by Jonathan Vatner | February 08, 2010

When Cassandra Gilski, president of Chicago-based Signature of Elegance (847-899-9477), had to organize a team-building event on a miniscule budget, she reached out to Simply Homemade, a Chicago-area meal-preparation kitchen that hosts private cooking parties on the cheap. She divided the group into teams beforehand; when they arrived at the kitchen, the teams participated in a cooking competition similar to the Food Network's Throwdown! With Bobby Flay. The best part? Gilski didn't have to pay extra to feed them. (847) 534-4400: