There are quite a few students and bachelors living in the same area as we do, and local businesses reflect this in the composition of their shelves and items on their menus and in their price levels.
I’ve been seeing quite a few ready to eat and ready to cook products appearing in grocery stores, one of them being Pasta Box: Cheesy Alfredo, by Chef’s Basket, priced at what appears to be a reasonable INR 98 at Amazon, down from the regular INR 99. Be sure to keep that money aside for a rainy day, okay?
Let’s see how the product does.
PASS: Packaging, Portion and Storage
Pasta Box: Cheesy Alfredo, by Chef’s Basket comes in a Chinese takeaway style cardboard box, with the herb mix, pasta, Alfredo sauce, sea salt and chilli flakes in separate packs. All the packs appear designed to be used without cutting tools like scissors etc, and there’s enough of every ingredient as would normally be required.
It’s easy and convenient to store and makes a standard portion that’s enough for a regular person with a regular appetite. In fact, looking at the box, I’m now thinking I should have served it in the outer cardboard pack! Might have been interesting.
Cooking with Pasta Box: Cheesy Alfredo, by Chef’s Basket is easy. The instructions printed on the packaging are accurate and if followed, will result in how the product was intended to be consumed. I followed the instructions on the pack and served the result for Cherie’s lunch. As you can see, it looked great!
FAIL: Texture & Flavours
It would be an understatement to say that Pasta Box: Cheesy Alfredo, by Chef’s Basket is devoid of all taste. The main flavour component, the sauce, is smooth and creamy and that’s that. It has no flavour, doesn’t appear to have any cheese at all and adds no taste value to the dish. Apart from the pasta, the only textural element is the sea salt, which is temporary. In any case, we don’t expect a pasta dish to have texture separate from the pasta, though we would like flavour.
FAIL: Health & Nutrition
Pasta Box: Cheesy Alfredo, by Chef’s Basket contains a total of 520 calories, not that their packaging makes it easy to count, what with the calories given for a hundred grams each and odd amounts of ingredients. In case you’re curious, the pasta has 327 calories, the seasoning, 2 calories and the sauce, 191 calories. To put that into perspective, it’ll take a 60 kilo person, 3.27 hours of walking at about 3.2 kmph (slow) to burn them off.
The product also contains about 710mg of sodium or about 38% of your daily recommended intake, apart from which there do not appear to be any other nutritional aspects, negative or positive – in my opinion, neither here nor there.
I’m happy to consume a product if it’s tasty, even if it’s not as healthy as one might want it to be. I’m happy to consume a product if it’s healthy, even if it’s not as tasty as one might want it to be. Pasta Box: Cheesy Alfredo, by Chef’s Basket doesn’t appear to fall into any of those categories, being devoid of both taste and nutrition. I suggest avoiding it until they fix the sauce, after which it might actually become a welcome respite from the usual.
|Product||Pasta Box: Cheesy Alfredo|
|Container size||237g (total)|
|Price||INR 98 (on Amazon)|
|Pack size||90g pasta + 140g sauce + 6g sea salt + .8g seasoning + 1g chilli flakes|
|Calories per serving||520|
|Calories per container||520|
|Ease of use||Very easy|
|Sodium content per serving||710mg|
|Sodium content per container||710mg|
|Significant source of||Calories|
|Recommended for||Emergencies, camping, picnics etc.|