An obvious benefit to serving a Michael Angelo’s meal for dinner is the time saved in preparation; just pop a meal in the oven, kick up your feet and wait for the savory smell of comforting Italian food to waft through your kitchen.
While you could spend this time catching up on your Instagram feed or organizing the junk drawer, we’ve come up with eight things you can accomplish, all while waiting for your favorite Michael Angelo’s meal to be ready.
1. Set the table: You don’t need magazine editor dollars to set your table in style. Pleasantly delight your family by creating a simple yet gorgeous centerpiece with your favorite flowers or succulents, add color with bowls of seasonal fruit, use natural materials for a laidback yet fashionable atmosphere and add playful accessories for a vibrant night of fun!
Check out our The Hostess with the Mostess Pinterest board for more inspiration.
2. Ready the drinks: Chill your favorite bottle of wine or make a Sicilian cocktail for the adults with 1 ounce Amaretto, 1 ounce mango rum and 4 ounces of blood orange juice. Just mix all of the ingredients in a glass and fill with ice. Add some sparkling Pellegrino to the table for some non-alcoholic bubbles.
3. Add some green: Mom always told us to eat more veggies. Grill up some of your favorite vegetables to add a simple, delicious and healthy side dish to perfectly compliment your meal. Brush on some virgin olive oil, sprinkle on some salt and you’re all set! If you want to add a bit more touch of Italy, try out Sara’s pesto recipe.
4. Prep the salad: Dress up your side salad with this home-made dressing: In a blender add ½ cup olive oil, ¼ cup mayonnaise, ¼ cup grated Parmesan, ¼ cup minced parsley, 1 tablespoon sugar, 1 tablespoon white wine vinegar, 2 tablespoons black pepper, 1 teaspoon salt, ¼ tablespoon red pepper flakes, 1 clove garlic and the juice of 1 lemon. Blend it all together and toss with your favorite salad greens and veggies right before serving.
5. Bring on the dessert: Our favorite Tiramisu recipe is easier than you’d think. Just follow Sara’s how-to on making a light yet mouthwatering serving of Italy’s most popular dessert.
6. Tidy up: Before the oven dings and your family begins to follow the scent of the delicious meal to the table, start cleaning up the beautiful mess you created. Load the dishwasher and wipe down the countertops so you’ll have a few more minutes for post-dinner family time.
7. Tune it up: Make any mundane day special simply by setting the mood for the night with the perfect playlist. Sort through your family’s favorite artists and compile a few tunes for a night of bonding and laughter.
8. Relax your mind: Take a moment to breathe and relax. You’ve already accomplished seven tasks to create an amazing dinner for your family. Now… it’s ‘me-time!’