It’s no secret that I’m the cooking novice of the CS Team. What the rest of the team doesn’t know is that I’ve been secretly upping my game in the kitchen with Plated for a few months. It’s a personalized subscription meal service that allows even beginners like me to cook restaurant-worthy meals at home in my own kitchen. So, when Plated asked if we’d like to try out two of their freshest recipes, I jumped at the chance to show off my new skills in the kitchen for the rest of the team. Chanel and I teamed up to make an incredible shakshuka pizza and a chicken caesar panzanella here at the CS Bungalow. Luckily, I now have two more savory recipes in my weeknight easy dinner file. Read on to see how our two recipes turned out, (and Chanel’s reaction to my culinary abilities!).
photography by kate zimmerman turpin
The box, containing everything we’d need for the two recipes, arrived right on our front porch. I couldn’t wait to open it up and show everyone what comes with each Plated recipe.
There are a lot of subscription cooking services out there to choose from, and I have to admit that the well designed look of the Plated website was initially what sold me on giving them a try. (Hey, I am an art director after all!) That pretty branding is carried through all of the packaging, and the recipe cards that come with each recipe are beautiful and collectible.
Since the shakshuka pizza recipe takes approximately 50 minutes, we decided to start with it. Plated’s recipes range from from 20-minute quick prep recipes to full culinary adventures, but they’re all under one hour, which is great for busy working gals like myself!
When I say the boxes come with everything you need, I mean they come with everything. Our shakshuka pizza recipe even came with the parchment paper to put under the dough.
Chanel was amazed at the fact that I now know how to peel an onion. And she gave me a good tip for chopping it — after you’ve peeled it, always start by cutting it “from root to shoot”!
One of my favorite aspects of the Plated recipe cards is that there is a photo for each step. So clutch for beginners and visual learners!
The recipes are very specific when it comes to how long to cook items, which is comforting for a novice cook like me.
Example: It’s not “cook until soft.” It’s “cook until softened, about 3 minutes.”
I have to admit I was pretty excited to roll out some dough, which is something I associate with people who really know what they’re doing in the kitchen. I felt like a total pro!
Chanel worked on making the sauce using a custom spice mix, harissa, garlic, and grape tomatoes.
Did I mention I like rolling dough?
Now for the exciting part — adding the eggs to the pizza. According to Chanel (who is basically a shakshuka expert) this is where a lot of people get tripped up. The Plated recipe walks you through exactly how (and when) to add the eggs so you get a perfect result.
The finished product fresh out of the oven! Shakshuka pizza with za’atar crust and feta cheese. YUM.
Chanel added a sprinkle of parsley to finish off the pizza.
Feeling confident from our pizza production, I was ready to dive into our second recipe: a chicken caesar panzanella with brioche croutons and roasted tomato. The ingredients you get from each Plated box are so fresh (and definitely insta-worthy!).
The second recipe only took us about 35 minutes from start to finish, and I now know how to make my own croutons. That’s one of the best things about Plated — you learn cooking principles that will help you branch out into other recipes from cookbooks, or even inventing dishes yourself.
Our two finished dishes!