Sunday, October 18, 2015

Day 291 - Potato Tots

We are not “food snobs”.  Really, we aren’t!!   But I think I can safely say that, in our nearly 28 years of cooking dinners together, David and I had never once made TATER TOTS.  I know that I, for one, thought poorly of the things. 

Oh call them what you will, Trader Joe's, ain't nobody gonna say "Potato Tots"...
I thought of tater tots as a mushy side dish on my elementary school cafeteria tray.  And this may not sound kind, but I also connected tater tots with the infamous Duggar Family…  They are not high on my list of “role models” and they annoy me a ton, so I do not want to do anything “Duggar-ish” and I put “eating tots” into that category.  (In fairness, if you do not have a negative reaction to the word “Duggar” and if you are curious about “one of Jim Bob’s favorite dishes” (a grown man named JIM BOB???), then here is a link to a recipe for it on their blog:  click here to read the Damn Duggar recipe

Anyway, I think David and I both had some hidden prejudice against the teeny tiny tater tot.  That is, until we had them recently at a restaurant in Cincinnati.  Oh man – those tots were heavenly!  They served them with good dipping sauce (which was a new concept to me, I had heretofore only thought of dipping a tot in ketchup).  If you are in the area, go to Revolution Rotisserie and get yourself some TOTS!

So, since we had that lovely experience with tots at the restaurant, we decided to give it a go and try the Trader Joe’s version.  And now that we have had them twice I can safely say – WINNER WINNER CHICKEN DINNER!

Having recently eaten such tasty tots in Cincinnati, David was happy to get them in the frozen food section of TJ's
I cooked them by frying them approximately ten minutes in olive oil.  I kept flipping them so they would cook evenly.  They were smaller tots than I expected, which scared me.  It gave me a quick flashback to Pawnee Elementary School and the mean lunch ladies (all except for that ONE kind lady, the one who would make you TASTE the thing you didn’t like, then actually help you hide the rest of it in your milk carton so you wouldn’t get it trouble for leaving food on your plate…). 

We served these with 3 dipping choices:  wasabi mayo ( reviewed here ), Dijon mustard (not yet reviewed) and BBQ sauce (not yet reviewed).  The tots tasted good in all 3 dips!

Our dip choices
David says, “These tots are a revelation!  Just like watching a David Gaines physical theatre performance* changes your nasty impression that you got from all those bad street mimes, so these light fluffy cloud-like pillows of tater (with a  lightly crisp edge) wipes away that impression of hard, crusty, tasteless “nothing going on inside” tater tots that you remember from elementary school cafeterias and bad restaurants since.  These are LOVELY!  And so quick!  You get them out, fry them up, and you have a lovely starch!  (MAY I INTERJECT – OF COURSE THEY ARE QUICK, HE DIDN’T COOK THEM, I DID…)  Get yourself a girl like Susan and you’ll be made!!”

We agreed that the wasabi mayo was the best dipping sauce, but David took it a step further and re-dipped in bbq, too!  A double dip!

I am glad that we have overcome our prejudice against tater tots. 

*Here is a link to see a blurb of a David Gaines performance.  Hopefully this will change your impression of “mime” the way these changed ours of tots.  David Gaines "7 (x1) Samurai" 90 second trailer here

Price – $2.29

Rating – 4.5


  1. I started reading this review early in the day but got distracted. Came back to Safari hours later and couldn't figure out WHY I had been reading the Duggars' casserole recipe; a few hours later still, I came back to finish reading your review, and a-ha! the circle is complete!
    Really enjoy your blog - please keep it up in 2016!

    1. Oh Karen, that cracked me up!!!! I can see you looking at the screen going, "The Duggars??? How did I end up here?"".

  2. Your blog keeps getting better and better! Your older articles are not as good as newer ones you have a lot more creativity and originality now keep it up!

    1. :) Thanks! I do enjoy writing it.

  3. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  4. your blog is good I really like this blog. I hope this blog is getting better. the success of his blog

  5. I'm so impressed you fried them! They're great just baked in the oven too-the directions on the TJs bag aren't quite right, they take a bit longer than it says. They're fun to eat too!

    1. Someone mentioned having them for BREAKFAST and I liked that idea. So we had them with scrambled eggs with cheddar. Yum! Good way to start the day.