For far too long, I've heard many a comment (including my own written thoughts) about Trader Joe's not selling their curry sauces in a jar. Yes, I know there is a Masala sauce on shelves, but it is no where close to the sauce on the frozen entrees.
So, while we wait to see if a real jarred sauce will ever appear, now we can at least have a seasonal pumpkin curry sauce. One of the key differences with this is the absence of tomato and the prominence of pumpkin.
But is it as good as the frozen sauce or the jarred sauce?
For me, this was on the same level as what you find in the frozen aisle. It is rich, complex, but only mildly spicy. So heat junkies take note, this is mild.
There is also a mild acidity here perhaps coming from the lemongrass flavor.
I tried this straight from the jar and said "oooo...this is pretty good."
Then I heated it in a pan and yes, the flavors came more alive when it was warmed up.
So why not 5 stars across the board on this one?
Well, I did have one other problem with this: pairing this.
Because tomato goes with so many things in a way that pumpkin does not, I had a hard time pairing this well so the full flavor shined.
I had some leftover vegan chicken, but I didn't love it. I had some broccoli and I didn't love it with that. But with some naan or paratha it was awesome. Heck even over a plain bowl of rice it would be pretty good.
It has all the spices you would expect in a solid curry. It just didn't slap you with heat despite the word spicy being the first thing you see. But it is pretty assertive in the pumpkin and coconut flavors.
So if you are like me and like to sop up the sauce with some bread, then this is a pretty solid item to pick up. And if you have any pairing suggestions, please drop them in the comments section. I'd love to hear how everyone enjoyed this one.
For $2.99 it's a solid deal but because it is a pumpkin product it will only be on shelves for a limited run.
Would I buy this again? While I anxiously away a solid regular curry sauce that rivals this one, I will buy a few more of Trader Joe's Spicy Pumpkin Curry simmer sauce before it disappears at the end of the season.
Did you try it? Let me know what you think in the comments section!
The visual rundown
The jar of Trader Joe's Spicy Pumpkin Curry:
The nutritional information and the ingredients
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The Bottom Line
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Trader Joe's Spicy Pumpkin Curry Simmer Sauce
Product Name: Trader Joe's Spicy Pumpkin Curry
Product Description: Trader Joe's Spicy Pumpkin Curry is new, jarred, and very complex.
Trader Joe's Spicy Pumpkin Curry Simmer Sauce is new but seasonal.
- Rivals the flavor and complexities in sauce found in the frozen Indian selections
- Taste out of the jar is solid, but shines when it is heated
- Seems to be best paired with naan, rice, or other starch.
- Pairing was difficult. I found it best with something starchy.
- If they could make this was a tomato base it would be off the hook amazing.