Saturday, October 4, 2008

Saturday Sussie: Dinners Made Easy

Note: Sussies are unexpected treats I stumble across during the week that I share with you on Saturdays.  They are not to be mistaken for "hussies," which are, of course, loose women...  

As I wrote yesterday, this past week I had the opportunity to try out one of those places that prepares nutritional dinners for families who don't always have time to cook.  

Prior to this week, I hadn't really paid much attention to these businesses (which are popping up everywhere these days).  Needless to say, I'm glad for the introduction.  If you are like me, and haven't taken notice, here's how they work:

--You pick out recipes that you like from their menus, including how many meals you want and how many you are feeding.
--Then you visit their kitchen and prepare the recipes with their help.  Preparation goes by fast because they have everything laid out--baggies, food, instructions, etc.  
--The meals are prepared specifically for freezing if you decide to take them home and eat them later (which most people do), although you can taken them home to eat right away, too.
--Most of the meals do require some cooking (they aren't like tv dinners), but it is minimal.  More like "defrost overnight and then grill for a few minutes" as opposed to "nuke for ten."
--If you are on the run and just want something for dinner, they usually have prepared entrees on-hand to purchase on the spot.  
--And most of them will host events.  Like couples date-night, or a baby shower (like the one I attended).  

For working women who are too tired to cook after a long day, this is a great find.  The meals, though pricier than fast-food (but cheaper than dinner-out), are healthy and easy to prepare, and they don't include all those "supplemental chemicals" found in the wares of your grocer's freezer section.  

Or, if you are like me and have more time to cook (but somehow lose all motivation by Friday evening), they are great for storing up a few backup meals for those days you just don't feel like cooking (and save you from spending $40 on pizza delivery!).  

Finally, they are also great for gifting.  Know a new mom who could use an easy, healthy meal?  How about a friend whose spouse and kids are sick?  Or a neighbor who works all the time?  Sometimes the gift of dinner is the best gift of all.

On a technical note, we attended the Dinner Fork, which is a locally owned business, so you won't find one in your town.  But I'm sure a quick Google or phone book search will help you find a similar place (like Supper Solutions) close to you.

Happy Cooking!

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