Review of Fresh n' Lean's Almond Raison Cauliflower
The Almond Raison cauliflower from Fresh n' Lean is one of their 100% planted based meals, and it makes use of some common flavor combinations - pick up a bag of trail mix and you're likely to find almonds and raisons mixed together.
Like all Fresh 'n Lean meals, this one was fully cooked and packaged at their facility and arrived at my house ready to heated up in the microwave and eaten. The convenience can not be beaten.
Two minutes in the microwave and I opened up the package ready to eat. I could clearly make out some slivered almonds mixed with cauliflower florets, pieces of carrot, and some more un-identifiable things that may have been raisons, or may have been other veggies.
Unfortunately, i can't say that I liked this dish much. While I did get the raison flavor, I couldn't find any. The almonds had softened in the cooking process, so the intended crunchy texture wasn't there. And all the other veggies where simply over cooked, and somewhat blended together with one another.
The flavor was a bit flat, and needed either salt or acid (or fat, but I know that's not Lean n' Fresh's thing). Like vegetable components in all the meals I've tried from these guys, they were just a bit of a muddled mess.
I wouldn't order it again.
The almond raison cauliflower came fully cooked and prepared. So I didn't have any ingredients to unpack and cook. Instead, i was able to simply poke a hole in the plastic cover, and heat in the microwave for two minutes.
The "purity" of the ingredients is a core element that i'm sure a lot of people are attracted to. Veggies are all organic and GMO free.
I wasn't able to find a full list of ingredients. I'm sure it was available on the website, when I ordered the meal; but they have sense rotated through - I can't find it on their site. Simply looking at the dish I could tell there was:
Making the dish
Because Fresh 'n Lean meals come fully prepared and cooked, there isn't really any step where you make the dish. Before eating you simply poke a hole in the meal's cover and heat in the microwave for 2 - 3 minutes.
Peel back the plastic and you're ready to go.
While I used the microwave to test the meal (I think most people will use that method), Fresh 'n Lean also provides guidance for heating up in the oven, or on the stovetop - which may actually give a better end result.
Bottom line, i was not a fan of this recipe.
I actually like the flavor combinations and think these ingredients can work well together. And to be fair, the flavors were not that bad; but the textures were just awful.
The vegetables all just kind of blended together, and seemed very over cooked. It might have been better less cooked, but I only cooked it 2 1/2 minutes in the microwave, and the suggested time was 2 - 3 minutes. They were not nuclear hot when they came out...they were just all...soft and mushy. So I think they were over cooked before I ever got these veggies.
Sadly, they reminded me of vegetables that have sat on a buffet line chaffing dish for a couple hours. Not too tasty.
Fresh n' Lean's Almond Raison Cauliflower
I've come to find that the meals from Fresh n' Lean are in general over cooked; and this one is no exception.
i understand the benefits of ensuring that the ingredients are all natural, organic, and otherwise "clean". And I understand the value that comes from not having to cook anything at all. This meal could not be more convenient.
If those things are more important than the flavors and textures, I think you'll be likely be happy. This was an edible, very "clean", healthy meal; that was 100% plant based. I get it.
If that's your bag, go for, and let me know how it goes.