Food Trends

From sous chef to star

We were “gifted” with some Blue Apron meals so I’ve been promoted from my sous chef status. And “star” might be an over-reach, but…

I can see the positives firsthand:

  • right to the door – bad weather this week, they adjusted my delivery day
  • variety of diets – we selected “Weight Watcher” recipes since that was closest to the way we typically eat
  • individualized food preferences – opt out of pork for example
  • select your own meals – so you stay in your comfort zone
  • let Blue Apron select for you – so you’ll eat a bit more adventurously – sambal oelek anyone?
  • everything is pre-measured – mise en place without you getting out any bowls or measuring devices
  • no missed ingredients – you need salt, pepper and olive oil on hand
  • people like to feel like they did something in meal prep
  • detailed and timed directions – OK, I didn’t follow a few points that seemed unnecessary to me but it’s all explained!

The negatives:

  •  elaborate packaging – while everything comes perfectly contained there’s a bit more packaging than ingredients

I don’t know how other meal kits work but the idea fascinates me. For that lost generation whose parents were never in the kitchen, this system could be a very helpful instructor. And fun.

Sometimes we forget the upside of eating –  it can take you around the world on a plate. Try a new food to be well,

Marcia

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Ho Ho Fun!

Whether you’re gifting for Christmas or another holiday, here are a few ideas for those you want to have a healthy new year:))

For the chef-in-training, how about a cutting board that helps differentiate between a small and medium dice (they’re on their own for a rough cut!). Markings on the board eliminate the need to get out a ruler (if millennials use rulers). Obsessive Chef is one brand of these cutting boards; could you use one too?

We flavor foods with fat, salt and sugar. Not too healthy, right? Culinary grilling planks are a cool alternative. The wood imparts a flavor (cedar, hickory, cherry or alder for example) but you can also soak the boards in wine or a fruit juice for even more flavor. You’re adding no calories, just another layer of taste. Fish is probably the most commonly grilled food but veggies could be another easy idea for planks on the grill.

Meal kits are just the thing for the new or easily bored cook. They are quite pricey but their step-by-step instructions, inclusion of every last ingredient (garnishes too) and unique flavor profiles will make an adventurous eater happy. Skill level demanded for the many brands is highly variable, so make sure you make those two elements a perfect match too.

Finally, I keep reading about (but have never tried) an airfryer but they get rave reviews. Fried foods with a minimum  amount of fat sounds like a nutritional winner to me. Superheated air surrounds your food to cook it; it’s the circulation that provides the all over crispness. These are sold at every size and price point. While they are one more bulky appliance to store in your kitchen, I’m guessing you just purged unused appliances just last month. This looks like a fun one.

Share your ideas on gifts to be well.

Marcia

 

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