Covid restrictions have largely disappeared, but so has the dogma that one must go out to have a good time. All winter, the nation stayed in learning TikTok dances and watching box sets, while restaurants pivoted to deliver special meals to doorsteps.
As we finally enjoy a relatively normal summer (staying in every night to watch Love Island – oh, the irony) we’ve realised banana bread might’ve been a short fling. But feast boxes? They’re everyone’s type on paper.
This week, we’re sampling Norma’s veggie-laden offering, indulgent enough to tempt the most dedicated carnivore home for a TV dinner…
An ode to Moorish and Sicilian culture spread across three characterful floors, we’re longtime fans of Norma. Headed up by celebrated chef Ben Tish, you can count on a special meal in the Fitzrovia outpost – or let the meal come to you.
OK, sell it to me…
Norma Feasting Boxes combine the finest seasonal ingredients to create dazzlingly colourful dishes. Think free-range chicken spiced ceremonially at the table, followed by cannoli stuffed with roasted peaches and marsala dolce, then drizzled in orange flower water. Just like you usually whip up at home, right?
Do they deliver everywhere?
Available for delivery across the UK, except the Scottish Highlands & Islands, Northern Ireland, Isle of Wight, Isle of Man, Channel Isles or Isles of Scilly.
Deliveries are on Fridays, with orders taken until Tuesday 4pm. For delivery that week, orders placed Wednesday-Sunday will be delivered the following Friday.
So, what’s in the box?
The offering changes monthly, as the chefs have fun dreaming up new flavour combinations. We love this concept because it suits a small crowd (it’s almost impossible for two people to finish everything in one sitting – particularly if they’ve gorged themselves on crisps minutes previously. Oops). Add some extra breads and dips, and you’ve got amazing party bites for three or four.
Another point to note: vegetarians are well-suited, as most of the dishes are meat-free, leaving meat lovers to go wild on the likes of spiced lamb chops, unctuous meatballs or juicy steak – no bothersome sharing required.
The June box is now available, and for £125 you’ll get:
- Two hunks of homemade focaccia, plus Nocellara olives
- Spaghettini fritters and parmesan sauce
- Smoked anchovies with pork fat toast
- Fresh spacatelli pasta with ricotta and pistachio pesto (phwoar)
- Grilled beef bavette, courgettes, mint, chilli and Gremolata
- Summer frittella (light and airy fried pudding)
- Watermelon, chicory and Pecorino salad
- A cannoli kit (what fun!) with whipped Ricotta, candied fruits and pistachios
- Almond biscuits – because you needed biscuits, after all that
Oh, and don’t forget a truly lovely bottle of plonk – this month it’s a Sicilian Costadune Frappato. Yum.
What will I need?
The usual kitchenware – some baking trays, a saucepan… and some booze to kick things off.
Stay on theme with zingy MALFY Gin. We’re obsessed with the whole range, distilled with the likes of Sicilian blood oranges and tangy lemon. Make life really easy with a DIY cocktail box from Create Cocktails At Home – their MALFY La Dolce Vita box provides everything you need to make the perfect Italian aperitivo (they even throw in some breadsticks, yay!).
Anything else I should know?
Your delivery box is accompanied by a cute little card with a QR code, which takes you to detailed cooking instructions for each dish.
Most plates are super simple – you serve the olives and focaccia cold (obvs), while a pasta might need heating through, or lamb chops just a few minutes of flash frying. The difficult elements of dinner parties have been removed, so you can truly kick back and relax. Buon appetito!