“ Brand: Tesco / Type: Fish „
Shopping can be a nightmare for me as I have a milk allergy and you wouldn't believe the number of food products that either contain milk powder or a number of different milk products including the most difficult to spot-milk proteins. Over the years you would think I knew what I could eat, but I'm afraid this isn't true, with the trend to continuously update products, the makers often add ingredients and as lactose (milk sugar) is a cheap and effective way of preserving and sweetening food, then I have to keep reading the labels.
For a long time I gave up on any fish that was breaded or battered as so many contain the dreaded milk protein, but I was getting really fed up of having to eat smoked haddock, which is expensive and you can only do so much with it.
I longed for something I could keep in my freezer, especially since I don't do a large shop very often. So I have to give Tesco a big thumbs up for their new improved fish range and their excellent website which allows me to zoom in on a product and look for that all-important place on the box that states it's allergens.
I actually came across this fish by accident, as my friend was about to pop it in my trolley. I explained for about the tenth time about the possibility of allergens, but she didn't think there could be any in fish. 'It says 100% fish' she explained to me.
'It's in the batter' I replied knowing that batter is normally worse than bread. But to be fair to her I did take a look at the box and was really pleased when it said that it contained wheat, gluten, fish and mustard. To the amazement of other shoppers I read almost everything on the box before I trusted it enough to buy it-I've been caught out before now by proviso's stating that it is made in factories that handle milk. This actually stated that it couldn't guarantee it was nut free but that it had been made in a nut-free factory. I thought that worth stating for anyone who has a nut allergy as well.
The box itself is a sturdy shape and it can be recycled which is important to me. The picture of the fish looks appealing with a cross section showing thin golden batter over white flaky fish. It does state 100% whole prime fillets although the fish content is only 65%. That is higher than some I've bought before so I thought it worth trying. There is nothing worse than shaped fish that's almost 60% batter. The calorie content is 245 calories per fillet and as the box contains four almost identical shapes then that's a little over 125 grams per fillet. The saturated fat is also only 1.1 gram, very important again to me as I have cholesterol problems. However, I wasn't too keen on the 1 gram of salt, but overall it worked out as reasonably healthy.
The proof of the pudding is in the eating, so they say, and this fish is lovely both to look at and to eat. It states it needs to be cooked in the middle of an oven for about 25 to 30 minutes, but my oven is a little hot and it took about 20 minutes. I cut through the fish and it revealed white flakes with none of the discoloring you sometimes get from cheap fish. The batter was quite light and crispy with no burnt edges (don't you just hate that?) It was cooked through without drying out and was evenly hot throughout. As I had some concerns about the salt content I served it with new potatoes, very lightly sprinkled with my Soya margarine and a nice crisp salad. I enjoyed my meal and didn't feel guilty about my diet.
On the plus side I can also serve this when I have visitors as well. I have previously had a problem trying to cook and serve different kinds of fish. Not everyone likes my smoked haddock either, but they love this white haddock.
Unfortunately I didn't find this on offer. I've bought it twice now and each time it cost £2.69. That's still very reasonable and considering the problems I have getting a good balanced diet I am not complaining.
So a big thumbs up and 5 stars from me.
As Always, thanks for reading.
It was just by chance that we bought these fish portions as I usually buy mine from Iceland but when we were in Tesco last night I asked hubby what he fancied for tea and he wanted fish. We had a good look at the range on offer and these are the ones we chose. I have to say we were very impressed with them and may actually switch to buying these from now on.
The fish portions come n a cardboard box which has a picture of one of the protons cut open and the Tesco logo and product name on both the front and back of the box. The main colour is red so they are easy to spot. On the sides of the box you can find the cooking instruction, ingredients and nutritional values. The box is very easy to open with a pull tab on one end which they opens up and the fish can just be tipped out.
~~COOKING AND TASTE~~
There are 3 different ways of cooking the fish and those are:-
Grill - grill on a medium heat for 16-18minutes turning occasionally.
Deep Fry - Depp fry the fish for 8-10 minutes
Oven - place in the oven for 20-25 minutes on gas mark 7 (220 deg.c / 425 deg.f)
The fish is to be cooked from frozen for the best results.
For me I find using the oven is the best way as it means I can just pop them in and not have to keep checking on them, it is also much easier as I can cook the oven ships at the same time. I did find that they took nearer 30 minutes to cook as they were still cold on the inside after the stated time so need to be left for longer.
When the fish comes out of the box it is a light golden colour and does not look very appealing but this improves greatly once cooked and the batter does loosen slightly and make for a nice light coating to the fish. Once cooked it looks a lovely golden brown colour and vary appetising. The smell from the cooked portion is also very appealing, it is not overly strong but there is enough aroma to make you feel hungry.
The fish tastes great and the mix of the soft haddock inside and the crispy light batter is great. There are no bones in the fish which is a bonus for me as my boys do eat these. I was not left with any nasty after taste when finishing my portion and I did find the whole portion was just enough for me to eat. It is a good size and four portions do feed my family of 5 as my two youngest share one portion.
The box size is 500g and there are 4 portions. The haddock is skin and boneless which means these are great for young children.
The nutritional values for one of the portions are:-
These values are quite good compared to some other brands of battered fish.
The ingredients for those wishing to know are:-
Haddock (52%) Wheat Flour, Vegetable Oil, Batter, Water, Maize Flour, Salt, Raising Agents (Disodium Diphospahte, Sodium Bicarbonate), Dextrose, Yeast Extract, Mustard Powder, Yeast Batter contains: Wheat Flour, Wheat Starch, Salt, Mustard Powder, Pepper Extract.
There are some allergy warnings on the box and these are to warn that the product contains wheat, gluten, fish, and mustard. The recipe is nut free but Tesco cannot guarantee that the ingredients are. They do say that the fish may contain minor bones but out of the 4 portions we had we did not find any. There are no added preservatives, flavours or colours in these fish portions.
The fish is best cooked from frozen and if it does get defrosted then it must not be re-frozen.
The box can be fully recycled.
~~PRICE AND AVAILABILITY~~
As this is a Tesco only product then it is only available to buy in their stores. It is priced at £2 a box and I found this to be a great price. We do pay this price for our similar fish portions from Iceland but these did taste much better and the batter was lighter and crispier.
I have to give the full 5 stars to these fish portions as they tasted great and we all thoroughly enjoyed them. The price is good and £2 for a meal for a family of 5 is excellent. I do suggest serving these with chips and peas as they make a good hearty meal that way. For the price I don't think you really have much to loose by trying them.