Thursday, October 27, 2011

Trader Joe's latest: Crispy seaweed snacks


Consider your basic sushi roll, the kind with the dark green wrapper. Take away the rice and the fish and what you're left with is that dark green wrapper.

That clever Trader Joe has now dusted that wrapper with salt and wasabi and packaged it for 99 cents as a virtuous snack.

You know the name of the blog, people: I'll Bite. And I will.

This morning, I opened a package of Trader Joe's Wasabi Roasted Seaweed Snack. The first thing to get past is the texture: It's sort of plastic, shiny and very green, like freeze-dried Astroturf. It's also a bit fishy. But it is crisp, and it delivers a dose of salt and a nose-clearing hit of wasabi. It's weirdly addictive if you're trying to avoid potato chips. You also can crumble a few sheets for a salad topping.

Half of a package, or about 10 to 15 palm-size rectangles, has 30 calories, 2 grams of fat (none trans or saturated) and 60 milligrams of sodium, with 20 percent of your RDA of Vitamin C, a little vitamin A and tiny bit of iron.

27 comments:

Anonymous said...

I have been eating seaweed snacks since 1993. Nothing new here at all.

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Kathleen Purvis said...

Anonymous 11:53: I removed your comment for abusive language. I may or may not agree with Anonymous 11:40, but he or she has the right to comment, negatively or positively.

Anonymous said...

I, for one, had never before heard of a crispy seaweed snack, apparently having wasted all of those years since 1993, so I was happy to read about them. The only problem I have with Trader Joe's is that the closest one is more than 15 miles away. It's comforting to know that Aldi's is a part of the same company.

Anita said...

How funny that I just bought that and ate it a few hours ago! I thought it was good!

Anonymous said...

Anonymous 12:48: Actually the Aldi's in the US are part of Aldi Sud, which is not associated with Trader Joe's. It is the brother of the owner of Aldi Sud who was the owner of Trader Joe's (he died last year). However, I hope that you are still comforted.

Kathleen Purvis said...

Thanks, Anonymous 12:28. On the Aldi's/Trader Joe's connection, that's sort of right. Aldi's was founded by the Albrecht brothers, who later split up and divided their stores. The late Theo Albrecht owned the half that included stores in America. A family trust bought Trader Joe's, and Theo was a member of that trust. So there is sort of common ownership and similarity in business models, but not shared management.

Anonymous said...

I have to agree with anony 11:40. But, my sister-in-law is asian and introduced me to the seaweed sheets in the late 1990s. They have been available in asian grocery stores for a long time sans the wasbi dusting. It's good to know they are now available at Trader Joe's. They are tasty but the texture can be off-putting. I will definitely buy them. Thanks for the info Kathleen!

Kathleen Purvis said...

I'm always happy to eat and tell, Anonymous 1:30.

TD said...

Kathleen, I think you've got that wrong about Aldi's. Aldi Sud (south) went to Karl Albrecht and they are the group that has the US Aldi's. Theo Albrecht got Aldi Nord (north) which does not operate any Aldi's stores in the US, but they are the parent company of Trader Joe's.

Kathleen Purvis said...

Yes, that's correct. Brother Karl's Aldi Sud took the U.S., U.K. and Australia, while Aldi Nord focused on Europe. However, Theo, the owner of Aldi Nord, broke with that arrangement when he bought Trader Joe's from the founder, Joe Coulombe. It's difficult to confirm information on either company, since both brothers were notoriously secretive, and both chains continue that policy (as I learned well when TJ's was originally opening in Charlotte). But the details were widely reported when Theo Albrecht died last year.

Anonymous said...

Does this count as seafood?

Anonymous said...

why did the convo turn into WHO SHOT JR (Who owns the chain)?

who cares.. better yet.. WHY?

AS FAR AR THE TOPIC.... it doesn't shock me that its being made and sold. We (americans) love anything in small bag that reads... 0.99.

Anonymous said...

I've always liked seaweed and wasabi.

There are a lot of asian snacks that include the two with a cracker of some shape or the
other.

Typically, the Japanese have the most snacks of this kind.

I also like squid and find dried squid and squid flavored chips tasty.

My favorite brand was Squidy which was like a squid-flavored cheese puff.

Anonymous said...

These are also good crumbled over rice! Mmmm...

Gretchen said...

Without getting into the ultimate Aldi's/TJ's management, I find many of TJ's items at Aldi's under the Clancy's label or Beaumont. Take a look, especially around Christmas for puff pastry (a dollar cheaper), hummus and pita type chips (all the time).

Angie @ Musings of a Violet Monkey said...

I saw these last month at TJ's and bought four packages... 2 plain, and 2 wasabi flavored. The wasabi ones are too hot for me by themselves. And the plain ones just aren't memorable, as I just remembered they are still sitting in my pantry. I'll have to try what Anon 6:48 suggested, and crumble them over some rice. That does sound tasty.

Per the Aldi/TJ's convo... can anyone confirm that Aldi in UK/Ireland is Lidl? I have been in many Lidl stores over the years, and they seem JUST like Aldi to me. Even the logo is similar. It's something I've always wondered, but never enough to actually research it - I guess!


~

Kathleen Purvis said...

Re: Lidl. All I turned up in a very quick search is that Lidl is considered Aldi's primary competition in Europe. So that would indicate the ownership isn't the same.

Jess said...

I love seaweed snacks but to be honest I like the trader joe's one's better. They don't have the fish oil on them like the one's you buy at the asian market. It's just my own personal preference of course. Now that they have wasabi flavor I'm stoked! I just ate the whole package, by accident because they are so good.

heobeo said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
JW said...

Like both the wasabe &the plain, my wife is probably more addicted than I. I'm interested in looking at the feasibility of crisping our own from the larger packaged sheets of seaweed now sold commonly even in the supermarket. Its too papery for a snack. My wife has crisped them in a fry pan...great, but labor intensive.

Anybody have success with a dehydrator?
I know some people believe exceeding 107° destroys nutritional enzymes with veggies.

Anybody with their own experience?

Anonymous said...

These things are addicting, I was introduced to them when TJ's had them on a free sample table. I can't go a week without eating one of the packages, the one with Wasabi has a nice light punch to it.

Anonymous said...

They are good and popular. Thanks to marketing arms of TJ's. Pssst... you can these at asian groceries three packs for one dollar.

Anonymous said...

I absolutely love these smacks! I prefer the plain to the wasabi-flavored as I love the ocean-y flavor. I feel okay
about scarfing these down, as they have fewer calories and fat grams than regular potato chips.. Yum, yum!

Anonymous said...

yummmmmo....

Unknown said...

where can you buy this?

Stefan Rios said...

man those fucking things tasted like ASSHOLE in bag.... smh