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Thoughts from category: things we make

daal do nicely

Lentils? Check.

Chickpeas? Check.

Turmeric roasted cauliflower with fresh spinach and more spices than you can shake a hardy pestle and mortar at?

VPID_high

Check, check and triple check.

All these wonderful ingredients are part of our brand new Indian Daal Curry recipe which is now available in a Sainsbury's or Waitrose near you.

It tastes great with some raita and a bit of naan bread and means you can now technically have your (healthy) curry and eat it.

We're giving away a whole boxful away for you and your mates to enjoy. So to bag yourself a curry night on us, just answer this simple question:

Which animal makes up the title of the Oscar winning movie, Slum___ Millionaire?

a) canary
b) dog
c) gerbil

Post your answer as a comment below by Friday 6th March and we'll pull a winner out the nearest hat next week.

This competition is now closed. Thanks to everyone who entered. We'll pick a winner and announce it here, soon as we find a big enough hat.

master chef (sort of)

"Cooking doesn't get any tougher than this."

Or maybe it does...

Chef

Whether you were a fan of the red, blue and yellow kitchen and the dulcet tones of Mr. Loyd Grossman or it's Gregg and John shouting at each other that tickles your culinary fancy, if you've always dreamed of being a Masterchef, then here's your chance.

Sort of.

We'd like to see how you jazz up your veg pots for an evening meal. In short, we want to crown our very own innocent Masterchef.

All you have to do is add a comment at the bottom of this post, telling us the best veg dish you've ever made (if it involves a veg pot you'll get bonus points) and giving us one good reason why you should be in with a chance of becoming our very own Masterchef.

Then in a couple of weeks we'll draw up a shortlist and ask you to vote for the finalists – we'll ask the top 3 chefs to come into Fruit Towers and compete in our very own version of Masterchef, right here, in our kitchen. The challenge will be to do something magical with one (or more) of our veg pots and a bunch of other ingredients.

We hope you're up for it. In the mean time, here's something to tide you over, in the shape of an example of how to fix up your veg pot real sharp.

Spicy Prawn Thai Curry (with a veg pot)

Take 2 innocent thai coconut curry veg pots

Pots

Search the freezer.

Freezer choices

Choose your additional ingredients.

Extras

Fry up your prawns in some garlic, ginger and chilli.

Prawn fry

Heat up your veg pots in a pan and add a generous squeeze of lime.

Pots in pan

Serve (and then realise you're fresh out of coriander to jazz up the presentation).

Et voila

Await the judge's decision

Looks good

Fork it in

(The obligatory fork shot)

Lime

"I'm getting lime, I'm liking the crunch of those water chesnuts and the plumpness of those prawns.

(pause for savouring)

"You've cooked them beautifully."

Lime lime lime

"The combination is just stunning. But you could add a little something extra. Maybe some coriander. Naan bread. Some more heat, some more sweetness...to really make it sing to me".

You get the idea.

So get those culinary thinking caps on, post your entry as a comment below by Friday 13th February and may the pots be with you.

veg pots - an update

Vpot[1]

It's been a bit busy in veg pot land recently. To be honest, they're selling better than we could have imagined, so most of our time is taken up with making more. But we just wanted to quickly let you know what's happening in a few areas, and reply to all of the comments (mainly in response to this post) in one fell swoop.

Where you can buy them:

- We're in about two thirds of all Waitrose stores. They decide which stores (not us), so if they're not in your local store or they've sold out, please ask a Waitrose person to order you some.

- We're also in a lot of Sainsbury's main stores now (as of 3 weeks ago) and will be in many Sainsbury's Local stores from November.

- We'll be in Tesco from the end of December, and we're working on other places as we speak.

- In Northern Ireland we're currently only in a few stores – Sainsbury's in Forestside, Holywood Exchange, Sprucefield, Newry and Dungannon. We're working on the rest.

Vegan/Vegetarian:

We've had lots of vegans asking us to make a vegan recipe. If you eat honey then you can eat the Moroccan recipe. Otherwise, none of them are suitable for vegans. The good news is we are working on a solution. The bad news is that it may take us a couple of months to get it made and into the shops, but should be out early next year.

Vegetarians - three of the recipes are suitable for vegetarians. The Thai one isn't because it has fish sauce in.

We tried loads of ingredients instead of the fish sauce, because we'd rather everyone could eat it, but it made such a difference to the taste that we stayed with the traditional ingredient.

Some people hadn't seen this on the packaging so we've changed the packaging to make it clear on the top that it contains fish sauce. And we take your point about the 'not suitable for strict vegetarians' comment, that was rubbish, we've changed that too. It should take a month for new packaging to be in the shops.

Dairy-free/Wheat-free:

A couple of you asked for dairy-free versions. The Thai and the Moroccan are dairy-free.

The Thai and the Pea & Rice recipes are wheat-free.

Price:

We're funding a lower launch price to start with because it's a bit cheeky to ask people to pay full price for a product they haven't tried yet. This is also why we put up some sampling stands, which you may have seen in Sainsbury's or Waitrose/John Lewis stores, so people can try before they buy. After this time, the veg pots do go back up to the full price of £3.49. The price is driven by the amount and quality of the ingredients and we don't want to make them worse to make them cheaper. We're going to stick with these products for now, but we'll try to have them on regular offers so you can get some cheaper ones or try new flavours.

Recipe suggestions:

Thank you for all the recipe comments. It seems that people like the four launch recipes on the whole, but we're definitely listening to what you say and we're making some tweaks. We'd better get on with it.

Of course, if there's anything else you need to know about our veg pots, then just post a comment and we'll try to answer.