Oh boy! Last Monday, Coles supermarkets have launched a new “freshness” campaign, slashing prices on 12 fresh fruit and veg products and promoting it with a very annoying “there’s no freshness like Coles freshness” jingle. According to their major competitor, Woolworths the fresh food people, there’s nothing special about what’s on offer and, considering that out of shoppers with a basketful of similar items on sale from both supermarkets, Woolies customers come out on top budgetwise, the campaign could even be considered misleading. According to Twitterverse, people are finding it pretty annoying, laughable and misleading to say the least. As do farmers.
To be honest, I’ve never bought anything from the Coles’s deli counter because all the products look dry around the edges and don’t even get me started on the sad looking fish. Woolworths is much better at this and I feel safe buying those products there. Fruit and veg? I prefer an extra trip to the local grocer or a farmers market, which we are so blessed with here in Sydney – everything is so much fresher, strawberries are mould free and you get to chat to the producers who get a fair buck for their work.
However, what I have found a clear but a rarely advertised advantage of Woolworths over Coles, which in my books makes Woolworths a better choice for pantry essentials, is their fairly recently launched Macro Wholefood Market range. One such item I discovered is Woolworths’ Macro certified organic meatballs. Yes, they are pre-made , but because they are certified organic, I have the confidence of knowing that nothing harmful has been added to the mix and the meat itself comes from a good source. And they taste pretty good too.
While most of the time I don’t mind spending a good hour preparing a meal, there are times when such an extravagant use of my time is, well, too extravagant and certain pre-made foods come in handy. I still read the labels and pick things that are free of nasties, but at least I know that choosing products from the Macro range will make life a lot easier, and our food choices that little bit more whole.
Organic spaghetti and meatballs
To make this meal, I have used Woolworths’ Macro Wholefood Market range certified organic meatballs and spaghetti. Tomatoes and herbs for the recipe came from our lovely neighbour’s garden, and while not certified organic, they were bursting with so much freshness the kids ate a whole handful on the way home, and were themselves commenting on the wonderful flavour.
For the spaghetti and meatballs:
- 400g pack Macro organic meatballs
- 100g Macro organic spaghetti, dry
- 8 large tomatoes, chopped roughly
- 1 cup of mixed cherry tomatoes, halved
- 2 cloves of garlic, crushed
- 4 sprigs of thyme, leaves only
- 2 sprigs of basil, leaves only
- 1 cup of red wine
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- parmesan cheese
To make the meatball sauce: heat oil in a medium stockpot over high heat. Brown meatballs for about 2 minutes in two batches then remove and set aside. Place the pot back on the stove over medium heat, add tomatoes, crushed garlic and herbs. Stir around to release the juices and flavours. Add wine and meatballs. Cook for another 10 minutes to allow the meatballs to cook through.
To make the spaghetti: cook according to packet instructions.
To serve: divide spaghetti and meatball sauce between your serving plates. Sprinkle with a little flaked parmesan cheese.