I’ve never been one for meal delivery services – aside from the odd takeaway of course! I’ve found the idea of having my food measured out, pre-prepared and delivered in a big box a little strange. I’m unsure why, but, there we go. When I was approached to give Marley Spoon a go I was unsure, to say the least – what if I loved having my dinner most-of-the-way pre-pared for me and going forward I couldn’t face the Lidl hell now I know the alternative.
While it’s safe to say I absolutely loved my experience with Marley Spoon, I won’t be missing out on my weekly Lidl trek anytime soon. This month Marley Spoon have collaborated with Olia Hercules, The Observer’s Rising Star of 2015 and author of the celebrated cookbook, Mamushka. Combining her Ukrainian heritage with Cypriot, Italian, Moldovan, Laos and Caucasian influences, to name a few, Olia has created a selection of exciting dishes for Marley Spoon that have featured on both the Two-Person and Family menus. All recipes are delivered with the seasonal ingredients, in exact quantities, to cook at home. I was kindly invited to test out the Spiced Aubergine Mujaddara with Shallot Garnish & Yoghurt and Marley Spoon’s very own Flat Bread Pizzas with Tender Stem Broccoli and Radicchio salad.
My lovely box arrived on Friday last week to my office at around 10am – just when they said it would arrive so that’s impressive! The meals were portioned into separate brown bags with the loveliest designs across the paper. To say I was a little obsessed with the packaging is a massive understatement. It’s the element of delivery services that many people ignore – why does it matter what box your supper comes in – but Marley Spoon’s packaging made me feel very happy. Alongside the brown paper bags was a sheep’s wool lined cooling bag with the dairy elements in and two recipe cards with beautifully shot images and clear instructions.
We opted for the Flat Bread Pizzas on Friday night – a healthier choice for that naughty end of week treat. The ingredients included Middle Eastern flat breads, tender stem broccoli, pine nuts, mozzarella, and basil, plus spices and dressings for the radicchio salad. The instructions were wonderfully clear and took us through step-by-step. We created the tomato sauce, then prepped the veggies, then cooked the pizza and prepared the salad. Everything was ready in 40 minutes and we were tucking into a delicious, healthy meal which took minimal effort.
Olia's dish of Spiced Aubergine Mujaddara with Shallot Garnish & Yoghurt was a touch more complex but again the instructions were really well put.The ingredients bag included aubergines, shallots, lentils, yoghurt and dill plus an array of Middle Eastern spices which brought a tonne of flavour to each mouthful. We began by cooking the rice and lentils in a traditional way with the spices being fried off first, moving onto the garam masala aubergine rounds and the sticky sweet onion garnish. The finished dish looked as pretty as the pictures provided (which was a surprise because my presentation skills are, well, rubbish) and tasted incredible!
Will I be ordering from Marley Spoon again? Perhaps - I think it's a great option for special occasions but for my daily life it's a touch too expensive. Portions start from £4.35 per person and can be ordered online here.
Thank you to Marley Spoon for providing the boxes for this review. All opinions are my own and not been influenced in any way by the provision of the boxes.