7 March 2012

Two taste tests : Blue Dragon Laksa Curry Paste & Asda Meatballs

Not both at the same time, I hasten to add! 

First of all, I have to tell you that neither of these items involve any sort of sponsorship.  I obtained the paste from an online offer that was open to all and I bought the meatballs.

So - the Blue Dragon Laksa Curry Paste.

Now this is an interesting curry paste, as it is more Thai than Indian.

However, in the "recommended recipes", it involves Madras curry paste - so I was a bit confused.  However, the paste itself turned out to be a light, lemongrassy, gingery kind of paste that indeed required some extra "oomph" to make a flavoursome curry.  To my way of thinking, a curry was never meant to be one-dimensional or bland.  However, even with the help of some star anise, madras curry powder, coconut milk, additional chilli and seasoning, this curry stayed fairly two-dimensional.

In fact, towards the end, I had to bail out as I began disliking the flavour intensely.  As I said to son & heir (who enjoyed the curry), when something is starting to make the skin of your back crawl, it's time to stop eating it.

Hubby thought the end result was okay - nothing to write home about.

Looked (and smelled) very promising, at this stage!

I think, if I were ever to try this curry paste again, I would leave out the coconut milk and the madras curry powder and perhaps aim for a lightly flavoured, but quite intensely chilli hot, prawn curry.  I think that the curry powder and coconut milk made it very difficult for the paste to shine through and overpowered the sweet flavours that it contained.  A shame, considering it was one of the "recommended recipes"!

As for the Asda Meatballs, if I ever see one of those on my plate again, it will be far too soon.

Hubby took charge of this one and baked the meatballs in the oven, before including them in a rich red wine and tomato sauce, over spirali pasta.  The sauce was divine - but the meatballs were, to coin hubby's phrase, "meat porridge".  Bleugh!  I'm afraid I like my meatballs to be firm, not squishy.  The flavour wasn't bad at all as they do contain 80% beef, the killer was the texture.  I just thank goodness that he oven baked them and didn't decide to cook them in the tomato sauce - in which case I suspect they'd have dissolved.  ~shudder~  Never again.  

Beautiful sauce - shame about the meatballs!




  1. Hmmm I have to admit I am not too keen on the thought of those meatballs either...
    Still I am always in the market for a curry paste.
    ACC X

    1. Alice, the curry paste was definitely something that could be given a second chance.

  2. There is nothing in this world that would make me buy meatballs, having inherited my mother's world-class recipe, and the curry paste sounds .. pasty. I tend to use Patak's, from a jar, and chuck in whatever else takes my fancy at the time. Tonight we'll be having a fish curry with Patak's Kurma sauce with a bit of added kick from some smoked paprika I have. I can hear it calling to me from the ingredients cupboard ... *sigh*

    1. I do agree regarding the meatballs, Laura, but we thought that if they were okay it would serve as an almost-instant dinner for those nights when cooking seems like far too much work. It was definitely worth a try - but I'll stay with my home made meatballs, thank you very much. LOL

      Patak's always used to be my curry paste of choice, as you can always rely on them to do what they say on the jar.

  3. Meat porridge?? YUK!

    I have a large bag of IKEA meatballs still in the freezer. Never been brave enough to try them!

    1. Well, I'm not sure how reliable IKEA food is in comparison to Asda (who aren't the best in the world, by a long chalk), but at current rate of progress - I'd bin 'em! LOL Leave room for something worth having! :)

  4. Hi Jenny, ....what can I say, these things are aliens mascarading as curry. I need to get Blue Dragon (premier foods plc the brand owner) asda to a leaf out my book! ....Jenny I'll need send you one of my other masalas ( fresh curry paste) for you to try out. For those unfamiliar with my creations take a peak at www.curryfusion.net

    1. I know, I know - but I'm always hopeful that one day one of the big brand owners will come up with a curry paste that is a great one. I felt as though this one had been anglicised beyond the point of redemption - and that "recommended recipe" was just the pits. Oh my goodness yes, if you could get someone like Asda to stock your masalas, just think how fantastic that would be - for curry, for you and for the consumer!

      I'd feel a bit bad about accepting another masala from you, as I haven't been back and bought any. The problem I've found, though, is that they are just a bit too pricey for me. I have to tot up the entire price of making a curry - and if one of the basic ingredients is pricey, it cuts down what I can spend on the meat (or fish). It's a difficult juggling act.

      For those of you who enjoy a really authentic curry though - do try Bipin's Masalas, as they are out of this world. :)

  5. Replies
    1. I assume you are talking about trying the Curry paste, Fargo. I guess if you keep the curry very light, fresh and with prawns or a lightweight fish and step up the chilli by a factor of thousands, it might work. Let me know if you try!

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