Battle of the Boxes: Newshub tries HelloFresh - take two

Late last year, Newshub lifestyle editor Sarah Templeton compared some of the food delivery boxes on the New Zealand market. In this surprise addition, she tried HelloFresh again. Don't ask too many questions. 

Look, I'm all for second chances. Sometimes things the second time round can be better than the first. That's why, as we all know, 2009 reality show A Double Shot at Love was even better than 2008 show A Shot at Love with Tila Tequila. Heady days.

Last year I tried different food delivery boxes on the market, including Woop, My Food Bag and of course HelloFresh.

It was nagging at me that I tried Woop and My Food Bag for two weeks each, and spent only one on Hello Fresh. And my review was not bad per se - it simply pointed out that you cannot class something as a BOWL if it's really a sneakily hiding SALAD.

"I think I'm a fan, but perhaps another round is needed to seal the deal," I wrote in my last review. The lovely people at HelloFresh simply BEGGED me for another chance and I conceded, due to being a lovely person***.

The first meal that we tried, we were off to a rip-roaring start. Seared beef and rosemary sauce with garlicky silverbeet and creamy mash was what I like to call "yum AF". The meat was beautiful and the veges were delicious - even my carnivore boyfriend ate all of his greens (a miracle).

Night one: The seared beef and rosemary sauce.
Night one: The seared beef and rosemary sauce. Photo credit: Newshub.

The next night was not so successful. Chermoula chicken with veggie risoni and lemon yoghurt sounded lovely on paper. In my kitchen it was simply an unmitigated disaster.

This was not the fault of HelloFresh - although I would say to maybe have the instruction about chopping garlic away from the rest of the yoghurt instructions, otherwise somebody might put raw garlic in their lemon yoghurt. Maybe.

The chicken was raw in the middle, and while I was stressing about that I burnt all the vegetables, then burnt the pasta and put raw garlic in the dressing.

The burnt vegetables of doom.
The burnt vegetables of doom. Photo credit: Newshub.

It was horrific, I threw a tantrum, threw the whole pan into the sink and drank half a bottle of wine while my boyfriend cleaned up and ordered us Thai.

Luckily the next night, Middle Eastern beef meatballs with roasted pumpkin and coriander yoghurt went off without a hitch, and I even had enough for a delicious AND healthy lunch the next day. As we all know, you normally can only have one without the other. Game changing. 

And the tandoori chicken kumara bowl I threw together for a packed lunch was nice, but again, my thoughts on a bowl vs salad can be found in the last review.

Night 3: The meatballs.
Night 3: The meatballs. Photo credit: Newshub.

I'm glad I was given a second shot at love with HelloFresh; apart from my certifiable disaster, it was pretty straightforward and quick to cook, and those individual paper bags are bloody handy, even if they do take up a lot of room in our tiny apartment fridge. Two thumbs up from me.

*** They said, "want to try again?" and I said "yes please!"