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Posts Tagged ‘@Aldi’

Parkview Hot & Spicy Smoked Sausage Review

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Parview Hot & Spicy Sausage ReviewHere’s another great product from global discount grocer Aldi. Germany based Aldi sells staples and fresh grocery items, under (mostly) their own created labels, at substantial discounts compared to national brand names.  I’ve written about several of them in the past.  These sausage, in the refrigerated section, also come in  “Polish” and “Sun Dried Tomato” varieties.

The Hot & Spicy type are a mild pork and beef smoked sausage, with natural flavorings, a couple of different sugars and different preservative salts.  The sugar content slightly elevates the carb count.

The spicy “bite” is more evident in the after taste than when you’re chewing, and most consumers will find these to be a very satisfactory product, whether grilled and on a bun, or sliced and pan fried for breakfast or other meal entree.

As I have explained in the past, Aldi’s contracts with national manufacturers to make the products to Aldi’s specifications and price point.  These sausages are made in the Chicago plant of Owensboro, KY based Specialty Foods Group.   USDA establishment M17S-is at 4550 W. Jackson Blvd, about four miles west of the loop (pictured below).  SFG makes a number of different brands of processed meats, including Scott Petersen bacon, and Field Liverwurst.

As with most mass-produced sausages, this one is a very fine grind, and it’s in a thin hog casing.  I wonder what determines the thickness of a casing? Diet? Exercise?

I generally find brand name natural casing sausages and hot dogs priced around a buck a pop when they aren’t on sale. These are more like 65 cents each as packaged.  Worth adding to your shopping list.

Parkview Hot & Spicy Sausage Review

Parkview Hot & Spicy Sausage

SFG Chicago Factory

SFG Chicago Factory

 

 

 

Parkview Hot & Spicy Smoked Sausage Review

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Appleton Farms Ham Steak Review

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Aldi Ham ReviewI have written about a lot of Aldi products; Aldi is the global discount grocer owned by the same German family as Trader Joes.  At Aldi, you won’t find many big brand names, but rather Aldi concocted brand names that are manufactured under contract to Aldi’s specifications. (Also it will cost you a quarter to rent a cart, refunded when you return the cart to the line. Oh, and bag your own).

Where as my spawn professes to be a “ham hater,”  I am a genuine ham lover, and adore it all. Except honey glazed.  My domestic favorite is the slow salt cured beauties from the Carolinas;  internationally:  jamon serrano, prosciutto and the like.

Much of the ham in grocery stores isn’t very good, tho, and so it’s nice to run into one that isn’t full of fillers and other bits.  The Appleton Farms Ham Steak is ham, water, salt, seasonings, and that’s about it.

It’s made for Aldi by a packer called “Gusto” and they’ve been running a  ham and bacon operation west of Chicago for over forty years.  Gusto was purchased by Butterball in 2012, Butterball is owned by Seaboard, a diverse firm dating back to 1918 and a single flour mill in Kansas.

They run a 200,000 sq foot facility in Montgomery, IL, capable of grinding out 6 million pounds of product weekly. Wow.

Their Appleton Farms Ham Steak?  Superb.  Highly recommended for real ham taste and texture.

Aldi Ham Steak Review

Aldi Ham Steak Review

Gusto Packing Factory

Aldi Ham Steak Review

Gusto Packing Aerial

Appleton Farms Ham Steak Review

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Simms Garlic Summer Sausage

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Simms Summer Sausage Review A couple of weeks ago, I wrote about Garlic Summer Sausage from one of my favorite meat processors, Klement’s of Milwaukee.  I enjoyed the product, and it was at a deeply discounted promotional price, which was even better.   Today I was zipping through Aldi’s for staples, and noticed they had a garlic summer sausage as well, and fairly inexpensive.  Their in-house brand name is Simms.  Many of their other processed meat products use the brand name of ParkView. Not sure why the distinction.

This product is made for Aldi at Abbyland Foods, (USDA est. 1633)  in Little Chute, WI.  Little Chute is almost dead center of the state, halfway between Chippewa Falls and Wausau.  They kill cattle and hogs up there in Little Chute, make a gaggle of processed smoked and fresh meat, and still find time to run a truck stop, c-store, and a couple restaurants.  Abbyland started in 1977, and today has over 1000 employees and sends product all over the USA.  Google Earth pic of the plant, below.

Besides the value pricing, what I liked about this sausage was the garlic was more pronounced than the Klement’s product, but they are both good. Either one of these brands are much better (and considerably cheaper) than Hickory Farms, scourge of every shopping mall in the land at this time of year.  Ingredients with the Simms are straightforward,  pork, beef, salt, and the list of the “less than 2% stuff.”  (Various flavorings and preservatives). It’s a fine grind in an artificial casing. Nice flavor and texture.

Simms Summer Sausage Review

Simms Summer Sausage Review

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Simms Garlic Summer Sausage

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Lunch Mate Hard Salami Review

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Aldi Salami ReviewAnother bargain from Aldi’s (locator)  this week was their “Lunch Mate” brand hard salami at $2.99 for an 8 ounce resealable pack, making is $6 per pound.  Compare with your grocery deli counter, and you almost always save 30-50%.

