Marley Spoon: Picadillo-Style Chili with Olives & Currants + $30 Off

Since today is supposed to be a day about love, and the way to a man’s heart is through his stomach, I thought I’d feature one of my Marley Spoon reviews. If you’d like to try out this weekly meal subscription service for yourself, use the coupon code COOKSMART for $30 off.

My meal plan is for a weekly delivery of 2 meals (2 portions each), which costs $48.
chicken
This week included a repeat recipe of Fried Chicken Sandwiches with Root Vegetable Fries that I’d already reviewed fully before. Since this was my second time with the recipe it came out even better.  The breading stayed on and it was delicious.  It’s one of my fave Marley Spoon recipes and one I could easily replicate on my own.  Definitely consider trying out the recipe for yourself.

Now for the other recipe in my box:
recipe
Picadillo-Style Chili with Olives & Currants
Download the recipe here.
I love Cuban style recipes and when beef is mixed with things like raisins and currants, so I decided to give this one a try.

Our Fresh Ingredients…
ingredients
We get some rice cooking and then prep our ingredients.
chopped
We cook the aromatics and spices in oil and then add ground beef.  After it’s browned, we add in vinegar, tomatoes, water and salt.  Then cook until thickened.
beef with-sauce
We slice up some olives, then top our chili with them and the currants.
olives
Our finished dish:
marley-spoon-picadillo-style-chili-with-olives-currants
Taste: Like!
I’m not the biggest fan of olives so I went light on them. I thought this had a nice flavor and was a unique spin on chili.  I do wish that the olives and currants were cooked for a bit with the chili, rather than just added on as a topping.  I think it would have added a lot to the flavor.  This recipe was easy to put together and didn’t require a ton of prep or clean-up.  Overall, a nice twist on a familiar recipe.
Portion Size: Generous (there were leftovers)
Good for Entertaining?: While the flavors are interesting, it’s probably not something I’d entertain with.  It’s more of a cold Sunday indoors type recipe.  I do think that some fried plantains would pair well with it as a side.

OVERALL
Verdict:
Hit!
The chicken dish was even better now that I’d gotten the hang of the recipe.  I liked the creativity of the chili and the ease of preparation and clean up.
Both recipes called for easy to find ingredients, so they’d be a snap to recreate on your own.
Overall, a great box.

Have you tried any food subscriptions?
If so, what were your expectations and did the box meet them?

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.

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

COUPON CODE: COOKSMART

Marley Spoon: Bucatini Puttanesca with Shrimp & Fried Chicken Sandwiches Plus $30 Coupon Code

It’s Tuesdays with Marley as I head back to the kitchen for a review of my weekly Marley Spoon subscription boxIf you’d like to try it out yourself, use the coupon code COOKSMART for $30 off.

Now to start there is some big news over at Marley Spoon –
“Martha Stewart and Marley Spoon have come together to bring Martha’s celebrated recipes and smart cooking techniques to your kitchen. Delivered and designed with easy weeknight cooking in mind, recipes reflect Martha’s love for seasonal ingredients and delicious flavors.”

I absolutely love Martha Stewart.  I mean she built an empire teaching people how to to do stuff like make candles out of hazelnuts.  An EMPIRE.  That’s a level of genius I can’t begin to understand.  Plus she went to jail, came out and ended up more successful.  That’s just a level of badassery that you can’t help but admire.

I actually also love most of her recipes – although I’ve found the online ones to be much more accurate than the cookbooks.  So save your money and just go to her website.

In any case, I’m excited (can’t you tell) to see what changes Martha brings to the recipes.  I’m hoping it’s less chopping coriander seeds and more one pot cooking.

My meal plan is for a weekly delivery of 2 meals (2 portions each), which costs $48.
Bucatini Puttanesca with Shrimp
I’ve never made a puttanesca and I loved Shrimp so I figured I’d try this out even though olives aren’t my most favorite thing.
Shrimp Puttanesca Recipe

Our usual fresh ingredients:
Shrimp Ingredients
This is a pretty straightforward recipe.

Olives capers
We prep our capers, olives and garlic.
While the pasta boils, we sauté some shrimp with garlic amd crushed red pepper flake in some olive oil.
Shrimp cooking
We take out the shrimp and make some sauce by adding our canned tomatoes, breaking them up and adding in our chopped ingredients.
Sauce
To finish we add pasta and reserved pasta water to the pan, return the cooked shrimp to it and add in oregano leaves we picked from their stems.  (It’s just not a Marley Spoon recipe if we don’t pick tiny leaves off of herbs).
In Pan
The finished product looks like this:
Shrimp Puttanesca
Taste: Not for me
The shrimp was fresh and the ingredients were lovely, but the finished dish was just too briny and olive-y for my taste.  I think Puttanesca is supposed to taste this way so the recipe was successful, it’s just my personal palate doesn’t agree with it.  This was quite easy to make and I’m sure someone who loves briny flavors would enjoy this.  As a note, if you leave it in the fridge, it gets hella strong.  I ended up just eating the shrimp out of the leftovers because the pasta was just too much for me.
Portion Size: Generous
Good for Entertaining?: For someone who really loves olive flavors it would be a nice dish to serve family style or at a dinner party.

Fried Chicken Sandwiches with Root Vegetable Fries
Who can say no to Fried Chicken?
Fried Chicken Recipe

More fresh ingredients:
Fried Chicken Ingredients
So first I had to prep my ingredients, which led me to realizing that I need to sharpen my knives.
Prepped Veggie Fries
While the vegetables roasted, I made the sauce for the sandwiches.
Sauce - Chicken
Then it was the fun that is breading chicken.  I was a little too generous with one breast, so the other had a bit less coating.
Cooking Chicken Chicken Draining
I fried it up and while some breading fell off, I still thought they looked pretty good.

Then it was time to build our sandwiches.
Now I love potato bread, but these buns were kind of sad and tiny – especially in comparison to the chicken.  I think we needed rolls that were a bit bigger.
Sad Buns
When all was said and done, here’s what we ended up with:
Fried Chicken Sandwich
Taste: Hit!
These were tasty and the mayonnaise sauce had a lovely dill flavor.  I loved the root vegetable fries and I thought they were a nice alternative for traditional potato fries.  The only real downside was that the bun was a bit small.
Portion Size: Good
Good for Entertaining?: Yes, for a fun laid back menu.
I’d do a take on chicken cordon bleu by adding swiss cheese, ham and mustard (in lieu of the herbed mayo and pickles).  For the veggie fries, I’d add in some sweet potatoes and serve them with some homemade ranch sauce for dipping.  As an appetizer, I’d do some kind of flavored popcorn mix with nuts and Bourbon mint Iced Tea for a cocktail.  For dessert I think I’d go with a Strawberry Tiramisu.

OVERALL
Verdict:
  Like!
I didn’t care for the taste of the shrimp recipe but that’s more about me and less about the ingredients.  I liked that it was an easy recipe that you could actually complete on a weeknight.  The chicken was delicious and I’ll definitely be trying out root veggie fries with other dishes.  All the ingredients were fresh and I feel like I learned something new, which is my goal with this sub, so I’m taking this one as a win.

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 for $30 Off: COOKSMART

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