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DianaB

Cooking from Meal Kits (Hello Fresh, Purple Carrot, Gousto, and so on)

113 posts in this topic

@SJMitch, I checked the recipe cards last night, and the cans of coconut milk were meant for the beet curry.

 

Another TB12 meal this week: zucchini boats.  The ingredients:

 

ingredients.thumb.jpg.a4ef617f33279cc984022bafe0716093.jpg

 

Millet is cooked.  Zucchini is halved and centers scraped out, then baked.  Tomato and shallot are diced.  Mint is chopped, peach is peeled, sliced, and placed in a hot bath of boiling water, rice vinegar and salt, then refrigerated.  Garlic is sliced and combined with olive oil, mint is chopped.  Yogurt is combined with sumac and salt.  Okra is sliced and then charred in a hot skillet, then combined with the garlic/olive oil mix, sautéed briefly and then the millet, tomato, shallot and most of the mint are added.  Baked zucchini is stuffed with this mixture and then topped with chopped peanuts, mint, pickled peaches, and sumac. Yogurt is served alongside.  The dish:

 

594cfe309d1a9_zucchiniboat.thumb.jpg.f61034def43949706484989d6f3a5d48.jpg

 

I forgot to add the pickled peaches.  Oops!


Edited by liamsaunt (log)
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6 hours ago, liamsaunt said:

@SJMitch, I checked the recipe cards last night, and the cans of coconut milk were meant for the beet curry.

 

Did they give you a completely redone card listing coconut milk instead of coconut cloud powder?  The online card (and my hard copy) lists the powder.

 

Sun Basket, more than the others, swaps ingredients from time to time and we get a little notice in our box like this:

 

594d607b06cf3_CamScanner2017-06-2311_30.38_1.thumb.jpg.62c1cfaac1d2163eb45d101399ebf726.jpg

 

The zucchini boats look delicious!  

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Ah Gobble, this is why we still stick with you, as fickle as you are:

 

ravioli-001.jpg.86651f9f58e9e1eb324e144b31bdc9e7.jpg

 

The color-temp of the photo is a bit off -- the sauce is is actually pale green.  This is ravioli with asparagus and fava bean filling served with mix of corn, zucchini, and fresh fava and asparagus quickly sauteed and a provided asparagus-cream puree.  Fresh chive blossom (THIS is the kind of garnish they would more regularly do in the earlier days, though usually they gave more than a single blossom to split between two servings!) and shaved parmesan.  We only augmented slightly with some red onion and garlic in the sautéed veggies (the red onion being extra from a particularly large onion provided by Purple Carrot for those Jerk Tempeh Tostadas).

 

Summer, I love you.  And our figs are coming in and the markets have Hami melons again and lychee, and longan and rambutan and and and ....

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After looking at all these wonderful meals, I almost regret to say that I have dropped Hello Fresh after just 5 deliveries. Three of the boxes had problems - the first two chronicled earlier in this thread and the last one involving substandard produce (arugula isn't supposed to be yellow, right?). The final straw was a text from my sister, to whom I forwarded an offer for a free box, reporting that the meat in her delivery was 45 degrees. Ultimately, I just can't justify the expense for such uneven quality. Looking forward to seeing your continued successes, though!


Patty

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22 hours ago, SJMitch said:

 

Did they give you a completely redone card listing coconut milk instead of coconut cloud powder?  The online card (and my hard copy) lists the powder.

 

 

The card I have calls for the cans of coconut milk.  You add it when the card you linked to adds the water to the beets.  The photo of the beets cooking is different than the one in your link.  The nutritional data is also slightly different.   How odd!

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2 hours ago, patris said:

After looking at all these wonderful meals, I almost regret to say that I have dropped Hello Fresh after just 5 deliveries. Three of the boxes had problems - the first two chronicled earlier in this thread and the last one involving substandard produce (arugula isn't supposed to be yellow, right?). The final straw was a text from my sister, to whom I forwarded an offer for a free box, reporting that the meat in her delivery was 45 degrees. Ultimately, I just can't justify the expense for such uneven quality. Looking forward to seeing your continued successes, though!

Hmmm. Seems like my decision to forget the whole Hello Fresh scenario was probably wise. 


Anna Nielsen aka "Anna N"

...I just let people know about something I made for supper that they might enjoy, too. That's all it is. (Nigel Slater)

"Cooking is about doing the best with what you have . . . and succeeding." John Thorne

Our 2012 (Kerry Beal and me) Blog

My 2004 eG Blog

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3 hours ago, patris said:

After looking at all these wonderful meals, I almost regret to say that I have dropped Hello Fresh after just 5 deliveries.

 

Wow, I think you gave them more than enough trial.  I've gotten several discount offers for Hello Fresh, but every time I've looked at their menus on offer nothing stands out to me. I hope you got credit for the bad items! 

 

We only used Plated, Green Chef, and Chef'd for a few deliveries each.  No bad experiences, but just nothing special.  Well, Chef'd has some recipes that interesting, but ingredients just were mediocre to average quality.  Since they are order on demand, I might order again if the menus on offer from our current services some week aren't to our liking.  

 

We previously had just 4 deliveries from Blue Apron, but as I mentioned, their prior selection options frustrated us.  So we are trying again.

 

Din was the most amazing during their short life.  They shipped with dry ice; the meat always arrived frozen.  Oh, and they shipped in reusable insulated shopping bags with handles and zippers (lightweight, not heavy duty ones).  They would take them back but also said you could keep them.  So we did.  Now they are our grocery shopping bags.  They look like these Amazon ones  But they couldn't make it work (and they tried several business model change-ups).  Their quality, ingredients, and shipping method just cost more to provide, and their prices were higher because of it ($15-$20 per serving).  Having seen what you get for $10 to $14 per serving from other companies, they were actually a bargain!  So it's not surprising they went out of business, they must have bled money.

