I was well in to my second glass of wine last Friday before I realised I hadn’t put up my post for the day. That is the kind of tizz I was in after the news about Brexit broke that morning. My friends from the North of Ireland and England were devastated and the day was spent in a daze, hoping this was all some vast joke and by the end of the day everything would be back to normal.
The intended post was a product review for Mrs Crimbles Gluten Free Pasta & Sauce. I do like Mrs Crimbles products, I am partially to an almond slice and their cheese crackers are my favourites so I was more than willing to give these pre -packaged dinners a shot. Strangely I have only ever seen them in the Centra around the corner from my house so I am not sure what their distribution is like nationwide.
The packs are 90 grams in weight and come in three flavours, fusilli with a tomato and mediteranean herb sauce, fusilli with a white wine and cream sauce and fusilli with a gourmet mushroom and cream sauce. I opted for the mushroom sauce as I tend to find pre packaged food a bit bland but mushrrom flavour does tend to fair better than most when it is freeze dried.
The instructions are simple, on the hob you bring 150ml of water to the boil, add the contents of the pack and reduce the heat to a simmer and cook, stirring occassionally for 10 minutes or until the pasta is cooked through. You can also cook this in the microwave. When I opened the pack there was a pleasant if slightly confusing scent of chocolate mixed with the mushroom but I just shrugged and emptied the pasta and sauce in to the pot.
This was a quick dinner for one, the label says it could be lunch for two but I would have to dispute this as the if I offered up half of this portion to anyone I know I would expect a sharpley raised eyebrow in response.
The finished dish definitely benefitted from the addition of salt and pepper and a generous grating of parmesan but it was grand. Although I can cook and I like good food I refuse to be a food snob about products like these, this is emergency food for celiacs and in that this product is definitely filling a gap. If you have a teenager at home who needs a something they can cook for themselves when they get in from school or you have a first year college student with celiac you are sending out in to world and you are worried about them cooking gluten free for themselves this is ideal. I would definitely keep one or two packs of these in the cupboards for days when I am too busy or tired to cook. For festival season, if you are camping and bring a wee gas stove this is a cheap and easy gluten free meal to have on stand by, all you need is a pot, some water and a spoon, job done.
This is convenience food for celiacs and I hope that similar products start coming on to the market soon, anything that will make our lives easier is fine by me.