This was last night’s dinner menu: roast chicken with creamless cream corn and roasted herbed mushrooms and roasted swordfish wit Meyer lemon risotto, courtesy of a new meal delivery service, plated.com. The picture does not do the meal justice. The swordfish was moist and succulent, the creamless corn was creamier than you’d believe and the roasted mushrooms were to die for.
The cooking was fun. I had my two sons to serve as sous chefs… well, technically, I was their sous chef, and they shuffled things in and out of the oven and patiently tended the risotto on the stove… and the cutest assistant sous chef ever:
The best part of the whole experience — outside the eating part, of course — was that I didn’t have to go out hunting for the ingredients. They showed up at my front door Wednesday afternoon, looking like this:
In short, the box contained everything I needed to prepare two plates of each meal except 3 tablespoons of olive oil and 1 tablespoon of butter.
The box of yummies came from plated.com, a New York outfit that works with chefs to develop weekly menus, sources all the fresh ingredients, packages them complete with recipe cards and ships them to your door once a week. And, they deliver in Worcester.
Now, normally, I wouldn’t even think of something like this, but apparently Plated.com thinks I have enough Klout to rate a freebie tryout of their menu service. If I were paying for it, it would have cost $14 a plate ($12 a plate with a $10 monthly subscription), which is way more than I’d typically spend for a dinner at home, but comparable to a restaurant meal, and a whole lot more fun. And, true confession time: I’ve been known to drop $50 on takeout (a few times a month in all honesty), not because I don’t have time to cook, but because I don’t have time to shop. So Plated.com works nicely for me. I’ll probably keep the subscription and order 4 plates (the minimum order) a couple of times a month.
Here’s the thing. Plated sources all of their ingredients locally — in New York. I’ll bet some entrepreneur in Worcester could pull together a coalition of local chefs, farmers and other food providers in Central Mass and do a totally local version of this. In fact, one of the local CSAs could totally distinguish themselves by adapting this kind of concept: sign on a couple of local chefs to develop recipes for the CSA package, print up the recipes, do weekly deliveries and voila — Worcester taste delivered straight to your door. If someone does it, I’m totally in.