Seductive Tables For Two: Our Romantic Hawaiian Dinner

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As any couple with a two-year-old will tell you, it’s not always easy to find time for a romantic evening together. (Our current idea of “romance” is sharing a beer while watching American Idol.)

I decided to get us out of that romantic rut by planning a special meal at home that would be eaten in a very special place – the dining room. Or, as it’s called in our house, “that room we never, ever eat dinner in.” The theme of the meal and the table setting would be a romantic setting near and dear to our hearts, our honeymoon in Hawaii.

To help plan our romantic dinner at home, I drew inspiration from a beautiful book called “Seductive Tables For Two: Tablescapes, Picnics, and Recipes That Inspire Romance” by Moll Anderson. Moll is a lifestyle and romance expert who’s a genius when it comes to entertaining at home.

She’s got upcoming appearances on Access Hollywood and a radio show on XM Talk 168 every Saturday at 5:00 pm EST, so she definitely knows what she’s talking about when it comes to romance and “setting the mood.” (Feel free to follow her on Facebook and Twitter for all sorts of romantic tips and insight!)

I picked up our copy of Seductive Tables For Two at my local Books-a-Million. The book was conveniently located on a display near the front of the store along with a bunch of other romantic Valentine’s Day-themed reading material.

Seductive Tables for Two

There are so many things that I love about Seductive Tables For Two. The pictures are incredible and the descriptions inspiring, but what’s really nice is that Moll offers ideas for all sorts of occasions – special ones, holiday celebrations, and even impromptu settings like picnics. She gives you table setting ideas, suggestions for little touches that bring the whole thing together, guides for casual and formal table settings, and stemware basics.

The book even includes a recipes-for-two section which includes ideas for everything from breakfast to desserts to beverages. She even throws in plenty of timesaving recipes and take-out tips so you can spend less time in the kitchen and more time enjoying your special meal with your loved one.

Seductive Tables for Two

One of the lessons in Moll’s book is that every table should have a focal point. Our focal point – which captured the theme of our Hawaiian dinner perfectly – was a pineapple surrounded by hibiscus flowers. Yeah, they were fake hibiscus flowers, but I couldn’t find any hibiscus growing in our backyard on the cold East coast in January, so I did what I had to do.

Seductive Tables for Two

When was the last time we ate dinner at a table with flowers on it? Hard to say, but we were about to! And yes, these flowers were real.

Seductive Tables for Two

The table is ready! Yes, we were using real cloth napkins (not paper towels!) and we’d be drinking our beer (Coronas, of course) out of real beer glasses! I choose the parts of the table setting carefully: the sand-colored table runner, the bamboo styled plates, the hibiscus flowers, and the sea blue napkins.

Seductive Tables for Two

With the table set, it was time to get to work on the meal. Borrowing another lesson from Moll (that a romantic meal doesn’t have to be something expensive or time intensive), I decided to prepare one of my husband’s favorite meals – hot dogs and fries – with a Hawaiian twist. That twist included the delicious Hawaiian Pineapple Salsa pictured below.

Seductive Tables for Two

For the fries, I got a little “fancy” with some hand cut potato wedges tossed with salt, pepper, garlic powder and oregano and baked in the oven.

Seductive Tables for Two

Dinner was done almost before I could say “Aloha!” (Actually, while the potatoes cooked, I reminisced by looking at pictures of our honeymoon in Honolulu.) Those things with flames shooting out of the tops are called candles. Apparently, some people light them during dinner, even when there’s no power outage.

Seductive Tables For Two

So how was the dinner? Well, besides being romantic, the food was fantastic! All in all, it was a wonderful meal, and I owe a big thank you to Moll Anderson and her book for helping to bring it all together!

For more photos and details about my experience, check out my Google+ album!

Seductive Tables for Two

I am a member of the Collective Bias® Social Fabric® Community. This shop has been compensated as part of a social shopper insights study for Collective Bias®. All opinions are my own. #cbias #SocialFabric #SeductiveTables

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  1. Love this post! I really want to check out her book!

  2. That is absolutely gorgeous and I love the entire theme! this book sounds like it has some amazing ideas!

  3. I love it! I just bought a bunch today for a tropical table setting in honor of our honeymoon to Maui too. Once you have kids you have to ‘recreate’ at home!!

  4. I love this this theme for how simple it is to create!

  5. Love the Hawaiian salsa idea! Yum. What a sweet way to remember such a great event. I can’t wait to check out that book and set up my own seductive tables. 🙂

  6. Love your Hawaiian theme table. I’m really wanting to read this book!

  7. Amy Desrosiers says:

    I love how you made fried, and hot dogs look so awesome!! What a nice set up!-Love it!

  8. This is so neat! I did something similar for hubby on Valentine’s Day like a millennium ago! (Well before children were present!) I should do something like this again!

  9. Savannah Miller says:

    Your table looks beautiful! I need to get this book so I can start setting romantic dinners for me and my hubby.
    Our romantic times consists of getting the kids to bed early and then watching reruns on tv. I would love to treat my hubby to a beautiful dinner like this 🙂

  10. Very pretty! Looks like a romantic evening!

  11. I love reading your posts! I cracked up about the candle part, you’re too funny! That looks amazing and I love how you showed that a romantic dinner doesn’t have to be complicated. The only time my husband even eats at the table is when I make him for holiday dinners. I’ve never been alone with him for dinner at our own house.

  12. This is such a great idea. I have been trying to find creative ways that we can spend more time together without the same old movie night in. I would love to have a quiet dinner after the kids go to bed.

  13. Definitely sounds like something that I need to read. I have a 4 month old, a 1 year old, and a 3 year old. So, our relationship is definitely losing its spark.

  14. I’m definitely getting this ASAP! Thank you!

  15. Wonderful. I love the table setting and well really all things “Island”.

  16. What a great spread! This looks fabulous.

  17. GORGEOUS, Shanna! I love the tablescape! And, what a great idea to theme your focal point with the meal you serve!

  18. We honeymooned in Hawaii, too. Such a special tablescape to rekindle the romance!

  19. I love this ! Hubby and I sometimes feed the kids get them set up for bed and have our own similar date night dinner together 🙂 it is very relaxing and romantic !

  20. Miranda Gonzalez says:

    Thanks for the inspiration. That book looks great, I will have to check it out.

  21. Those Hot Dogs LOOK TO DIE FOR. and the beer….yummmmmmmm! and the toble is nice too! You need to come cook for me!

  22. I have got to get this book. We never get to go out and this would a great way to spend one on one time together and have a romantic night. I love your table setup it is so pretty. Your meal looks terrific also. My husband loves hot dogs too especially chicago dogs. We went to Hawaii for our honeymoon too it was the most beautiful place I have ever seen.

  23. I love how you took what could have been an ordinary dinner at home, and made it into something REALLY special. Thanks for the inspiration!!

  24. Oh that table that has not just the coffee pot but my mixer is called a dining table???? I love how your table looks and I will be checking this book out!

  25. Wow! Love the table setting and especially your commentary – thanks for the smiles this morning. I too need a reminder that under all the “stuff” is a table that can be used for something beautiful and delicious.

  26. Cute! I love the pineapple.

  27. how fun is this…love the tropical theme

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