I’ve given a new meal London-based delivery service called Hello Fresh a whirl this month, and thought you might be interested to know how I got on.
The concept is simple – the recipes and ingredients for your week’s evening meals delivered in a box to your door on a Monday night.
They don’t assume you have anything in your storecupboards, even down to a pinch of chill or a knob of butter. You really don’t have to think about a thing.
The food was from a variety of different shops like Waitrose and Sainsburys, neatly packaged up so you’ve only got what you need so there’s no waste.
The meat and fish were of exceptionally high quality, but some of the veg was a little bit tired.
How much does it cost?
3 meals feeding 4 people £59
5 meals feeding 4 people £89
This includes the delivery cost.
Who’s it aimed at?
Judging by the price and the time-saving nature of the service, I think it would suit busy professionals who like cooking when they have time but aren’t very experienced at it.
Perhaps you’ve got a busy week coming up and can’t be bothered to make any food-related decisions but want to eat well or have people staying you want to cook nice things for without the hassle.
Or maybe you could buy it as a gift for someone who’s snowed under at work, or recovering from having a baby.
Recipes I tried:
Classic Tuna and Pasta Bake with a Crunchy Twist - classic family supper, very quick and simple and there was so much of it that I was able to put it everyone’s packed lunches the next day. The crunchy twist was the use of crumbled up cheese crackers for the topping which was unusual but worked.
The Emperor’s Chocolate Chili Con Carne - this was my favourite by far as it’s not something I usually cook. Putting a small amount of dark chocolate in with the ground beef gave it a really rich yummy dimension. It wasn’t too spicy either so went down well with everyone in the family.
Penne at Sunset with Creamy Tomato, Fresh Salmon and Basil - not hugely healthy – but of course using double cream makes things totally luxe! For a weeknight meal i’d have been tempted to use half fat creme fraiche instead which I think would work just as well with the salmon. Again another simple meal that went down well with the troops.
The meals were pretty simple to make and really delicious – great to be able to have all the right ingredients to hand and not have spent much time menu planning for the week ahead.
I’m too much of a control freak to do something like this all the time though as I like to come up with my own recipes and ideas, but it was lovely to have a break, especially with relatives to cook for.
You’re paying for the convenience – it’s not cost effective to have portioned-off packets of staples like pasta and rice when you can buy cheaply in bulk to keep in your storecupboard.
It’s not your weekly shop, as you obviously still need to buy in breakfast and lunch items, along with your non-food things like washing powder.
The recipe cards were hard to read – tiny green text printed on a black background with the ingredients amounts on one side and the method on the other – I like it all at-a-glance on one page. It also doesn’t give you a nutritional breakdown or how long it takes to cook.
However Hello Fresh is still very much at the beginning of its journey, having launched a matter of weeks ago.
In the months ahead there will be improvements to the service, including options for vegetarians and special diets.
Thanks to Hello Fresh for supplying me with a box to review