As a member of Tesco Orchard it was time to make use of the vouchers that I had used.
Browsing the ready meals there was plenty of choice but I wanted something to really challenge my tastebuds and settled on a cheese based dish as they are always something that I find lacks in flavour and always tastes more processed than other ready meal dishes.
I chose the Tesco Finest Chicken and Beech Smoke Bacon Pasta Bake which boasted on the packaging to use Italian Tortiglioni pasta with tender chicken and beech smoked British Bacon from outdoor bred pork, in a tangy sauce of Sardinian pecorino and lombardy taleggio finished with a crispy rosemary and sea salt foccacia.
Retailing at GBP3.60 in stores at the time of this review it is a high end ready meal so I was expecting big things in terms of taste.
As I do not own a microwave I had to look at the dishes to ensure that they could be oven cooked, this dish came in a foil tin so was only suitable for oven cooking and claimed to be ready within 20-25 minutes from chilled.
Piercing the film, I placed onto the baking tray and cooked for approximately 25 minutes.
One of my pet hates about ready meals is when you cook something in a tray and you cannot remove the foil when it is cooked and it tears into strips or you end up burning your fingers trying to find a piece that is easy to peel away from the container!
This dish was different, a clear piece at the end of the container that was to be used to peel the lid away and that it did with considerable ease.
I then served into a pasta bowl and set about enjoying this dish.
Although I had high expectations for this dish, somehow Tesco still managed to exceed them, the chicken tasted delicious, so tender and tasty not bland and chewy. The bacon, although I would have liked that to have been a little crisper the promise of Beech Smoked Flavour was not too overpowering and offered a subtle hint as you combined with the other flavours in the dish.
The pasta was tender and the sauce, deliciously creamy and cheesy as if it had just been freshly prepared.
Overall this has been one of the most enjoyable ready meals that I have enjoyed in a long time and as a high end product I think that Tesco have got it just right.