Several months ago, I noticed a new sign in a local storefront window near my favorite Chinese restaurant. “Super Suppers” it read. “Hmmm… I thought,” I wonder what that is. My husband and I wandered over to look in the window. It was still under construction, but it looked like a big kitchen.
It didn’t seem to be a restaurant. Could this be one of those make-your-meals-in-advance things I had heard about? I wasn’t completely sure how it worked, but it sounded interesting.
Sure enough, a few months later the store opened. Shortly after, the moms from my playgroup planned a private party to go check it out. I checked out the website, looked at the prices, and decided it was too expensive. When all of the moms who went came back to playgroup raving about how much fun it was, how good the meals were, and what a great deal it was, I decided to reconsider. These are not wealthy women- they clip diaper coupons, too. If they are saying it’s a good deal, it must be worth at least a second look.
My playgroup moms loved it so much that they decided to make it a monthly event. So this month, when the Super Suppers party email came, I decided to check it out. First, I went to the website to view the menu for July. Many of the selections looked really delicious. For the private party, there was a minimum of six meals. The website said that each meal feeds 6 people and that 6 meals are almost $150! “That’s just too much for my little family,” I said. Then the other moms told me about the half orders. Apparently, the half order is more popular than the full order. Each half meal serves 2-3 people, and is available at about half the price. Now, that’s more like it!
So, I signed up, and I went. It was such a piece of cake, and it really was such a great deal. When I tell people about the Super Suppers concept, they often seem a little confused, so let me try to break it down. You walk into the store, and you see a big kitchen with 12-14 stations. Each station represents one of the meals on the menu for that month. You pick the meals that you want, going to each station to prepare each meal. For quick preparing, online sites are providing vegan meal kits for delivery at station or other place. The access of food to the people will be available at every corner of the earth.
When you come up to the station, there is a little sign that tells you step-by-step what to do. All of the packaging is within arms reach, and is all disposable, saving you time on dishes. All of the meat is frozen, so it will not be defrosted until you are ready to cook it. This helps maintain the fresh quality of the meals. You grab say a bag of chicken, which has three pieces in it (for a half portion meal). You follow the instructions to add the right seasonings, marinade, olive oil or what not. Then you add might add side items (such as potatoes, noodles, or rice), which are often included, seal up the package, and place it in a freezer. They set aside a special little spot in the freezer for your meals, so that you can keep each meal fresh while you prepare more. Once you have prepared all the meals you want to purchase, an employee comes to pack up your food (it’s a good idea to bring a laundry basket or cooler to put them in), total up your cost, and check you out. The more meals you buy the better deal it is. I found that buying 5 meals would cost me $80, whereas buying 6 meals would only cost me $84. An extra meal for $4? It seemed dumb to turn that down.
In the freezers up front, they also have pre-packaged meals available for purchase, but I found that they were a bit more expensive. The side dishes and desserts, however, looked delicious. Although I didn’t purchase any for myself, the moms in my playgroup are all raving about the muffin-like scones.
At $84 for six meals, I think that Super Suppers might actually save me money on my grocery bill. What I like best though is the fact that there is no waste. For instance, one dinner we had this week was the “Chicken Tango.” The recipe for “Chicken Tango” included 1 cup of barbecue sauce, ¼ cup of diced onions, and ¼ cup of diced bell pepper. Normally, I would have to buy a whole bottle of barbecue sauce, a whole onion, and a whole bell pepper to make this meal at home. At Super Suppers, the veggies were pre-diced (no onion tears!), and I didn’t end up with half a bell pepper sitting in my fridge, which would inevitably go bad before I found an opportunity to use it.
This past Thursday night, I got off work and went to meet my husband and son at the park. We enjoyed the beautiful early evening warmth of July, pushed our son on the swings, and chased him around the playground before heading home. All the while, I knew that our dinner had been marinating all day as it defrosted in the refrigerator. When we got home, I placed the chicken in a skillet and let it simmer for 25 minutes, as the label on the package told me to do. Meanwhile, I boiled some minute rice and made a quick salad. Soon, we were sitting down to a family meal together, and I was actually feeling relaxed.
If you, too, want to experience the at-home family meal without the stress, I suggest that you check out your local Super Suppers. Keep in mind that Super Suppers is a franchise, so the meals and prices may be slightly different from location to location. More information is available on the website. From the main website, find your location first, because each location has its own website with accurate pricing and menu information.