Are you ready for a post filled with Italian foodie goodness? Good. Because that’s exactly what you’ve got here.
Italian food is hands down my favourite cuisine. I’m sure I’m not alone here, right?
The lovely people at Marks & Spencer have created a delectable new collection of Italian dishes that are super quick and easy to prepare, yet full of flavour and beautiful ingredients. These are meals I can totally get on board with. Whether it’s a quick but yummy midweek meal or a little Friday night treat to enjoy alongside a glass of wine, these are just perfect.
M&S understands that not every night can we be slaving away in the kitchen cooking from scratch, yet we still want good quality food that tastes great. The new Italian collection is all about bringing restaurant quality food to our dinner table at home, with top notch ingredients.
The new meal collection was created off the back of months of research across Italy, to ensure the authenticity of the dishes… and oh my, do they taste great!
Ian and I were treated to a few of these dishes to try, courtesy of Marks & Spencer, and we are most certainly grateful. They even threw in a few extra Italian treats too, which I’ll talk about later in this post…
First we tried the Scallop, Pancetta & Pea Linguine meal. Each bowl of the linguine serves one, so we shared this between us, as well as the Walnut & Gorgonzola Ravioli, and added the Cheese & Pesto Flatbread to the mix too. What a feast!
The Pea, Pancetta & Linguine meal was very impressive and took just 3 minutes to cook in the microwave. The flavours were lovely and they certainly don’t skimp on the amount of scallops you get, which is often the case with meals like this from other places – the balance of ingredients was just right. Definitely a meal I’d opt for again and I’m sure seafood loving Ian would agree!
Now, the ravioli might not look impressive visually, but don’t be fooled. As much as I loved the linguine (scallops, yum!) ..my favourite out of the two meals we tried that evening, was the Walnut & Gorgonzola Ravioli. This is packed full of flavour and so moreish! The little pieces of walnut inside were so nice, and really gave it added texture too. It was just so good, I loved every flavoursome bite. This is definitely getting purchased again. The ravioli took just 4 minutes in a pan to cook (or 5 minutes from frozen).
The Cheese & Pesto Flatbread was such a treat too, and great to have on the side with these meals. It definitely had a gorgeous pesto flavour to it, which worked so well with the cheese flavour. I loved the texture of this – slightly crispy on top and sumptuously soft inside. It took just 7 minutes to heat this up in the oven.
With this meal, we enjoyed the bottle of Baracca & Fossoldi Chianti, which is a Marks & Spencer Italian red wine. I’m relatively new to drinking red wine and I found this wine to be so smooth and really easy to drink. I genuinely enjoyed it, and I cannot say that about a lot of red wines.
It felt like such a treat to be sitting there together on a Saturday night, with a gorgeous meal that took just minutes to cook and a lovely bottle of red.
The following day, we tried the Fresh Tagliatelle mixed with the Chunky Vegetable Pasta Sauce and enjoyed this along with the Parmesan Ravioli.
Another day…another beautiful and quick to cook M&S Italian meal! The fresh tagliatelle was lovely, so much nicer than the usual dried pasta we use and took just 3 minutes to boil. 3 minutes!! Amazing. The chunky vegetable pasta sauce was deliciously tomatoey and perfect to go with the tagliatelle – I bet this would be great to go with something like king prawns! The chunky vegetable pasta sauce was certainly tasty and featured veg such as courgette and pepper. This took just 3 and a half minutes in the microwave. We topped this dish with the parmesan that was provided to give it a little bit of a cheesier edge. Yum!
Again, the ravioli blew me away. The parmesan ravioli was sooo good! The cheesy flavour was perfectly balanced and not too powerful, meaning you can eat piece after piece without it being sickly or too much. It was perfect. I swear I’ll be popping back to Marks & Spencer tomorrow to pick up these packs of ravioli straight away. I’m so impressed! Ian and I cook tortellini (similar to ravioli) all the time when we need a really quick meal – especially on evenings when we’re heading straight out to the theatre. I think it’ll be ravioli next time instead…
Now… once you’ve enjoyed your Marks & Spencer Italian meal, it’s time for a sweet treat. Marks & Spencer kindly gave us a box of their Italian Dessert Chocolate Assortment and through this kind gesture, we have discovered one of our favourite EVER chocolates!
The assortment features a mix of the following three chocolates… Budino, Tiramisu and Stracciatella… with the latter being one of the best chocolates on the planet. Ian and I have already decided that we will 100% be buying another box of these to enjoy at Christmas time and I won’t be surprised if we end up gifting boxes of these to loved ones too!
Here’s what to expect inside the box…
Budino – “This classic Italian chocolate dessert is re-imagined with a deliciously intense dark chocolate truffle encased in a crisp dark chocolate shell.” Tiramisu – “The most famous of Italian desserts, this chocolate twist is a milk chocolate shell hiding a creamy chocolatey coffee centre.” Stracciatella – “A smooth milk chocolate shell encasing a delicate white filling with crunchy cocoa pieces. Inspired by the classic ice cream from Northern Italy.”
Thank you sooo much to Marks & Spencer for allowing us to discover and share this brilliant new collection of Italian meals. We were so impressed with how super quick everything cooked and how wonderful it tasted. We’ll definitely be popping back in store to try out the rest of the collection very soon… and to buy more of those chocolates!
*Marks and Spencer gifted me these meals in return for an honest review. All my thoughts are mine as always.