The product is made by Patrick Cuhahy’s Wisconsin plant, USDA establishment 28.    Cudahy, founded in 1888, is a brand that is part of the John Morrell Food Group, which is in turn, owned by Smithfield, which is now owned by Chinese investors.  Many, many Smithfield/Morrell sub-brands come through this factory, here’s just a few:

Armour Food Company, Armour-Echrich Meats, LLC Butterball, Carando, Carolina Turkey, Cook’s Ham, Inc,. Country Lean, Curly’s Food Inc., Decker Food Company, Eastbay Packing Co,. Farmland Foods, Inc., Farmstead, Gwaltney Hunter, Krey Packing Co,. Hunter Packing Co., John Morrell & Co., Kneip, Krakus Foods International, Kretschmar Brands, Inc., Krey Packing Co. Lakeview Lundy’s Maple River Brand Mohawk Provision, Inc. Moseys, Northside Foods OhSe Partridge Meats, Inc. Patrick Cudahy Peyton Packing Co., Inc. Premium Farms, Premium Pet Health, Premium Standard Farms, Quick-To-Fix, Racorn, Inc., Rath Blackhawk, Inc., RMH Foods, Rodeo Meats, Inc., Roegelein Selective Petfood Services, Inc, Smithfield Foods, Inc., Smithfield Packing Co., Spring Hill Brand, Stefano Foods, Tobin’s First Prize Meat Co., Valleydale, Inc.

The salami is a thin sliced, slightly-smoked,  pork and beef product with seasonings and the usual curatives. It’s quite flavorful, and I said above, a really good value.  Cudahy makes a pepperoni (under their name) I like, too, which is often value-priced at the market.

Cudahy is currently planning to expand the plant, located just between the Milwaukee airport and the shore of Lake Michicgan.  Pictures of the plant below from Google street view (if accurate).

Hungry now?  Here are some salamis that ship.

Aldi Salami Review

 

Aldi Salami Review

 

 

 

 

 

 

Lunch Mate Hard Salami Review

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Friendly Farms Cottage Cheese Review

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Friendly Farms Cottage CheeseI love cottage cheese – not that lowfat crap, but delicious creamy max fat small curd. I use it as a dip for ruffled potato chips and tell myself I’m eating healthy. I usually sprinkle a little Tony Chachere Creole Seasoning on the top.

Friendly Farms cottage cheese is another in-house product from Aldi, the German discount food chain scattered across the US.  I’ve reviewed some of their stuff before.  Generally for “staples,”  you can’t beat Aldi in price, except at the Dollar Store, which has become my new “go-to” place for tomato juice, chicken and beef broth.  They’re a buck. :-)

You can check where your dairy products originate (you’ll probably want the producer to be as close to you  as possible) by deciphering the numeric production code on the carton or bottle.  It is usually near the expiration date in the format of XX-XXX or similar.

Then you trot over to this website and enter the code. Voila!  So I find out this cottage cheese is packaged for Aldi by a company called PET O’Fallon, outside of St. Louis and seemingly a part of Dean Foods, one of the nation’s largest food producers, and a company with a pretty boring website.

I’m picky about cottage cheese, and I like this one.  Since it is from Aldi, it’s a great value too.

 

 

 

 

 

 

friendly farms cottage cheese

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Bremer Lasagna Review

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We can probably file this one under my heading of “things I’ve tried so you don’t have to.”   I have written about products from Aldi before, the large German based grocery corporation that also owns Trader Joes.  Aldi sell most their own label of foods, manufactured for them by the “big guys” but heavily discounted.  Shop only at Aldi and you can probably save 25-30% off your grocery bill.  Supplement your Aldi trips with getting your staples at dollar stores, and you’ll save even more.

I’m not much for frozen or canned pasta “meals”, but somebody dropped by an Aldi brand lasagna, which is branded “Bremers,” but according to the USDA plant number on the package, is made by Chicago’s “On-Cor.”  I shouldn’t be surprised, the packaging is very similar and the contents and dietary label are identical.

As always, I went with the oven style prep instead of microwaving, which took about 45 minutes.  Below are pix of the package, the frozen product, and the plated product (with added Parmesan) and the street in Chicago where the product was born.

How was it?  Surprisingly meatier than I expected, yet for some reason, I find all pre-prepared Italian and Mexican foods (especially Hormel Tamales) to have a slight “burn” to the tomato sauce which I personally find unappealing.  I can’t really identify the source of that discomfort for me, just has always been that way.

In any regards, would I buy it again?  Well, yes, over big name brands like Stouffers, it’s just a much better value.

But nobody, but nobody makes lasagna better than Mrs. BurgerDogBoy, unless she tries to slip in turkey Italian sausage.

Bremer Lasagna Review

 

Bremer Lasagna Review

(Added Parmesan)

 

 

 

 

 

 

bremer lasagna review

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Parkview Beef Wieners Review

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Parkview Hot Dogs ReviewI have written about Parkview brand before, the in-house mark for processed meats at the discount grocer Aldi. These hot dogs are produced at a plant in Albert Lea, Minnesota, which was previously owned by Minnesota old-timey brand Schweigert’s, who make the official hot dog of the Minnesota Twins ( nearly 600,000 sold at the park this season).  Both the plant, and the current Schweigert’s brand are in the portfolio of Cargill these days.

The dogs come eight to a one pound pack, and the first two ingredients on the package are beef and water.  That’s a good thing, with pan shrinkage virtually unnoticeable.

The sausage has a very fine grind, and an extremely mild flavor. At 8/pound, a hearty bun is recommended, perhaps an S. Rosen Poppyseed, or equivalent.

BTW,  as pictured here?  I put the slices in the weenies prior to cooking, just for effect.

Parkview Hot Dogs Review

Parkview Beef Wieners Review

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