I chowed down a sausage roll, a yum yum, a steak bake and a vegan steak bake
Initially published on Wales Online.
Forgive me Britain for I have sinned.
I’ve never been to Greggs.
I moved from France, to the UK, almost three years ago and I’ve never stepped foot inside the popular bakery – much to the horror of my friends and colleagues.
When I first brought up this little know fact at work my colleagues were appalled.
So much so, that they began a long and tiresome campaign to convince me to try it.
It’s not that I had a vendetta against Greggs, it’d just never appealed to me.
Finally after months of peer-pressure I caved.
Two of my colleagues planned out which items I was going to try.
They agreed on a steak bake, a vegan steak bake, a yum yum, and of course, a sausage roll.
When I got to the till my bill was £5.13.
First up, the famous sausage roll
The first thing I tried was the famous sausage roll.
The pastry was by far one of the blandest things I’ve eaten in a while.
It was filling, though.
But much to my disappointment, the whole thing tasted of nothing.
I expected the sausage to have at least some kind of taste.
But taste doesn’t seem to be Greggs’ forte, I discovered as I moved onto the vegan steak bake.
“I am confused,” was my first thought.
Even though the pastry was covered in raisins and the filling looked nutty and gravy-ish, I couldn’t taste any of these things.
During the five minutes it took me to eat it, I couldn’t distinguish any specific ingredients.
It tasted muddled up, like there was no real flavour to it.
Fortunately, the regular steak bake rebuilt my hopes.
One of my absolute favourite British foods is a meat pie.
They’re the perfect winter warmer on a cold day.
The steak bake had all the makings of a meat pie – meat, gravy and onions wrapped in pastry.
Succulent pieces of steak sat underneath perfectly caramelised onions, which added a warm sweetness, nicely balanced by thick gravy.
Just writing about it makes me want to eat another one.
And at £1.50, why wouldn’t I?
Next up I tucked into a yum yum.
I got a sugar rush just from looking at it.
Then I bit into it and an explosion of sugar overtook my senses.
One bite is all I could have as the pastry was overlysweet.
My co-worker insisted it was supposed to be eaten with a cup of tea.
I agreed to postpone my judgment and try it with a cuppa but I reached the same conclusion.
It’s just TOO sweet.
An underwhelming experience
Overall, I’ve found the whole Greggs experience disappointing.
In my opinion the bakery seems to struggle with balancing flavours.
The taste is either non-existent, indistinguishable or too sweet – depending on what you’re eating.
The steak bake was by far my favourite and I’d probably buy another one of those.
“Congratulations, you’re British now!” my colleagues cheered as I took my last bite and screwed up the greasy paper packaging.