5/19/17

Healthy Meals Made Easy With Chefs Plate

Cooking healthy meals with fresh ingredients has become a breeze with food delivery services gaining popularity worldwide. Chefs Plate is on a mission to make cooking fun again and encourage Canadians to bond over delicious meals.


Dev and I tested the service last week while home and pet sitting for family friends. It was great because we didn't have to worry about stocking the fridge with a ton of groceries (and condiments) that probably wouldn't get used up. Each box contains the perfect amount of farm-fresh ingredients sourced from Canadian suppliers to create two portions without any waste.

We have another box arriving next week for the same reason. With our European trip quickly approaching, we won't have to worry about food going off while we're away.



The ingredients for each recipe arrived in a refrigerated box and packed into recyclable brown bags (aside from the ground pork which sat alone under a big pack of ice). Both fit nicely on a shelf in the fridge and were super easy and compact to store. 



I thought it was so cute how the eggs were packed into their own little boxes - although one of ours was broken - and the little jars of peanut butter, sesame oil and tamari were just too adorable! There was even little packets of sugar! Literally everything we needed (aside from cooking oil, salt and pepper) to make some delicious grub was at our fingertips and there was no need for an emergency grocery trip. 



Initially we were both very concerned about how big the portions were going to be. The first recipe we tried came with about 1/2 a cup of rice, which didn't seem like a lot. But the good ol' saying "our eyes are bigger than our stomachs" rang true and after indulging in a pretty decent sized plate full, we were both pleasantly stuffed and there was even leftovers for Dev to take for lunch. 


New recipes are introduced each week - there are typically seven to choose from - and feature a variety of meat, fish or vegetarian options. They're all well balanced and seem to contain interesting flavours or combinations I personally would never think to try.

For our first two meals with Chefs Plate, we chose:

Kimchi & Pork Fried Rice (with snap peas, shimeji mushrooms and a fried egg)

The ingredients included:

Lean Ground Pork
Sticky Rice
2 Eggs
Shimeji Mushrooms
Green Cabbage
Snap Peas
1 Yellow Onion
Gochujang
Rice Wine Vinegar
1 Sugar Packet
1 Kimchi Spice Mix Packet (sesame seeds, ground ginger and gochugaru)


This was definitely our favourite of the two!

I've never tried kimchi before, let alone make the spicy, pickled cabbage myself. Trying new things can be scary, and not knowing what the heck Gochujang is made me thankful for not having to purchase an entire bottle of it. For the record, I think it's a chili paste... 

Now that I've tried the dish, I can confirm that I probably would make it many, many times again and therefore can justify stocking my cupboard/fridge (wherever it's stored) with Gochujang. Just don't ever ask me how to pronounce it...


The directions for each recipe included pictures to follow and made whipping everything up super easy. We saved time by not having to dig for measuring cups or spoons because everything was pre-portioned and our meal was ready in roughly 30 minutes. 


The Kimchi & Pork Fried Rice had just enough heat, but the snow peas added a nice sweetness and the cabbage really bulked up the meal to help us feel full. 



Crispy Five Spice Tofu (with cauliflower rice and creamy peanut sauce)

The ingredients included:

Extra Firm Tofu 
Cauliflower
Brocoli
1 Red Onion
Peanut Butter
1 Brown Sugar Packet
Sesame Oil
Tamari
1 Chinese Five Spice Packet
1 Lime


This recipe was also very good!



I often contemplate becoming a vegetarian or pescatarian and have eaten plenty of tofu in my days. Devon, however, was the true test for this recipe...and it was a hit! He compared the crunchy bits of tofu to french toast bake, only a little more savoury. He also admitted being surprisingly full after, despite consuming a meat-free meal (although he did joke about driving through McDonalds for some preservatives).


I'm a sucker for anything with peanut butter, and this combo was really nice. It was our first time trying cauliflower rice, and although we couldn't find a grater where we were staying to shred the veg, Dev did a pretty good job chopping it up small so it cooked through quickly. The flavour and texture combinations were awesome and I would totally make this dish again!

Although the subscription service is a little pricey ($49.80 weekly for a 2-Person Plan), it's completely flexible and can be skipped or cancelled at any time.

Dev and I had so much fun spending time in the kitchen cooking together and experimenting with new flavours. Both recipes made us feel inspired to eat out less and create better home cooked meals more often. They were both dishes we had never tried before and we look forward to recreating them someday in the future.

I also can't wait to test out a couple of new recipes when our box arrives next week. I'll be sure to keep you posted on our thoughts. 

xxx

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