I love Trader Joe’s. I started going to Trader Joe’s in college, exploring the aisles and discovering new foods. Then when I moved out on my own to a tiny little studio right under the flight path to the airport, I started shopping there almost full time.
Today, I still do about 75% of my shopping there. I do a lot of price comparison and milk is significantly less expensive than the Albertson’s grocery a block from where I live.
Other goods that save me money at TJ’s is eggs, butter and pasta — a good chunk of the necessities. Sure, I would be saving in gas money if I walked to Albertson’s instead of driving to Trader Joe’s but I have a long-standing commitment to that store and it has some good stuff. And sometimes I do walk/ride my bike to Trader Joe’s if I have the energy.
Aside from the staples, Trader Joe’s has fantastic seasonal merchandise. I’ve tried their panettone and liquor cakes and it is all very good, but I’d never tried the very popular Candy Cane Joe-Joe’s.
I have resisted the Candy Cane Joe Joe’s because I don’t like Oreo cookies very much, but decided to give it a try after seeing a box of it in the company refrigerator. The regular flavor Joe-Joe’s are available year-round, but the Candy Cane version has a cult-like following because of the candy cane specks in the creme filling. I’ve read forums telling of how the cookies have sold out at some stores and how some people stock up on them so they can keep it in the freezer year-round. The cookie itself is very refreshing and tastes like a Thin Mint but with a creamy center. But two Candy Candy Joe-Joes are all I can take in one sitting without overdosing on its peppermint goodness. A box of 36 sells for $2.49.
Since I was already at Trader Joe’s, I had to also pick up the over-indulgent cousin of the Candy Cane Joe-Joe’s. Meet the dark chocolate covered variety. I prefer these to the regular Candy Cane Joe-Joe’s, possibly because it cuts down on the almost overwhelming peppermint flavor. But one is all I can handle. Plus, it has more calories than two CC Joe-Joe’s. I hate watching what I eat but it’s 150 calories for one chocolate-covered vs. 140 for two regular Candy Cane Joe-Joe’s. A box of 10 is $3.99.
I stopped in my tracks in the frozen dessert aisle when I saw a Buche de Noel. I’ve been wanting to make one but with everything going on at work, I’m surprised I’m still cooking dinner every night. A traditional Buche de Noel is a cake roll decorated to resemble a snow-covered log, usually with a mushroom or two decorating it. The Trader Joe’s version is a dark chocolate mousse cake. The cake is definitely a chocoholics dream but it was just so-so to me. The buche de noel serves up to 7 people — or one very hungry person for $8.99.
Since all of these purchases were spur-of-the-moment and I’m not in love with any one of them, I’m going to drop them off at work to have my hungry co-workers devour them instead.