Product Review: Equal Exchange Gift Basket
       

*wipes cookie crumbs from face*

Oh, hi there. I have one more product review that I absolutely must share with you.

I received the package from UPS last Thursday when I was expecting a WaterPIK flosser, but obviously a package containing cookies is much more exciting and relevant to my interests. A new way to floss my teeth vs. tea and cookies. Hmm, tough one…

The gift basket was wrapped up neatly in red and white tissue paper within a recycled cardboard gift box. It was like an early Christmas for me!

I opened it to find that ^.  Cute, right? All of the items are organic and fair trade, so that’s already a mark in the “plus” column.

The basket includes Equal Exchange Organic Black Tea (Breakfast Blend), Equal Exchange Organic French Roast Coffee, and a package of two Liz Lovely Ginger Snapdragon Cookies.

First, the tea. Fittingly, I had this with my breakfast on Saturday. I usually opt for fruity-flavored tea when I drink it hot, but this tea had a nice depth of flavor on its own. I just added a bit of agave nectar to sweeten. I noticed that the steeped tea seemed more concentrated than store brand teas I usually buy, which is a definite plus, because I like strong tea.  At only $4 for a box of 16 bags, I think this is a pretty good deal that you can feel good about purchasing.

I tried the coffee on Friday night (along with the cookies, but I’ll get to them later). I’m not a big drinker of hot coffee. Normally, my style is to make a pot of espresso, chill it, add plenty of sweetener, cream, and ice cubes, and blend it. However, I will indulge on occasion, and I made an exception in order to try this coffee. I brewed a pretty strong pot and added plenty of milk to my cup. It was quite tasty and tasted much less bitter than the coffee I am used to brewing. I am a fan of strong flavors, so I’m glad they sent me a dark French Roast to try. The price is not bad, either – $9 to feel responsible about your coffee. The only downside is that I can’t find this brand in stores around me, so I would have to pay shipping and order it online. Hopefully this sample bag will last me a while, though, since I’m not a regular coffee drinker. 😛

I saved the best for last in this review series. These are certified vegan Liz Lovely Ginger Snapdragon cookies. I didn’t pay much attention to the packaging before I tried them, so I was just expecting a chewy version of a gingersnap. I took a bite, and the cookie bit back (in a good way)!

MMMMM. I can’t rave enough about the flavor of these cookies.They are INTENSELY ginger-flavored, with an extra zing from the crystallized ginger on top. They also have a perfectly chewy texture (from the addition of molasses, I suspect). My husband only “liked” the cookies, because he is not as much of a fan of the intense flavor of ginger as I am (unthinkable!). Now I understand why there is an image of a dragon on the cookie package.

Unfortunately again, I could not find these cookies in the organic snack section of my local grocery store.

Looking at the above photo is pretty much torture. Yeah. I might have to order more online for people to try. In the meantime, this gave me reason to pick up some crystallized ginger on my last grocery shopping trip in case I want to try my hand at making my own. Note to self – buy some molasses.

Also worth mentioning is the basket itself. From the website, it is a “fair trade square kaisa grass basket imported by Ten Thousand Villages from Dhaka Handicrafts, a non-profit that works to improve the lives of children and rural families in Bangladesh.” Can’t go wrong with that!

If you are, by chance, interested in trying any of these products, you can find them all (except for the cookies) at EqualExchange.com. The cookies can be found at LizLovely.com.

Once again, thank you to Mambo Sprouts for the opportunity to try and review these products!