Way back in Feb 2010 I tried out the Bo Luo Pork kit in the Wanchai Ferry range and said that while it was fantastically tasty I'd only buy them as a luxury item instead of a takeaway. I picked this Kung Pao chicken kit up fairly recently and then wondered who I would eat it with. The main person I try these meat based recipes out on is my sister as Ms. NLi10 is a Vegetarian but she isn't a big fan of nuts or spicy food. Instead of replacing the chicken with Quorn I decided that my sister could eat around the peanuts.
The roasting of the peanuts stage of the recipe was probably my favourite part - this is something that I'd never really thought of and another example of the 'recipe book on the box' approach that these Wanchai Ferry meals embody. I'm going to try this with own brand peanuts and other recipes and see how it goes - the texture it added to the meal was both unexpected and great. The smell when cooking was fantastic as well. I continued with the recipe and added my own types of veg instead of those suggested, but it seemed to be a success. The noodles were light and the sauce smelt nicely tangy.
Unfortunately when selecting my audience for the meal I hadn't expected the 'medium' heat sauce to be quite as explosive as it was. My sister is not a fan of hot food, but this was beyond that. I'm happy to eat a nice Madrass curry and have had Szechwan sauces before but this exceeded my expectations and really put the Pow into Kung Pao. My sister managed to eat some of the chicken out of hers and I just about finished mine, but suffered for the experience and could not enjoy as many of the peanuts as I'd have liked before it got the better of me.
I really didn't expect the heat, and it wasn't a great meal as a result, especially not for my 'mild' preferring sister. It won't put me off trying others in the range, but this is firmly a 'hot' and not a 'medium' in my eyes...