Purchased Price: $2.99 Size: 24 oz. bag Purchased at: Target Rating: 6 out of 10 Pros: Has a fluffy interior and slightly crispy exterior. Having the chorus of Tina Turner’s “The Best” pop into my head every time I see the packaging. Made with Grade A potatoes. Made with olive oil. Goes great with ketchup, but tastes fine naked. There’s enough in the bag for four big servings. If you’re into all-natural products and too lazy to cut up raw potatoes, season them, and bake them, these are perfect for you. Cons: Only a slight flavor improvement over regular partially natural potato wedges. There’s a noticeable freezer-ness to them; people will not mistake these for potato wedges from fresh raw potatoes. Didn’t see any sea salt on the wedges. Packaging makes it seem like it’s made with only olive oil, but it’s also made with vegetable, canola, sunflower and/or cottonseed oils. Oven preparation only.
Nutrition Facts: 3 oz. (about 7 pieces) 120 calories, 20 calories from fat, 2.5 grams of fat, 0.5 grams of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 0 milligrams of cholesterol, 290 milligrams of sodium, 360 milligrams of potassium, 22 grams of carbohydrates, 2 grams of fiber, less than 1 gram of sugar, and 2 grams of protein.
Purchased Price: $1.27 Size: 4.5 oz Purchased at: Target Rating: 6 out of 10 Pros: Decent fried potato flavor. Easy to prepare. Inexpensive. Enough to share with someone. Gluten free. Crisping tray does a good job at making them crispy. Cons: I don’t know if I’d consider them “extra crispy.” Some might find a condiment is necessary when eating them. Is the exclamation point really necessary? Made with partially hydrogenated oil, which means it has less than 0.5 grams of trans fat. Crispy Crowns? More like Crispy Rounds. Inconsistent cooking; some had a crispy exterior and fluffy interior, but some has dried up interiors. Three and a half minutes seem kind of long for just tater tots.
Nutrition Facts: about 14 pieces – 220 calories, 120 calories from fat, 14 grams of fat, 3 grams of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat*, 0 milligrams of cholesterol, 340 milligrams of sodium, 200 milligrams of potassium, 22 grams of carbohydrates, 2 grams of fiber, less than 1 gram of sugar, 2 grams of protein.
Eating mashed potatoes is a rare treat for me. I eat a lot of rice because I’m Asian and I’m afraid if I don’t eat enough of it my ancestors’ spirits, who were probably rice farmers in Japan, will come and take away my chopsticks and slanted eyes.
Of course, getting my RDA (Rice Daily Allowance) is easy here on this rock in the middle of the Pacific Ocean because rice is by far the number one starch. It’s rare to have the option to consume mashed potatoes, even at Thanksgiving or on August 19th, which is National Potato Day. The only times I get to enjoy mashed potatoes are at nice steak restaurants, buffets or after I accidently step on my Wendy’s baked potato.
It’s been awhile since I’ve had mashed potatoes, so I was looking forward to trying the Ore-Ida Steam n’ Mash Garlic Seasoned Potatoes, which is made of up a bag of frozen cubes of potatoes that you steam in the microwave and then mash to your heart’s content in a bowl. This product not only allows me to nosh on the butchered and crushed relatives of Mr. Potato Head, it also provides the missing link that enables me to describe my work ethic in terms of mashed potato preparation.
I can be mashed-potatoes-from-scratch diligent, Ore-Ida-Steam-n’-Mash somewhat reliable, instant-mashed-potatoes lackadaisical or accidently-stepped-on-my Wendy’s-baked-potato lazy.
There isn’t a lot of physical labor with the Ore-Ida Steam n’ Mash, compared with making mashed potatoes from scratch, which involves washing, peeling, cutting, boiling and other actions that infomercial gadgets promise to do. I just heated the bag in the microwave oven for ten minutes, let it sit for two minutes to cool down, poured its contents into a bowl, added 2/3 cup milk and then mashed it like a cockroach.
