Friday, 17 February 2012

HelloFresh, a revolution in the kitchen!

I recently discovered HelloFresh, a young, London based company that is trying to change the way people cook.

This is the (brilliant) idea:
Every week HelloFresh will send you recipes together with the ingredients you need to prepared them - they will send you exactly what you need, saving you the time to think about what to cook, do the shopping, and even having to weight the ingredients.
In addition, HelloFresh will give the opportunity to discover new dishes as well as planning your family meals without wasting any food.

So let’s see how it works:

1. Go on the HelloFresh website
2. Choose your plan, select the number of meals per week and how many people are in your household.
3. Delivery. Recipes and groceries will be delivered Tuesday evenings between 5pm and 9pm.
4. Start cooking! Recipes are simple and straightforward (you won't need more than 30 minutes or any fancy kitchen equipment).

So last Tuesday I received my first delivery, a nice box full of fresh ingredients, together with the recipe cards. Here is how the recipe cards (with step-by-step cooking instructions) look like:

And here are the recipes I have tried:

Hippocrates' Honey and Chili Chicken with Herb Rice

Arabian Nights Lamb Kofta with Almond Couscous and Cucumber Salad

Potent Pan-Fried Salmon with Linguine and Homemade Pesto


Quality of products
The products I received (meat, fish and vegetables) were all very fresh.

Time saving
A recent survey indicates that weekly grocery shopping for a family of 4 on 
average takes approximately 90 minutes to complete. Of these 90 minutes,
about 65 minutes are spent in a supermarket and another 25 minutes on 
the way to and from the supermarket.
HelloFresh can do everything for you, so you can save precious time for you and your family.

No more food waste
HelloFresh will send you exactly what you need to prepare your meal, so you will not waste any food.

Simple and straightforward
Recipes are simple and straightforward. You won't need more than 30 minutes or any fancy kitchen equipment.

No subscription fees or delivery charges
There is no minimum length for HelloFresh subscriptions, and delivery is free of charge.


When ordering, you cannot select individual meals, so hopefully HelloFresh will enable customers to choose their preferred meals in the future.

The recipe cards are very pretty, but a bit hard to read (the font size is a bit small).

It would be nice to be able to order drinks too, but this service is not available at the moment.

That said, HelloFresh is still a very young company, and I am sure they will take their customers suggestions onboard in the future.

If you would like to find out more, visit or call +44 203 397 0992.

Thanks to Zena@HelloFresh for supplying me with a box containing three recipes to try.

Sunday, 12 February 2012

Lemon & Poppy Seed Muffins

Lemon & Poppy Seed Muffins

The weather is awful this morning in London, it’s cold and gray. I woke up quite early, so early for a Sunday! So I decided to start my day in the best possible way: baking! I love muffins, as they are so simple to make, giving me enough time to take a lot of pictures, to process them and finally choose the ones that I like the most. Well, happy Sunday everyone, it is now time to have a nice cup of double espresso with one of my little muffins...

Ingredients (makes 10 muffins)
  • Plain flour, 225 g
  • Butter, unsalted, 100 g
  • Caster sugar, 125 g
  • Sunflower oil, 30 g
  • Milk, 90 g
  • Free-range eggs, 2
  • Poppy seeds, 3 tbs
  • Baking powder, 2 tsp
  • Bicarbonate of soda, 1/2 tsp
  • Lemon (the grated zest), 1
  • A pinch of salt

For the lemon glaze
  • Icing sugar, 100 g
  • Lemon juice of 1 lemon


For the muffins
Preheat the oven to 180ºC and line a muffin tin with 10 paper cases. In a small saucepan, melt the butter and set aside. In a bowl, mix all the dry ingredients together: sieved flour, caster sugar, poppy seeds, baking powder, bicarbonate of soda and a pinch of salt. In another bowl, whisk the eggs for about 10 minutes. Now add all the liquid ingredients: melt butter, sunflower oil and milk. Add the grated zest of a lemon and mix well. Pour the liquid mixture into the bowl that contains the dry ingredients. Mix well and divide between the paper cases, filling each one to just over half way. Bake in the preheated oven for about 18-20 minutes or until lightly golden. In doubt, test one muffin by inserting a clean toothpick into the center. If the toothpick comes out clean, the muffins can be removed from the oven. Let cool completely.

For the lemon glaze
In a small bowl, squeeze the lemon and remove the seeds. Sieve the icing sugar. Gradually add the icing sugar to the lemon juice, mixing well. Continue adding sugar until you obtain a dense, smooth consistency.
When completely cool, drizzle the muffins with the lemon glaze, and decorate with extra lemon zest if desired.

