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Thursday 22 October 2015

Iceland Let's Eat American Loaded Burger with Pulled Pork & BBQ Sauce

One of the guilty pleasures of the occasional evening when my girlfriend goes out is the option to eat something quick and dirty. More often than not, I've tended to pop to one of the local takeaways, or the local KFC but, since the latter recently gave me a case of food poisoning that lasted through at least half my recent holiday to Chicago, I'm starting to think better of all that.

Yet, still, the urge to have something quick and dirty is strong, almost undeniable... and so, while trawling my local Iceland for something vaguely sensible (their Pizza Pala range, while currently small, is worth a look), my wandering eye alighted upon a selection called Let's Eat American. Having only recently been in that very country, you can imagine my curiosity was piqued. There's quite a variety of products in this line, but there's nothing quicker or dirtier than a burger that you cook in the microwave.

Nothing, that is, other than a burger with pulled pork slapped on top that you cook in a microwave.

The product comes in a (frankly, oversized) cardboard box containing two separate bags - one with the burger and pork in a plastic tray, the other with the ready-cut sesame seed bun - which must be irradiated separately, the former taking four minutes, the latter a mere thirty seconds. After that, it's just a case of opening the bags, removing their contents, and throwing them together.

The result is, naturally, nothing like the picture on the box. For starters, the edges of the burger/pork crisp up and stick to the sides of the tray, so it doesn't look as moist or appetising as the promotional image. There's also some weird, gelatinous stuff in there which I generously presumed to be some sort of cheese component. The packaging does describe the contents as "A cooked quarter pounder beefburger, topped with a BBQ flavour sauce, pulled pork, fried onions and grated red Cheddar cheese", but it's clearly a miserly quantity of cheese that ends up as a mildly disturbing goop that's not even plentiful enough to ooze convincingly... it just sort of lurks, looking unappetising. And, if there are fried onions in there, I can't say I encountered any... but then, in all honesty, I can't say I encountered anything "BBQ flavour" either.

The pork itself is not bad, but it certainly lacks flavour - and not just the BBQ flavour of the questionable sauce. The texture is good and, for something that's been microwaved from frozen, it was nice to see it didn't turn out too soggy or too dry - microwaving frequently goes one way or the other, and it's very difficult to fine-tune the timings for a better result. The burger, meanwhile, was decidedly average for this type of product... which is to say of limited flavour, dubious texture, and with a quantity of gristle/bone flecks sufficient to make the likes of me wary of the next bite.

That said, for a mere £1.50, it's not offensively bad - the burger is certainly a decent size (slightly larger than the bun, in fact) and the quantity of pulled pork is reasonable - but given the underwhelming flavour and the typically rubbery nature of the microwaved bun, this isn't a product I'll be picking up again in a hurry.