Friday, May 13, 2011

Critique: Banquet’s Chicken Finger Meal

First off and for clarity, this meal is apparently offered in two 'dollar-a-box' versions. You have your choice of either French fries or Mac n Cheese. I elected to try the Mac n Cheese side on the theory that in no way would I be happy eating a micro serving of fries. Like a Lay's potato chip, you can't eat just one or even a few!

In a similar vein to other reviewers, I was struck by the offering of the brownie. A true rarity in the world of TV dinners, especially cheapies like the ones I tend to eat. In the picture on the box it looks really, really big. I could hardly wait to get my mouth around that puppy. (My only concern was whether I could eat it all at one sitting).

Then, there is the little pile of macaroons sitting in the other side compartment looking like decapitated slugs. I used to eat these a lot  in college when I couldn’t afford better food. Now, decades later, I’m still in the same predicament mostly due to ‘Obama-ecometrics’. I’ve got money, mind you… it just isn’t worth much anymore. I gazed at them for a second more, sighed, and then moved on to main entree.

The ‘chicken fingers’ are the main focus of this meal. There are three of them big boys just a lying there waiting for their chance to shine. According to the directions, you are supposed to ‘rearrange’ these guys half way through the cooking process. In my mind, this opened the door to all sorts of creative (read as perverted) arrangements. This time however, I settled for just moving them around a bit with my fork. To my eventual happiness, I opted for a bottle of BBQ sauce in which to dip them.

So, a few minutes after doing the microwave thing, I had my steaming repast neatly arranged between my fork and my bottle of sauce. For what it’s worth, the Mac and cheese was pretty decent. Not enough there to really matter much, but palatable.  The fingers tasted mediocre, (that BBQ sauce I added really helped), but the brownie… Uh, how can I put this? The brownie sorta sucked! It just didn’t want to be eaten! It was entrenched. I had to dig it out of its compartment with my fork in a manner reminiscent of removing barnacles from the side of a ship. And, the harder I worked at it, the more it disintegrated.

The brownie not withstanding, I gave this meal a six on a scale of ten. Once again, like so many of the other meals by Banquet, it’s good for those times that you don’t want to cook. Then, after you eat it, you remember why you still might want to take a class on cooking in the future.

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