Gourmet Meals in a Box: Hello Fresh Week 2

Week two of Hello Fresh is in the books! One of this week’s dinners was fantastic, while the other two were good. Here’s a peek at what they sent me and what it looked like after my culinary impressionism.

 Pan-Seared Salmon with Honeydew-Cucumber Salsa & Watercress Salad

This one is tough to judge because it is, after all, a matter of personal taste. Remember in week one of Hello Fresh when I loved the salmon-sweet potato cakes because they didn’t taste too salmony? Well the pan-seared salmon is full-on salmon. No sweet potatoes to take the edge off that fish taste. So, while I think it was a good dish, it wasn’t my favorite because the salmon tasted like salmon. I can’t put this on Hello Fresh. I could have chosen an alternate dish, but I think those salmon-sweet potato cakes tricked me into thinking I really liked salmon!

Hello Fresh Pan-Seared Salmon
Pan-Seared Salmon tasted like salmon

Prosciutto-Wrapped Chicken Saltimbocca with Sautéed Spinach & Garlic-Sage Sauce

This dish was delicious! The prosciutto got just slightly crispy. The chicken was juicy tender, and the sage, prosciutto and sauce gave it all the flavor it needed. The side of sautéed spinach loaded with garlic and grape tomatoes is nearly a stand-alone for me. This is one of my favorite summer sides.

Hello Fresh Prosciutto-Wrapped Chicken
Prosciutto-Wrapped Chicken

Curried Jamaican Beef & Collard Greens with Spicy Red Chili & Creamy Polenta

This dish sounds wonderful, it has the ingredients to be wonderful, but it lacked something. Perhaps if the onion had been diced rather than thinly sliced it would have married with the beef a little better. The ground beef tasted as though all the flavor was on the outside, but when I started chewing, it was just plain beef on the inside. Does that make any sense? No? The creamy polenta was redeeming–who doesn’t love polenta?

Hello Fresh Curried Jamaican Beef
Curried Jamaican Beef & Collard Greens

The box was delivered on the day specified, and everything was kept cool and seemed fresh. However, the box was partially open. One flap had popped away from the strip of packing tape across the top. The other flap was taped down, and because of the styrofoam box within the box, there didn’t seem to be any chance of tampering.

Hello Fresh box partially opened
Box arrived like this. All flappy.

The recipes were easy to prepare, and I was quite close to hitting the HF time estimates. Hello Fresh uses more packaging than I would prefer. If I were to use any of these services on a regular basis, I doubt I would get much sleep for all the worry over the non-recyclables.

Hello Fresh packaging
Less individual packaging, but the styrofoam liner is too much

Room for Improvement

  • Nutrition labeling – for example, on the “Stock Concentrate.” This is important to me.
  • Reduce the amount of packaging and use more recyclables.

Would I Recommend Hello Fresh?

Yes. These recipes were all easy to prepare, they did not keep me in the kitchen too long, and about half of them were quite tasty (which, again, is a matter of personal opinion). The portions were large which meant I had leftovers for lunches and dinners beyond the box. Bonus!

Let me know if you’ve used Hello Fresh and what you think. Next up is my comparison of the three (Plated, Blue Apron, and Hello Fresh). Stay tuned!