Monday, November 28 and Tuesday November 29, 2016: Blue Apron Dinners
December 1st, 2016 by Katekoster

Good friends of ours (thanks J&C) gave us a voucher for two meals from Blue Apron, a company that delivers you the makings of a full meal, along with detailed directions.  So we decided to try making them.  Here is our review. The first two meals we received were: 1) Bucatini Bolognese with Brussel Sprouts and Pecorino Cheese and 2)Pan-Seared Cod with Meyer Lemon Sauce & Fall Vegetables.

First of all the packaging was very good: everything was cold and all of the packaging is recycleable.  It’s also cool that they give you exactly the amount of ingredients you need.

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The first dinner we made was the Bucatini Bolognese.  The recipe looked good: but super straight forward: carrots, onions, garlic, ground beef and tomato sauce (we often use different ground meat in our bolognese: a combo of veal and pork, or lamb, so it was a little surprising this was just beef.).  The directions are easy to follow and with good photos, but you definitely have to do the work (lots of chopping).  Basically you chop up all the vegetables, sautee them, add the meat, add the tomato sauce and let simmer: serve with pasta, pecorino cheese and garnish of basil  The twist Blue Apron wanted us to do was to pick off the Brussels sprouts leaves and add them to the bolognese sauce at the end.  But we prefer Brussels sprouts roasted so we roasted ours in the oven with a little olive oil and salt and pepper…that way they turn really crispy.  Then you can sprinkle on top of the plated dish or just eat on the side.  Also from some kids’ perspective they would NOT want Brussels sprouts in their bolognese sauce at all so if you cook them separately, people can add them or not. Also, the amount of brussels sprouts was very close to a garnish, and we do NOT recomend using Brussels Sprouts a garnish–we wanted more of them so we could eat as a side.

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The second dinner we made was Pan-Seared Cod with Meyer Lemon Sauce & Fall Vegetables.  This recipe was definitely more adventurous (and we liked that it was something very new to us).  Again the directions were great….but there is a lot of chopping…don’t think that this or the Bolognese dinner are QUICK dinners. First you slice 2 baking potatoes very thin (and roast in oven with olive oil and salt & pepper), then you have to chop up broccoli, carrots and garlic.  You saute those in olive oil till soft and set aside.  Then you lightly flour the cod fillets with rice flour (we’ve never used rice flour so that was interesting) and sautee them in the same pan.  When the fillets are done, you set them aside and make a sauce with butter, meyer lemon, and chopped almonds.  That was really fun.  We don’t make sauces very much so this was a good introduction.  OK so then you are supposed to plate the dish by combining the roasted potatoes with the cooked vegetables with creme fraiche (like sour cream), and then put the fish on top of that and lemon sauce on top.  The problem is that you have these amazing crispy potato slices that you are supposed to combine with soft (damp) vegetables.  We thought that was a crime…it would ruin the potatoes so we didn’t do that step–we plated them separately.  Again maybe its a kids’ thing, but cooked broccoli should never be combined with crispy potatoes.  But the whole dish tasted amazing.  Thanks Blue Apron (and J&C).

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