Fancy, make-ahead, low-stress dinner party?

Hi all, I'm hosting a dinner party at the weekend for some really foodie friends. I don't want to spend all night in the kitchen so I'm looking for an unusual, make-ahead main course. To give you an idea of the vibe, the starter is going to be a pulled, smoked brisket croquette served with kimchee and spicy Korean sauce. I'll fry the croquettes in advance and reheat in the oven before serving. I'd like to mix up influences, so don't need to go Asian for the main. Any suggestions?

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TheFritschKitchen
TheFritschKitchen April 22, 2015

I was going to suggest Momofuku's bo saam, but that sounds like it might be too similar to your starter. Another option would be tamales. Don't know if they would qualify as fancy (although you could get creative with what you stuff in them), but they are make ahead and you can re-steam them right before serving. I've had duck tamales before and they were fantastic!

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BurntCream
BurntCream April 23, 2015

Wow bo saam sounds amazing! I'd never heard of it before so thanks for the tip, it'll definitely make it to the table for another dinner party. I'd love to try my hand at tamales, duck sounds delicious!

The Thyme Savor
The Thyme Savor April 22, 2015

How about a pumpkin seed, herb & garlic crusted pork tenderloin? Sear, roll in mustard, the the seed/herb paste and grill or roast 20min/lb.

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BurntCream
BurntCream April 23, 2015

Sounds easy and delicious! Great tip.

Brain Health Kitchen
Brain Health Kitchen April 22, 2015

A Moroccan tagine can be made ahead of time and actually improves after a day in the fridge. For my last dinner party I made a lamb tagine, a spring vegetable tagine, and a big platter of couscous. Dessert was a really easy olive oil/almond/orange cake.

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Stephanie
Stephanie April 22, 2015

In a similar vein as jacksonholefoodie, what about a curry based dish? The presentation might be a bit more rustic, but the flavor should be great for a foodie crowd, especially with a spicy start and if you're going "global" inspirations. Endless flavor/ingredient/serving possibilities there...
https://food52.com/recipes...
https://food52.com/recipes...
https://food52.com/recipes...

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BurntCream
BurntCream April 23, 2015

Curry would be great - and always gets better the next day so a perfect make-ahead. Thanks for the links too!

Nancy
Nancy April 22, 2015

if you have not done so, please have a look through search results in hotline for "dinner party" or even "dinner party, Asian" - many threads, ideas already here.

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Healthline
Healthline April 22, 2015

Aloo Methi is a North Indian recipe that can easily be prepared ahead of time. It's vegetarian, but it could be a good options since you're serving beef in the appetizer round: http://www.healthline.com/health-recipes/aloo-methi

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BurntCream
BurntCream April 23, 2015

Sounds great, and it is sometimes nice to go veggie after a meaty appetizer. Thank you for the tip!

Garlic Fiend
Garlic Fiend April 22, 2015

How about something you can serve at room temperature, so no reheating required. One of the best entrees I had was a smoked salmon served with assorted grilled vegetables. I do not like cooked salmon, but this was excellent. You can maybe use non-traditional veggies and whip up a sauce to serve with the entree.

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caninechef
caninechef April 23, 2015

This sounds perfect to me. The first course sounds complex with a lot going on and my immediate thought was a simple fish preparation to balance things out. But I was thinking fish, last minute, not what you asked for.

BurntCream
BurntCream April 23, 2015

Sounds lovely to me! I hadn't considered serving something that wasn't hot but it's a really smart idea. Many thanks!

BurntCream
BurntCream April 23, 2015

Also - great name!

CanadaDan
CanadaDan April 23, 2015

For dinner parties, the last two i've had i made beet-cured salmon which you can (and should) make 1-3 days ahead and just slice and serve with some crustini and i also made a horseradish sauch (basically sour cream, dill, horseradish, lemon). I got amazing reviews from everyone so i made it a staple. write back if you want the recipe it's guartanteed easy, cheap, delish.

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ChefJune
ChefJune April 23, 2015

That sounds great, Daniel, but I'd like to know where you get your salmon that it's cheap. In these parts salmon is quite pricy. I'm lucky to find it at $12.99 lb on special.

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