Game Night-In + TBL Panzanella

A rainy summer night with a little ingenuity can be a wonderful recipe for date night bliss. Here’s our take on a rainy summer date night-in.

Good Eats (Camaraderie)

Rain or shine, a great summer meal from the Good Eats cookbook is the TBL Panzanella. It’s a Tuscan-inspired dish with a little American fusion. The TBL stands for BLT but that may be copyrighted. It was somewhat light, refreshing, and a delicious summer dish. I am not a tomato person, Britt, however, absolutely loves them! Cook up some bits of chopped bacon and toast a half loaf of French Bread. Cut a handful of cherries tomatoes in half and cook for five minutes in a bit of the bacon grease, which gives you tomatoes that taste like bacon instead of tomato, a meal even Ron Swanson would love! Toss the toasted bread in a bit of olive oil, create a vinaigrette consisting of red wine vinegar, olive oil, salt, and cracked black pepper. Take all the ingredients to the table, and this is key, toss the salad together at the dinner table. There’s a bit of showmanship and Britt is impressed by my rippling triceps. Fellas, you can also wear a tight-fitting v-neck when serving this up…always a bonus. We had fun on this one! Great meal and time preparing it together on a rainy summer night.

Sliced Bread for TBL Panzanelle on 52 For Two Date Night

Sliced Cherry Tomatoes for TBL Panzanelle on 52 For Two Date Night

Sautéed Cherry Tomatoes for TBL Panzanelle on 52 For Two Date Night

Vinaigrette for TBL Panzanelle on 52 For Two Date Night

Combining Ingredients for TBL Panzanelle on 52 For Two Date Night

Finished TBL Panzanelle on 52 For Two Date Night

Good Plan (Initiative)

For this rainy summer night inside, I attempted to pull off the most romantic game night ever! Britt said I succeeded. I pulled out our Christmas lights again, which only takes about ten minutes to find and put up, and then looked through our board games and pulled out a few gems. Scrabble, Monopoly, and Phase 10. This gave us plenty of different options over the course of the night. In our case, we never finished our first game of Scrabble. My first question (below) led a date night tangent that I’ll write about later. Christmas lights always make a normal date night above average, so I try to bust them out whenever I can. Our original plan was to do something fun outside, the rain kept us in, and we had a blast on this rainy summer night!

Rainy Game Night In on 52 For Two Date Night

Good Conversation (Depth)

1. What are the three most romantic love songs you’ve ever heard?

Britt: *Come Away with Me by Norah Jones, Chasing Cars by Snow Patrol, and Iris by The Goo Goo Dolls.

Matt: *Come Away with Me by Norah Jones, You & Me by Dave Matthews Band, The Way You Look Tonight by Eric Clapton

*Come Away with Me for the both of us, it was the first song we ever danced to (at a friends wedding) and it was the first song we danced to at our wedding.

2. What’s the hardest task you’ve ever done to this point in your life?

Matt: A toss-up between installing all the appliances in our house, trying to get a yard with 75% grass instead of 95% weeds, and picking whether or not to go on a family vacation or play in my little league championship game. Compared to Britt, apparently I haven’t had a very hard life. BTW, I went on the vacation instead of the little league championship…we lost anyway.

Britt: C-Section recovery