Product Review: Archer Farms Chile Lime Grilling Sauce

Let’s rewind about 5 months ago. I was applying to summer internships in the food/journalism field, and one particular job asked me to submit a few food writing samples, including a product review. I began to panic, because I had never written a product review and was in Sevilla, unable blog about anything relevant to what I had been asked.

Now, fast forward to about a month ago, when I started my internship at Every Day with Rachael Ray Magazine. One of the benefits of working at a magazine is all the free stuff you get when companies want you to feature their product. My editor has been very generous with sharing her freebies with me, including a bottle of grilling sauce by Archer Farms. At first, I was hesitant to accept the sauce because I do not have a grill and couldn’t see myself utilizing it. But then, I began to think back to my lack of product reviews on my blog and figured this could be the perfect opportunity. I’ve already used the sauce twice as a marinade for both tofu and chicken, and I want to share with you the outcome.

I brought the grilling sauce home on a Monday, meaning it was Meatless Monday, and opted to use it as a marinade on tofu for stir fry. First, I cut the tofu into cubes and patted them dry to get rid of most of the water (tofu is like a sponge- it loves to hold on to water).

Then I let it marinate in the grilling sauce for about half an hour. It was about a quarter block of tofu and 4 tablespoons of marinade.

Meanwhile,I chopped up some peppers, mushrooms, tomatoes, broccoli and corn and began to sauté them in olive oil.

I added the tofu to the hot pan and let the sauce caramelize on the cubes.

After the tofu and veggies had been cooked through, I added a little more sauce for flavor and ate it piping hot (I was starving)!

The chile lime sauce has a bit of a tangy kick (hence the name, chile lime) and its an interesting sensation eating stir fry, expecting something salty and savory, and tasting something sweet and acidic. The tofu didn’t really suck up the flavor as much as I had wanted; maybe next time I will let it marinate for longer.

A few days later, I decided to try the sauce as a marinade on chicken. This time, I let the chicken marinate for two hours. I used 4 chicken breast tenders in 4 tablespoons of sauce. Again, I sauteed the chicken and let the sauce caramelize.

I ate the chicken hot and cold, and my results were much  more successful. The sauce really soaked into the chicken, keeping it moist, spicy and flavorful. The flavors were a great accent to rice and black beans, and it really tasted like an authentic south American dish. It was such an easy and unique way to flavor your average chicken breast, and I would definitely use it again, even to impress my friends!


Meatless Monday is My New Favorite Day of the Week

Yes, I am one of those converted foodies who has begun partaking in the global movement to improve not only my own health but also the health of our beautiful Mother Earth, Meatless Monday. In fact, I have expanded my anti-meat eating and have tried to cut all red and processed meats out of my diet, and order tofu at any opportunity that comes my way. Don’t worry! I’m not going all crazy vegan or vegetarian on you- I still love chicken, turkey and seafood. I guess you can call me a ‘flexitarian.’ My pistachio crusted tofu was created after reading about it on the Village Voice on the menu at Bird Bath Bakery in New York City. I thought, “hmm, well I don’t live anywhere near there but I can definitely recreate that dish.” And a miracle was born! This tofu is so delicious and so easy; I crave it during the week, anxiously awaiting the next Monday so I have an excuse to eat it. But really, who needs an excuse to eat something so healthful and delicious?

Ingredients (makes 2-3 servings)

1 block firm tofu, cut into 8 rectangles

¼ cup low sodium soy or teriyaki sauce

1 tbsp Dijon mustard

1/3 cup shelled unsalted pistachios

¼ cup panko bread crumbs

1 tbsp chopped rosemary

Salt and pepper


Line a cookie sheet with tinfoil and preheat an oven to 425 degrees. Pat the tofu dry with a paper towel. Try to remove as much moisture from the tofu as possible, as dry tofu absorbs more liquid and more flavors! Mix the soy or teriyaki sauce with the Dijon mustard in a bowl. Add salt and pepper to taste. Toss the tofu in the marinade and let sit for 15 minutes.

Remove the tofu and pat off any extra liquid with a paper towel. In a food processor, combine pistachios, panko, rosemary and salt and pepper. Blend until the mixture resembles the texture of bread crumbs. Empty mixture onto a plate or pie tin and dredge each piece of tofu until every side is completely covered.

(yes, I used a coffee filter to pat down the tofu… we had no paper towels!)

Spread tofu on baking sheet and bake for 20 minutes, turning it once halfway through. Tofu should be a little brown and crispy, and warm to the touch. Serve with stir fried vegetables, rice or salad.