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Gary Barlettano

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Rice-A-Roni Attempts To Make A Comeback

by Gary Barlettano » Sun Jul 16, 2006 10:44 am

I saw this article on SFGate.com this morning:

[url=http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?file=/c/a/2006/07/16/MNGTUK06P31.DTL]RICE-A-REDUX
After a 7-year hiatus, it's billed once again as the San Francisco treat
[/url]

It got me thinking about the first time I went to San Francisco about 15 years ago. One of my "proudest" tourist pics was that of a cable car with the Rice-A-Roni ad on the back. I'd have uploaded it, but it's stashed in (what my daughter cynically refers to as) a break-up box related to wife number 2.

It also got me thinking about what I enjoy eating which comes in a box. To tell you the truth, I've never had Rice-A-Roni or Hamburger Helper or many of the varieties of mac and cheese which are out there. And it's not because I snub them. My mother never cooked that way and I guess I didn't pick up the habit except for maybe BisQuick and Aunt Jemima pancakes. I do use some things from Trader Joe's ... like their cornbread mix in a box. But, in general, I'm a scratch cook by nature.

Anyway, yeah it's kind of a Sunday troll, but what do you guys eat of the box which you can recommend or not?

OK, I'm off to Sonoma with Zari to pick up some wine and do a little pick-a-nicking. Hope you all have a great Sunday!
Last edited by Gary Barlettano on Sun Jul 16, 2006 1:16 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Carl Eppig

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Re: Rice-A-Roni Attempts To Make A Comeback

by Carl Eppig » Sun Jul 16, 2006 11:06 am

The only thing we eat out of the box is dry cereal (buy oatmeal in bulk). Current fav is Post's Golden Crisp.
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Karen/NoCA

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Re: Rice-A-Roni Attempts To Make A Comeback

by Karen/NoCA » Sun Jul 16, 2006 1:22 pm

Had to check my pantry to see just what we eat out of a box. Cereal, Arborio rice, pancake mix, various crackers, Maldon Sea Salt, teas, chicken and beef broth, and when I get lazy, I like Rice-a-Roni Spanish Rice mix. Directions call for adding a can of chunked tomatoes, which is nice, plus my addition of fresh lemon juice. I also like Casbah Nutted Pilaf, to which I might add some hot curry or various other enhancements.
Checked into our second refer and found a box of Orzo, Barilla Pasta Jumbo Shells and a box of Oven Fry Extra Crispy Chicken Coating (which we love), with the exception of the jumbo shells, the rest of the list is standard for my pantry.
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Robin Garr

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Re: Rice-A-Roni Attempts To Make A Comeback

by Robin Garr » Sun Jul 16, 2006 2:06 pm

Karen/NoCA wrote:Had to check my pantry to see just what we eat out of a box.


Lots of pasta here, Karen, and a couple of different forms of crackers. That's about it for us, unless you consider cornmeal in the cylindrical cardboard container. :) I'm not sure the San Francisco supervisor was thinking of pasta, though, when he made his remark, but probably meant to diss prepared foods ("just add water").
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Mike Filigenzi

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Re: Rice-A-Roni Attempts To Make A Comeback

by Mike Filigenzi » Sun Jul 16, 2006 4:09 pm

Kraft Macaroni and Cheese!!! A habit developed in college that I can't seem to kick (unlike the majority of other habits I developed in college). We end up with more of the Annie's Organic Mac and Cheese these days because that's what my wife buys. I wish she'd quit that, though - it doesn't hold a candle to the delicious artificial cheese-like substance in the Kraft box.


Mike
"People who love to eat are always the best people"

- Julia Child
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Paul Winalski

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Re: Rice-A-Roni Attempts To Make A Comeback

by Paul Winalski » Mon Jul 17, 2006 1:14 am

For what it's worth, Paul Prudhomme, in his Seasoned America cookbook, offers up his version of "San Francisco Rice"--rice browned with vermacelli, then simmered with seasonings. This of course is the dish upon which the original Rice-A-Roni (tm) was based. Prudhomme as always has taken some liberty with the seasonings, but his recipe does give the basics of the original.

You don't have to make it out of a box--so there. :twisted:


Quaker Oats mucking up the original product idea that was so successful reminds me of what recently happened with my favorite antacid--Mylanta. Magnesium/aluminum hydroxide is never going to taste good, no matter what you do with it, but the original Mylanta managed to make it halfway palatable. Then they started mucking about with "new, improved" versions that tasted truly vile. The latest incarnation of the product is being touted as "Original Classic Flavor" with a little neck label that proclaims, "It's Back!" What they really mean is: "Our last five years of tinkering with success resulted in total crap. We're going back to what made us successful in the first place. Sorry about that!"

Now if we can just get Lay's Potato Chips to ditch the 5 tons of salt they started adding to every package as part of their "new, improved flavor" a couple of years ago.....

-Paul W.
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