Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Make Ahead Meals

I'm curious about these "make ahead meals" places that are popping up all over. Have you heard about them? Apparently you can go and prepare your own meals to take home, or stop in and pick up something already prepared to cook at home. My sister went to Let's Dish in the Boston area. She prepared 12 dinners (each feeds 6) to put in her freezer and use throughout the month. She put together things like mozarella stuffed meatloaf, raspberry chipotle pork tenderloin with toasted barley pilaf and chicken with sun-dried tomato pesto suace. Her report was very positive. She said the ingredients are fresh and good quality (for example they use a lot of fresh herbs as opposed to dried), the prep was fun and the meals tasted really good. There is a Let's Dish in Scarsdale, Super Suppers in New Rochelle and Sip and Supper is opening in October on Main Street, just down the hill from me. Read more about them in the Westchester area here. Dream Dinners, Dinner A'fare, Dinner My Way all have multiple locations (mostly in the west and midwest). Check out this site for an extensive list of meal preparation stores (some don't let you prepare your own meals). Although prices vary, it seems to be more expensive than planning and shopping on your own (approx. $3.50 per serving), but less expensive than a restaurant meal. I can see a lot of uses for this; taking dinner to a friend, having a nice dinner at home with your spouse, having something in the freezer for last minute meals. Most places I read about also cater to party groups. I like the idea of cooking with my friends while accomplishing something very practical.

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