vegan jerky: there is so much to say, and yet so little. some think it tastes like dog treats, some think it doesn't, and some secretly always wished they could try dog treats and are excited that there is a quasi-acceptable and meatless way to do so. there is a weirdly wide variety of vegan jerky on the market, and i've sampled a nice selection. the most commonly available kinds, it seems, are the tofurkey kind (bleck), the impressive number of flavors of primal strips (their slogan is "fun meaty satisfaction" - ewww!), and stonewall jerquee. there is also a veg jerky that comes in bulk that's occasionally sold at our local co-op. last summer, all members of our house, even the naysayers, became obsessed with the co-op mystery jerky. well, guess what? the mystery is solved! as a gift for our california friends, lauren ordered a 5 pound bulk bag of the jerky and it is stonewall's! i never would have guessed that, because it tastes so much different than the pre-packaged "snack paks" (their spelling, not mine) made by the very same brand. i wonder if it's a freshness issue? or perhaps solely psychological?
stonewall's jerquee (please, pronounce it as we do: "jer-kwee") is made by lumen soy foods. their website, soybean.com, is worth checking out. it looks like it was designed by a 9th grader in computer class in 1995. but that's okay! i'm pretty sure they mean well, and they offer a bizarre range of products that i've never heard of. according to them, the jerky leaves you feeling "full" and "warm" inside, which isn't totally accurate, but man they sure are fun to chew!
and, have you ever seen 5 pounds of jerky? it's kind of intense (see the apple for scale):
a note on nutrition: yeah, this stuff is kind of garbage. it probably has some protein, but also a crazy amount of sodium. a quick scan of the ingredients leads me to believe that it is no where near as processed, or as scary, as meat jerky. we try to only get it as a special treat, and we also try to accept that fact that as far as snacks go, carrot sticks ain't always gonna cut it. we will just leave it at that!