We are kicking off February with another food challenge sponsored by Delhaize Luxembourg. This time I managed to pull off a healthy 2-course menu on a tight budget for two people. You’ll find the links to the starter and the main dish of my healthy 2-course menu below.
Delhaize is collaborating with people food bloggers. I managed to become one of the people in Luxembourg who can participate in this project. Therefore I am very happy to present to you articles and recipes that are sponsored by Delhaize Luxembourg.
On a monthly basis, Delhaize hands out a food challenge, specifying the general outline of what has to be done this particular month. This could be the ingredients, a theme or similar things. But also the budget or which brand to use (e.g. the house brand).
Delhaize Food Challenge
For the January/February 2017 challenge, the given theme was “New Year’s Resolution“, i.e. creating a healthy recipe for all you food enthusiasts who fancy getting in shape after the holiday season. Furthermore, they ask to mainly use products of their home brand and set a budget and I’m free to use this amount within the guidelines.
Delhaize “Extra” Products
This time they added another layer to the rules, asking to use also products with their special “extra” label. Products with the “extra” label are considered especially healthy compared to a traditional alternative. Depending on the product they might be:
- Rich in vitamin C
- Low in sugar
- Rich in minerals such as iron, magnesium or calcium
- Low in fat
- Rich in fiber
- Low salt
This isn’t a new strategy. Delhaize adopted it a few years ago and put the health topic at the core of their strategy. With constant improvements of their products, both in general quality and ingredients used, they try to encourage their customers to live a healthier life by eating better.
While this sounds like a lot of corporate marketing, in my personal opinion I have always been satisfied with the products of the Delhaize brand. And because I am a big proponent of eating healthy and well balanced I wouldn’t participate in those sponsored challenges anymore if I’d didn’t enjoy their products.
Here are two products I used in my recipes containing the special label:
That being said, it’s always up to you to eat healthy, clean and well balanced! The best product isn’t worth much if you neglect other areas (i.e. not enough physical activity, smoking, too much alcohol or other drugs) or overeat on a single product. For instance, a well-balanced granola might be considered healthy, but if you eat a kilo a day then you should reconsider your eating habits (unless you’re hiking 30km every day 😉 )
A Healthy 2-course Menu: Nothing “extra” to be found
When I read the rules for the challenge I was excited, as it’s a theme that I can deliver a great recipe too. I almost instantly wanted to do a surf and turf dish. Then I saw the condition with the “extra” label and was taken aback. I had never seen the label before and wasn’t sure if it would fit my idea. But after a few talks with the organiser I got convinced that they have plenty of products to go with – especially for my idea.
So I went shopping for my recipe and in the store I visited not a single product was to be seen. In fact, once I talked to the staff, they weren’t aware of this. The staff went up the chain of command until they found someone who knew what I was talking about. They asked me to wait and that they would hand me a list of items available in the store. Instead of doing this, they found the marketing material to highlight the items.
Dehlhaize Luxembourg: My favourite staff
10 minutes later you had them hanging around all over the store. We ended up working together for a while. It was an odd experience but in the end it was fun. It also highlighted one of the aspects I enjoy the most about Delhaize and this particular store I frequent: the staff is incredibly friendly and helpful.
When I checked the items they had I found plenty to choose from. Above you saw the two I picked. I almost broke out in laughter when I saw that the soya drink was one of them. It’s my favourite soya drink out there – price-value ratio is outstanding. I’ve been buying it for months and never saw that little heart. Maybe Delhaize should make those tiny labels more visible, I missed them even though I was looking for them. I wonder how clients unaware of this feature are supposed to recognise them?
Did you ever see them? Tell me in the comments section.
A Healthy 2-course Menu: Surf and Turf
The main reason why I picked a surf and turf menu as my recipe was because it’s a versatile recipe idea that you can easily transform into what ever you feel like or is available. I wanted to mix up my surf and turf with a combination of lean proteins (chicken and salmon), fatty acids (salmon and avocado), vegetables to and a purée for some carbohydrates (you need them for plenty of things, if you are doing sports most predominantly to replenish you glycogen stores in your muscles and liver).
While I was shopping I was able to get plenty of food for two people. In fact I got so much that I decided to make my single plate dish into my healthy 2-course menu. This was a very spontaneous decision and the starter could be a lean dish by itself.
Avocado Mussels Salad
Here’s the link guiding you to the recipe of my Avocado Mussels Salad
Surf and Turf with Purée and Guacamole
Now to the main attraction of my healthy 2-course menu, the main course. As said I have some corn-fed chicken with salmon, served with a homemade guacamole. As sides we have roasted zucchini and eggplant. The twist of my recipe is the purée, which is in it’s base a sweet potato purée. I found that to be a little boring, so I added another layer of taste to it by mixing some topinambour into it.
Here’s the dish and the link to my surf and turf with purée and guacamole of my main course of the healthy 2-course menu:
Once again it was a very fun challenge and I like the result of my dish. Especially the sweet potato-topinambour purée turned out great. The challenges itself are always manageable but I always try to make something more.
I am not required to make a recipe for two people with the budget I get. Nonetheless, I love to challenge myself and I want to show people that you can eat on dishes that are usually considered “expensive” and thus unaffordable. Sure, salmon isn’t on my plate every day either, but it should be on your plate at least once a week.
The dish healthy 2-course menu was enough for two people while having a few leftovers (vegetables, purée and guacamole). The total cost per person is not even EUR 10,– from a very high-quality store in Luxembourg.
Or in other words: healthy doesn’t mean expensive and if you have a big menu at McDonald’s you pay only a little less and receive definitely a less healthy and clean menu compared to mine. If you need any food consulting advice or help in how to cook or prepare well-round meals you can contact me. I give private classes on that subject.
I really hope you enjoyed this month challenge and my take on a healthy 2-course menu. Share your thoughts in the comments section.