Introducing: Carrefour Simply You Box

At the end of 2016, Carrefour launched their own meal box called Simply You Box.

Offering a similar concept to Smartmat & HelloFresh – a cardboard box filled with 3 different recipe cards plus the fresh ingredients to make these recipes. Each week, the Simply You Box offers 9 different recipes from which you can pick/choose which 3 meals you would like to cook. Just like the other recipe/fresh food boxes offered by competitors, they too promise that meals can be ready within 30minutes and are easy to follow.

Turkey schnitzel with roasted baby potatoes and salad (10 April 2017 menu)

What you need to know:

  1. Choose 3 recipes out of the 9 menus that offered
    • 3 vegetarian, 3 traditional & 3 family friendly
    • Menu’s change weekly
    • View 4 weeks worth of menu’s online
  2. Number of people to feed: Currently options are only 2 people or 4 people?
    • 40€ for 2people = 6.67€ per meal per person
    • 60€ for 4 people = 5.00€ per meal per person
  3. Collect on a Monday from your nearest Carrefour Drive pick-up point (available all over Belgium). They are investigating delivery options for the future!
  4. Payment via debit/credit card online
  5. Order by midnight on Monday to collect the following Monday

I got the opportunity to test out one of the boxes (2people) and can say that the whole process was very EASY – especially the collection at the Carrefour Drive pick up point in Auderghem where Carrefour staff were super helpful and took at total of 5minutes!

As you can see from the box above – the quantities were GENEROUS for 2people! (A whole packet of linguine for 2people for one recipe! Obviously, splitting their pre-existing packaging for this concept doesn’t make sense – but it means that not only is the concept pretty cost effective at 6,67€ per person per meal but that you might be adding to your store cupboard as well!)

Coming back to value for money => how does this stack against the competition?? Pretty well considering that HelloFresh is 34€ for 2 people for 3 meals = 5.67€ per person/per meal and Smartmat Original Box is 59€ for 2 people for 3meals = 9.83€ per person/per meal. So Simply You Box is only just more expensive than HelloFresh but definitely cheaper than Smartmat Original box.

creamy risotto with roasted pumpkin & mascarpone (10th April 2017 menu)

Additional Comments

  • Positive:
    • Easy to follow simple recipes (each card is printed recto-verso, so Dutch on one side and French on the other side – but even with that – the recipes were so easy, that you didn’t really need to pore over each line of instruction)
    • Fresh ingredients were exactly that… FRESH
    • Excellent quality/price ratio;
    • Pretty balanced nutrition (IMHO… that I could see – although I am not a nutritionist, I am sure that they are consulting with one and having carbs/protein/vegetables etc in each menu seems pretty level headed to me)
  • Negative: finding something negative to say was really difficult as this is a great concept that is executed professionally!
    • Having to collect box on a Monday (looking forward to delivery options becoming available);
    • Website & recipes only available in Dutch/French

Website: www.simplyYouBox.be

PROMOCODE: Use unique code WHIMNTSYB before 31/05/2017 and you will get a discount of 10€ when you purchase a Simply You Box of min 40€

White Mushroom Lasagna

A colleague recently reminded me about the HelloFresh concept (weekly delivery of ingredients & recipes for a certain number of meals for the family) and offered for me to try a box on a *free* coupon that she had been given. I had tried the concept in July last year (read the review here) and thought that the concept was pretty good, but I didn’t like the fact that recipes/website were in Dutch only and that there wasn’t much choice when it came to the meals each week.

The good news is that they have evolved!! Although the website is still only available in Dutch or French, you do get an email that allows you download the recipes in English just before your order is delivered. AND you can choose within 10 menu’s that change weekly! (Another bonus is that I notice that their price has remained the same=> 53€ for 5 meals for 2 people)

We got an original box => 5 meals for 2 people. And I have to say that a few of those meals were portioned for 3 rather than 2… meaning that we have some soup in the freezer and HIM or I could have leftovers for lunch the next day. One of those meals was the White Mushroom Lasagna – which was delicious but very filling & rich!

white-mushroom-lasagne

I have never made a béchamel / white sauce like this before – but talk about hiding the vegetables!!

We are currently signed up for a regular original box and I am loving the fact that for a few nights each week, I don’t have to *think* about “What’s for supper?” and the ingredients/groceries required – PLUS it has allowed us to widen our repertoire of cooking (and eating) and increase our vegetable intake. Indeed… we are definitely getting our 5-a-day in now! (I also signed up for their wine box but that is another story :))

This recipe is definitely a make again AND perfect for a vegetarian!

