NYC Food Find: Home Baked Rice Cakes from Westside Market

We're suckers for free samples, and the Westside Market on 110th and Broadway has been hawking these in-house rice cakes for a while now.

They set them up with a variety of dips, right next to a "Magic Pop" machine that apparently produces the rice cakes (although it wasn't magically popping while we were there). After several free samples over two different trips, we finally bought a bag.

Now, we first have to say that we kind of like rice cakes. Sometimes we need a crunchy fix, and they are good vehicles for peanut butter. We found these to be a nice upgrade from the uniform, puck-shaped variety.

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The ingredients are listed as brown rice, wheat flour, corn, salt, soybean oil, and sweetener. So, despite their low calorie content, they aren't necessarily packing a nutritional punch. They are, however, extremely crispy and have a salty-sweet flavor that tastes less stale and artificial than other rice cakes. We'd put them out with dips or chutneys as an appetizer for guests.

Since we haven't seen the Magic Pop machine running — although there are finished cakes scattered next to it — and the bags say Delice Bakery Factory on the bottom, we're trying to figure out if these are actually made ON the premises. We're assuming so...

Anyone else got some scoop on these rice cakes?

(All images: Elizabeth Passarella)

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