I recent made lunch for myself and two guests. We ate in the back yard on a sunny day.
They thought the meal was elegant and probably expensive. I simply thought it had a nice balance of flavor, color, and nutrition. Also, it was easy to prepare and a good deal.
The main course was wild-caught Alaskan salmon from Trader Joe's with a creamy sauce ($10.55 for three pieces, totaling 1.3 pounds), which I simply sprayed with olive oil and grilled on my little barbecue.
The side dish was vegetable gyoza, also from Trader Joe's ($3.49 for a bag). I simply put them in aluminum foil on the grill. We already had dipping sauce in the fridge.
The dessert was a bowl of frozen mango chunks, also from Trader Joe's ($2.29 for a bag, of which we used one-fifth), topped with a small amount of Dreyer's low-fat vanilla ice cream (we used about $0.8 worth).
So the meal had savory, creamy, and sweet. The fish's sauce was colorful with red and green bell pepper bits, and the mango added a third bright color. The food had protein, vegetables, and fiber. Preparation was trivial. And it only cost $4.86 per person for something apparently fancy.