Its taste was bland, despite the garlic. If it weren’t for the addition of several tablespoons of butter, I probably would’ve made my rice-growing ancestors smile by throwing it away or making naughty sculptures with it. Its texture wasn’t too fluffy and there were a few raw, uncooked potato chunks here and there, which were unpleasant to bite my teeth into, but that was probably because I mash things instant-mashed-potatoes lackadaisically.
The Ore-Ida Steam n’ Mash Garlic Seasoned Potatoes are convenient and can be more than decent if you add other ingredients to the mix. It’s not close to smashed spuds made from scratch, but it’s better than instant mashed potatoes and a Wendy’s baked potato I accidently stepped on.
(Nutrition Facts – 3/4 cup – 110 calories, 4 grams of fat, 2.5 grams of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 10 milligrams of cholesterol, 330 milligrams of sodium, 250 milligrams of potassium, 17 grams of carbohydrates, 2 grams of fiber, 0 grams of sugar, 2 gram of protein, 2% Vitamin A, 0% Calcium, 15% Vitamin C and 2% Iron.)
Item: Ore-Ida Steam n’ Mash Garlic Seasoned Potatoes Price: $4.50 Size: 24 ounces Purchased at: Safeway Rating: 6 out of 10 Pros: Convenient. Easy to make. Tastes better when butter is added. Better than instant mashed potatoes. Allows me to describe my work ethic in terms of mashed potato preparation. Being mashed-potatoes-from-scratch diligent. Cons: Bland. Still had a few chunks of uncooked, raw potatoes. Not close to being as good as mashed potatoes made from scratch. My mashing abilities. Being accidently-stepped-on-my Wendy’s-baked-potato lazy.
When all the other men on the face of the Earth disappear and I am the last man on the planet, women will have to come over to my place to keep the human race going. When the ladies come over for some sweet, sweet lovin’, I like to give them a night to forget, full of my crying a night to remember, full of pleasure, and if they’re into it, a little pain.
If they don’t run away sleep over, I can also give them a morning to remember with a little surprise.
After a night of drunken “I totally don’t know your name” sex passionate lovemaking, she’ll probably need breakfast to realize that I’m not as handsome in daylight as I am under a strobelight reenergize herself so that she can get through the day. After all, breakfast is her chance to escape the most important meal of the day.
Sure, I could just pour her a bowl of Froot Loops Raisin Bran with chocolate milk skim milk, but I want to show her that I’m not cheap I had a wonderful time last night and I hope the leopard print fuzzy handcuffs didn’t freak her out it was wonderful for her as well.
Instead, I would warm up pizza from the other night cook her a breakfast, that consists of eggs, bacon, and some potatoes.
I like cooking breakfast because it is the only time I get to wear my “Kiss the Cook….Down There” apron is one of the easiest and quickest meals to make. On several occasion, I’ve cooked breakfast for dinner because it’s the only thing I know how to cook it’s so easy to do.
Look at that picture of breakfast-sy goodness on the right, ladies. You can expect that in the morning if you happened to be tricked by me to come to my place to see my Ansel Adams photo collection that doesn’t exist come over and spend the night.
The eggs and bacon take only minutes to make, but the potatoes can be a totally different story. Sure I could just stick some day-old potato wedges from KFC in the microwave and say I slaved over a stove to make them. Sure I could cut up some red potatoes into wedges, dip them in egg whites, sprinkle paprika over them, and stick them in the oven for 30 minutes at 450 degrees, but I wouldn’t want the mother of my possible future illegitimate children caused by an expired broken condom beautiful woman in my bed to wait.
Thank goodness for these frozen Ore-Ida Extra Crispy Easy Breakfast Potatoes. Using the crisp and serve tray made out of the box, they take four short minutes to heat up in the microwave, which is the same amount of time I would last during a sweet, sweet lovemaking session it would take me to cook the eggs and bacon to go along with it. The result of those four minutes are some decently crispy potatoes, but not extra crispy like the box says, which is as disappointing as my performance in the bedroom the Detroit Tigers in the 2006 World Series.
