Wednesday, September 10, 2014
Trader Joe's Natural Butter Flavor Microwave Popcorn
I've never found microwave popcorn that I'm completely happy with. Every time I think I've found a good kind, it seems that the next time I buy the same thing, it's not nearly as good--as if the manufacturers can't put out a consistent product.
So I didn't have high hopes for Trader Joe's being my knight in shining oil. And it wasn't. But it was pretty good.
I was disappointed by how small the individual bags were--1.4 ounces, according to the box. For comparison, some Orville Reddenbacher I have in the cupboard has bags labeled as 82.3 grams each, which is a bit under 3 ounces. The problem of the TJ's small bag size is compounded by the fact that at least 1/3 of the kernels didn't pop. Granted, this may be because I have an underpowered, slightly wonky microwave oven. (It's built into the cabinetry above my stove, and looks like its way past its sell-by date.) But the net result was a really pathetic yield--such that after eating it I immediately went and popped a second batch and ate that, too, just to feel like I had had a normal amount.
But I do like it. It's a lot saltier than most microwave popcorns, which I like. I wish it were a little more buttery, but it's OK in that respect. None of the kernels got scorched. None were soggy with oil. The ones that popped virtually all popped fully, leaving very few of those unacceptable barely-open bits.
Will I buy it again?
Yes, probably so, if my impression of it through the last four bags remains the same as it is after these first two. The world of microwave popcorn is a vast sea of mediocrity, and at least TJ's rises a little above that unhappy standard.