Time took: One hour and 40 minutes (Blue Apron claims all recipes take 30 minutes)
New foods: Gouda cheese, artichoke
This recipe pissed me off. Oh, it looks somewhat reasonable on paper, but it's not. While waiting for water to boil (what, under 10 minutes?), you have to:
Wash and dry produce (two items)
Chop the spinach (big bunch)
Peel and mince the garlic
Grate the cheese
Pick the parsley leaves off the stems, chop the leaves
Peel and small dice the onion
Cut the chicken into bite-sized pieces
Process the artichoke (trim leaves, peel outer leaves, cut off the outer skin of the stems, cut in half lengthwise, add to a bowl of cold water along with the white wine vinegar)
Maybe a pro could do all that, but I couldn't do that in ten minutes and end up with all my fingers. I swear, the recipe was impossible without either a helper or having measured EVERYTHING out before you start. How can you stir constantly AND measure out a cup of milk? How can you read ahead and see what you need when you're constantly doing two or three things at once? Or catching up on the chopping that you were supposed to do in step one but ran out of time for?
And worst of all? It didn't even taste good. I picked some of the chicken and a couple noodles out (and tried the artichoke, though it was only a small bite and I was too annoyed to really think about it), but the rest I'm throwing. After cooking it for an hour and 40 minutes. I swear, Blue Apron recipe creators are obsessed with onions. There are always WAY too many in the dish.
I could have made a frozen dinner in the microwave, a couple of minutes and NO effort from me, and it would have not only tasted better, it likely would have had fewer calories, too.
I think next week is going to be my last week of Blue Apron. It's not even that the cooking takes so much longer than they say, it's not that I only like one or two meals out of the three per week, but it effects my life too much: I have to keep thinking about this and planning my life around it. "Nope, can't have that for lunch, I have to have something little because I'm cooking tonight." There's an annoying amount of pressure behind HAVING to cook three meals a week. If I liked the meals, if I even once wanted to eat the leftovers from it, that would be a different story.
This was a good idea, but I guess it's just not a fit for me.
Note to self: Can't cancel through their site, have to email them (firstname.lastname@example.org). Nice...
Edit: Sent the email. No idea if it's in time to cancel next week's or not.