A Dream Dinners Experience

Tiffany (a friend of mine) and I had our first Dream Dinners experience today. We arrived a few minutes late, so most of the others had already jumped into preparing their meals. We were also the only "new" customers, so it was probably better we were there a few minutes late if we weren't going to be early.
We were welcomed, and one of the employees explained about where we'd find our recipe packets, and also where to stash our purses. We were encouraged to each select a shelf in the cooler, and then we were walked over to the aprons and sink. From there, the employee walked us through the first recipe. It was fairly easy, and I loved that they have containers for the bags. You open the bag, place it into a container, and fold down the edges, so that if you splash on the edges, it simply goes into the inside of the bag.
The first recipe was Pulled Pork BBQ sandwiches. The recipes are displayed with little stands, and in addition to having the amount of each ingredient to add, they had colored squares next to each, indicating the quantity and number of times to use the measuring utensil. Incredibly simple to prepare, and I loved the measuring cups that you use to measure the liquids. The spices, powders, and other dry ingredients had color-coded measuring spoons or cups making it very easy to figure out which one to use for each ingredient.
The spices were dried spices, not fresh in most cases, but considering that I use them at home for convenience, I can't complain. The meats were, in most cases, frozen. Some of the veggies were frozen, as were some of the pastas, while others were not.
The recipes were very easy to follow, and the ingredients for each recipe were very easy to locate in each station. The stations were large enough to allow for one or two people to use each station at a time. It was easy to rotate to each station with minimal waiting, except for the very popular recipes. Ziploc bags were readily available, and for those items that were placed in pans, the pans were well-stocked and right by each station.
The only confusion came when we were close to ready to pay. We were supposed to each receive a free chef-touched entree, but that wasn't indicated in our order paperwork. Thanks to my phone, I was able to pull up the email, and we were allowed to select our two entrees. In addition to our free entrees, we received a small pineapple upside down cake as a surprise.
They packed up our orders for us, and did keep it straight between the two of us. I paid for everything while Tiffany was finishing her last meal. We selected our meals for next month, and selected our date for July.
We each have a menu sheet for our fridge, to see what we have in the freezer. We can then cross off each item as we use them.
I've decided that I'll still need to take care of side dishes for each meal, but at least those are very easy. They do offer the option of buying side dishes as well, but the prices were very steep for those. It's far easier to swing by the grocery store each week, pick up some veggies, and have those as sides, rather than their side dishes.
I did manage to cram all of the bags and pans into the basement freezer, without having to sacrifice anything, although I'll still probably take additional food into work on Monday.
I'm looking forward to trying the first of the entrees next week. I'll post my selections for July in the next few days, along with my experiences with each meal as we try it.

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