Leon – Sicilian Chicken Meatballs Little Hot Box

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Leon is chain of restaurants that was set up in 2004 and currently has 35 stores. It’s motto is that it serves ‘naturally fast food.’

I visited the Leon branch situated in Birmingham Grand Central station today…I was so happy when I found out that Leon was coming to the city via this newly-built station. For me, it has realized the exact remit which its founders set out to fulfil. They wanted to give people access to nutritious, yet tasty, fast food which they did not feel was readily available on the market. In the last year or so I have tried a few different things and I have always thoroughly enjoyed what I have eaten, as well as feeling a sense of satisfaction that it is good for me too. Along with the superfood salads and green shakes, they do things that are not typically healthy; for example a chicken burger, but the point is that it is probably healthier than a comparable chicken burger from another fast food eatery. So if you are craving a chicken burger this would be a good place to go. This is in line with my own personal philosophy…you should not deny yourself things that you crave. Eat them less and have a healthy side dish and drink with it. So rather than a chicken burger with fries and a fizzy soft drink…a chicken burger with a side slaw and a carrot, apple & ginger juice (or whatever other combo appeals to you) is a less guilty way of indulging in that burger. Plus the actual burger here will be better for you; it doesn’t taste processed or greasy. Anyway, enough of burgers…I haven’t even had a burger from there recently, I was just using that as an example..

The thing I really love is their hot boxes. I have tried a few, but my current favourite is the Sicilian Chicken Meatballs Little Hot Box…which is the one I have devoured on both my last two trips to the restaurant.

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They do not do the big version of the box with the chicken meatballs, I do not understand why, but oh well. It is 5-6 lightly-spiced chicken meatballs in a tasty tomato sauce with a generous splash of pesto and a side of brown rice…finished off with a garnish of fresh coriander. I find it extremely moreish and delicious; it is not overly filling though so it is probably a good idea getting something else with it. I got the fresh slaw as a side and together I did find it enough to satisfy my appetite.

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The slaw is really fresh tasting, it has hardly any sort of dressing on it (which probably means it is really good for you!) It is nice and crunchy, adding another dimension to the meal. However, it is a bit pricey – it was £2.35 to eat in.

The meatball box was amazing and I would definitely get it again. I will probably try something else next as I am sure that there will be other things on the menu that will be  equally phenomenal. As fast food goes, this is definitely pricier than your average choice (around £8-£10 with a drink) but I guess the fresh ingredients come at a premium and ultimately you get what you pay for.


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