White Mushroom Lasagna
4 portions

1 head of cauliflower
1 onion, finely diced
2 garlic cloves, crushed
250g chestnut mushrooms, sliced
200ml single cream
50g cheese, grated
lasagna sheets
500ml vegetable stock
butter
6 Tablespoons flour

  • Cut cauliflower in smaller pieces and using a food processor, make into crumbs
  • Gently fry the onion & garlic & cauliflower in 2 tablespoons of butter for 2minutes in a deep saucepan. Remove from heat
  • Melt 2 tablespoons of butter in the same saucepan
  • Stir in the flour, mixing for 2minutes at a medium heat
  • Add stock slowly, mixing well with a whisk to avoid lumps
  • Bring to the boil, then add the cauliflower mix along with the mushrooms to the sauce
  • Add the single cream and 1/3 of the cheese (along with Salt & Pepper to taste)
  • leave on the heat for 2minutes
  • in an oven dish, layer the lasagna sheets & sauce => repeating until all the sauce is used up
  • Sprinkle with remaining cheese
  • Bake at 200C for 20-25minutes

white-mushroom-lasagne-2

Introducing… Breakfast Delivery Brussels

When people decide to pursue their love of food and start up their own business serving their local community – I am definitely one of the first people to stand up & help support (crowd funding, kiss kiss bank bank or whatever might make the most sense)

So when I saw a new concept in Brussels of having breakfast delivered to your front door… I thought the idea novel and quaint.

Don’t get me wrong – sometimes, the highlight of my weekend is going out with HIM and the monkey for breakfast/brunch somewhere… but sometimes, just sometimes – you also want to laze about in your pj’s while still enjoying freshly baked goods, soft boiled eggs, freshly squeezed orange juice and steaming hot cups of ** (whatever your heart fancies)… without actually having to go to the shops or even enter your kitchen.

breakfast delivery 3

Which is where Breakfast Delivery Brussels comes in.

logo_breakfast

A simple concept… either a Simple or Deluxe breakfast…

Simple 15€

  • coffee/tea
  • orange juice
  • pistolet (a bread roll)
  • croissant or pain au chocolat
  • Jam & chocolate spread OR ham & cheese
  • Hard or soft boiled eggs with toasted bread soldiers

Deluxe 22.50€

  • All the above
  • yoghurt with granola & fruit OR chia-coconut pudding with fruit
  • Toast with Avocado & Salmon

you always have the option to add (for an extra euro): pistolet, croissant, pain au chocolat, jam/chocolate spread, ham & cheese. And you can make it extra special by including some bubbles too! Either in 35.7cl or a full 75cl bottle

I had supported the concept via Kiss Kiss Bank Bank – and therefore got 2x Deluxe breakfasts… (suppose to include a bottle of champers but I think that this must have been mislaid – but that really didn’t matter and a delicious pot of home made rhubarb & strawberry jam)

breakfast delivery 1

What do you think? Pretty impressive eh?

There was SO MUCH food – that we ate off it for 2 days! I loved the yoghurt with home-made granola & fruit (so much so – that I “stole” HIM’s for the next days breakfast) and the salmon/avo toast was left for the afternoon.

breakfast delivery 2

Why we loved it:

  • Our delivery slot was 9-10am and I got a phone call at 8h50 to say that it would be delivered in 5minutes (which it was!)
  • Everything was fresh and tasty – even the coffee was still hot on delivery
  • So much food – real value for money!

Future improvement suggestions

  • Time slots should be in 30minute intervals… HIM starts at work at 11h00, so I would have preferred a 10am delivery time, but if I chanced it and took the 10h00-11h00 slot, I couldn’t be guaranteed that our food would arrive in time. Instead I took the 09h00-10h00 slot and it was delivered at 09h00 sharp.. which was actually too early
  • an option to add the yoghurt/granola/fruit parfait to the simple breakfast…

What you need to know:

  • Deliveries are only on Saturday & Sunday: 08h00-13h00
  • Deliveries only possible in a 4km radius from the Bourse Area
  • Payment: cash, bankcontact, bank transfer – but remember to put your proof of payment in email format
  • You can order in advance online or even phone/email on the day
  • the more you order, the cheaper it gets!

