I’ve never been much for cooking. Left to my own devices, my menu looks like this: Pasta night, salad night, frozen dinner night, pizza night, Pho Friday, random takeout night, and salad night again. For breakfast I’ll have yogurt or oatmeal. Lunch gets the PB&J, salad, and microwave burritos rotation.
Terrible, I know!
Learning how to cook has been on my “to do” list throughout my adult life, but somehow it always got put to the side. One big hurdle for me was getting overwhelmed by the number of ingredients everything has. Having to go to the store with a list and get every thing, but that store didn’t carry all the ingredients, so I’d spend the day hunting for something random like celery seed. Ug.
Might as well order take out.
So I was talking about this with a mom at a party and she recommended that I use Blue Apron. Blue Apron is a service that delivers groceries, but not just any groceries. Ingredients for meals along with recipes so you can cook your own meal. I signed up a few weeks ago and got my first delivery yesterday.
The pricing is $9.99 per person per meal. I signed up for the “omnivore” pack for two and three meals per week (around $60). Upon unpacking the box, I quickly realized that if I were to buy everything at the supermarket, it would be significantly more expensive.
The three recipes I received ran around 600 calories per meal, making it both healthy and flavorful.
The ingredients are pre measured, and except for things like olive oil, salt and pepper, everything is included.
I made my first meal last night, the Flank Steak au Jus. The instructions came with photos, which helped to figure out what had to be done to make the dinner. It took about 35 minutes, and as someone who is not used to cooking, I felt a little flustered realizing that I had to peel and cut the turnips, the tarragon had to be washed and patted dry, then de-leaved and chopped finely. What was the difference between crushing the garlic and making it into a paste?
It reminded me that I don’t cook because I’m lazy. And trying to get the meal timed so it be ready for this very narrow window in the evening when my husband is home, and before my son starts going to bed (a one hour process). Hitting this window makes the difference between eating at 7pm and eating at 9pm.
Anyway… for a while there it was a bit touch and go, but I somehow pulled it together in the end. And how amazing, a plate that is mostly vegetables, with meat, and few carbs. My husband and I were really impressed with how good it tasted. We’re not used to actually making such nice food at home!
Obviously I need to work on my food presentation skills, and also I don’t think the au Jus came out like the picture. My steak was a little rare, but I like rare steaks. It was great to have all the ingredients together and go through all the steps, so I could see things like, adding a dressing to the cauliflower didn’t have to be a huge production. Just whip a little dijon/oil/taragon mixture and coat the caulies.
So, all in all? I’d say it was a success. Before you know it, you’ll be calling me Chef Boyar-Jennine.