Last week, I was lucky enough to be invited to the launch of
Tesco's Healthy Living Range.
Now here's a company on my wavelength who have really nailed it. They have developed a range of attractive, tasty foods for customers who want to make healthier food choices without compromise-
just like Slice-of-Slim!
Some are ready made meals-great for those time-short moments, but there are also sauces, dips, wraps, dressings, cereal bars etc if you prefer to combine your own ingredients and get inventive.
The range has been split into two categories;
Big on taste, lower in calories
for people trying to lose weight.
This range even has the propoints calculated for you and clearly shown on the back-FANTASTIC!
for people trying to eat more healthily or maintain their weight.
Both ranges have controlled levels of salt, sugar, fat and saturated fat. What really impressed me is that NONE of the products have the red nutritional traffic-light colour coding on the front of the packaging. So as a consumer, you can see instantly that you are making a wise food choice.
It was great to have the opportunity to chat to the product range developers- the nutritionist, brand developer and brand manager. So much thought has gone into this range and I really felt that they understood their consumers' needs-our cravings, our need for innovation and excitement as well as wanting to eat more healthily.
They even pointed out details to me that I may not have spotted-like the scoops taken out of the sides of the cardboard sleeves on the packaging not only show the food clearly, but are more exaggerated for the lower calorie range (suggesting an hourglass waistline) and slightly less so for the balanced range.
These may not seem important, but these details help us consumers subliminally - reiterating the healthy message and the promise these foods are going to deliver.
So, let me set the scene for you.
The lunch took place at a beautiful old establishment called Kettners in Soho.
We were greeted with a selection of canapés which showcased the Healthy Living Range.
I tried the
Sweet Chilli Chicken Little Gem Cups
King Prawn and Mango Salsa Pots.
I was delighted to see that this had not been put together just for the event- here's how you buy this particular dish.
It's £3 and 3pp/115kcal and would be delightful to serve guests or even grab instead of a sandwich at lunchtime-right up my street!
I really enjoyed the flavours too.
The King Prawn and Mango Salsa was delicious. £2.00 for 2 pots and 2pp/72kcal per portion-fab!
Spicy Lentil and Chickpea dip served with Honey and Linseed Crackers was a refreshing change from humous and carrot sticks!
I also like to do my own thing with ingredients, so was thrilled to see these wraps made up using
Beetroot, Canellini Bean & Mint dip
(£1 per pot and 2pp/83kcal per 1/4pot serving) cleverly combined with feta, bell peppers and rocket-yes! Refreshing, innovative and tasty!
The room was dressed to perfection. The attention to detail reflected the thought that had gone into the product range. The flowers picked up on the packaging colours...
The window sills were bedecked with fresh produce displays- inspiring us to want to eat healthily and sending us the message that everything we were about to consume was going to be good for us and made with fresh ingredients!
Lit candles set into fresh apples lined the tables and greeted us with a refreshing and Spring-like scent...
Then we did a taste test, where we blind-tasted the Healthy Living Range against the same dishes with a higher fat content...
I genuinely preferred the Healthy Living Range in pretty much every dish!
For the main course, we tasted;
Chicken Saag & Rice
Teryaki Chicken with Brown Rice & Ponzu Sauce
Braised Beef & Root Veg Mash
The Chicken Saag and the Teryaki Chicken were my favourites with delicious, authentic flavours.
I would definitely buy them to use at home.
It will take too long to give you the nutritional information on every dish we sampled, so I will review my favourites and post all the information separately for you.
With two vegetarians in my household, I was delighted to see that the vegetarians at our table were well catered for-with an interesting selection of;
Spiced Butternut with Fruity Pilaf & Feta
Bean & Vegetable Chilli with Rice
Sweet Potato & Jerk Rice
For dessert, we sampled
Caramel Iced Dessert
both of which were delicious and you can buy as part of the Healthy Living Range.
But in true Slice-of-Slim style, my favourite desserts were the ones that had been innovated by the Tesco chef using various products from the range to show us how versatile and delicious they could be...
So we had;
Healthy Living Inspired;
Strawberry & Raspberry Cheesecake
5 seed Fruit & Nut Bars
Extra Light Soft Cheese
Blueberry Creme Brûlée
Even though I'm a total chocoholic, my favourite desserts were the Iced Caramel and the last two 'invented' dishes.
We were sent home with a beautiful hamper of selected goodies to try.
I can't wait to go and see the range for myself in store and pick out some more items to try as it's a really comprehensive range with many lines. Obviously the range selection will vary depending on store size and location.
I hope you will see how inspired I am. I can see that I will genuinely buy some of the convenience dishes on those days when I just don't have time to cook from scratch but want to still give my family and myself healthy choices where everything has been worked out for me.
I will definitely try the cooking sauces, such as Thai Green Curry, but most of all, I'm looking forward to creating my own dishes using products from both ranges as my basis for innovation-so watch this space!
A Tesco Triumph.