Would I use them again? DEFINITELY – but I would opt for the simple breakfast going forward! Show your support and order for this weekend!

BREAKFAST DELIVERY

email: info@breakfastdelivery.be

website: http://www.breakfastdelivery.be

phone: +32 493 06 78 24

Introducing…. Cirkle

I remember a few years back being told about a BIO fruit/vegetable delivery service called Reason2Be, and I looked at the site… but decided that I didn’t need a regular fruit/vegetable box delivered … and left it at that.

However, the joys of having a 4.5month old in my life while going back to work full-time, means that HIM spends his days with her and his nights working, and I spend my days working and my nights with her. Which doesn’t leave much time to head out to do grocery shopping (except on Saturday mornings and even then, our time is completely dependent on Little Miss – when she last slept, ate, poo-ed, etc….) and sometimes you just want to relax on a Saturday and not rush around like a mad thing – right??

I had previously had the honour to test our recipe kit delivery services like Smartmat, HelloFresh and Flavour Delivered (these tests were done as a blogger and I didn’t have to pay for their services or the test boxes that I received) – but this time, I made the decision to try out a new option on my own (i.e. this is NOT a sponsored or promotional post)

circkle logo

Back to trying out the CIRKLE  concept–  the new & improved site for Reason2Be which offers a whole range more than just fruit & vegetable boxes! You can now get quiches & tarts from Les Tartes De Francoise, meat products from well-known Butcher Jack O’Shea’s, a full range of different types of breads from Lowy,  dried natural & organic foods from SuperSec, dried tea from Unami, Oxfam fairtrade products, delicious biscuits from Maison Dandoy… not to mention a range of craft beers, Bio wines and obviously… fruit & vegetables!!!

You can choose to purchase box sets (fruit, vegetables, or a combination of both, with or without meat & eggs, recipe kits, discovery boxes, wine boxes, craft beer boxes, etc….) or you can purchase items individually and add to your cart! You create an online account, load some funds into it (VISA, Maestro, etc) – and select your delivery day and time range (day/evening). You do need to finalise your order by 06h00 the day before your delivery day – but up until then, you can go in as many times as you like to make changes to your order.

On the day of delivery, you can check your online account and it will tell you who your delivery driver will be and what time frame you can expect your delivery to be made (i.e. 13h30-14h30). You can also check their twitter account to see if they are on time or not (as they load a daily tweet to say if they are on time or running late)

I placed my first order this week and spent 85euros (which included the 3euros delivery charge)… it may sound like a lot of money for a fruit/vegetable box… but I worked out that we got 5 full meals for 2 people plus fruit, cheese, bread, hummus, etc. So a weeks worth of meals (including 2 meals with meat!)

So what did I buy??

here it is…..

cirkle 1

 

  • Meal 1: small Quiche Lorraine from Les Tartes de Francoise (which I served with a salad (ingredients already in my fridge)… and also managed to take some to work for lunch the following day)
  • Meal 2: Recipe Kit* for Spaghetti di Timilia with aubergine, baby tomatoes, basil & goats cheese
  • Meal 3: Recipe Kit* for thick butternut, lentil & garlic stew
  • Meal 4: Recipe Kit* for bacon & mushroom risotto
  • Meal 5: Pork Sausages from Jack O’Shea which I will serve with carrot stoemp (potatoes already in our cupboard)
  • Fruit: Banana’s & apples
  • Vegetables: Carrots (already mentioned above to go into our stoemp), fresh herb pot of basil, 2 green peppers
  • Other: loaf of spelt sliced bread, Danish blue cheese, block of cheddar cheese and a tub of hummus

*The Recipe kit that I purchased was a 3meal pack for 2people (39.99€) and even included a mini bottle of wine for the making of the risotto 🙂

Recipe Kit #1

Recipe Kit #1: Spaghetti di Timilia with aubergine, baby tomatoes, basil & goats cheese

Not only was the driver, Fabien, on time and super helpful by unpacking the cardboard boxes from his cooler packs onto my kitchen counter, as I was one-handed holding Little Miss who refused to be put down in case she missed something exciting happening – but he also spent time explaining the recycling part of their offering! I can use the cardboard boxes that my delivery was made in to box up a range of items that they would collect at their next delivery. This includes batteries, old used vegetable oil, mobile phones, printer cartridges, books, CD’s, DVD’s and baby clothes to name a few. Some is for disposable and others (like the books, cd’s, etc) are then sold via Oxfam for charity.

