Fast food has become a way of life for many of us and it’s easy to see why. It’s an easy, reliable and cheap option, it’s just a shame that it isn’t always the right option. Aside from the fact that the food available at McDonalds, KFC, Burger King et al is just plain unhealthy, the way that these companies work just doesn’t sit right with me and I have shunned these kind of places for many years now.
Thankfully this hasn’t been any real hardship for me. I have no interest in eating a ‘burger’ that has the flavour and consistency of a piece of cardboard. Likewise, the thought of eating a non free range chicken makes me feel physically ill. I am also lucky enough to be able to say that I didn’t really frequent these places as a child so this food has never been part of my day to day life. That doesn’t mean I’m not as busy as those who eat this stuff; I’m just a bit fussier. The humble sandwich, the Mexican burrito and sushi are my favourite options, but I’m always on the look out for something new which is why Nourish has gripped my attention.
Now, I must come clean and confirm that Nourish is a client of the marketing company that I’m currently working for, but I still believe that Nourish has something to offer to the people of Sheffield and I ‘d still be writing this post if they weren’t a client. As the title says, this is fast food with a conscience.
This means that nutrition is high on the agenda for owners David Stache, Ben Pryor and Richard Pryor. Indeed, David is a well respected nutritionist who cares about Britain’s health so you’ll find full nutritional breakdowns of each dish on the menus (protein, fat, carbohydrates, fibre and calories) as well as dietary information. There’s a bit of blurb about the health benefits of the ingredients on the packaging too. And if that wasn’t enough, both David, and Ben (who is a personal trainer), are on hand to help with any questions you may have. With plans of cookery classes, presentations and a weekly shopping box system, Nourish really does want to help us change our lives for the healthier.
Of course, the nutritional content of a meal is far from being the be all and end all. Food is a source of enjoyment for many and taste is just as important. And this is where Nourish gets interesting; the menu is both appealing and approachable thanks to chef Richard (previously of The Milestone) who has worked his magic with the superfoods David has directed him towards. So there’s a distinct lack of scary ingredients and as dishes include options such as Thai Green Curry and Meatballs in Tuscan Spiced Tomato Sauce, I think that Nourish will appeal to the ‘foodies’ amongst us as well as the health conscious.
Keen to make every calorie count rather than counting every calorie, you’ll find that David, Ben and Richard have worked hard to ensure that each dish is packed with nutrients. Each ingredient has been scrutinised in terms of what it can bring to the plate which means, for instance, that standard thickening agents aren’t used in the Thai Green Curry – why use standard thickeners when cauliflower can do the job whilst adding further nutrients to the dish?
Of course I had to try some food whilst I was there and I started off the day with the Superfood Egg Pot (£4.45) which is a breakfast of two poached free range eggs, poached salmon, avocado, spinach, sunflower and chia seeds with a couple of slices of rye bread on the side. The flavours worked well together and although the portion looked small, it was packed with protein ensuring that I was full until lunch.
The Protein Box (£4.95) is already proving popular (it was their best selling salad on the day) and it’s easy to see why. Free range chicken, boiled eggs, smoked salmon, lemon, chia seeds, dill and coriander makes for a real luxurious lunch in my book. Having said this, it probably was a little protein heavy for my sedentary lifestyle and I think I’ll try the Smoked Mackerel and Beetroot Salad or the Quinoa Superfood Salad next time.
I also managed to try the Baked Sweet Potato with Smoked Mackerel, Greek Yoghurt and Horseradish – it was as delicious as it sounds and at less than £3.50 a pop, I think these may become a favourite of mine. Of the hot food options we tried the Mexican Bean Chilli (£5.45). This was packed with vegetables and served with perfectly cooked wild rice. My only criticism was that it could have been hotter – maybe the option of a few slices of chilli would work for those of us who like heat.
Overall I was impressed. I like the idea behind Nourish, but just as importantly, I like the food and I can see this becoming a favourite for a lunchtime treat that just happens to be healthy.
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Thanks Sam Mawson for the Pictures!