Somehow ready meals just never rev us up. It’s all in the promise, marketing, convenience, glossy packaging…we get sucked in. Then there is buyers remorse, plastic guilt, the lacklustre flavour and let’s face it all that packaging to make the meal look substantial but when you open it up, it is barely enough to feed a pygmy possum.
Celebrating World Vegan Month, MasterChef 2021 Winner Justin Narayan has joined forces with Dineamic, who create ready made meals. Till now we hadn’t tried them. Justin’s brief was to create two plant-based meals and now the range sits at five plant based options in addition to substantial existing range.
No surprise that International foodtech, Future Farm was chosen. We have been fans for a while now. They are leading the world in creating sustainable plant-based proteins that are composed of vegan ingredients which tick all our boxes: free from artificial aromas, colouring, non-GMO and ethically sourced.
Our box arrived at home nicely chilled. The Halo packaging is game changing in it’s sustainability and as easy as pull, ping, pow, start the microwave. The tray just goes straight in, no faffing with pulling off the plastics or popping a hole to fend off a mini kitchen implosion. They are 100% carbon neutral too.
We kick off with Justin’s two new dishes. He uses Sri Lanka as his inspiration for slow braised Future Mince with his secret recipe of spices (Take that KFC). The coconut milk sauce is delicately balanced with basmati rice. The broccoli is fresh and tasty (not grey and gluggy!). His other meal is a Chinese style hoisin chili sauce stir fry with Future Mince, meaty mushrooms, and tofu. It’s a hard style of cooking to do well in a microwave, as we did miss that ‘just wok feeling’, but it had a nice balance with the miso, ginger and chilli.
Onwards to Harissa Future Meatballs with Mediterranean Vegetable Couscous. It’s a got plenty of attitude and the addition of pearl couscous gives it more texture. It’s part wonderful and part strange to eat a meatball, which, well, tastes like meat. Some vegans or vegetarians might take a while to process the range of emotions from wonderment, ‘OMG did read the packet right and eat meat-meatballs, not Future meatballs? ‘ to an uncomfortability with something many of us gave up a while ago. Oh and now the guilt comes in! It’s a mind-maze of how it makes us feel. For meat eaters you won’t notice the difference! Either way it tasted great and is so good for our planet.
We also chomped down on pumpkin & Future Mince bolognese with Ravioli. So too the casarecce with Future Meatballs which is paired with a creamy tomato sauce, not too overpowering but loaded with veggies. Both were delicious, and the kind of meal you never see on menus for vegetarians, in fact all the pasta ranges that we tried were great. Our favourite was the creamy pesto pumpkin gnocchi with broccoli. The gnocchi is sensational. Nice large puffy pillows consistently cooked all the way through, lots of deliciously gooey sauce. Why dine out?
Dineamic – https://www.dineamic.com.au/ for the entire yummy range. Dineamic is stocked in select Woolworths, Coles and IGA stores
Cost: RRP of $11.50 each,
Plant-based meals available include Pumpkin & Future Mince Bolognese with Ravioli; Harissa Future Meatballs with Vegetable Couscous; and Future Meatballs with Creamy Tomato Sauce and Casarecce.