Would I use them again? Yes… I reckon we will become regular users at least twice a month and am looking forward to trying out a few more recipe kits (not to mention their wine selection 🙂 now that I can enjoy a glass of wine again!)

Show your support and check them out: www.cirkle.be

 

Why you should join the Belgian Meatball revolution with BALLEKES

Ever had a dream?

Imagine that you could turn that wonderful dream into a reality and actually make it your job… Wouldn’t that be wonderful?

I know that we all sit and day-dream how we would open up our own little business doing x or y (sometimes linked to big lottery values :))… the kind of business that our hearts are into… our passion & love!

After having started a bistro (t’Bolleke) in Brussels serving traditional Belgian cuisine, it soon became apparent that the Ballekes that Francoise & Thibault were serving were an absolute hit… so the idea of providing a fast (but casual) restaurant with minimum service serving high quality Belgian meatballs, fries & beers was born!

ballekes

Which is why I really think you should be doing your little bit to support the Belgian meatball revolution with Ballekes!

Before we even talk about the meatballs… I do want to point out that you don’t need to live in Brussels (or Belgium)… just imagine how donating a few euros could help a team reach their dream. If you do live in Brussels (or Belgium) – think about how your help could fill your belly 🙂 – a worthy investment in my eyes!!

So what money do they need? After working on an abandoned building, gutting it and starting from scratch – Florence & Thibault still need 25.000€ to finalise the renovations of the shop – this includes the carpentry (counters/benches/tables, etc) as well as lights & the floor!! All very necessary items don’t you think???

How can you help? Their crowdfunding project is live (as of Friday 15th January) and with just over a month to go – they offer a range of donation packages including:

  • 5€ => toast your name with a beer in their THANK YOU VIDEO
  • 10€ => 5 fried apero croquettes on your 1st visit (either Shrimp or Cheese)
  • 24€ (excl. shipping) => your 1st meal OR t-shirt OR cap OR name on the wall of fame
  • 49€ (excl. shipping) => t-shirt OR cap PLUS bottle opener, Ballekes “pils” glass & your name on the wall of fame
  • 99€ => Crowdfunder card with 10% discount for life PLUS your name on the wall of fame
  • 149€ => invitation to the VIP opening, t-shirt OR cap PLUS bottle opener, 2 glasses, your name on the wall of fame AND the crowdfunder card
  • 249€ => name engraved on a table for two, 2 invitations to the VIP opening, 2 t-shirts/caps/bottle openers, 4 glasses, your name on the wall of fame AND 2 Crowdfunder cards

all the way up to 4.999€ which gets you Ballekes for life… meatballs every day for every meal…. 🙂

Otherwise you can also contribute your own chosen amount – find more details here

More about the Ballekes restaurant & menu concept => consider a simple counter ordering system with the option to customize your choices and enjoy your meal in a cosy atmosphere!

The counter ordering system will be simple

ballekes 2

  1. Select your protein – pork/beef, chicken or bio veggie
  2. Select your style – with a Belgian sauce; with baguette or the healthy salad option
  3. and finally… select your sides & extra’s

ballekes 4

Sounds good, eh?

I know that you think that Brussels probably has enough food options… but I think that this option is an absolute winner of an idea!

AND LOCATION wise is perfect… close to Chatelain, Avenue Louise, St Gilles & Uccle

Chaussee de Charleroi 174, 1060 Brussels (Open 7/7)

Ballekes 3

What are you waiting for?

#Jointhebelgianmeatballrevolution

eat! Brussels 2015

If you haven’t attended one of the previous 3 eat! Brussels festivals … and you live in the city, then you have really been missing out!

eat brussels 4

I attended in 2012 and in 2014 (sadly missing out in 2013 because I was travelling) and all I can say is ” GO GO GO!!!” to the 2014 edition being held from 10-13th September 2015. Entry is free, but be sure to purchase tickets(which will be exchanged for tokens) so that you can eat & drink to your hearts content (details of these are at the end of this post).

