For ages now, I’ve been curious about Blue Apron. They sent me ads through email and mail, and I finally took the plunge, and with a pretty good deal (around $35 for a service that costs about $60 on average). I was excited about a couple things right from the start; you get to tell them you’re vegetarian and pick out your three recipes, awesome. So when I went onto my laptop to edit my preferences (their mobile site is finicky to say the least), I learned that as a vegetarian, I had to have a mushroom dish in my box. I don’t like mushrooms, unless they are well hidden, but I ended up with my only option being a mixed mushroom situation. With that, I was excited for 2 of my 3 meals that I would be getting.
I got home last Friday to find my box not in front of my apartment door, but in front of the apartment building. So, word to the wise; if you’re ordering from Blue Apron, schedule the delivery for when someone will be home, or to an office where someone will be. The possibility of spending $60 to have it left in front of an apartment building is a huge bummer, but I understand that not all shipping services have access to the buildings.
Once I got the box inside (it’s big and a bit heavy because there are massive ice packs in the bottom, so be aware), I immediately tore into it. Everything was clearly labeled, and it made it all seem too easy. Nevertheless, I was excited, but I was watching Tokyo Drift and awaiting the arrival of my Nintendo Switch, so food wasn’t my priority. I got the box on Friday, but didn’t start cooking until Sunday.
Sunday night, while the boy was on the Super Art Stream, I started cooking. I started what we were going to eat that night; kale and while cheddar quesadillas. Though I’m not going to ship you the ingredients, I will share the recipe with you all, because it was (spoiler alert) super tasty, and I’ve got a few changes to suggest to make it even better. So, to start out, you’ll need:
2 eggs (Blue Apron provided cage free farm eggs)
4 corn tortillas
3 radishes (these can be skipped if spicy food doesn’t scare you)
1 clove garlic
1 bunch kale
2 tbsp crème fraîche
3oz block white cheddar
1 tsp quesadilla spice blend (ancho chile powder, chipotle chile powder, and ground cumin)
olive oil (at least 6 tsp)
First things first, wash your fresh stuff. Fruits and veggies should always be washed before you make food with them. Next, peel and chop the garlic. They say to finely chop it, but I say if you have a garlic press, use it. Or just use the flat side of your knife to press it (it breaks it apart and you get better flavor). Remove the kale leaves from the stems and roughly chop (you can use kitchen shears here, it’s much easier than actually chopping it). Quarter your lime (don’t peel it, we’re only here for the juice). Grate your cheese (it was at this point that we realized our cheese grater is missing, and decided to just cut the cheese). Cut the ends off of the radishes, then slice them as thinly as you can (neither of us actually ate the radishes, because they are just a bland way to help people deal with spice).
In the biggest pan you can get your hands on, drop in 2 tsp of oil and heat it to medium. put in your kale, and cook it until it’s starting to wilt.Add the garlic, and cover for a bit while the flavors hang out. Add 1/4 cup water, and about 3/4 of the spice blend (no one would b upset if you used all of it here), re-cover the pan until the kale is wilted, remove from the heat, and juice half of the lime into it. Set that aside.
In a small bowl, drop in your crème fraîche and the other half of your lime’s juice. Mix it up & set it aside (you need to do nothing else with this; it will need to be plated, but nothing else). The next instructions make me disagree with Blue Apron a bit, so I will give you their thoughts and mine. Blue apron says to lay out 2 of the tortillas, split half of the cheese between the two of them, and split the kale between them. Top with the other half of the cheese and other 2 tortillas, then wipe out your pan, add some more oil, and fry ’em up (about 2 minutes on each side, heat at medium). But that was very difficult. We had a splash guard for oil (frying is tough, man) and flipping them was incredibly difficult. So my thought is to make 4 quesadillas instead of two. Split the cheese evenly between all 4 tortillas, do the same with the kale, then fry or grill them each. If you’re doing it my way, I suggest putting ingredients only on half of the tortilla, and making sure there is some cheese at the edge to seal it up. That, in my mind, will make them easier to cook, flip, and eat.
Now it”s good to make the person who is eating with you help, because there are a lot of moving parts required in making this meal. While the tortillas are being taken care of, fry an egg. Eventually both eggs have to be fried, but make things easier on yourself by only frying one at a time (BA said to do them both together, but I disagree). Once your egg is fried and your tortillas are slightly browned, you can plate them (with or without the radishes), with the lime crème fraîche on the side.
It was incredibly tasty, but it was super tough to eat. There were a lot of moving pieces, and not only do they not include olive oil, but they don’t list it in the recipe itself, only in the instructions. While I’m excited to make the other dishes, I’m also nervous; this was difficult to start alone, and I legitimately could not have made it by myself. Blue Apron doesn’t offer a singles box, but they suggest making it then setting the food in portions for leftover lunches. That would be impossible for me to make alone, at least in a timely manner.
I’m intrigued by the rest of my box. I’ll be posting the recipes and my thoughts on them next week and the following, but I am unsubscribed to Blue Apron. There is a lot of plastic packaging in their box, they don’t let you choose non-mushroom dishes, and this was a lot of work for a super high calorie meal (that lasted one night). In my mind, it makes more sense to buy a whole thing of kale to make multiple tortillas on multiple nights, and have it cost a similar amount of money. It’s a nice indulgence, and I have the recipes forever now (fun fact, they also just post their recipes online), but I don’t think it’s worth the money.
All images and recipes are copyright of their respective owners.