ScratchDC Will Help You Cook Like a Chef
Whether you are treating yourself to a night in or trying to impress that special someone with your non-existent cooking skills, there’s a new service that will take care of all the hard work and make you look like a gourmet.
ScratchDC makes meal preparation easy. They take the hassle out of creating incredible meals at home. Monday through Thursday you can go to their website and order meals for two from about $27 to $33. They take most of the work out of dinner – they cut, chop, peel, measure, marinate and package all the ingredients into green packaging and deliver it to your home and office for you to cook that evening. All you add is heat and maybe water.
American University graduate Ryan Hansan, who grew up in the D.C. burbs, started the service last August. Every morning, Hansan and his team of four others chop, marinate, measure and bundle the ingredients for that day’s recipe in their kitchen at National Harbor. Then Hansan or another of the guys personally delivers each package between 3-9 p.m. They originally delivered only to parts of Northwest and Capitol Hill, but have expanded to Northeast and into Alexandria and Arlington.
They’ll also deliver to your office or leave your package in a cooler you supply on your porch. Office deliveries can earn a discount of 10-20 percent if multiple people get their deliveries at the same address.
The meals vary day-to-day and week-to-week, with the next week’s menu posted on Friday. Meals vary from burgers to ethnic meals and everything in between such as meals like chicken tikka masala, mozzarella & prosciutto pizza, phyllo wrapped tuna rolls and balsamic flank steak. There are also often vegetarian meals or vegetarian options.
Each morning, the ScratchDC team starts with fresh, mostly locally-sourced organic ingredients. You receive the individually-packaged ingredients and an instruction card in each bundle. Just follow the directions boiling, baking and frying and in about 20-30 minutes you have a tasty meal without having to fight the lines at the market.
Trying it out
Last week, I tried the garlic shrimp with jalapeno cheddar grits and snow peas. My ingredients arrived right on time packed in a brown box tied with a twine bow. All the ingredients, including the butter and salt and pepper, were individually packaged in clear biodegradable corn starch containers or a Ziploc bag. The package also included a sheet with the directions on it. All I needed to complete my meal for two was a pot with a lid, a skillet, one cup of water and a spoon. There was even a telephone number included in case I got stuck cooking or had a question.
The instructions were easy enough that even a non-cook could make a great home-cooked meal. The recipe was so specific that it explained that medium heat was between 5 and 6. The directions were almost spot on, although the grits weren’t creamy, but more like cornbread batter (though still tasty). The ingredients produced a meal for two with generous portions including 11 medium size shrimp each. Enough to have leftovers for lunch the next day.
ScratchDC purchases their ingredients from suppliers and farms that use organic, sustainable and humane practices, and tell you where your food comes from. On the back of each bundle’s recipe card is a list of all the ingredients and their source. They get most of their in-season produce and herbs from Lancaster Farm Fresh Cooperative, one of the largest farming co-ops in the Mid-Atlantic based in Lancaster, Pa. Most their beef, pork, lamb and duck comes from Baltimore’s Fells Point Meats, and their poultry comes primarily from family farms all over Pennsylvania via Murray’s Chicken.
Give it a try and save!
Want to know more? Check out the ScratchDC site or follow them on Facebook or Twitter. Want to try ScratchDC? They have offered DC on Heels readers a 15 percent discount off your first order! Just enter the promo code DConHeels at checkout until June 21, 2013.
Have you tried ScratchDC? Let us know what you think or tell us after you use your 15 percent off.
Editor-in-Chief Mark Heckathorn is a journalist, movie buff and foodie. He oversees DC on Heels editorial operations as well as strategic planning and staff development. Reach him with story ideas or suggestions at dcoheditor (at) gmail (dot) com.