For February, we decided to enjoy our meal as an early Valentine’s Day celebration. I fondly remember the years when Honey and I would set a special table in the den after the boys were tucked in bed on Valentine’s Day, praying they actually stayed in bed. And then the years when they could stay up with us, but we enjoyed simpler things like heart shaped ravioli and heart shaped pizza. I’d carefully craft cucumbers with a mini heart shaped cutter, and fashion cherry tomatoes into hearts for our salads. Now that they are teens, they look forward to dining with us over a gourmet meal on Valentine’s Day. (And I am SO happy to have them at my table, no matter the holiday, day of the week or occasion.) I set a beautiful table for our candlelit dinner and, I must admit, it is so much more fun to do this knowing I don’t also have to make the meal!
Each meal contains a salad, bread, entree with sides and dessert, and quick heat and eat instructions are provided. I loved that everything was prepared with literally zero work, and I was able to do it all at the same oven temp.
While our main course heated, I plated and served the salad. We chose the Mandarin salad with house vinaigrette, and it was absolutely delicious! The meal is packaged so thoughtfully that even the salad container was layered so that as you spoon it onto plates everyone gets a little of everything. There’s no need to even toss it in a separate bowl!
Each entree is portioned to serve two and there are so many to choose from! We loved the sound of the sides Instead of Flowers had paired with the Beef Brisket meal and didn’t change a thing, although that is absolutely an option.
- Slow smoked barbecue beef brisket, served with our own sweet, tangy Georgia peach barbecue Sauce
- Mandarin salad with house vinaigrette
- Sauteed haricots verts with grape tomatoes
- Mashed red skinned potatoes
Everything was delicious and there was just enough for one leftover plate. I thought for sure it would be mine but woke up the next day to a text from John “I call that fantastic brisket. Leave them a good review from me.” No kidding – he used the word fantastic. He’s never given my cooking such a rave review. 🙂
For dessert, we did one with Caramel Apple Bars and one with Lemon Bars. After John called the brisket leftovers, little brother followed up putting his name on the last few bites of the sweets. Again, both were delicious!
In addition to setting the table, my only to-do was to pick and pop a bottle of bubbles. I thought this prosecco rose fit the bill.
You can read about our Filet Mignon meal here. After this second meal, I have four items on my wish-to-recreate list…. the Warm Bacon Dressing and Butterscotch Bars from meal one and the Tangy Peach BBQ sauce and Mashed Red Skinned Potatoes from meal two. YUM.
I cannot recommend Instead of Flowers enough. The entire process has been flawless both times and it is a huge treat to enjoy this type of meal at home without lifting a finger. If you have littles at home this Valentine’s Day, forgot to make a reservation out, or just don’t love dining out on February 14 with overcrowded restaurants and prix fixe menus, use my discount code and enjoy a divine meal at home!
Discount Code for 10% off your order: DIXIEDINNER
Let me know what y’all pick! We are counting down the days to March!