Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Dinner at 8pm: September 2013

The entire meal (including dessert and coffee)
only cost us between $25-$30. If we would
have gone out, the meal would have cost us
between $50-$70 with tip, plus another
$40 or so for a sitter. 
This summer has been so incredibly busy that we've had no time for date night "in". With school starting, and the craziness it brings, I decided that Dinner at 8pm was a must! I love how it gives time to cook and chat with each other (without interruption) on a completely different level than when the kids are awake. I will also admit that I enjoy the fact that it's way more economical for us than hiring a sitter and paying for dinner, dessert, and coffee. On September 13th, we will put the kids to bed a little early, make ourselves a delicious dinner, and enjoy some time together without breaking the bank. :) Here is our delectable menu for the evening. By the way, everything except the rice and frozen yogurt will be prepared on the grill so the kitchen will be quiet, which helps the kids to fall asleep faster.
AppetizerFlatbread with caramelized onions, fresh basil, and goat cheese - ended up making a sun-dried tomato, basil, and goat cheese flatbread, which I will link to once I finish the recipe post

Accompaniments ~
Dessert - Grilled honey cinnamon plums and homemade vanilla frozen yogurt - opted for grilled chocolate cake as the plums this week left much to be desired (about $2 each)

Coffee - Decaf coffee with a little cream and sugar was the perfect compliment to our dessert

Now here is the procedure for the day...
  1. You can prep and/or make a lot of your ingredients ahead of time, i.e. the veggies for the wild rice casserole, the caramelized onions, the flatbread, the frozen yogurt, etc. So will start by doing as much as possible during  rest time, which lasts about an hour).
  2. I will gather all my ingredients while the kids eat supper.
  3. While the kids get their jammies on I will begin cooking the wild rice casserole.
  4. Then, as soon as they are settled in bed, Jared and I will start all out cooking. Nothing needs to go on the grill for more than 20-30 minutes so we should be ready to eat by 8:30pm at the latest.
A Side Note ~
This entire evening is meant to be a time for you and your spouse to connect and enjoy each other's company. If you have odd schedules or don't really enjoy the adventure of cooking together, feel free to order takeout, use a frozen meal (I would highly recommend Buitoni's Meals for Two in the freezer section), or even make it a "Dessert at 9pm" night. To see the original "Dinner at 8pm" (where I got my ideas), check out a bit of sunshine. If you'd like to take a look at some of my previous Dinner at 8pm nights, take a peak here.

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