Long ago when I was growing up in the Washington DC area, we were frequent visitors to the National Air and Space museum. I loved that place and spent many, many hours there just wandering around looking at the planes and rockets and dreaming of going into space. I wanted to be an astronaut like many kids my age after the Apollo launches in the 1970s. I remember one of the fun things to do at the museum gift shop was to buy freeze-dried ice cream! We all got a huge kick out of it. There was something that was supposed to be ice cold and wet not in a hard little block that was fun to eat. I always wondered what would happen if you added water and stuck it in the freezer if it would go back to ice cream. Whatever, it was delicious on its own…
Later on, when I got older, we would go camping and you could find all sorts of freeze-dried this or that for saving weight when you backpacked. I think you still can at REI and places like that, but I haven’t been backpacking for 20 years so I don’t know anymore. I just remember getting some of those meals in a bag and you just add water and heat them up and they were mostly awful. I’m sure they are better now.
So, I’m checking the end stack where they keep the new stuff coming into my local store. You saw my review of the Movie Theater Pop Corn yesterday in the pile of new stuff and right next to it were these two products I’ve never seen before. Freeze dried whole red seedless grapes and freezed dried raspberries. I opted for the grapes since I’m a wine nut. (I might pick up the raspberries today).
The first thing I noticed was how light the bag was, but really if it’s anything like that freeze dried ice cream I got as a kid, then I can see why. Grapes are like 99% water. They are also gluten-free. Just grapes here!
I opened the bag and was amazed at how light the individual berries were. Almost like puff rice. Popped one in my mouth and chewed on it. I was struck by how grapey and not too sweet they were. The outer skin on them is the sweetest part and the interior is like puffed corn. Very crisp. They crumble easily when you squeeze them, but because there is some sugar in them, they stick to your hands to put them right in your mouth. They had a nice mild grape flavor and you get a little bit of sugar and some acid when you eat them. They also stick to your teeth like chewing soft candy but quickly dissolve in your mouth. While I’m chewing on them, I’m trying to figure out what you could do with them besides eating them straight out of the bag. I guess you could bake them in muffins, or put them on your cereal. You could crumble them up and put them on yogurt. I guess the uses for them are endless. Oh, and they probably make a good snack for backpacking! For that matter, do they put these in the space shuttle for the astronauts to eat as a snack? I guess not anymore since the space shuttles are done, but you can imagine some long ago time when astronauts would be eating these as a snack!
These are funky and unique products. One that isn’t likely to hang around too long but you never know with Trader Joe’s. I really like them. One caveat, I left them out overnight in the bowl on the counter and they started to get super sticky in the morning. I guess they were so dry that they started sucking moisture out of the air and re-hydrating! Leave them in the bag!
I’m not even going to list the ingredients because all it is is the fruit.
I’m going to rate these 8 Bells!
I saw a variety of different fruits up at the store a couple of days ago. Including, Freeze Dried Strawberries, Freeze Dried Blueberries, Freeze Dried Raspberries and I think I saw Freeze Dried Pineapple?. I’ll double check next time I’m at Trader Joe’s.