“We take the planning and trekking out of home cooking,
leaving you with the fun bit.”
At the beginning of the year I decided to give fresh food boxes a go. There are many to choose from and the first company I decided to test was Gousto. Partly because I was aware of them through advertising but also because they have offers for first time customers (not all of the others do) so the first box was actually 50% off.
- easy to use website
- you can choose your own dishes & delivery date
- recipes are easy to follow
- their customer services team is very efficient
- have never had so much washing up before
- in 5 recipes the phrase “season generously with salt (& pepper)” appeared 7 times, another 2 instructions for “add a pinch of salt” plus “boils in salt water” x2. Given how much we’re warned about excess salt in a diet is bad I’m not sure this works with Gousto’s “It’s obscenely healthy” statement.
- none of the cooking times matched (and I’m pretty good at cooking)
I ended up ordering 2 boxes from Gousto, because in the first box the vegetables were questionable and I wanted to give them another chance. The dish in question was Spiced Aubergine and cucumber was a main ingredient (for the raita). The cucumber that arrived was soft and looked like it should have been thrown out. The aubergine wasn’t particularly wonderful looking either but it was ok. Where I live there are two greengrocers, both of would never have put that cucumber out to sell and while the second box from Gousto was an improvement I was never that impressed with the vegetables.
The remainder of the ingredients where fine and everything was packed securely, so meat was kept cool and sauces didn’t spill.
The dishes I picked from Gousto were:
- Spiced Aubergine (box 1)
- Pork with Sweet Leeks (box 1)
- Balsamic Glazed Sausages (box 2)
- Asian Beef Noodles (box 2)
- Lamb Pistachio Meatballs (box 2)
As previously mentioned the recipe cards are easy to follow and give you an approximate cooking time (one that never reflected reality in my case). It also tells you the kcal and fat of the dish, how many of your 5-a-day as well where the inspiration came from. For example; Lamb Pistachio Meatballs = Persian.
There was a lot of stuff about Gousto that I liked. I mean I’m never going to find ‘pomegranate molasses’ in a shop near me, I wouldn’t even know where to go look for it. As everything is measured out and delivered you don’t have to worry about planning things out.
All the dishes I tried were nice. Once I got the second box and stopped following the recipe to the letter (ignoring the constant ‘add salt’ instruction and easing up on the garlic) I enjoyed it more.
I haven’t tried anybody else so I can’t Gousto as such but I would recommend them to try, especially because they have such good offers for first time customers.
Weekly, fortnightly or monthly subscriptions are available but I’m not sure on any of these at this point – I can see me ordering one-off boxes.