Monday, April 6, 2015

Blue Apron Review (Take 2!)

So, a couple weeks ago we got charged for a week of Blue Apron meals. I guess Ant never canceled our account and was just manually skipping them each week. He forgot, and 3 meals we really weren't excited about were on it's way (one was a catfish dish that neither of us would touch with a 10 foot pole). We didn't notice until 4 days before delivery, and the site says they need 7 days to cancel. We immediately emailed their customer service to see if there was anything they could do. Fortunately, their customer service team was understanding and canceled our order.

We were so thankful that they were able to cancel our order that after seeing how delicious the next week's meal plan looked, we decided to order another box. We had a pretty good experience with Blue Apron the first time and expected our second box to be just as wonderful.

Blue Apron still doesn't allow you to pick your meals, but we knew we'd be getting the Corned Beef and Turkey Chili- I can't do shrimp- horrible childhood experience, the smell of cold shrimp still haunts me to this day. Our vegetarian option (the bottom row) was a surprise. All three looked yummy, and we ended up with the Baked Fontina Pasta.

Here's how everything turned out!

Corned Beef-Spiced Flank Steaks

Our delivery was scheduled for the Friday after St. Paddy's day, so it was a little weird that corned-beef and cabbage was on the menu. They should have done it the week before, but whatever. The steaks turned out really well, the spice rub was very flavorful! The potatoes tasted good, but looked pretty bad. I think I cut them too small, so I shouldn't have cooked them as long as I did. They kind of mashed themselves as I stirred the butter in.

New to me ingredient: Cabbage! I've had that purple cabbage in mixed salads, but I don't believe I've ever eaten a green cabbage, at least in the corned beef and cabbage sense. It was mixed with that whole grain mustard I loved so much from our first week of BA, which was a delightful touch. I would definitely eat it again.

Leftovers: We ate all the steak, but Ant had some of the cabbage and potatoes for lunch the next day.

Turkey Chili

I make turkey chili quite a bit (my go-to recipe is one from an old Weight Watchers cookbook), so I was curious to see how this one differed. The two are definitely similar, but this Blue Apron chili had more of a kick because of the added jalapeno pepper. I have to say, I wish the BA chili had a bell pepper. The WW one has 2, and I love them mixed in to the chili. Overall though, it was a very nice dish.

New to me ingredient: Avocado. Yep, I'd never, ever eaten one. And, they were Harry's very first food! They just always grossed me out- their texture looks anything but appetizing to me. Like a creamy, unsweetened cube of pudding. Or a green body cream. Ewww, I know. Ant loves avocados, and was super excited to put them on the chili. He begged me to try a little, so I agreed, and put one little cube in my bowl. I ate it, and turns out, I don't completely hate avocados! Who woulda thunk. I even added a few more chunks to my chili. It added a nice, light contrast to an otherwise heavy dish.

Leftovers: Yes, enough for one serving. I reheated it for lunch the next day.

Baked Fontina Pasta

Probably my least favorite of the three we had, but that's not to say it was a bad dish. It wasn't, but I felt like there was either too much pasta, or too little sauce. Altering the measurements slightly would make a world of difference I think. This also was a deceptively complicated recipe! Just glancing at the recipe card I thought we'd be able to breeze through it, but there are a ton of steps.

New to me ingredient: Brussels Sprouts. They've never appealed to me and I was really apprehensive about this dish because of them. I chopped them up very finely and didn't notice a strong flavor when mixed in with the pasta. I don't think I'd go out of my way to try them again, but if they're in a dish that otherwise sounds appealing, I wouldn't shy away from it.

Leftovers: Yes, enough for lunch the next day. It didn't reheat very well, but I finished it. The pasta was really dry, again, if there was more sauce it would have been better.

Overall, it was a yummy week! And I have to mention what a great sous chef Ant was. He helped out quite a bit with preparing all three meals. We didn't have as much left over as last time, but every meal fed the three of us (Harry had very small portions, and wouldn't even touch the chili), with a little left over.

I'm sure we'll do Blue Apron again when another good week comes around. But, next week we're trying out Hello Fresh for the first time, I'm excited to compare the two services!

Disclaimer: I'm not in any way affiliated with Blue Apron. The box was paid for by me and the opinions expressed in this post are 100% my own. 

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