 

We've also looked into Marley Spoon, PeachDish, Terra's Kitchen (which ships in a cooler), and Home Chef.  But so far, none of the menus have tempted us or had a big enough first-timer discount to make a trial worth it.

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Looks like Purple Carrot just makes silent substitutions.  One of our dishes this week was to be Sweet Corn Risotto with Lemon Parmesan Broccolini & Chervil 

 

But we didn't get chervil, we got basil.  The hard-copy recipe card we got lists basil in all the right places.  Not a big deal, but I'd rather they do what Sun Basket does and include a note.  Or what Gobble does and send email saying that an item has been substituted.

 

We chose the non-TB12 menu this week since it looked better to us, partly because this risotto was offered and we previously made TB12 corn risotto and loved the taste (see photo previously in this thread -- with artichokes).  This version is quite different.  

 

It uses regular arborio rice instead of brown arborio.  It also has less corn, one ear added as whole kernels cut from the cob instead of two ears with one cooked and pureed and one added whole.  The TB12 one also has added coconut powder.  I liked the prior version better and my husband likes this one better.  This one is closer to a traditional risotto though both are much less rich (no added cheese).  The regular menu has smaller portions (the TB12 menu is intended for highly active people who need more calories).

 

I over-roasted the broccolini. My fault, I turned off the oven and left it in thinking the risotto was close to finished, it was not.  Oops.  So we had very crispy broccolini, still tasty. I wish they had give at least twice as much broccolini, however.  They had you juice the lemons and serve the juice on the side.  I did so, but really, lemon wedges would have been easier both to serve and to use when eating.  Like before I used chicken stock as part of the cooking liquid.  I mixed the vegan Parmesan into the risotto but topped with real Parmesan.

 

IMG_20170624_215806.jpg.a5d6d90185b635029ac450379e3c1442.jpg

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And the last of this week's 6 meals: Southern Spoonbread from Purple Carrot.  The meal kit provided ingredients for a corn spoonbread, a tomato and black-eyed pea gravy, and sautéed swiss chard.

 

IMG_20170625_204603.jpg.2abdc2ac517e819956000e1d1a808901.jpg

 

And it's Purple Carrot's first mistake with us: the tomato-black-eyed-pea-gravy called for 1/4 cup of vegan cream cheese but it was missing from our box.  Now, I'm usually very, very good at checking ingredients before I start cooking but this time I rushed to start cooking when I saw the spoonbread needed to bake for 30 minutes.  So I was halfway through the recipe when I discovered the missing ingredient.  And I sure don't have that on hand!  Looked for a substitute and didn't even have yogurt or anything.  So, I had to make quick trip to the store mid-recipe while the spoonbread baked.  They only had Tofutti vegan cream cheese (which I consider only so-so) so I got real cream cheese.

 

I also added real bacon to the swiss chard.  We actually DO often have veggie bacon on hand (we like veggie 'meats'. A lot), but had recently used the last of ours up.  Also, this morning I was at Whole Foods and saw cooked okra and shallots on the hot prepared food bar and thought it would be perfect with dinner.  So that's the veggie on the back of the plate.

 

This dish has problems and significant promise.  The gravy was exceedingly rich.  Maybe vegan cream cheese would be better!  The spoonbread needs a bit of work.  They didn't tell you what size pan to use, but from their photo it looked like theirs was in a small lodge skillet, so I used an 8" one.  To get a crust on the bottom, I preheated the skillet with oil while the oven was coming up to temp, and then added more oil before adding the batter (this worked, see photo).  After 30 minutes, the center was still very liquid and had a taste of raw flour. It's supposed to be custardy, but the flour needs to be cooked.  So I let it go for a total of about 42 minutes.  Maybe their pan was bigger than 8".

 

Despite the problems with the spoonbread, we'd probably get this again!

 

Ready for the coming week, with 9 meals: Sun Basket, Purple Carrot (TB12), and Blue Apron.  Liamsaunt, did you make your asparagus pesto pasta yet?

 

 

 


Edited by SJMitch (log)

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8 hours ago, SJMitch said:

Ready for the coming week, with 9 meals: Sun Basket, Purple Carrot (TB12), and Blue Apron.  Liamsaunt, did you make your asparagus pesto pasta yet?

 I have not. I did not cook this weekend. Saturday we hosted a dinner in a restaurant for my inlaws 50th anniversary, and yesterday we skipped dinner in favor of a U2 concert. If the veggies are still fresh I may make it this evening and serve it with scallops from my fish share. 

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And ... back to Purple Carrot (TB12) for dinner (they arrived this morning). First up is a  corn and poblano tortilla pie with orange-peppadew salsa. 

 

For this one we would be eating dinner very late in the day so I pre-prepped the ingredients (chopping and salsa assembly) hours in advance:

 

IMG_20170627_185619.jpg.6e12ab9acf33db6f3d1d64889fa3af86.jpg

 

The peppadew salsa was great!  So easy. Since Whole Foods carries peppadew on the olive bar, I can see making this from time to time.  Just a mix of peppadew, orange, lime juice and cilantro.  That's it.

 

The tortilla pie was made with beans, corn, poblano pepper, onion, spices, and a little vegan cream cheese (got it this time!).  The vegan cream cheese is why they call it a 'quesadilla', but it just adds a subtle note of creaminess.

 

IMG_20170627_203450.jpg.52f8e5a7628c8b8d5e9533fd040f41d1.jpg

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