Marley Spoon: October 2015 & $30 Coupon Code

My subscription boxes often take my writing in new and exciting directions. The wonderful folks at Marley Spoon sent me a fresh meal box to review along with a fantabulous coupon code for $30 off (use COOKSMART), so today, I become not only a subscription box blogger, but a food blogger.

Marley Spoon creates “delicious, easy to follow recipes.” That they deliver with “fresh, pre-portioned ingredients.” Each week they feature a new menu where you can choose the meals you want. They are “dedicated to sourcing organic and sustainable whenever possible. Building relationships with environmentally aware farms and producers ensures that the highest quality ingredients arrive at your door each week.”

Their Culinary Director is Jennifer Aaronson the former Editorial Director of Food and Entertaining at Martha Stewart Living so you know we’ll be getting some awesome recipes. They also donate any leftover ingredients to City Harvest, an amazing charity that exists to end hunger in New York City communities. Marley Spoon delivers to the mid Atlantic and New England regions: most of New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Massachusetts, Delaware, Maryland, West Virginia, and Washington D.C.

Every Monday you’ll receive an email with the upcoming weeks’ recipes and you’ll have 5 days to edit your order or skip that week, so this subscription has a ton of flexibility.

So bear with me as I take a stab at some fun new recipes. And forgive my 1960s kitchen, (no I didn’t use a filter, my stovetop really is that unfortunate shade of brown). For reference, I consider myself an intermediate cook. I’ve made plenty of complicated dishes, but with certain cuisines and techniques I am still quite unskilled.

I received a box with 2 recipes and servings for 2 people which cost $48.00.

There were lots of interesting recipes to choose from and I opted for Green Curry Shrimp, because curry has always intimidated me a little and I was interested in seeing the quality of the seafood included. The other recipe I chose was Sesame-Coated Chicken Paillards since I thought my boyfriend would like that one.

The box showed up on a Friday when I got home late from work and everything was still cool and fresh.
Box Box 2
Included with my recipes and ingredients was a free gift of finishing salts.

Green Curry Shrimp RecipeGreen Curry Shrimp with Eggplant Zucchini and Jasmine Rice
I opted to try the shrimp recipe first. Included with the shrimp is a bag of fresh ingredients specifically measured for this recipe.
Shrimp Ingredients
The shrimp looked super fresh and didn’t smell fishy at all.
Curry Bag Curry Bag Items

I grabbed the required tools and set to chopping.
Curry ToolsEggplant
This recipe has rice included. Typically I use a rice maker, so this was going to be a test to see if I could remember how to actually make rice on my own.
Rice cooking
This recipe is also heavy on cilantro which I have no problem with, and I was surprised that it called for me to chop up the cilantro stems. I’d only ever used the leaves so I found this intriguing.
Cilantro
Coconut Cooking
I followed the instructions and added vegetables…
Eggplant Cooking
and then shrimp…
Shrimp Curry
And suddenly a big pot of curry appeared!

Taste: Delicious!
I was super impressed with the flavors on this. It had a fresh taste with a perfect spice level. The shrimp was super fresh and not even remotely fishy. My anti-fish boyfriend tasted it and actually liked it as well.
Portion Size: Very Generous.
This claims to be for 2 people, but it can serve a lot more. I’d say this easily could serve 4 or more.
Good for Entertaining?: I think this would make a great meal for entertaining. I’d do a chicken satay as an appetizer, a fruity cocktail for a beverage and finish with a mango cheesecake for dessert.

Shrimp Curry Dish
The flavors of this recipe tasted just like Thai curries I’ve had out at restaurants. And I could easily see making this again myself. I’d probably replace the eggplant with extra zucchini or a different veggie just because I’m typically not a fan of dishes where eggplant is on the mushy side. I was really impressed with how fresh the ingredients were and this was a great start to the box.


