The Tipping List
Guide to a Romantic Night In
Tips from The Clover Hostess on how to have an inexpensive date without even having to put on shoes
Is the economy putting a damper on dining out and other romantic outings? Well fear not, romance doesn’t have to be expensive. What’s more romantic than a night in together? And you know the old adage about the way to the heart being through the stomach … Cooking at home is a great way to show off your domestic skill set while creating an evening you can be proud of.
Even if you don’t know how to turn on your oven or what a saucepan looks like, this guide will give you the basics on how to maximize the skills you do have because The Clever Hostess loves to indulge every reason to celebrate.
The Clever Hostess Guide to a Romantic Night In:
1. Keep portions small. A dinner date is no time for a heavy, filling meal that bloats the belly and puts you in a food coma. Consider foods that are flavorful and make for good leftovers. You’ll want to have something on hand to eat late night.
2. Wear an apron. Not only will it keep your pretty date outfit stain-free, it is also a very cute way to show your effort without bragging.
3. Set the plans in advance. Lead time will show that you are putting thought into your evening, but it will also give you time to find out from your date if there are any foods they absolutely won’t eat.
4. Take the time to clean your place and set a nice table before your date arrives. China, napkin rings, wine glasses, fresh flowers, and candles are all small touches that convey thoughtfulness.
5. Plate everything in advance. If your main course needs to warm, preheat the oven to 350 degrees and shut it off. Keep dishes in the warm oven and your food will be a perfect temperature when you’re ready to serve.
6. A taste of chocolate is the best dessert. A low maintenance chocolate dessert is perfect. Consider chocolate dipped strawberries, chocolate pudding or these amazing chocolate brownies.
7. Alcohol should be an accompaniment, not a focus. If a large amount of alcohol is needed to have a good time then you should probably save yourself some effort and just skip dinner
8. Aromatics can make or break the evening. While scented candles are romantic, a good hostess must pay attention to how all the smells commingle. We recommend candles that smell like something edible, ie vanilla, cinnamon, sage, and basil.
9. Don’t fear garlic as long as both of you are eating it. The powerful aroma and heat of the small cloves is said to fuel the flames of passion.
10. Follow recipes closely, set your oven timers, work out your preparation timeline in advance, and always ALWAYS taste before serving. Doing the work in advance will keep you calm and give you a chance to handle any culinary missteps without breaking a sweat.
The Clever Hostess is the authority on do-it-yourself party planning. Stay current with popular party trends and menus by subscribing to The Clever Hostess newsletter at thecleverhostess.com and check out all of our Clever approved recipes at thecleverhostesskitchen.com.