A way for busy families to eat right

Sunday, February 25, 2007

Meals in Thyme offers solutions for busy families in the Cape Girardeau area that want home-cooked meals.

With Meals in Thyme, a customer can spend only one or two hours per month to prepare six or 12 entrees. These entrees can be frozen and cooked later at the customer's convenience.

The process is simple. A customer chooses a session from Meals in Thyme's calendar and makes a reservation at least 48 hours in advance. He or she then selects six or 12 entrees, which each serve four to six people, from the company's menu. Half-portion meals, which serve two to three people, are also available. The menu changes monthly.

The customer then places an order, with prices ranging from $69 to $199.

At each event, 15 entree stations are set up. Each station includes a brief set of instructions for preparing the entree. All the ingredients are provided. The customer may visit the stations in the order he or she wishes. It usually takes about 10 minutes to prepare one entree. Gloves, aprons and containers are provided by Meals in Thyme.

When the customer is finished, he or she leaves with six or 12 entrees that are labeled with cooking instructions. Each customer needs to bring his or her own cooler in which to carry the meals home.

For those who are too busy to visit a session, Meals in Thyme can prepare the meals as well for $25 per meal package.

February's menu at Meals in Thyme includes barbecue pulled pork, pan-roasted stuffed chicken breasts and Swiss chicken bake.

Meals in Thyme also offers Thyme to Go, fresh-made meals available for carry-out. Customers pick up entrees such as vegetable beef soup, chicken tortilla soup and chicken spaghetti. Thyme to Go is open for pick-up from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. and from 4 to 6 p.m. on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday. Casseroles serve four to six people and are $11.50. Dumplings and soups are $6.75 per quart.

Descriptions of each entree, including nutrition information, can be found at the company's Web site, www.mealsinthyme.com. The Web site also features a schedule of upcoming sessions.

Owner-manager Cindy Berry appreciates the devotion of Meals in Thyme's regular patrons. "We've got a nice base of regulars that are very loyal customers," she said.

However, Berry would like to see more people discover Meals in Thyme. "Because it's a new industry, a new concept for people, we've had to do more education," she said. "It's exciting when new people come in."

Meals in Thyme is at 1131 N. Kingshighway in Cape Girardeau. More information is available on the company's Web site or by calling 332-1717.

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