The Ore-Ida Extra Crispy Easy Breakfast Potatoes taste pretty good for something that came out of the microwave. I noticed a slight peppery taste to them, which I’m sure a lady friend who slept over would like because it will help get the taste of me out of her mouth she won’t need to reach for the salt or pepper.
When they’re on sale for $1.25 a box, they’re cheap enough to stock up on, which will come in handy when some woman stays over after giving me pity sex another lady friend comes over.
Item: Ore-Ida Extra Crispy Easy Breakfast Potatoes Price: $1.25 (on sale) Purchased at: Safeway Rating: 8 out of 10 Pros: Pretty good for something that came out of a microwave. Quick to make. The crisp and serve tray. Crispy, but not extra crispy. Enough for two people. Making breakfast for a lady friend. My “Kiss the Cook…Down There” apron. Cons: 1.5 grams of trans fat per serving. Herpes. My short performances in the bedroom. Illegitimate children caused by an expired broken condom. Tricking women to come over. Making sweet, sweet love with me.
Usually Iâ€™m skeptical about things that are easy, because Iâ€™m afraid they either arenâ€™t easy or they carry some kind of sexually transmitted disease.
So I was obviously a little cynical about these Ore-Ida Extra Crispy Easy Fries I picked up from the national grocery store chain I shop at, but I figured I could take a risk since they were only a dollar.
Actually I bought two boxes of the Easy Fries because Iâ€™ve been known on occasion to mess up microwave foods. For example, Iâ€™ve caused many Hot Pockets to erupt like they were high school science fair projects. Also, Iâ€™ve burnt more bags of microwave popcorn than Iâ€™d like to admit.
When I got home from the store, I decided to make one of the boxes of Easy Fries.
When crisping microwave foods, thereâ€™s usually some kind of crisping sleeve made out of some gray material. With the Easy Fries, the entire box they came in was the crisping sleeve. A layer of the gray crisping material was on both sides of the interior of the box.
The instructions for crisping were simple. Just flip the box over, tear out the back cover of the box (which was perforated for easy removal), and take the back cover and lay it directly on top of the frozen fries. Then just stick the box in the microwave for four minutes.
After the four minutes were up, I let the box sit in the microwave for about a minute more to cool down. I canâ€™t tell you how many times Iâ€™ve burnt my fingers by accidentally touching the gray crisping material because I was so eager to eat.
When the fries were ready to eat, I found that I had a big problem. I didnâ€™t have ketchup. This was a problem because itâ€™s one of the ways I get vegetables into my diet.
Well I did without the ketchup and began eating the fries naked. (No, I wasnâ€™t naked. I meant the fries.)
The crisping results varied, with the skinnier fries being crispier than the thicker fries. As for the taste, I have to say that theyâ€™re the best tasting microwave fries Iâ€™ve ever had, but then again theyâ€™re the only microwave fries Iâ€™ve ever had. However, the taste is definitely not even close to those frozen fries made in a conventional oven.
But in this case, Iâ€™ll take speed over quality, since it takes about 25-30 minutes to make fries in a conventional oven.
Since I was slightly disappointed with the crisping results, I thought about sticking the second box I bought into the microwave for longer than the instructed four minutes. However, I didnâ€™t because I was afraid of ruining them in the microwave, or whatâ€™s slowly being called among my friends as, â€œMarvo-tizing the food.â€
Item: Ore-Ida Extra Crispy Easy Fries Purchase Price: $1.00 (on sale) Rating: 8 out of 10 Pros: Cheap. Get fries in four quick minutes. Best microwave fries Iâ€™ve ever had, but then again theyâ€™re the only microwave fries Iâ€™ve ever had. Cons: Crisping results vary. No ketchup, need to buy ketchup or steal some from the Burger King down the street.