I had to laugh reading a post by former full time food blogger the Amateur Gourmet called “Ok I lied: It sucks to cook after work“. He’s got a job as a TV writer now and admits he really struggles finding time to cook on a week night after work. It’s a common dilemma and my recent solution has been to order food and recipe delivery boxes. There are a few different options available now in Australia with the latest newcomer, Marley Spoon.
Marley Spoon offers a few different options but the one I’ve gone for is a box containing three meals for two people. I still love finding the time to cook on weekends but given I’m often out a few week nights as well having three meals with the ingredients ready to go for quick after work meals is a real lifesaver for me.
The key differential with Marley Spoon is that you get to choose from a range of options each week. Most food and recipe delivery services don’t give you any choice. I’ve also been impressed by the quality of the ingredients used. The meat and seafood is top notch and vegetables stay very fresh. Recipes are a little more involved than competitors like Hello Fresh but the results are also more gourmet. The only negative is the amount of packaging with Marley Spoon that is not recyclable. I hope this is something the business is working on. Overall though, it’s a great service if you are time poor but still a keen cook. I got sent one free box to trial from Marley Spoon and loved it so much that I have now paid to sign up as a ongoing customer and have had a few weeks delivery since.
So what does a typical recipe look like? This is the lamb and thyme pappardelle – a bit of a twist on a spag bol but with all the same comfort food vibes. It’s speedy to make and the addition of anchovy gives a real flavour punch.
- 1 onion
- 2 garlic cloves
- 1 carrot
- 250g lamb mince
- 4 sprigs thyme, leaves picked
- 1 tbsp tomato paste
- 400g can chopped tomatoes
- 1/2 tsp dried chilli flakes
- 250ml chicken stock
- 150g pappardelle pasta
- 25g parmesan, shaved into strips
- 32g anchovy fillets in oil
- olive oil
- salt and pepper
- 1. Bring a large saucepan of water to the boil. Finely chop onion, garlic, carrot and anchovies.
- 2. Heat two tsp of olive oil in a frypan over a medium high heat. Cook the lamb mince for 5 mins or until browned, breaking up with a spoon. Season with salt and take the lamb out of the pan and set aside.
- 3. Reduce the heat to medium and add the onion, garlic, carrot and anchovies to the pan. Cook for 5 mins or until softened.
- 4. Add tomato paste and stir for 1 min. Return lamb to the pan with tomatoes, thyme leaves, chilli and stock. Cook for 10-15 mins stirring occasionally until thickened. Season with salt and pepper.
- 5. Meanwhile cook the pasta in the pan of boiling water for 6 mins or until al dente. Drain in a colander before tossing through the sauce.
- 6. Divide pasta between bowls and scatter over Parmesan to serve.
Details: Marley Spoon is available in Melbourne and Sydney now.
Damage: The ingredients and recipe for three meals for two people costs $69 a week.
I was sent one free box by Marley Spoon and have paid independently to use the service four times.