Dishing up Love

by Rebecca Matheson Ortiz, Tastemaker in Residence

As newlyweds, the hubwub and I do try to eat dinner with each other at least a few times a week. In order to keep our relationship (or dinner habits) from going stale, we often change things up a bit to turn ordinary weeknight supper into a romantic meal for two.
From simple rules to elaborate plans, these four tips are sure to add some spice to meal times with your better half.

1. Put the phones away. Keep them in the other room, leave them at home, designate a specific basket for them—whatever works for you is fine, so long as they’re not being used. So much time spent together is often wasted on electronic devices. Stash them for just a bit and truly communicate, just the two of you—without outside influence—and enjoy the attentive company of the one you love over a hot meal. The romance level skyrockets when you actually take the time to set the world aside and give undivided attention to your special someone.

2. Get creative. Come up with new ideas from table settings to the food itself and try something a little different than the usual daily grind. A picnic in the park with fruit, cheese, fresh bread and a bottle of wine is perfect for a sweet summer lunch that is out of the norm. Another creative idea is to pick a new recipe and cook it together. Variety and doing something new will leave you with great memories and a stronger bond.

3. Go overboard. A bottle of the wine that was served at your wedding or during a special event in your relationship, candle light, a rose-petal strewn table cloth and fine china can all make a big impression. Get cheesy and have fun with it every once in a while. The effort put in to the display will just reinforce the joy of putting effort into your beautiful relationship.

4. Play favorites. With the food, that is. To really make your soul mate feel cherished, find out their favorite things to eat and prepare (or buy) them. Go all out and keep the theme going from the main entrée and drinks to dessert. Nothing says “I love you” quite like a smorgasbord of favorite dishes, as food really is the way to the heart.