Make us your home page
Instagram

Taste test: a few of our favorite food things

Since our judges don't usually get to pick the foods they try for Taster's Choice, we invited them to bring a favorite holiday treat to share for this week's column. While some of the foods are available throughout the year, judges said they save them for holiday enjoyment. We hope readers will enjoy a few of their suggestions as well.

Kathy Saunders, Times correspondent

Product/Score

(out of 100)
Utz White Chocolate Flavored Chocolate-Covered Pretzel Cinnamon Sticks Pepperidge Farm Candy Cane Milano Cookies Publix Deli Cranberry Orange Relish Golden

All-Natural Potato Pancakes/Latkes
Judges'

comments
"Lovely" and "welcoming" were the words that came from judges sampling these. "Serious fans of white chocolate will love these," said one panelist. "They are smooth and comforting." Another said she liked the luscious chocolate coating. "These could definitely be addictive." Another agreed, saying, "It's really hard to just have one." She liked the balance of spiced cinnamon and sweet chocolate. "These would taste great with coffee.""These are a refreshing mix of chocolate and peppermint between two crunchy cookies," said one panelist. "They are a perfect twist on regular minty Milanos." Panelists said they definitely will be putting these on their holiday dessert buffets. "I'll say it — this is a sexy cookie," said one judge. "It's lightly minted, touched by dark chocolate and layered on an airy biscuit.The citrus flavor was profound in this relish. All of the panelists agreed the store brand of relish would be particularly great with a Black Friday leftover turkey sandwich. "It's tart and puckery," said one judge. "It might make a nice relish for a main-dish honey-cured ham as well." Another said she really liked the dark color of the cranberries and the vibrant bits of orange. "Put this in a beautiful serving bowl and it's an elegant side dish for a festive meal," added one taster.Crunchy outsides and warm, soft centers made these the perfect potato pancakes, according to our judges. "They hold together really well and don't taste overly processed," said one panelist. We warmed these frozen latkes in the oven, although package directions listed the option of pan frying as well. Right out of the oven, they were crispy and flavorful. "They have a touch of onion and a sweet, crunchy outside coating," said a panelist who suggested these would be great with applesauce or apple jelly.
Would

they buy?
All four judges said yes.Three of the four judges said yes.All four judges said yes.All four judges said yes.
Shopping information$8.99 for an 18-ounce container from Total Wine & More.$2.50 for a 7-ounce bag from Target.$1.99 for an 8-ounce container from Publix.$3.99 for a 10.6-ounce box of eight from Winn-Dixie.


Panelists: Nan Jensen, registered dietitian; Wayne Conery, retired restaurant manager; Jeff Jensen, public information officer for the city of Treasure Island; and Liz Mergenthaler, dietetic intern with Pinellas County Home Extension.

Send suggestions for product testing to: Taste section, Tampa Bay Times, P.O. Box 1121, St. Petersburg, FL 33731 or email them to [email protected] Please put TEST SUGGESTION in the subject line. To read past Taster's Choice columns, go to

tampabay.com/things-to-do/food/tastetest.

Serving sizeFive piecesTwo cookiesOne-fourth cupOne patty
Calories14013010070
Fat/Fiber5g / 0g6g / 0g0g / 2g3g / 1g
Sugars/Sodium13g / 110mg9g / 50mg19g / 0mg2g / 190mg
Carbs/Protein21g / 2g17g / 1g25g / 0g10g / 1g

Taste test: a few of our favorite food things 12/18/15 [Last modified: Friday, December 18, 2015 10:30am]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Review: Cast up to the challenge in Richey Suncoast's 'How the Other Half Loves'

    Stage

    Theater has many plays where there are two completely different apartments depicted on the stage, usually split down the middle, one on the right, one on the left.

    "How the Other Half Loves" runs weekends through Oct. 29 at Richey Suncoast Theatre in New Port Richey. Cast members are Christine Stoll and  David Daly (in front) and Bob Marcela, Heather Clark, Mike Worssell and Blake Parker (in back, from left). [Photo by Jess Glass]
  2. Review: Excellent cast delivers entertaining production of 'Young Frankenstein' at Stage West

    Stage

    I went to see the musical comedy Young Frankenstein at Stage West Community Playhouse in Spring Hill with some trepidation. I had seen a very good production of the show at another theater a couple of years ago, and I was concerned that I would subconsciously compare the two to the detriment of one or the …

    "Young Frankenstein" plays weekends through Oct. 29 at Stage West Community Playhouse in Spring Hill. Keith Surplus, left, performs as Igor and Lynda Dilts-Benson, right, as Frau Blucher. [Photo by Carol Ballard]
  3. Top things to do in Tampa Bay for the week of Oct. 23-29

    Events

    R. L. Stine: It's fitting that the week before Halloween, USF's Lecture Series features the popular horror author known for the Goosebumps series. Stine will discuss his career, creative process and sign books Wednesday at the Marshall Student Center in Tampa. Free. .

    ATLANTA, GA - AUGUST 09: Singer Anthony Hamilton performs onstage at the 2014 Ford Neighborhood Awards Hosted By Steve Harvey at the Phillips Arena on August 9, 2014 in Atlanta, Georgia. (Photo by Moses Robinson/Getty Images for Ford Neighborhood Awards)
  4. Seasoned cast scores an extra-base hit for St. Petersburg Opera with 'Faust'

    Stage

    TAMPA — Charles Gounod's Faust sets the table early. The world-weary philosopher immortalized in a dramatic poem by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe is in his study, lamenting his state of affairs. He's willing to give away everything he has to be young again, even his soul.

    The St. Petersburg Opera Company begins its season with Faust, in a production seemingly aligned with the original intent of French composer Charles Gounod and librettists Jules Barbier and Michel Carre. [St. Petersburg Opera Company]
  5. Blake High grad Taylor Trensch lands lead role in 'Dear Evan Hansen' on Broadway

    Stage

    For those who saw Taylor Trensch grow up in Tampa, his rise from promising student to star is heartwarming and entirely predictable. In January, Trensch, 28, will be moving into the title role of Dear Evan Hansen on Broadway, one of the hottest tickets in theater.

    Taylor Trensch, a 2007 Blake High graduate, will play the title role in Broadway's Dear Evan Hansen. Courtesy of Frank Trensch.