Cooking for one and cooking healthy can be really difficult sometimes and buying all the ingredients to make amazing dishes you see in the cookbooks starts to get expensive. It also takes time and if you’re like me – a lot of pans and cleaning up after spillages. So i’ve been trying out four of the top dinners from a painfully cool little company called Scratch Meals to see if you can actually cook amazing food for one, from scratch, in the time it takes to bung a ready meal in the microwave and peel back the sweaty film.
What is a Scratch Meal?
Scratch meals are convenient little boxes that contain everything you need to create your culinary masterpiece at home in under 10 minutes. Chicken, rice, curry paste, lime you name it, every single thing you need is in these little packets, all measured out and chopped ready to use, and oh, did i mention that the recipes have been devised by Michel Roux Snr? Too cool. I found every one of these meals so easy to cook and i managed them easily in under 10 minutes, with just two pans or less (two recipes only one large pan) and no spillages…not one – way to go me!
Chicken Thai Green Curry* – This was my favourite but mostly because i love thai green curry! It was hot like it should be but that smooth kind of hot you only get from Thai food, and the vegetables were crunchy and fresh. The rice cooked in 4 minutes whilst i was colouring my chicken making the whole thing ready in just 7 minutes – and i timed it. Not the healthiest of the bunch but certainly better than a takeaway Thai feast, this would make a delicious Friday night in dinner with a cheeky glass of NZ Sauvingnon Blanc….or two.
Makhani Chicken Tikka Masala* – Who in our little country doesn’t love a good curry – especially a masala. A real comfort food and a super tasty one at that, this came very close to beating my Thai Green Curry for top spot. With two of your five a day and everything you need (including a curry leaf) to create an authentic tasting curry for one this was a real winner. Spicy but not too hot and creamy without being sickly – thanks to the yoghurt – i was perfectly satisfied when i’d finished eating this one and in the spirit of being healthy i even resisted a beer which would have gone down ever so nicely!
Singaporean Crayfish Noodle Laksa* – This meal is less than 300 kcals but doesn’t taste like it at all – It’s light but packed full of flavour so you don’t feel like you’ve missed out one little bit. The crayfish were fresh and delicious and the sauce even though incredibly simple was delicious. I could see myself eating this one in a high noddle bowl with some chopsticks in front of the telly any night of the week, amazing.
King Prawn and Chorizo Paella* – Paella is the one dish i find really difficult to cook myself, quickly and manage to make it taste authentic so i have no idea how Scratch have done it with this one. In 8 minutes i had a sticky, fresh, incredibly tasty paella with big juicy king prawns and spicy chorizo. I thoroughly enjoyed this meal too as it was right up my street and really filled me up. There were a hefty number of prawns in there too, in fact all the meal packs didn’t stint on the meat at all which is a huge plus point for me.
How much does cooking ‘from Scratch’ cost
By now you’re probably drooling (attractive) but also thinking ‘they look great but how much are they?’. Well, not as expensive as i thought they would be is the answer. A Scratch Meal Kit will set you back £3.95 which considering the portion sizes, the quality of ingredients, the ease, speed and amount of meat in each one, i’d say is pretty damn good. I don’t think i could afford to eat one every single night, but i’d definitely swap my usual oily Friday night curry for that Makhani Chicken Masala or the Green Thai Curry, and not only would my waistline thank me but my purse would too. I’d even be tempted to grab myself a Paella or Laksa to cheer up a miserable Monday evening when the diet starts again because they really don’t feel like healthy food and i even looked forward to my dinner when i knew i was cooking ‘from Scratch’…sad but true. These get a massive 10/10 for me and i’ll definitely be hunting some down in my next food shop!
You can try our a Scratch Meal Kit for £3.95 from Ocado HERE and other top supermarkets – take a look on their website to find your nearest stockist! You can even ‘cook along’ with Scratch on their Youtube channel HERE – neat!
Have you tried Scratch Meals before? Would you give them a go? Which one would you try?
Tweet us @xameliax @scratchmeals #scratchmeals