Our Green Chef boxes don’t just get out of bed beautiful. A lot of rigorous testing goes into those weekly packages. We’ve already talked about the planning it takes to keep our fresh, organic produce and meats at peak conditions when they reach your door. This week, we want to show you the pride our home testers take in ensuring your overall experience is the best it can possibly be. Because let’s face it, every choice we make—from the quality of food to the number of steps in a recipe—is made with you in mind.
Meet Rachel. When she’s not performing as a princess at children’s events, delivering singing telegrams, singing jazz in clubs, or being a holistic life coach (we know, we kind of want to be her best friend too), she’s going through Green Chef boxes with a fine-tooth comb and sharing valuable feedback. Below Rachel talks about her life as a Green Chef recipe tester:
Tell me about the process of a recipe tester.
Every week I typically get a box of three recipes. We have a set list of questions designed to analyze every aspect of the recipe. We talk about how the products arrive, or if something’s missing, or not prepped properly. (After all, Green Chef is your sous chef.) We go over if things could be packaged in a way that makes it easier for customers.
We get an email with the written recipe, and we critique the entire recipe in and of itself, down to sentence structure. We give feedback on all the different equipment we end up using. We see if there’s a way we can shorten the steps or rearrange the steps so that we can use less equipment. We talk about how easy the recipe is or, if it’s difficult, where it’s difficult and how much time it takes.
Then of course we get to test all the things about the actual meal itself. If it’s wonderful, what parts we like and what would we change. It’s every single, little thing.
Do you have a culinary background?
I don’t, but I’m really passionate about food. I used to have a job working as a cruise ship entertainer and traveled around the world for four years. While I was working on the ship, I didn’t have very much control over what kind of food I was being served. At first I really enjoyed it. It was delicious vacation food, and I got to try lots of different kinds of cuisine. Then I started to watch documentaries.
That’s when I started learning about lots of disturbing things about food and food quality. It really started to change how I felt about eating on the cruise ship and actually caused me a lot of anxiety to not have any control or idea about what kind of food I was getting or where it was coming from. It was one of the big reasons I ended up leaving ships. I wanted to have that control again.
As soon as I left, I just started cooking like a madwoman. I loved it. I just loved it. It was very important to me to find really good quality, organic ingredients, and really lovely recipes to cook.
What do you feel is the most important aspect of a good recipe?
First and foremost, having really great food to work with is a really important part of it. That’s definitely first. Having a lot of variety is important, especially if this is going to be the way you get a lot of your meals every week. That’s a huge thing Green Chef provides. I’m always astounded. They always have ways of keeping it fresh and interesting. I feel like I get to try so many different kinds of things from all different cuisines from all over the world. It’s just wonderful.
And I feel like it’s important to make it easy. The most ingredients that I’ve ever had are maybe ten. They try not to make much equipment or time necessary. I get the feeling that they try to keep it around 30 minutes. I feel like I always take a little bit longer, because I take my time and enjoy it. I mean, why not?
I definitely feel like those are the most important things. The fact that they’re organic, and they meet so many different dietary needs that people are looking for. I’m gluten-free with an emphasis on paleo right now, and they can accommodate that. I’m really grateful to be able to have that quality of food with such ease.
What is your favorite part about your job?
I really like inviting friends over for dinner and treating them to an absolutely amazing meal and having that be my job. That’s my favorite part. Knowing that every single week I’m going to eat something amazing. I’m eating healthy food. Getting to take really good care of myself, take good care of the people in my life, and, in doing that, I’m helping them. Sometimes I have to pinch myself.
It’s really quite fun for someone like me. I get to use so many different kinds of skill sets to really get in-depth and make sure they put out a product that is to their standards, which I personally feel, after having so many of these recipes, is a really high standard of product. I’m very proud to get to work for this company.
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