There is nothing more genuine and caring than offering to cook a meal for your date.  Whether you are male or female, the effort and thought put into the endeavor is sure to pay high dividends in the relationship, if you do it right. The set up to the dinner is almost as important as the food itself. A great dinner starts with great ingredients much in the same way a great relationship starts with great components such as the little things that are the foundation of whatever you are trying to build.  You have a choice to make here as shopping for the ingredients can also be a great relationship experience as well. A stroll through a gourmet food market, complete with a bit of taste testing can be as appealing as the actual dinner and can give you some great dinner date ideas. It’s a good way to figure out what types of foods your date likes, and a walk through a wine and spirits store will also tell you much about your date.  Shopping together works much better when you are already in tune with the gastronomic preferences of your date and you can also test their tolerance for others things; such as if there is a Chinese section of town complete with ducks, chickens and other formerly living creatures waiting for their turn on the butcher’s block. After all, nothing says I love you better than a tank of Carp or Toads destined for your kitchen.

Make certain whatever you are cooking allows ample time to spend with your date. If you are cooking a five-course meal and all of them require your utmost attention, it will leave you with minimal time together. Even if this is the kind of dinner where you both do the cooking, you want to have some down time as well. It is best in these situations to create a menu that will leave sufficient room for conversation throughout the meal. The actual meal however is not the end all be all of the evening, as other important elements should be taken into consideration as well.

Presentation of the food along with the setting of an attractive table shows your date that you do pay attention to the little things.  Remember, that a great meal and attractive table set up mean nothing if your place looks like a pigsty. Make sure you have spent sufficient time cleaning up your home; this means every room especially the bathroom. No person likes to come into the bathroom of someone they are dating and decides they would rather go to the 7-11 across the street for their needs.  A clean house will always make your date feel comfortable in your home and if they feel comfortable there, it’s a good bet they will want to come back frequently. Two final points to make are to always make the initial dinner something that you have cooked before and are familiar with, the second point is that if your meal doesn’t turn out as you had hoped, have a alternative or plan “B” such as keeping the number of a pricey restaurant with take out service on speed dial!

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