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Lillys Table: Delicious Meal Planning/Recipe Site

Every Christmas we wonder "what do we get for people." For a lot of our friends and family the answer is really hard: We may know their interests but not well enough to have meaningful suggestions. Ultimately, though, we feel like we want to give people more time and maybe a little motivation. Time is the one thing that we all need more of.

Fortunately there is a way to do that this year that is compatible with last minute shopping: Gift Certificates to Lilly's Table.

Lilly's Table: Cook seasonally. Eat consciously. Live well.

For about 2 months now we've been using Lilly's Table to help us plan our meals. Every Sunday we wake up, open our computer, and look at what new items Lilly has sent us. The week's recipes are always seasonal and delicious. The interface shows us general nutrition information and some data on how long it will take to make the item.

The weekly menu has an introductory description from Lilly that gets you excited to make the dishes. You read about ingredients that are in season, which meals should come first or second to take advantage of leftover ingredients, and general foody advice.

We go through looking at the recipes and the beautiful accompanying photos and pick out the items we want. At the top of each recipe are buttons to "add to shopping list" and "add/remove from my recipe book"

On the bottom right of the recipe is a spot to indicate things we've made and provide our own notes.

The recipes are mostly private to paying site members and it costs $12 per month.

Why pay when recipes are free on the internet?

Before we knew about this site, we mostly got our recipes from Epicurious or by typing ingredients into the Google search box and seeing what came up. We've found lots of things that way, but compare these two webpages: one from from AllRecipes.com and one from Lilly's Table:

The site is just much prettier to look at, it has no ads (of course) and much less distracting content. When I go to Lilly's Table I'm not there to be inundated with other recipes (and by the way, why is allrecipes.com cross-promoting a hot dog recipe on the page of a butternut squash recipe?).

Looking at Lilly's Table gets us excited to make our food again. It saves us time in shopping and in the kitchen and gives us the inspiration we need to try out new things again.

For more information from Lilly, try the Bella Cuisine blog and Chef Lilly on twitter.

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