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If the Shu fits... a takeaway to wow your dinner guests

SHU, 253 Lisburn Road, Belfast, Tel: 028 9038 1655, www.shu-at-home.com

The takeaway habit has embedded itself firmly among those of us who share a love for restaurants and are now nostalgic about them. Takeaways may not match the quality of the actual restaurant experience due to the transit times and the fact that you're, er, eating at home, but at least they give us a flavour of what we once had, a little echo of the good times.

They also provide increasing numbers of diners a chance to enjoy virtual themed dinner parties. Imagine a party of three or four households all enjoying the same dinner simultaneously in front of the laptop. For some this may be hell, of course, but for others, it's another variant of socialising.

Our kitchen is being used more than it ever was, but, paradoxically, we are also ordering more takeaways. If our experience is a common one then everyone should be a winner of sorts.