Saturday, November 14, 2015

Season's Choice Cracked Black Pepper Onion Rings (Aldi)

Crispy and pretty darn delicious.
 This story begins the same way many of my stories do:  With me looking through Aldi’s weekly “Special Buy” ad.  That’s when I noticed they were offering onion rings, something they surprisingly don’t always carry.  But upon closer examination, I noticed that these weren’t just any onion rings…they were cracked pepper onion rings.  I have seen fries go through many iterations, but anytime you see onion rings, they’re typically just typical onion rings.  I guess most places figure that you can’t improve upon perfection, but not Aldi!

The first thing I noticed out of the bag is that these are uniformly large pieces.  I frequently purchase their typical whole onion rings when they are made available, and the size of the individual pieces vary greatly; some are super large, while others are essentially little crisps.  The vast majority of these were large pieces.  The second thing I noticed, besides the large black pieces of pepper generously covering each piece, is that each one looks thicker; just eying them was enough to make my mouth water, as I envisioned the solid “crunch” that each one would make as I’d take a bite out of it!

I must admit, I overcooked them slightly in the oven…somehow, I did not hear the oven alarm go off after they were done.  Needless to say, the crunch I anticipated was all that…and then some.  There certainly is something different about the batter (besides the obvious addition of pepper)…while it doesn’t seem to be any thicker than their normal onion rings, it’s definitely crispier, which is excellent in my book!  As for the black pepper…I honestly didn’t feel like it added much at all.  You can definitely taste it--if you take enough bites, you can even feel a peppery taste sitting on your tongue--but these largely just taste like normal onion rings to me. 

Now, I’m not saying that like it’s a bad thing.  Currently, these are the only kinds of onion rings Aldi is offering, and the extra-crunchy batter, paired up with the whole onions (as opposed to the lamer diced version) make them slightly better than the normal onion rings they carry.  However, I do believe these are a little more expensive (maybe by $.50, or so), and while I didn’t feel like the black pepper added enough to justify the price hike, they are still very good.  I personally wouldn’t hesitate to get these again; Aldi may have failed in their quest to “liven up” the onion ring, but they did prove even failures can be delicious.  Sometimes.

Overall: 7.5/10.  I really don’t think the pepper adds much, besides a peppery taste on your tongue after a few pieces, but let’s be honest here:  Can you really screw up an onion ring?  In this case, I thought the outside cooked up even crispier than their typical onion rings do, giving each bite an inviting crunch.  I also appreciated that these were made with whole onions (as opposed to diced), which always makes a better tasting ring.  If memory serves me correctly, these are about $.50 more expensive than the typical, “regular” rings that Aldi carries, but seeing as how these are the only kinds of onion rings they are offering right now, I wouldn’t hesitate to get these again to satisfy an OR craving.

3 comments:

  1. Spicy onion rings. These were chosen because we wanted something a little different as a side. Nice crunch, great flavor, fair price. Definitely be getting 2 bags next time.

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  2. Horrible. Soggy even after cooking longer. Don't buy these.

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    1. Hmmm...never had sogginess being a factor, at least when properly cooked. Got these again about a month ago and they were deliciously crisp after recommended time in the oven.

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