Muffins al limone e semi di papaveri

Ingredienti (per 10 muffins)
  • Farina OO, 225 g
  • Burro, 100 g
  • Zucchero, 125 g
  • Olio di semi di girasole, 30 g
  • Latte, 90 g
  • Uova, 2
  • Semi di papavero, 3 tbs
  • Lievito chimico per dolci, 2 tsp
  • Bicarbonato, 1/2 tsp
  • Scorza di un limone
  • Un pizzico di sale

Per la glassa al limone

  • Zucchero a velo 100 g
  • Il succo di un limone

Pre-riscaldare il forno a 180ºC e disporre 10 pirottini in uno stampo da muffins. In un pentolino far sciogliere il burro a bassa temperatura e mettere da parte. In un recipiente abbastanza capiente versare tutti gli ingredienti secchi: la farina setacciata, lo zucchero, i semi di papavero, il lievito, il bicarbonato ed un pizzico di sale. In un altro recipiente sbattere le uova per una decina di minuti. Aggiungere il burro, l’olio di semi, il latte e la buccia grattugiata di un limone. Mescolare bene il tutto. Versare i liquidi nel recipiente degli ingredienti secchi e amalgamare bene. Con il composto ottenuto, riempire a metà (o poco più ) i pirottini ed infornare per 18-20 minuti. Nel caso siate insicuri sui tempi di cottura, inserire uno stecchino in uno dei muffins, e se questo esce asciutto, sono pronti. Togliere dal forno e lasciare raffreddare.

Preparare la glassa
Spremere il limone in una ciotolina. Setacciare lo zucchero a velo e iniziare ad aggiungerlo al succo di limone, mescolando. Aggiungere abbastanza zucchero fino a quando si raggiunge la consistenza desiderata (pittosto densa).  Decorazione Con un cucchiaio versare la glassa sui muffins e decorare con altro limone grattuguato se si desidera.

Thursday, 9 February 2012

Spicy mussels in tomato sauce

Spicy mussels in tomato sauce

OK, I have to confess that cleaning mussels is not one of my favourite activities, but if you think about how quickly they cook, and how tasty they are, that extra time that it takes to clean them is definitely worth it. It is important that you discard any broken mussels, and once cooked, the ones that do not open. I sometimes make them without tomato sauce (basically I follow the same recipe, without adding the chopped tomatoes), and serve them with plenty of chopped parsley and squeezed lemon juice. Delicious.

  • fresh mussels, scrubbed and beards removed, 1 kg
  • chopped tomatoes,1 can
  • extra virgin olive oil, 5 tbsp
  • garlic cloves, 3
  • crushed dried chillies, 1 tsp
  • dry white whine, half a glass
  • fresh parsley, chopped
  • salt and pepper to taste


Heat the olive oil in a large pan. Add the garlic and the crushed chillies and fry until the garlic becomes lightly golden. Add the mussels, and toss for a couple of minutes.
Pour in the wine and simmer for 3-4 minutes.
Pour in the tomato sauce, and let cook for about 8-10 minutes. Add salt and pepper to your taste. Serve in warm bowls or plates and garnish with the fresh parsley.

Wednesday, 8 February 2012

Deep fried meatballs in breadcrumbs

Deep fried meatballs in breadcrumbs

I love meatballs, as they remind me of my childhood, my mum, my family and my country Italy. Meatballs are an ideal comfort food for the family, especially for children. They also make a very tasty and economical meal. I never buy the already made ones from the supermarket, as it is so easy to make them.


  • Minced beef, 500g
  • Sunflower oil, 200 ml
  • Natural breadcrumbs for coating, 150g
  • Breadcrumbs, just the soft inner side of the bread loaf, 100g
  • Milk, 150 ml
  • Free-range egg, 4
  • Grated parmesan cheese, 3 tbsp
  • Plain white flour, 5 tbsp
  • Chopped parsley, 1 tbsp
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • Ground nutmeg, a pinch


Soak the soft breadcrumbs in 150 ml of milk for about 5 minutes. Using your hands, squeeze the breadcrumbs to remove the milk in excess, and transfer into a large bowl. Now add all the other ingredients: the minced meat, 1 whole egg, the grated parmesan cheese, the chopped parsley, salt, pepper and a pinch of ground nutmeg. Using your hands, mix all the ingredients until well blended. Form the meatballs, rolling them into tiny balls (the size of large walnut) and set aside. In a small bowl, whisk the remaining three eggs with a fork, for a minute or two. Season with a little salt and pepper and set aside. Coating the meatballs: lightly coat each meatball in flour, then dip in beaten egg, and finally in breadcrumbs. Heat the sunflower oil in a deep pan and fry the meatballs until golden brown, for about 5 minutes. Remove from the oil, drain on kitchen paper. Serve with some lemon wedges and sprinkle with chopped parsley if desired.