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Milson's Kitchen Cannelloni Primavera From Aldi
This is the third review I write about Aldi's frozen meals, and more is yet to come… what else can lazy people do? There's a picture of this meal on Aldi.co.uk as a part of the classic pasta meals. The picture on the website, and on the cover, of the cannelloni pasta which is filled with ricotta, spinach and broccoli, with the sauce, cheese, and small pieces of broccoli on top looks absolutely wonderful. As is the case with the lasagne from Milson's Kichen which I reviewed earlier, this meal comes in a strong and very well sealed orange cardboard box, with no microwavable tub. So, I put it in a partially covered tub in the microwave for 7 ˝ minutes as is indicated on the cover. The smell was wonderful and I was really happy just standing near the microwave.
Unfortunately, those of you who are allergic to gluten, milk, Soya, almonds, egg, celeriac and even peanuts should avoid this meal. As for the rest, let's go to the taste section beginning with the good things. For me, there's nothing memorable about the pasta itself, but the crunchiness of the filling is so good. In fact, the first thing I noticed is how crunchy the broccoli pieces on top are even after being heated in the microwave. The topping has a nice texture, for it's a nice mixture of tomato and herb sauce in addition to the creamy gratin sauce. In addition to this, it has chopped almonds, which makes the meal crunchier and this is just wonderful. However, I noticed even before heating the meal how generous the amount of cheese on top is, so no wonder it gives 615 calories. Well, grave as this may seem, it's not the only problem.
I thought that freezing is the only thing they do to preserve this meal, but now I know they use salt in it not just for the taste, but as a preservative too. Why do they do that? Why should they add 5.2g of salt? I mean, it is written on the cover that it's 87% of what a person consume of salt daily. Even I, who loves salty stuff, found it too salty. Once my family and I were invited to the house of one of our relatives, and we were warned beforehand that although her cooking is yummy, The mum always adds too much salt… well, her cooking is not half salty as this meal which does not even have a warning on it. Why didn't I throw it away, then? Well, I should've, but I was hungry and although I felt that it was salty right away I thought that was not too bad. With the last morsel my throat was burning because of all the salt, worse than when one eats hot food, and I had to drink so much water to let the burning feeling go to my stomach.
The verdict? This meal smelled nice and I loved the perfect crunchiness of the broccoli and chopped almonds. I know that ready meals in general have more salt and fat than what we cook at home, but this was excessive. And because I liked the ingredients and how they are cooked to keep them crunchy, I thought that this was a waste. Dear R. Milson: "Please consider adding less salt to your meals… they will still taste good, because you obviously know you're doing, but till you fix that, I'm sorry to say, I cannot buy this meal again." So, now you know some information about this meal, and you can decide. As for those of you who have high blood pressure, the decision you might want to make is not to touch this one.
Note: the picture you see here is of another meal from Aldi. It was difficult to provide a link for the picture which is on Aldi.co.uk, so I found a picture online for Cannelloni Primavera, but obviously Ciao chose to include one that has nothing to do with it, except that it has pasta too.
Summary: Eat it if you like… and drink a gallon of water afterwards.
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