Cooking from scratch is one of my passions. Even on weekday evenings, meals in our house are home cooked from scratch most nights. So what do I make of dinner subscription services? This week I’ve teamed up with Gousto to review one of their recipe boxes.
I consider myself a good cook, and I wanted to try something different to my usual repertoire, so I chose Aubergine Parmigiana with Pesto Bruschetta and Blackened Cod Tacos with Chipotle Mayo as my two recipes to test out.
My box ended up being delivered to my neighbour, which wasn’t the best start as it could have been left in the porch, but luckily my neighbours are lovely so they didn’t mind watching it and dropping it round when I got home from work.
The packaging was great though, and everything was still cold when I unpacked it despite it being delivered that morning. The box contained two ice packs (which I’ve kept and refrozen for future use) and was insulated using recyclable wool packaging.
Ste decided to try out the Aubergine Parmigiana, which was tasty, but not spectacular. He said it was easy enough to prepare, but nothing he couldn’t have done from scratch
It wasn’t the best looking dish I’ve ever seen, but it was enjoyable. The flavours were tasty, but quite simple, the texture was a little mushy for my liking but overall, not bad at all.
I tackled the Blackened Cod Tacos with Chipotle Mayo which I was more excited about.
6 soft tortilla wraps
6 cherry tomatoes
1 spring onion
Bunch of fresh coriander
2 squeezy packs mayonnaise
1 tub chipotle paste
2 cod portions
The recipe was super simple, and according to the card, would only take 20 minutes to make, so I set my stopwatch and off I went.
First up I preheated the oven and laid out the soft tacos on a baking sheet ready to warm up later.
I chopped up the tomatoes, spring onion and coriander, juiced half the lime and combined to make the salsa, reserving a handful of coriander for scattering over the finished dish.
Next I combined the mayonnaise and chipotle paste to make the spicy mayo, then drizzled with a dash of olive oil. The smell of this was AMAZING!
Next step was to combine the paprika and allspice with salt and pepper, then coat the cod fillets in the spice mixture.
I then fried the fish in a medium heat pan. The recipe card reassures you that although it might look like it’s burning, you want the spices to blacken to give you the flavour. They also recommend you only flip your fish once, so make sure it’s blackened on the underside before turning over.
Once the fish was cooked, all that remained was to warm the tacos through and slice the remaining half a lime, then it was time to plate up!
As well as looking quite beautiful, these were really delicious. The fish was crispy on the outside from the spice crust while reminaing tender on the inside, the smoky chipotle mayo tasted divine and really complimented the dish, while the salsa with lime and coriander gave it a fresh boost.
I paired this with a citrus pale ale which complimented the spice and smokiness really well.
So, this recipe definitely delivered on flavour, but did it deliver on time? I consider myself a good cook with half decent knife skills, and despite following the recipe card to the letter, it still took me 32 minutes to make from start to finish, so I’d add on a bit of time to their estimates when you’re cooking at home.
The aubergine parmigiana could have been better, but it wasn’t bad by any stretch. The fish tacos were brilliant, great flavour and easy to prepare. Is it a recipe I could easily make myself without a recipe kit? Yes. But did it inspire me and would I make this again? Absolutely.
If you’re finding that most nights you’ve got naff all in the fridge and a takeaway menu temptingly close, Gousto could be exactly what you need to get you inspired and into the kitchen to cook from scratch.
Want to try it out?
I’ve got an exclusive offer from the chaps at Gousto – £20 off on each of your 1st and 2nd Gousto orders, on any sized box – so they could cost you as little as £7.49 each! Enter the code TORNADO when ordering to claim your discounted boxes.
Disclaimer: My Gousto box was complimentary but I was under no obligation to provide a review. All opinions are, as always, my own.