I grocery shop for Victor’s mom on Mondays.  It’s not a big deal – she’s easy to shop for – but she does have a few things she wants that can only be gotten at the local Acme.

I am not crazy about Acme.  They’re a lot more expensive than other stores, for one, and even though they have remodeled, I still can’t seem to get past what a dump it was when we first moved here.

But…  Last week instead of doing my really quick run-in-and-run-out, I decided I needed to at least walk the store and give them another real chance.  It’s the holidays, and all.  I was feeling slightly magnanimous, or something.

Up-and-down every aisle I went, looking at different products and mentally comparing prices with PathMark and Wegmans.  For the most part, they were higher and I really wasn’t finding a lot of things to put in that huge shopping cart I was pushing around.

I’m not a huge National Brand shopper and tend to zero in on store brands and regional items.  One brand that seemed to be everywhere was “Culinary Circle.”  A quick look-up on the phone showed that it’s the more upscale private label of Acme’s parent company, SuperValu.

I noticed some simmer/stirfry-type sauces that looked interesting. One, in particular, was a  Cuban-Style Mojo Citrus Marinade & Cooking Sauce.  “Fresh citrus complement a blend of chiles and fresh garlic.” Works for me!

Packaging is a lot and I liked the packaging.  Price was reasonable.  And lo and behold!  No high-fructose corn syrup or other nasty ingredients!  I bought a bottle.  I don’t buy a lot of bottled sauces because they’re easy to make and most of them are loaded with chemicals and other franken-foods.  But I do like to have a couple on the shelf for those nights when I’m feeling particularly lazy.  Like tonight.

I have to say the sauce did not disappoint.  It had a really nice cumin/chile flavor balanced with tangy citrus.  I was actually surprised that it had a bit of heat.  It’s almost automatic that the first thing I need to do with bottled sauces is add something to kick it up a few notches.  I didn’t have to, tonight.  It worked straight out of the bottle.

I stirfried chicken, celery, broccoli, added the sauce and then added some canned pineapple and an orange in segments.

Over rice.

I have a Mayan Fajita Marinade & Cooking Sauce in the cabinet.  I think next week we may have to head to Central America!