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Wednesday 18 April 2012

Iceland Ultimate Snacks Beef Burrito

Considering that I've tried a Findus Chicken Fajita Wrap and was not exactly impressed, and that I've tried Iceland's Ultimate Snacks Beef Yorkshire Pudding Wrap to similar effect, the odds of this being any good were on the slim side. Frankly, I'm surprised I bothered to try it.

But I did. And I'm glad I did.

Here's the thing: My biggest beef (har har) with the U.S. Yorkshire Pud wrap was the singular lack of beef. Based on my experience of this beef burrito, that would be because it's all in here. There must be a great store of shredded beef, and the Yorkshire Pud wrap ended up pulling the short straw and got what little was left over at the end.

Here, on the other hand, you have a wrap which is almost literally bursting with shredded beef. It's actually rather strange when you consider the other ingredients: green peppers, red peppers, spicy beans and rice could all - and, in many cases, would all - be used as fillers to reduce the amount of beef involved. In fact, since the packaging actually lists the percentages of each of these ingredients, it's surprising to see that the beans and rice are the primary component. Each mouthful I took really wanted to tell me a very different story.

That's not to say it's all good. In spite of the funky plastic wrapper that expands as its contents are cooked (clearly some super-scientific material that aids the cooking process by ensuring an even distribution of the microwave radiation), the wrap itself tends to dry out where it's bunched up and go soggy and tear at its thinnest points. Furthermore, the beef, while plentiful, is exceptionally plain. It clearly has not been marinaded in any way (despite the ingredients listing it as 'Cooked Mexican Style Shredded Beef' which would tend to imply different), and Iceland are expecting their 'Chipotle Chilli Salsa (8%)' to provide flavour where the spicy beans and rice are not sufficient. Sadly - though, let's face it, predictably - this tactic fails.

It's almost as if the salsa - which isn't really a salsa anyway, since it has the consistency of HP Sauce - is just squeezed on top of the fillings, from a tube or bottle, once the burrito is assembled and before it's folded into a wrap. Had it been mixed up, just a little, the flavour of the salsa would have been more prevalent. As it is, you're only going to get a very slight salsa hit on the beef alone, and the rice and beans are often overwhelmed by the plainness of the beef otherwise.

Still, for a mere £1.50, this has to rank as one of the better products in the Ultimate Snacks line, if not right alongside their Sausage and Egg Muffin, then certainly not too far behind.

(Addendum 19/4: Also in this line is a chicken burrito which is just as good in terms of the meat-to-filler ratio, but the chicken seems properly seasoned, and tastes far better than the rather weak beef in this version.)

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