“ Brand: Golden Vale / Type: Snack „
As I have mentioned in some of my earlier reviews, I have problems with my appetite which is mainly due to me having a chronic illness that affects my digestive system. For this reason, I rely on snacks a lot of the time, rather than sitting down to eat a larger sized meal, which I simply cannot do a lot of the time.
My partner describes me as a 'picky' eater although this is not because I have trouble choosing WHAT to eat; I am really not very fussy at all you see! The reason that he calls me this is because I tend to 'graze' whilst eating rather than eating three decent-sized meals a day. I can often be found taking a snack from the fridge, only to follow this up with a packet of crisps or a biscuit and cheese an hour or so later, i.e. I pick at this and that rather than sit down to a "normal" meal.
With this in mind, I can often be found buying little snack-type treats for myself to keep in the fridge until such times as I fancy a nibble. One such snack that I buy fairly regularly is the pack of 'Brunchettas'.
The 'Brunchettas' snack only comes in three varieties as far as I know. The one that I buy most regularly and am therefore reviewing is the 'Red Pepper and Onion relish' variety. The snack is also available to buy in two other varieties, one of which is a 'Soft cheese' Variety, and the other being a "Ploughman's" variation.
I buy the Brunchettas fairly often as part of my weekly shop, and they are readily available from all major supermarkets such as Asda or Tesco. That said though, I tend to only buy them when they are on special offer, as they tend to be a bit too expensive for me otherwise! I bought a couple of packs in Asda last week, when they were on a 'roll-back' offer of 87 pence per pack. If they are not on offer then they tend to cost in the region of £1.30 from Tescos anyway, which I cannot really justify spending on such a small snack.
For those of you who are unfamiliar with this snack, it is a plastic sort of 'tray' designed package, with three individual segments within it. The tray has a peel off lid, and there is no preparation of the snack needed - it is ready to eat, and is therefore highly convenient. The pack does have to be kept refrigerated, though!
Once you peel off the lid from the plastic tray, each segment contains a different item. In the case of the Red pepper and onion relish Brunchettas, the first segment contains small circular-shaped pieces of very crispy and very crunchy bruschetta, the second contains some triangular-shaped slices of mature cheddar, and the third contains a generous serving of the red pepper and onion relish which is basically similar to a pickle or chutney. There is a small grey plastic spoon contained within the segment housing the pieces of bruschetta, so you can easily spoon your pickle out without needing to use your own cutlery.
The idea is that you take a piece of bruschetta, place a slice of the cheese on top, then using your little plastic spoon you can scoop out a helping of the relish and spread it on top of the cheese. Voila! You have a bite-sized snack.
In my opinion, the snack is quite satisfying, although I suppose if I wanted to nit-pick I would mention that the manufacturers could do with popping another one or two of these into the pack - there are only five bruschetta biscuits and five slices of cheese in the package and the bruschetta biscuits/bread are a little on the small side!
I do, however, find the red pepper and onion relish is very tasty indeed and compliments the cheese and bruschetta perfectly. It has a very sweet taste and is rather tangy, presumably because of the red peppers that are evident within the relish.
The bruschetta is very crunchy - more like a biscuit rather than bread and has the consistency of croutons or something similar. They are quite salty although not overly so. The cheddar cheese is just the right strength for my own personal tastes, and is not overly strong.
If you are looking for a filling, hearty snack then this is not for you, although to be fair there are no such claims on the packaging. I find that this is ideal for me as I am usually only looking for it to 'keep me going' at lunchtime perhaps, or alongside some soup as my evening 'meal'.
The concept behind the idea is one of huge convenience. The idea is similar to that of the 'Dairylea' range of snacks such as 'Dunkers' and 'Lunchables' in that everything you need for the snack is contained within the packaging - this makes it ideal to take with you when you are 'on the move'.
The nutritional information on the packaging informs me that each 65g pack will provide 178 calories and 10.7g of fat (eeek... not a particularly healthy option then!?) There is not any confirmation as to whether the product is suitable for vegetarians or not, but there is some allergy information on the label. The label also states quite clearly that the product may contain traces of nuts.
I can appreciate that some people would be looking for the pack to contain a bit more 'Brunchettas' inside, or that some people would find these to be too expensive. After all, it is probably more economical to buy a packet of crackers or Melba toasts and a little block of cheese!
If like me though, you are looking for something convenient and ready to eat, then these are for you! They are tasty enough to keep my appetite satisfied for a while without being overly fussy or on the other hand, far too plain.
The product has its own website which can be found at www.brunchettas.co.uk, where you can see full details of this product.
Overall, I would recommend them, but probably only if they were on offer. Otherwise, they work out to be just a bit TOO expensive! :-\