Tuesday, December 16, 2014

The Desperate Foodie

As a food lover, I make it my practice to ensure that every meal I eat is cooked to order using fresh, local ingredients.

Just kidding.

There are times - more times than I care to admit - when circumstances dictate that I grab something on the go. And by "on the go," I mean that sometimes I am forced to take something out of the freezer to heat up and eat at my desk at the office. I hope this doesn't happen to you, but in case it does, read on for some frozen meal suggestions to save your palate from the horrors of Hot Pockets.

My favorite frozen meals are made by Saffron Road, a company that makes products that are not only halal, but antibiotic-free, certified humane, and 100% natural. That may sound a bit like a Portlandia episode, but my feeling is that if you're going to be eating food from the freezer, you might as well eat something relatively good for you. Saffron Road delivers in that regard.

My favorite of Saffron Road's entrées is their chicken biryani. This photo doesn't at all do it justice, but it consists of a lovely bed of rice that tastes fresh and not at all like it's been frozen, topped with tender, very flavorful chicken. You honestly could have convinced me that this dish was freshly made, and when you're eating a frozen entrée at your desk, that's kind of a nice feeling.

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I also really like their lamb saag - tender lamb, spinach, and long-grain rice. Again, they've managed to make their rice taste very fresh - a difficult feat, in my experience - and the lamb and spinach meld nicely together to make for a comforting dish that tastes great in chillier weather (though I've also been known to eat it when it's hot outside).

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If you're a saag paneer fan, Central Market makes a wonderful frozen saag paneer under its Taste of India brand. Large, firm chunks of mild cheese (paneer) are mixed with a spinach that's prepared in such a way that it practically melts in your mouth. Here again, the rice is fluffy, fragrant, and not at all watery/insipid like some frozen rices can be.

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So next time you find yourself dining at your desk, check out one of these frozen meals. I hope they'll give a little lift to the inner foodie trapped inside your desk jockey self.

What are your favorite frozen food items?

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