Food! Are you a foodie? Do you love food? Do you relish it? There’s even a code for you at the end of this post to save some beans on food. (Beans…food…maybe only I make myself snort/laugh.)
I’d say food is pretty important in my family (my parent and siblings). A lot of our memories are based around food. What food we had on vacations. What food we had for our birthdays. What food we will make when we’re together. What food to try when we’re out somewhere. Yep, food. It’s what holds us together. We all just got an email the other day from my dad about food to eat at our next family gathering. I’m salivating thinking about it.
My husband thinks it’s hilarious when my parents call on our birthdays and the first question is, “What did you have to eat?” (Note to my family…there would be extreme disappointment if you missed that one year.) My kiddos even get to pick what special meal I’ll make them on their birthdays. Whatever they want. I’m secretly (okay, it’s not a secret) happy when they pick bacon! I’m thinking that’s what I’ll have for my next birthday. BLT’s and donuts. Hey sweetie…make a note of that. I’d like donuts, rather than a cake.
So food and photography? I haven’t quite meshed the two together yet. It’s difficult. I love photography, but I’d much rather eat the food than photograph it. Maybe it’s easier if you have 13 cupcakes and you can eat one while photographing the rest. Maybe. The other 12 would be calling my name, taunting me. “Eat me, eat me, eat me….”
So…one to my point of this post. HelloFresh food. My husband got a $40 off card in a box with an order of bike stuff. I held on to the card thinking maybe we would try it. I’ve gifted people with new babies a food delivery service before, but hadn’t tried HelloFresh. Well, the $40 off wasn’t good enough for me to order food for a family of four. I’m serious about good deals and that wasn’t good enough for me.
But, I found a reason to make it good enough. My husband took the kids over Labor Day weekend for a trip. A whole weekend to myself. That hadn’t happened in over a decade! But, while I’m good at making food for my family, I’m not so good when it comes to just myself. I’d be eating popcorn, fried Cheerios, and chocolate if left to my own devices. So I decided to use the $40 savings for HelloFresh to order a weekly menu for 2 people. I figured that would cover 6 meals for me and it was even cheaper than going to Subway for every meal (that’s the closest place to get food from my house).
Bonus…I thought I could try food photography with all my family out of the house.
But seriously….I didn’t think about it clearly. I’m pretty sure food photographers don’t always eat the meal they are photographing because it would be cold by the time they got to it. How do they do it? I was too famished and I didn’t want my meal to get cold, so I quickly snapped photos and then ate. I didn’t take the time to prettily style my meals. I have no patience. Kuddos out there to food photographers…they are talented and strong people. I apparently don’t have self-discipline when it comes to food.
So, I got to try three meals. Oh, they were all good. It’s hard to pick a favorite. Maybe it was the catfish meal. That’s the first one I tried. The meals arrived in a box with everything sorted and labeled neatly. It was well insulated and had freezer packs. The dog was keenly interested.
I attempted the catfish meal first and it was delicious. Everything was all measured out and ready to go. I just had to chop, add in olive oil, and add in salt and pepper. I was very impressed with the directions. Everything worked out smoothly as far as time and prep. Everything came together perfectly! I made the meal after a run around the neighborhood with the dog. Run first, food second. The other way around doesn’t always agree with the stomach.
When the meal was together….yeah…forget about styling and taking photos. I wanted to eat it! So I quickly took photos and ate. I split the meals into 2 portions, since they were for two people. I ate the other half for lunch the next day. But seriously, there was enough food in one serving for me to share it with a child. But I didn’t. I ate it all. I relished it! I even sent a photo of the food to my parents and siblings. Yep, that’s how we roll. Family food talk.
My second meal was a steak on top of a salad with nectarines. Oh, so good. I can still taste it!
My third meal was chicken fajitas. We’re big here with Taco Tuesdays and fajitas are in the mix often. Except for the chicken, I have an aversion to touching raw poultry. Ewww. Yes, I’m strange. On the rare occasions I have to cook raw poultry, I throw it whole from the bag into the pot or slow cooker so I don’t have to touch it. I touched raw chicken this time. I survived. I’m shuddering thinking about it, but I survived. The only bummer with this meal is that my avocado was as solid as a stone. There was no way I was making guacamole with that thing. I don’t fault HelloFresh for the avocado. I’ve had that happen to me when I buy avocados. Sometimes they just stay hard forever. Sometimes they’re icky when you open them up. Oh well. I did miss the guacamole, but the sour cream and pico de gallo made up for it. I added my own Red Hot cause I like a little spicy!
I just clarified the fact that as much as I want to try food photography, I don’t have the patience. Or I just need to make food I won’t eat. Mushrooms, I don’t eat mushrooms. Maybe I could be a fungus photographer?
As far as HelloFresh, I was pleasantly pleased. I am way too cheap to order it without a deal and I wouldn’t use the $40 off for a family of four unless it was going to be a crazy week and I didn’t have food in the house. It was a treat for me when I had to cook for myself and I enjoyed it, otherwise I probably wouldn’t have eaten so well. I think it came out to be about $5 a meal for me (6 meals) with the coupon code I had. That’s pretty good for the quality and amount of food I got. In a restaurant, that would cost you twice as much or more. Yes, I had to prepare it, but that was fun. Meal delivery isn’t something we will do very often, just because of the expense. I hate grocery shopping, but I love cooking….so if that’s you…meal delivery might be your thing. I put up with grocery shopping because it saves money, not time. I could see busy people using this, if they want to cook, but don’t have the time to shop and plan. It also makes a great gift…it’s something people who enjoy cooking will use. It’s a gift that doesn’t sit on the shelf unused. I wouldn’t hesitate to gift someone I love HelloFresh meals. People complain about all the packaging, but really…when you go to the grocery store…there’s a lot of packaging too by the time your produce is in bags and your meat is wrapped. You do need to plan ahead with HelloFresh and order ahead. You can see what meals are coming up and when they will be delivered to your home. Make sure to check it out before you order. Also, if you use a coupon and don’t want the delivery all the time, you need to make sure you pause deliveries you don’t want or to cancel your account.
If you want to give HelloFresh a try, I’ve got a code to save you $40. SUWJ2U . HelloFresh has classic/meat boxes and veggie boxes (which are a little cheaper). Both look amazing and I was quite pleased with my classic box. The code can only be used by new customers and you can’t use it with any other offer (such as a Groupon or another code).
Again, if you want to try HelloFresh, you can use this code to save $40 off your first box: SUWJ2U
*I purchased HelloFresh on my own. I was never contacted by them to write this post, just so you know. I’m just sharing my personal photos and experience. I’ve determined I need more practice with food photography.*