Previously hosted in the Bois de la Cambre, this year however, the venue has moved to Parc de Bruxelles (right in front of the Royal Palace) – but we are sure that the festivities will remain as bountiful as before!

previously held in Bois de la Cambre

previously held in Bois de la Cambre

There are options to attend workshops on wine hosted by the Bordeaux School of Wine (something that we attended last year and can recommend) – as well as the option to wander through each of the wine pavilion’s enjoying the opportunity of tasting different wines…

learning about wine

learning about wine

And food… don’t forget about the food! Get to taste some awesome tasting sized dishes from well-known restaurants in the city – or meander across to the International partners stands where you could enjoy tasty delicacies form Quebec, Beijing, Sichaun Province, Rabat, Budapest, Sofia to name a few!

eat brussels 8

a perfect portion size for a taste

a perfect portion size for a taste

ribs and jasmine tea... Mmmmm

ribs and jasmine tea… Mmmmm

How pretty is this?

How pretty is this?

PLUS a new addition to previous years programmes includes cooking workshops with Mmmmh! (a well known cooking school)… where there are even workshops aimed at families with children.

One thing you can be sure of – you wont leave hungry, thirsty or bored!

You can either purchase your tickets/vouchers online beforehand (with a discount!) – or at the ticket counters on the day – these are then exchanged for tokens (each token represents 1euro) and providers will only accept tokens (no cash) at their stands.

You can find everything that you need to know on their website: eat! Brussels drink! Bordeaux

Introducing… Smartmat

I recently got the opportunity to test out another food box delivery company… this time SMARTMAT (I also attended their launch party – which you can read about here)

smartmat-logo

As already mentioned – The concept is pretty simple – Smartmat helps you & your family to eat healthy & tasty food by supplying the ingredients and recipes to your home each week. That’s right – they do the shopping, provide the meal planners and deliver directly to your home… so all you have to do is the actual cooking (and eating of course).

They offer formula’s for 1, 2 or 4 people for 3, 4 or 5 meals… even offering Vegetarian, Quick/Easy & breakfast choices.

The meals are at least 25% organic, have no unnecessary additives or preservatives and focus on providing sustainable fish and local meat choices to create varied, healthy & original recipes.

Cost wise – they are little bit more expensive than FreshBox but when you calculate how much you spend on eating out… it still works out cheaper (in my opinion) plus it takes all the hassle out of creating menu plans and shopping, etc!

  • cost for 4 meals for 1 person = 49euros
  • cost for 4 meals for 2 people = 65euros
  • cost for 3 meals for 4 people = 75euros
  • cost for 5 meals for 4 people = 109euros

Once you sign up – you receive your delivery date – but your delivery time is only confirmed 4days beforehand and ta-da… the box is delivered.

The box that I received to review contained 4 meals for 2 people – a fish dish, a poultry dish & a meat dish – plus a punnet of strawberries (and recipe card) to make some cocktails!

smartmat 2

Portion sizes were very generous and the meat dish (hot dogs) was actually enough for 2 meals rather than 1 (I only did 2 of the 4 hot dog rolls and used the 2nd avo for another salad later on)!

smartmat 3

Plus I must admit that I thoroughly enjoyed making (and eating) these….

smartmat 4

Additional comments:

  1. Negative: The menu/recipes did not match the images printed next to them (oops :))
  2. Positive: Website is available in both Dutch & French
  3. Positive: The website provides 3weeks of menu’s – last week, current week and the following week

Would I make use of this again? Most probably – the contents of the box were super fresh, healthy and more than generous – plus there was a good ratio of fruit/vegetables, protein and carbs – giving the impression that it was a truly balanced diet. And of course – the ease of not having to think about what to cook, grocery shop, etc… makes life so much easier… leaving you time to do the things that you truly enjoy (like eat :))

Disclosure: I feel it is very important to disclose that I did not pay for this box – but I do promise that this a 100% accurate review of my experience & I was not reimbursed for writing this.

Introducing: Hello Fresh Box

Last week, I spoke about attending a SMARTMAT event (read about it here) as well as testing out FLAVOUR DELIVERED (read about it here) – I was also recently given the opportunity to test out a food box delivery from a company called Hello Fresh.

HelloFresh

The concept is pretty similar – you can order a box of ingredients, which are delivered along with recipe cards – taking the hassle out of meal planning and grocery shopping. Which means that the only thing that you need to do is get into the kitchen and cook (and obviously eat!).

Firstly – you select what type of food box delivery you want – Original (Meat/Fish – which is what I got to test), Vegetarian or a humble (but yummy) Fruit box.

