Yes, we have no bananas
Okay, I don’t usually spend a lot of time talking about products unless I really like something (ahem, balsamic vinegar from Cherry Creek). We do have brands of things we prefer and I will mention that brand by name in recipes but I like to let most people make up their own minds.
I discovered the Tortillaz, an air-baked rice and corn chip/cracker (officially, a crisp) at the D&W Fresh Market out in Williamston. Texture is a very important part of eating, for me. I like to have a nice balance of crisp, crunchy and soft in all my meals (along with a bit of sweet to balance out savory or vice versa). On the flip side, I’m trying not to eat too many chips and crackers as I really don’t need the carbs. Since I’m having salad for lunch today and there were no croutons for crunch, I decided to break out this bag of crisps. There are two varieties, zesty guacamole & cheesy nacho. Since I love the guac, I chose that variety. I did not look at the ingredients- I admit to being swayed by the “Air-Baked” and “Made with Grains” plus they were in the rice cake section which just screams healthy as long as you ignore the caramel flavored ones.
Unfortunately, there is no price sticker and the receipt is long gone but I can tell you they were not cheap. At least a couple of bucks for a 3 oz bag (at 1 oz/serving).
At first glance, I was aprehensive. In fact, I saved a few bites of salad just in case I needed to cleanse my palate. The crisps are shaped like tortilla chip triangles however they have a mottled green color to them, which I guess is supposed to look as though they’ve been powdered with guacamole. Not the most appetizing look.
First bite: very crunchy, like Bugles which I really like. They were certainly zesty although I didn’t really taste guacamole. It was mostly corn with some heat and maybe a cilantro or lime like flavor. And lots of crunch- like eating a dorito with the seasoning coating your fingers.
Side note: When I was a kid, we used to put Bugles on our fingers and pretend they were long witchy fingernails, then eat them one by one.
So, they tasted good but I didn’t think I could eat a lot of them, due to the finger coating and the potential for flavor overkill. Then I looked at the ingredients and nutrition.
Nutritionally, they are fine. Ingredients? Mmm, not so much. Okay, rice & corn I expect. Oil, yes. seasonings, sour cream, dried jalapeno. Yep, all what I’d expect. But, MSG? Maltodextrin, natural & artificial flavors, modified food starch, sodium diacetate? All of those things were above the sour cream and jalapeno. Bottom of the list were the oh-so appetizing food colorants (lakes?) and soy lecithin.
Notice anything missing? Look closely. I remind you, these are guacamole flavored chips. The key ingredient, the one thing you must have for guacamole?
Yes, that’s right, the avocado.
Who knew there were so many. And who knew that you could have guacamole flavored chips with not a whit of avocado? Okay, I admit the “natural and artificial flavors” is probably where it comes in. But you see, natural and artificial flavors doesn’t mean actual avocado or even derived from the avocado. So, guacamole without the essence of guacamole.
I’m a bit disturbed by it all. I brought the rest of the crisps home to have Chris try them. He likes them and doesn’t care that they have no avocado.