Just in Time For No-Turkey Day…

…I give you my honest review of Tofurky.

007I originally saw it about ten years ago when I went vegan the first time and had to buy all my goodies at the local overpriced health food store. I had never heard of Trader Joe’s back then so I was stuck with this place and as much as I loved the cute little red-haired owner, she didn’t pay my bills. One of the reasons I stopped being a vegan back then was how expensive it was. I mean really, if you want to be a healthy vegan, you have to take a few supplements, eat a ton of veggies daily and find a passable protein source that doesn’t make you want to toss your…well whatever meal you ate last. Have I mentioned how much I really do NOT like tofu? I don’t. There it is.

When I first saw the Tofurky I was afraid of it. How could this be good? Unless they mix the protein source with turkey-flavored juice and some stuff to firm it up like bird flesh, I just could never see this being a viable option for a roast-type meal. Fast forward ten years.

010My beloved Trader Joe’s now carries Tofurky and for a third cheaper as my local health food store. Score! I was still a little worried about flavoring and texture but I wanted to give it a dry run before springing it on my kids in two weeks. By the way, you have no idea the amount of crap I’m going to get for making this but I’m willing to do it so that people can have some understanding of what being a vegetarian is. It’s not only about cutting out meat but it’s about supporting companies and products that are dedicated to being vegan/veggie. I’m all over this.

011After reading the box thoroughly, I removed it’s contents. The ‘roast’ looked positively scary all shrink-wrapped in plastic and held together at either end by two rivet-type pieces of metal. I removed this outer layer, turned my oven on to 350 and placed the loaf in a casserole dish. I peeled and chopped five carrots into large chunks and placed them around the roast. I opened a package of cipollini onions (Trader Joe’s has two packages per one bag for $3.29) and dropped those around it also. Next came the bag of fingerling potatoes (Trader Joe’s $2.79) and five whole peeled garlic cloves placed around the roast as well. On the box are two different recipes for glazes and I picked the one that is olive oil, sage, and soy sauce. I drizzled half the glaze around the veggies and on top of the roast, then covered the dish with foil and baked it for an hour and a half.

013When it was done, I uncovered the roast, drizzled the rest of the glaze over everything and popped it back in for ten more minutes. At this time, I made the recipe for the mushroom gravy that was included on the box (minus the onions- what’s in the roast is plenty for me, thanks).

Oh deliciousness! Hardcore meat eaters would never, ever be fooled, but for those of us who every once in a while just want to put a roast-like item into a baking dish with some veggies…nirvana. The Tofurkey was meaty and not too weird and jiggley. The stuffing inside was awesome, no lie. Their recipe for mushroom gravy was pretty fantastic, also. Two enthusiastic thumbs up. My only recommendation is salt. Add salt. I’m not a salt user at all and I needed it badly here but the cool part is, it only made it better so…use salt. Also, did you know that cipollini onions are sweet and sort of creamy? Me neither! I officially love them!

I can’t wait to serve this to my kids, I think they will be pleasantly surprised, as I was. Now here’s a picture of me in my new turtle slippers. Enjoy.



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