Secondly – you select the number of people you wish to feed (from an 1-6 people) and then you decide on whether you want ingredients for 3 meals or 5 meals! Prices are pretty reasonable… in my opinion, especially when you consider what eating out costs!

  • cost for 3 meals for 1 person = 36euros
  • cost for 3 meals for 2 people = 43euros
  • cost for 3 meals for 3 people = 53euros
  • cost for 5 meals for 1 person = 46euros
  • cost for 5 meals for 2 people = 53euros
  • cost for 5 meals for 3 people = 73euros

And finally – indicate the day & time slot that works best for you – keeping in mind that deliveries are only done on Monday & Tuesday evenings between 16h30 & 22h30.

Now onto the box itself………

hello fresh box

Mine arrived with ingredients for 2 people for 3 meals – a fish dish, a chicken dish & a vegetarian dish:

hello fresh box inside

I can honestly say that the cost difference for 1 person to 2 persons makes getting the 2ppl box much more economical… and lets be honest, if you are going to spend 30-40minutes cooking dinner for yourself – it is always nice to have some leftovers for the next days lunch or the freezer, right? And I also believe that 3 meals is sufficient for my lifestyle – my rationale behind this statement is that I don’t have time to cook 5 weeknights in a row… I am often out at least 2-3nights a week and our weekends are more “ad hoc” with regards to cooking or going out… plus we like the choice of last minute planning on the weekend.

In terms of meal planning – the menu’s are set for each week – so you don’t have any choice in mixing & matching meals from other weeks – but what it does do is give you the opportunity to make something that you ordinarily wouldn’t have thought of!

As you can see from below – I made each of the 3 meals… and although the protein offerings were on the smaller side – the veg & carbs were plentiful!

hello fresh box meals

Comments about their website –

  1. Positive: you can see what menu’s are available for the following weeks
  2. Negative: The Belgian website is only available in Dutch…

Would I make use of this again? I would definitely consider it – with the upcoming birth of our daughter – I am pretty sure that domestic chores like meal planning & grocery shopping are going to be pretty low on my list of things to do and if there are opportunities to ease daily life… then this is going to be one of them!

Hello Fresh is currently available in both Belgium, the Netherlands, Germany, Austria, UK, US & Australia (although each country has a somewhat different offering)

Disclosure: I feel it is very important to disclose that I did not pay for this box – but I do promise that this a 100% accurate review of my experience & I was not reimbursed for writing this.

Introducing… Flavour Delivered

Just before I went to South Africa on holiday, I was lucky enough to receive a spice kit from Flavour Delivered – another company that has joined the food delivery system by offering to delivery Indian spice kits (as well as the recipes) directly to your home.

The difference that Flavour Delivered offers is that there is no perishables in your delivery – meaning that you can make up your meal whenever you want to! (Obviously spices lose a bit of their taste over time, so the earlier you make this, the fresher it will be!)

The concept is pretty simple – 25€ gets you 3 spice kits (Meat, fish or vegetarian… ) delivered to your door over the space of a 3 month subscription (i.e. 1 spice kit per month over a 3month period). With each kit providing the recipe & spices for 1 Indian meal (including sides) for 4 people.

The up side of this concept is that if you love a good curry but don’t want to go out and buy 20 large spice jars … you don’t have to! You get the perfectly measured out quantities of each spice in the kit – so there is no hassle or wastage! (As I don’t cook a lot of curries from scratch – this was a huge benefit for me!)

I got sent a spice kit for a vegetarian curry dish consisting of Tandoori Mushroom, chilli-coriander naan bread & cucumber Raita:

spices

So this past Sunday – I finally had the time & energy to try it out! Starting with the Chilli-coriander naan… which took 1 and 1/2 hours of preparation – but in the end was totally worth it… as I had never made naan bread from scratch before and it was delicious!

ingredients

chilli-coriander naan ingredients

Homemade chilli & coriander naan bread

Homemade chilli & coriander naan bread – still warm and brushed with dripping butter… Mmmm

The Tandoori Mushroom dish took 40min prep time and I started it about half way through the proofing period of the naan bread

Tandoori mushroom ingredients

Tandoori mushroom ingredients

Final Tandoori Mushroom curry

Final Tandoori Mushroom curry

and of course the cucumber raita took just a few minutes of chopping, mixing, etc which was easy to do while other items where bubbling away, etc. In total – it took me 2hours in the kitchen before we sat down to eat – this is normally longer than I would normally spend making a Sunday night supper – but in the end – both HIM and I enjoyed the fruits of my labour!

