Tuesday, 3 February 2015
Every other Tuesday I come home to two styrofoam boxes outside my apartment door. Dalakassen has arrived.
During the fall I realized that my eating had gotten into a real rut. I was eating the same three or four meals day in and day out. Cooking was boring. Shopping was boring (and often done when hungry so the food I was making was things that I could make quickly). I was also throwing away a lot of stuff because it went bad because I bought it when hungry without a plan. About the same time adds for Linas Matkasse started showing up in my facebook newsfeed. Linas is the most popular meal-in-a-bag here in Sweden but when I investigated further it wasn't available in my area. However I remembered that I had read about Dalakassen in the spring. Dalakassen isn't just a meal-in-a-bag service but it is a bit like a CSA in that it supports local farms in my area. It also offers primarily organic food which I like. The combination of local and organic is something that I try to support in my food shopping anyway, ever since I read Animal, Vegetable, Miracle by Barbara Kingsolver in 2008 or 2009. And with Dalakassen I don't have to go looking for it in the stores (I don't have a car so visiting more than one grocery store isn't always feasible).
I've now been getting Dalakassen for several months and I am very happy with it. There have been some weeks where I haven't liked that many of the recipes and one week almost every recipe had eggs in them (I'm allergic) but often I can adapt. For example one week it was supposed to be Spanish omelet, I made it to Spanish hash instead. Another week one meal had pickled herring, something I REALLY don't like. However I was able to give the herring away to a colleague who has been helping me a great deal.
This past two week period was perfect. I loved all the recipes and they will all be folded into my cooking. The first one was a quick hash (pytt in Swedish) with Wheat berries, chorizo and veggies and a yogurt and sweet chili sauce. It ended up being really colorful and when I brought it to work for lunch the next day several colleagues wanted the recipe. The second meal was Plaice with horseradish cream cheese, dill tomatoes and roasted potatoes. Fish is something I struggle to make something different with and this was really good and was still good when I heated it a few days later (after having been frozen). The last one was a variation of one of my favourite dishes: spagetti and meatsauce. What made it different was that the meatsauce had celeriac in it. It added a bit of an earthy spicy flavour to it and it was great. It also had what we in Sweden call Pizza salad and what you in the English speaking world would call vinegar based coleslaw. The coleslaw also had apple in it. The combination gave a nice tang and crunch to the meal. Definitely something that will be made again.
My colleague started Dalakassen at the same time as me, but he and his family have stopped it because they felt that it wasn't appropriate for their children. I think this depends from family to family what kids eat. I know kids who have a very limited palate and I know kids who happily tuck into anything put in front of them (I'm looking at you Big Girl Curl :))
I get the small box since I only feed me, so I pay 645 SEK for three different dishes that make 12 meals. For me this is very affordable because the food shows up on my doorstep so I don't have to go shopping as often, which means that I don't go shopping as often, and therefore I don't buy as much crap that gets thrown out. It means that when I do go shopping I can usually buy just the staples (milk, bread and the likes). My grocery bill has gone down. I also don't eat in the school cafeteria as often (which is affordable but not if you do it every day) since I have leftovers.
On the whole this is a service I really really like.
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