Thursday, 7 May 2015

LYO Freeze Dried Foods Traditional Polish Saurkraut: A Review

If you look up the process of freeze drying on the internet you will come across the word lyophilisation. This is one of several technical terms for the process. I can only presume that this is where the company LYO Foods and their co-operation partners Lyovit got their names from. They have been producing freeze dried meals since 1998 and received ‘The Gold Outdoor Industry Award’ in 2013. I’ve been looking for a UK supplier for 12 months or so and have finally found one. Base Camp Foods are based in Warrington, to the west of Manchester. I’ve had a couple of orders with the company and experienced their customer service. But more on them later, firstly I will cover the review of LYO Foods Traditional Polish Saurkraut.
 


 
Packaging
 
The packaging for the LYO Foods meals is a little different to the norm. Unlike most companies, other then Bla Band, they seem to be breaking away from the tall narrow packaging, opting instead for a square package. There are two easy open tear notches on each side of the pack, one above and one below the Ziploc.
 
 
 
 
Preparation
 
Using one of the top easy tear notches you rip off the top of the packaging to reveal a Ziploc type seal. In the case of the Traditional Polish Saurkraut you will need 420ml of boiling water (approximately 14.78 oz). First of all, remember to remove the oxygen absorber in the pack. Pour in the water, give it a really good stir and close the seal to keep the heat in. You may want to put this into some sort of cozy, especially if out in the cold. The instructions advise leaving it for 12 minutes, I left it for 15.
 
 
 
 
Taste Test
 
Now comes the important bit, how does the meal taste? I’ve had cold sauerkraut out of the jar, with a different spelling to that on the LYO meal. I can only guess that there are different ways to spell it depending on where you come from. But I’ve never had it hot, so I was expecting something quite sour. I was surprised to find it was a more moderate flavour. There are mushrooms in there, quite large chunks. The meal also contains pork in reasonable chunks also. I imagine the flavour won’t be to everyone’s taste, but I enjoyed it. And it is gluten free as well, a bonus in my book as I am now gluten free.
 
 
 
 
LYO Foods Announcement
 
There appears to have been a change to the LYO Traditional Polish Saurkraut. This is where Base Camp Foods customer service came in. Prior to my last order I received an email from Base Camp Foods informing me of a calorific change to the meal. LYO Foods have apparently had their meals reassessed and found the meal to be calorie deficient.  LYO Foods and Bas Camp Foods had this meal marked as providing 501 kcal. LYO Foods have discovered that because they use very lean pork in their meal, it actually only contains 312 calories. In some ways this is good news as those that like a low fat diet will benefit greatly. But the downside is if you are after a higher calorie count, then you my have to supplement the meal. Base Camp Foods were very gracious in this instance as the change to the product was out of their control. They made arrangements with me in respect to my order to compensate for the change. I won’t go into detail, but they were unaware of any plan to do a review and I was left a very happy customer from their side of the transaction. I’ve included links below.
 
 
 
 
Conclusion
 
At £7.99 a pop LYO Foods won’t be my first choice, but they are at the top of the list and worthy of a try to see if you like them. More than that I believe Base Camp Foods are worth a try. A competitor in the market that I have purchased from in the past seems to have dwindling stocks and a limited choice in the higher quality meals. The choice really is yours.