curry 5

Our little coffee table was literally groaning under the amount of food (and this isn’t even all of it!!! There were still 4 more naans to be cooked and still some curry in the pot! But as mentioned – this was a meal for 4 people… not 2 (and a bit) :))

curry 2

HIM and I both thoroughly enjoyed the meal (and due to the quantity – we will happily be eating off the leftovers this week) – but we both agreed that the tandoori curry would have been “meatier” and we both would have upped the spiciness – HIM is convinced that I used the wrong type of chilli. (HIM also had a 2nd helping – which is ALWAYS a good sign!)

curry 1

Would we make it again? Yes – I would love to do this again, but as mentioned, I would make it with chicken and up the heat! I think that this is a great family or friends sharing kind of meal… a definite crowd pleaser!

Flavour Delivered offers bloggers the opportunity to try out a spice kit – (limited number per month) – all you have to do is complete the media form telling them more about your blog!

Disclosure: I feel it is very important to disclose that I did not pay for this kit – but I do promise that this a 100% accurate review of my experience & I was not reimbursed for writing this.

Introducing SmartMat

I recently got the pleasure of being invited to a SMARTMAT launch in Brussels.

The concept is pretty simple – Smartmat helps you & your family to eat healthy & tasty food by supplying the ingredients and recipes to your home each week. That’s right – they do the shopping, provide the meal planners and deliver directly to your home… so all you have to do is the actual cooking (and eating of course).

They offer formula’s for 1, 2 or 4 people for 3, 4 or 5 meals… even offering Vegetarian, Quick/Easy & breakfast choices.

The meals are at least 25% organic, have no unnecessary additives or preservatives and focus on providing sustainable fish and local meat choices to create varied, healthy & original recipes.

I will be receiving a box from them in the next few weeks – so stay tuned for more details about the contents…..

smart mat3

So that is what SMARTMAT is all about… and as I mentioned – I was lucky enough to attend one of their launch events at the Yoghurt Farm in Ixelles, Brussels in the middle of June (hosted by the PR agency Nightingale).

smart mat 5

Firstly – the venue was decked out in a Swedish MidSommar theme (as the date was correct and of course, Anders, the head of Smartmat is originally Swedish although having lived in Belgium for the last 20years)

That is Anders telling us more about the evening and the SMARTMAT concept

That is Anders telling us more about the evening and the SMARTMAT concept

Think cosy, country feeling …..

smart mat 2

After enjoying a home-made vodka cranberry cocktail (virgin for moi)

smart mat 1

We settled down on the outdoor terrace to enjoy a slice of Smörgåstårta – which is a Scandinavian savoury cake (slices of bread spread with avocado, carrots, leeks and cream cheese and decorated … even with edible flowers!)

smart mat 7

Some enjoyed it with a shot of schnapps (while I looked on … jealously… but at 38% alcohol content, I was probably better off not drinking it!)

smart mat 9

And then we moved inside for our mains… home-made Smartmat hamburgers…on a guacamole bed, nestled in a soft hamburger roll.

smart mat 11

What started out as a simple, humble burger was easily “pimped” out by the add-on bowls on the table – featuring leaves of green (aka lettuce), slices of tomato & onion, crispy onion pieces, pickles, sauces which included a delicious homemade ketchup… and BAM… the makings of a KING burger where there.

smart mat 12

For those who were still hungry… a second round of burgers was distributed… but I had my eye on the prize…

smart mat 13

The Yoghurt Farm provided dessert… home-made frozen yoghurt which could be uniquely topped based on the individuals preference! I opted for freshly chopped pineapple, berry coulis (which is made on site), chocolate granola and chocolate chips (don’t judge me on the amount of chocolate… I use the excuse that I am eating for two… and my little girl has a sweet tooth 🙂 – plus I have to confess that I could have consumed my body weight in this dessert it was SOOOO good!)

smart mat 14

Not only was I super impressed by the Smartmat concept and the amazing frozen yoghurt – we were also allowed to build our own bouquet to take home (7 flowers, that were supposed to be placed under my pillow that night in order to dream of my future husband… I still joked and asked if I would dream of my 2nd husband!) before leaving with our goodie bag (co-organized with Dille & Kamille)

Once again – an enormous thank you to The Yoghurt Farm, Nightingale & Smartmat for a truly memorable evening!