Chris and I were in a rut. A dinner rut.
We had the same things week after week for dinner. Chicken cooked the same way. Salmon cooked the same way. Steak on the grill. Ad that was when Chris cooked. When I cooked, it was either Crockpot or pressure cooker to the rescue.
Something needed to change. I’d seen ads for Hello Fresh, Plated and Blue Apron. I decided to give Plated a shot. Quick dinners (less than 45 minutes), with all the ingredients delivered to your door. You just have to prep and cook.
I loved how all the items were packaged, in a box, with ice packs below and above the meats, and the dry ingredients on top. There was plenty of ice still in the box by the time I got home from work, too, so no worries about spoilage.
Our first meal was Ginger-Scallion Salmon Burgers With Sriracha Mayo and Crunchy Asian Slaw. (I think they could have cut the title down a little.Chris and I prepared this one together.
He did all the chopping, and I did the cooking. Thankfully, the cabbage and carrots for the slaw were pre-cut.
The salmon looked like a whole piece of tuna, but it broke apart easily, so it had been pre-minced, kind of like burger. I mixed all the ingredients for that with my hands. Yum. Squishy salmon.
The whole mean was done in about a half hour. Based on the photo, we worried that it wouldn’t be much food, but we were so wrong. I made Chris a slightly larger patty, and he couldn’t finish his. We didn’t finish the slaw, either, though it was good. It tasted like the ginger salad you get at many Asian restaurants.
The salmon burger was delicious! You could taste the hint of ginger and soy, but it didn’t overpower the salmon. It was like a grown-up salmon patty. Ah, memories.
The next meal was Grilled Balsamic Steak Tacos with Blue Cheese and Chimichurri. I was at the vet with my dog Charley while Chris put this together for us. He told me it was a huge pain to do by himself (especially the parsley). When I got home, the steak was still marinating, and everything was chopped up and ready to go. He just had to put the steak on to cook.
Overall, I’d say it was good. I had to substitute the blue cheese because I’m allergic, but he ate the tacos as-is. He only ate two of his three (then had non-taco tacos lat
er by wrapping all the ingredients inside the meat; no shell). I ate all three.
The final meal was Roasted Chicken and TomatilloRice Bowl with Crispy Tortillas. I made this one alone while Chris was working. And I have to say it was a huge pain to do alone. I was running around like a madwoman trying to do everything at once. The recipe says a lot of “do this while this is cooking,” but I ended up rushed every time. And getting all the cilantro off the stems? Not something I enjoyed. The best parts of this meal were the lime-yogurt crema and the salted chili powder tortilla strips. In fact, I think I’ll start making my own flavored tortilla chips now. That part was a cinch!
I thought there was entirely too much cilantro in this dish, but Chris liked it a lot.
My recommendation: Plated is a great date night activity. If you work together with someone else in the kitchen, it’s much easier (and more fun).
Plated is $72 a week for the six-meal package. That breaks down to $12 per person, per meal. Not bad, considering we’d definitely spend more than that going out to eat. I found a coupon for the first week that knocked it down to half price, too, so that helped. They also offer meals for four people as well, not just two, as well as vegetarian options.
I love all the fresh ingredients, and each meal was under 700 calories. Again, we would have probably eaten far more calories if we’d gone out.
Another bonus for Plated is that you can also buy desserts as an add-on, for $4 each (the price this week anyway). We’re trying to stay away from dessert, but I like the option.
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