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We are about 50/50 when it comes to liking Saffron Road products. Some have been totally terrible and others quite good, as frozen products go. Even with the toss-of-the-coin results, Saffron Road has a pretty good reputation here at Dr. Gourmet World Headquarters: I think that's because when they are good they are often really good. As such, it is with generally favorable anticipation when we find new products by the company.
Our first test of two more new products from them was Vegetable Pad Thai. I love Pad Thai and don't expect that it to be good frozen. Rice noodles are quite fragile - even fresh - and to reheat them in the microwave is chancy. They are, however, quite good in this dish and are fresh tasting with great texture. The tofu is equally good in both flavor and texture.
The rest of the dish makes it one of the better from Saffron Road. There is a good spicy kick and a sweet sauce that is fairly authentic. The sauce is almost too sweet, however, and if it were not - and the whole dish was less salty - this would be one of the best frozen meals they have produced. That salty flavor translates into 590 mg per serving, and the dish would be just fine at around 400 to 450 mg per serving. At 440 calories and 4 grams of fiber this is a pretty good and filling choice.
Palak Paneer is not the sort of dish that appeals to everyone, but I personally like the combination of bitter spinach and creamy baked cheese in Indian spices. This dish, even more than the Pad Thai, suffers from its saltiness. When I was reading the label and noticed that it contains 680 mg, I was expecting that most of that sodium would be the cheese, but the spinach is pretty salty as well.
That saltiness overpowers whatever Indian spice might be in the dish, and the main flavor that comes through is nutmeg. It's a shame because this is a favorable 440 calories and 4 grams of fiber per serving. The only redeeming value of this dish is that Saffron Road delivers good jasmine rice.
Their 50/50 track record is intact. One winner and one loser.
First posted: March 6, 2015