Product Type: Blue Dragon Food
Newest Review: ... and only a small picture at the bottom showing what the cooked meal could look like. It still has the Blue Dragon branding on it, obviou... more
Quick and easy but I've had tastier
Blue Dragon Stir Fry Oyster & Spring Onion Sauce
Member Name: redhead78
Blue Dragon Stir Fry Oyster & Spring Onion Sauce
Advantages: Good value, not too bad for you, makes a quick meal
Disadvantages: Bland and tasteless, difficult to get all the sauce out of the pouch
I like to cook from fresh as often as I can, but some nights I just can't be bothered putting much effort in and want something quick and easy to make rather than investing much time and energy in it. Having a food-loving husband means I feel guilty for giving him a plate of scrambled eggs on toast as his main meal of the day though and we both like our food to have some taste to it rather than being bland and boring. So I often find myself resorting to a simple stir fry as they're quick to prepare, don't take much effort, are relatively healthy and, if you add the right sauce, can be very tasty.
Recently we've been working our way through some packet sauces which I found on offer at Tesco. I can't remember the exact price but I think they were something like 65p each or 2 for £1, so I got a selection of 4 different ones to see which were "againers" and which we wouldn't touch again with a barge pole. Unfortunately, the one I'm reviewing falls into the latter category.
The Oyster and Spring Onion Sauce comes in a plasticky/foil pouch which you simply cut across the top to get the product out. I'm not really a fan of things packaged like this (salsa in fajita kits is another example) as it's very difficult to get everything out, you have to really squeeze at it and I still always feel like I've left loads in the packet. Whilst I realise it's probably an economical way of packaging a product like this I don't feel it's particularly effective for the consumer. In each pack you get 120g of product which is supposed to be enough to serve 2 people.
The actual design of the packet has now changed from the one pictured above and the front is much more orientally themed with chinese looking figures taking up the main part of the now cream coloured pouch and only a small picture at the bottom showing what the cooked meal could look like. It still has the Blue Dragon branding on it, obviously, and also tells us that it has no artificial colours or preservatives and that it is suitable for vegetarians. The back of the packet has the usual ingredients list and nutritional information (less than 100calories per serving and trace amounts of fat, bonus! Although it does contain quite a lot of sugars, but I suppose you can't have everything!
There is also a recipe suggestion on the back of the packet and a list of ingredients you will need to make it. I don't personally find these very helpful as the one on the back of the current packet, for example, is just chicken stir fry and egg fried rice. To me this is a waste if printing ink on the back of this pouch! I think you pretty much take for granted that yes, you'll be making a stir fry with this sauce and I imagine the vast majority of people would add chicken and vegetables and don't need to have a "recipe" suggested to them! And even my hubby could scramble an egg and add it to cooked rice without instructions!
Anyway, enough about the packaging and on to the actual sauce. When you squeeze the sauce out onto your cooked vegetables (I don't tend to use chicken that often as it means defrosting it, so I usually just load us up with different kinds of veg like onion, peppers, courgette, carrot, mushroom, broccoli and cabbage) it comes out of the packet quite thick and gloopy and a not very appetising dark brown colour. And it also smells quite pungent and treacly and really doesn't get your taste buds tingling at all.
Cooking it is easy, you just add it to stir fried meat and or veg and let it cook through for a minute in your wok, so you're not even really cooking it, merely warming it through. You then serve the concoction with the accompaniment of your choice; rice, noodles, whatever takes your fancy really. We tend to have it with rice as we have a microwave rice steamer which cooks rice perfectly every time in 11 minutes. This means that from start to finish (with the help of my food processor in chopping the majority of the veg) I can have dinner ready in 15 minutes flat from start to finish...not too shabby! Although my husband is now hankering after stir fry in a Yorkshire Pudding (he also likes chilli con carne in YP's too, so I imagine that's where he came up with that particular idea) needless to say that unless he cooks it himself - a highly unlikely occurrence - he won't be trying that one!
So what does the sauce taste like? Well, I have to admit I was pretty disappointed with this one and hubby agreed. We've now tried 3 different ones from this brand and of the three this is the only one we wouldn't want to have again. It just didn't have as much taste to it as the other two (sweet chilli and garlic and a spicy szechuan tomato sauce) and to me was very bland. I suppose I was expecting it to taste like the equivalent sauce that you would get from a Chinese takeaway but, unfortunately, it was nothing like it. There was nothing specifically wrong with it; it wasn't too sweet, it wasn't overloaded with salt like some ready made sauces can be, it just wan't anything really.
All in all I was very disappointed with the Oyster and Spring Onion sauce and we definitely won't be repurchasing it, especially when other options in the range are so much tastier. If you don't like spicy food then it may be one to try, but if you prefer your dinner to have a bit of oomph about it then I would avoid this one. For the price, even when not on offer, I would definitely recommend the range as a whole and they're handy to have in the cupboard for when you're having a "just can't be bothered" night, but this one in particular just didn't float my boat. I would really like to give it no stars but, objectively, it gets one for value and one for being quite healthy with a low calorie count and hardly any fat, so 2 stars in total from me.
Summary: Not the best option in this range, there are much tastier ones out there
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