A few weeks ago, Jackie sent us a coupon for three free meals from the dinner delivery service, HelloFresh. She’d been posting Instagram photos of the tasty meals she’d been creating, so we were excited to try it for ourselves.
One exciting afternoon when our friend Kevin was in town, the doorbell rang and I scampered down the stairs to retrieve a huge box of food. There is something immensely exciting and satisfying about three perfect meals tucked into three little boxes just waiting to be assembled. Of course, while the packaging in very pretty and the mini ketchup bottle is so cute, our eco-friendly Brooklyn side did feel a bit guilty. Just look how sad Lola was when she saw how many ice packets were used in the packaging.
Anyway, moving on … Look at these delightful meals:
- Nectarine and Zucchini Panzanella 2. Baked Tofu with Polenta 3. Black Bean and Farro SaladI think the colorful mini box of beans has to be my favorite. Not to get ahead of ourselves here, but the black bean salad turned out to be our favorite meal. It was our first time having farro and it’s a nice chewy grain. Kevin has already re-created this dish back in Chicago.
One thing to know about Kevin is that he is a very good traveler (a year in Spain, a year in Italy, three weeks in China, Israel, France, you name it) and he does not sit still while on vacation. So in the late afternoon, when Anna and I are happy to lounge on the couch reading, he was ready to squeeze in another New York City activity. Bless him. Anna had spent the previous day throwing up after eating too many avocado cheeseburgers at the beach so she begged mercy and stayed at home, but I headed out with him for a neighbor walk. That’s one thing I love about NYC: the historical streets and architecture is so pretty that a simple neighborhood walk feels like legitimate sightseeing.
I peppered Kevin with question after question as we meandered through the streets, many of which were new to me.
And peaked into as many beautiful homes as we could. As it darkened, we headed to the river to catch the sunset and views of lower Manhattan.
There’s always something exciting about Brooklyn Bridge Park because everyone seems happy and relaxed. For the life of me, I can’t figure out why it’s not as overrun as Times Square. Once we’d worked up a decent appetite — on the verge of being hangry — we headed back to the kitchen.
Kevin and I liked to pretend we were being very professional (perhaps writing a cookbook?) so in the beginning we documented about every apple being chopped and pot being stirred. However, I will spare you (mostly). Below we see the moment at which I set the timer for the farro to cook: That little poem, “This Is Just to Say” by William Carlos Williams is something little Katie transcribed when she lived in Park Slope. Admittedly most poetry is a bit opaque for my liking. Not exactly my cup of tea. However, this one I get. I love fridge poetry. “This is Just To Say I have eaten the plums that were in the icebox and which you were probably saving for breakfast Forgive me they were delicious so sweet and so cold. Maybe there’s a deeper meaning about greed and gluttony and temptation. (After all Animal Farm is not really about some talking animals, which confused our six-grade selves.) But whatever it means, it makes me happy whenever I read it. Back to the matter at hand. Kevin and I ended up preparing both the farro salad and the baked tofu. I hope HelloFresh is not marketing this as a romantic activity because after a burned hand, a dropped pan of toasted bread and other mishaps, Kevin and I were barely on speaking terms. Just kidding, but there were too many cooks in a tiny, hot NYC kitchen after the second hour of cooking.
The final product! Don’t worry I will not attempt a career in food photography. Nonetheless it was pretty tasty and definitely different from my usual dinners. Thanks Jackie for the tasty meals! And to Kevin for putting up with my bossy cooking self.