Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Crab and Langostino Rangoons

When I was younger, my family loved to go to a local Chinese restaurant for their Sunday buffet. My personal favorite was the crab rangoons, and their sweet creamy filling. Now that I'm older, and have no one to share an order of rangoons with, I tend to buy them at a local grocery store, so that I can bake a few at a time. I've  also discovered a new found love for lobster rangoons, which I like to also keep on hand, for when a craving hits.

When I discovered the Crab and Langostino Rangoons at Trader Joe's, I was thrilled. I've had langostino before, and enjoyed the unique taste. langostino (which is incorrectly known to many as langostino lobster) is a type of shellfish that is most closely related to a type of hermit crab known as the "Squat Lobster." The taste is unique, and personally I find it to be somewhere in between lobster and shrimp, with a slightly more "fishy" taste. The price for the rangoons was fairly standard, at $5.99 for a box of 12 (identical to what I pay for a dozen crab rangoons in the freezer section of the grocery store). 

I followed the cooking instructions for the rangoons exactly, but noticed two issues with the instructions. Firstly, they cooked for two or three minutes longer than necessary. Secondly, they released a lot of oil, and were overcooked on the bottoms. I would definitely suggest that anyone cooking these tries to flip them over halfway through cooking, to help prevent this. 

As for the taste of the rangoons, I was both disappointed and surprised. I was definitely not expecting anything remotely similar to what I may receive at a Chinese restaurant, but was surprised by just how different the fillings really were. Although the rangoons proudly display their content of cream cheese, I couldn't help but feel as though there was a very minor noticeable taste from the cream cheese, and it seemed borderline nonexistent when it came to the texture. The filling was not at all smooth, but instead had a very stringy consistency (similar to cheap tuna fish). It also had a very fishy taste (also similar to cheap tuna fish). I personally would not buy this item again, although I can see why this filling may appeal to some. I also (unlike Trader Joe's) would highly suggest avoiding this as an appetizer for any type of party or get together. For those that want to give these rangoons a try, I would suggest trying to use a dip for these, to help offset the taste. We used a sweet and sour sauce, which did help quite a bit. 

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