Food and Drink

Review: HelloFresh… Hello Taste

I seem to be a crash-test dummy for lots of things these days, so why not a meal kit?

At my age – 61 – I should know better than to expect a supermarket trip to magically suggest a dinner, but I still do. My taste buds are tired, and my recipe books buried in storage. We won’t mention the thousands of recipes I have on my computer.

I signed up to HelloFresh, chose my three dinners for two – dinner and leftovers for the next day.

Saturday morning brought a box with three brown paper bags nicely colour-coded and a chill pack of the meats and perishables. I’m housesitting, so there’s just me and a dog who’s very interested in anything I’m eating.

Meal 1: American BBQ Haloumi
What’s not to love about haloumi, kumara wedges and tasty slaw? This is a simple meal. Roast your wedges, prep the haloumi, char the corn, make the slaw, cook the haloumi, serve. I didn’t soak the haloumi in water, as I love its salty taste.
I split the meal into two, cooking one-half for dinner and the other half for lunch the next day.

Portion size: Generous.
Operator error: For dinner, the pan was too hot, and I charred the haloumi in its spice rub to the texture of rubber. The lunchtime edition was golden brown.
Spring onions: I love them, but they mature, so they were rather strong the next day. Maybe split your slaw into two batches and add the spring onion just before serving?
Bonus: Best quality kumara I’ve seen in a long time.
Order again? Absolutely.

Meal 2: Ras el Hanout Lamb Meatballs
Lamb, yoghurt, couscous, mint and almonds. Delicious.
This time, I took the meal with me to a friend’s home and even then there was enough for her lunch the next day. A little more work this time in terms of prep and cooking. The lamb had the right amount of fat to keep the meatballs sweet and moist.

Portion size: Generous.
Operator error: I forgot to season the meatballs.
Tomato paste: The meatball sauce had both tomato paste and a can of tomatoes. We thought the taste a little overpowering. I’d make the sauce without the paste and then test.
Bonus: Mint and spinach in perfect condition. No wilted veg problem here.
Order again? Absolutely.

Creamy Leek and Mustard Chicken
I got to this one on Friday night, and the veg were still in excellent condition. It was the biggest meal in terms of portion size, so the dog helped finish the mashed potato. It was also the recipe that took the most prep and coordination.

Portion size: Generous.
Operator errors: I’m house sitting and still getting used to gas hobs, so my timing wasn’t great. I charred the leek. If I’d read the recipe sheet properly, I’d have seen the little sign “Eat me early”.
Bonus: Turk’s chicken. Absolutely the best and it sautéed beautifully. No water leakage of any kind.
Order again? Yes, but I’d eat it earlier in the week, so Friday night wouldn’t need so much concentration.

I was gifted the HelloFresh box for my role as crash-test dummy, but I think it’s good value-for-money. Two good meals from each kit and the in the case of the meatballs, enough for lunch the next day. Ingredients were high-quality, particularly the kumara, chicken and lamb mince. The HelloFresh recipes were well-presented and included nutrition information.

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