it to a thin flat cereal like Cinnamon Toast Crunch. I personally much prefer the shape and size of this Churros cereal to that of Cinnamon Toast Crunch, but I do understand the comparison given that they are both a sweetened cinnamon cereals.

Since the Churros cereal was very crunchy to start with, it remained fairly crunchy even when I added milk. I enjoyed that the center of the pieces got softer yet the cereal didn't go completely soggy. The change in texture made it closer to what I imagine a real "doughnut like" Churro would taste like, but like I said, I don’t know for sure.

The cereal pieces have quite a bit of cinnamon on them, so much so, that the longer they sat in the milk the more the milk became completely sprinkled with cinnamon.   

As with most sugary cereals I thought it was more of a snack than a meal.

Even though, as I said, the added milk somewhat changed the texture and therefore the "eating experience" for me, I enjoyed this cereal both with and without milk.

Post Mini Cinnamon Churros Cereal has 9 added vitamins and minerals including iron, B vitamins, 10% of the suggested daily value of vitamin D and 15% of the suggested daily value of vitamin A. On the negative side it has 10 grams sugar per serving which makes it quite sweet but the added milk did seem to curb the sweetness to some extent.

Bottom Line: I highly doubt that Post's Mini Cinnamon Churros Cereal tastes anything close to the freshly fried Spanish doughnut treat it's named after but I thought it was a fun sweet cinnamon cereal and I enjoyed it. 

Box of 411 grams - 17.00 NIS on sale - normally 24.00 NIS   

Kosher Parve OK approved by Chief Rabbinate of Israel

Disclaimer: All items were purchased by me. No one is paying me for this review. All opinions are my own.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

OfTov's Barbeque Flavored Fillet

עוף טוב נתח פילה אמיתי
I recently tasted OfTov's "Real Fillet Barbeque Flavored Chunks". When I first read the press release and saw the photos I was sure it was referring to a fillet of beef, which on second thought seemed odd considering that it's made by OfTov and עוף=OF means chicken (bird/poultry/fowl). I didn't think that OfTov made anything but chicken or turkey products. (I even reviewed their Chicken Toaster Schnitzel not too long ago.) Yet something about the photos and the use of the word "fillet" and not say "Turkey Breast Fillet" made me think of beef. I assumed that OfTov was branching out and I was curious to taste this new product.

As soon as I picked up the package and read the label it was clear that it was in fact turkey and not beef.

When I opened it up I saw that each fillet was a different size and width. I couldn’t just follow the directions; which said to warm each fillet for 2 minutes in the microwave. It can't be that each piece, regardless of size and shape needs the same amount of time, especially when each one is so dramatically different. Sure enough 2 minutes was not enough for the fillet I chose to try. I had no choice but to keep it in the microwave for at least 5 minutes.

When I took the turkey out of the microwave I could see immediately that the corners of the fillet were extremely overdone but the center was just about warmed. Regardless of the size of each fillet and the amount of time I microwaved it for, I had the same issue; I couldn't find the right balance of cooking time to get the fillet ready to eat without overcooking the thinner parts. The end result was that the sides were overdone and the center was just about warm.

Even thought the middle was not overcooked it was extremely rubbery and dried out. I found it somewhat hard to cut with a knife and even more difficult to chew.

The so called "barbeque flavor" didn't help the situation at all. I thought it tasted extremely "artificial" and way worse than any bad bottle of barbeque sauce you may find on the store shelf. I don’t know what they were going for but it definitely didn’t taste barbequed to me. I really didn’t enjoy the flavor at all.

OfTov's Barbeque Flavored Fillet is made of real turkey breast which is rich in vitamins and minerals like iron, B12 and zinc. Each fillet is no more than 120 calories with only 3% fat and has no trans fats. These turkey fillets have no MSG no artificial food coloring and no preservatives.

Bottom Line: I found OfTov's Turkey Fillet to be rubbery and dry. I didn't think it was tasty or very edible. Aside from which I didn’t really care for the flavor, it didn’t seem like barbeque to me. Even though there is a 6 NIS coupon available for it online, I won't be purchasing this product again.

 500 gram bag 39.00 NIS

Kosher Mehadren
 כשרות אוירבך מהדרין.

Disclaimer: All items were purchased by me. No one is paying me for this review. All opinions are my own.