Marley Spoon‘s recipe for success is pretty simple: take some great quality ingredients, pack them up in a box with ice packs and easy to follow directions, and ship them out for your enjoyment. About 6 months ago we were drawn to this kind of approach when we started using Blue Apron, another meal delivery service, so we were totally onboard when Marley Spoon reached out to us to try their service.
Marley Spoon is organized by Culinary Director Jennifer Aaronson who was Martha Stewart’s Editorial Director of Food & Entertaining and offers a similar service to Blue Apron, but with one major difference: Marley Spoon sends leftover ingredients (after they pack all their customers’ boxes) to City Harvest, which helps feed more than 1.4 million NY’ers who don’t have enough to eat. As if that weren’t awesome enough, their food is pretty awesome too, with ingredients that come from local farms, artisan shops, vendors, and butchers. Ok, so let us break it down for you . . .
First off, you go onto the Marley Spoon site and pick out your meals (2 or 3 per week) including even a few vegetarian options. Then, during the early part of the week, you get an ice-packed delivery that comes with all the ingredients, the recipes, and maybe even a special treat if you’re a new user. And don’t worry if you’re not home when it comes because the box will stay fresh all day outside of the fridge. We really liked how easy it was to unpack because almost all the ingredients except for the meat and cheese were in bags by meal.
The two meals that we had picked were a Broken Spaghetti with Chorizo, Shaved Manchego, and Scallions and an Apple Spiced Pork Chop with Mustard Greens. The recipes were easy to follow and took around 30 minutes to make all together. Anyone can handle that, right?
We really enjoyed the Broken Spaghetti and we picked up some fun, new techniques along the way like toasting the pasta then cooking it in the skillet with the tomatoes and veggies, including fennel. The nice touch was the chorizo that we grilled up to a crispy and crunchy state and put on top with some fresh Manchego. While we probably would leave a bit of the fennel out next time as there was quite a lot of it, we very much enjoyed this dish.
And, just as yummy was the pork chop dish that we enjoyed on a cool and crisp night. It started with a giant bag of Mustard Greens that we mixed up with a garlic and sardine paste sauce that reduced down to something great (and much smaller). We weren’t sure how we felt about the sardine paste when we smelled it, but you know what? It worked nicely, adding a nice earthy saltiness. The pork chops (from Pat LaFrieda) were very juicy and popped nicely with a cardamom mixture to add some warm spice notes. We topped off the pork chops with a perfect fall mixture of delicate apples and onions. YUM!
All in, we dug these dishes and the experience overall. Along with learning new cooking techniques, the thing that we love the most is that there is no food waste at all: you make what is sent to you, period. Meals are also pretty inexpensive too, costing on average $18 per meal and $61.50 for 3 meals for a couple. And, if you’re trying to watch your portions, this is an excellent option at an average of 500-700 calories per person per meal. You can also up the number of servings to feed a hungry family, too.
If you’d like to try Marley Spoon (and we recommend you do), they’re shipping to CT, NY, NJ, PA, RI, MA, DE, DC, MD, and WV now, so all you need to do is sign up. Before you finish registration, you can enter code “OMNOM2015” to get 30% off your first order.