Chicken Paillard Recipe
Sesame-Coated Chicken Paillards with Crispy Salad
I chose this as my second recipe because I thought my boyfriend would appreciate that it was lower carb, plus it did look yummy.
We get raw chicken and another bag of fresh ingredients.
Raw Chicken chicken Bag ingredients
I grab some more tools from my kitchen.
Chicken Tools
Sadly I didn’t read the directions first and I was going to have to pound the chicken flat with a mallet. Now that sounds like fun and a way to release tension but I hate it. I tend to make the chicken look like swiss cheese, so this was going to be a challenge.
More fun with knives and chopping.
Cucumber Cherry Tomatos Mint
Then we make some dressing with lemon and olive oil.
Dressing
We have a lovely salad.
Salad
Then it’s the moment of truth for pounding some chicken (am I the only one that thinks that sounds perverse?)
Pounding Chicken
So I manage one piece perfectly and the second is quite sad.

Then I have to stick sesame seeds on them. I can’t decide if there are more sesame seeds on my floor or on the chicken.

I cooked the chicken as directed and voila!:
Chicken Palliard Plate
Taste: Satisfactory
I liked the flavor of the chicken but the sesame seed coating gave an odd texture that my boyfriend wasn’t fond of. The salad wasn’t super interesting but it was fresh and paired well with the chicken.
Portion Size: 2 people
This recipe won’t have any leftovers (except maybe a little salad).
Good for Entertaining?: No. You can’t make the chicken ahead of time and the sesame coating is just too messy and fussy to prepare while your guests are waiting. The side salad would work well though.

I thought the flavors of this recipe were very fresh and I loved the addition of mint leaves in the salad itself. I’ve used mint in dressings, but I thought using the leaves themselves in a salad would be too overpowering but they weren’t. It’s definitely a technique I will use again.

OVERALL
Verdict:
Love!

I was surprised at how much I enjoyed cooking these recipes. It’s so much easier when someone has measured all the ingredients and found tasty fresh proteins. Marley’s Spoon also includes clear, colorful recipe cards so you can make these again on your own. I received this box for free, but I plan to try out a couple weeks myself very soon. So prepare yourself for some more occasional food blogs.

Have you ever tried a fresh meal subscription service? If so, what did you think?

THE BACKSTORY

Marley Spoon creates delicious, easy to follow recipes.
They deliver fresh, pre-portioned ingredients and you select your recipes from their changing weekly menu.

They are dedicated to sourcing organic and sustainable whenever possible. Building relationships with environmentally aware farms and producers ensures that the highest quality ingredients arrive at your door each week.

Using trusted delivery partners, your Marley Spoon boxes come insulated and chilled, staying cool for 30 hours! After delivery, all the ingredients are guaranteed to stay fresh for up to 4 days – allowing you to decide when to cook.

Marley’s Spoon donates any leftover ingredients to City Harvest. City Harvest exists to end hunger in communities throughout New York City through food rescue and distribution, education, and other practical, innovative solutions.

Each week you’ll automatically receive great dishes, but as a flexible subscription, you can skip a week or pause your subscription anytime. You can also change delivery frequency, recipes, and the number of portions you’d like to receive.

Marley’ Spoon delivers to the mid Atlantic and New England regions: most of New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Massachusetts, Delaware, Maryland, West Virginia, and Washington D.C.

Monthly Cost:
Varies by number of servings and number of meals.
Check here for the configuration of your choice

COUPON CODE: COOKSMART for $30 off your First Order!

Once upon a time, long, long ago, Lisa attended Syracuse University where she studied singing in a giant castle surrounded by ice and snow. After she earned her music degree, she headed to the island of Manhattan, down to the West Village, to a place called the New School. There, she earned another degree in the great art of writing stories for children. She currently works on that same island, in the dungeon of an old building, making up stories while she sorts through endless stacks of papers, just dreaming of working somewhere with windows. She is currently working on several novels and hopes to write her way to that aforementioned windowed place. Her first book, “The Ice Maiden’s Tale,” a fairy tale adventure was released on May 30, 2017 and is up for sale on Amazon. In the meantime, she keeps herself occupied by obsessing over subscription boxes and home renovations.

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