I need simple and affordable meals to cook for women who are likely to criticise if i give them a substandard meal
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Nancy is a trusted home cook.
This is a such a wide open question, it's hard to know where to start.
Two places to look are a recent article here about how to serve a nice dinner where guests have different food preferences or restrictions.
Another way is to search this hotline with one or more key words describing your situation. Just one with the word "dinner" turns up many threads that might be helpful.
And/or tell us more about your planned event so we can make suggestions...like, what's the weather where you are now, any particular cuisine to include or exclude, etc.
Hi Nancy. I am serving supper after our evening prayer
Make all in advance to serve cold, room temp or just warmed up when you all get back.
Appetizer. Cold soup in cups. Gazpacho, Hungarian fruit soup or the like.
Main. Sauteed eggplant sandwich buffet. For bread and toppings, go Italian or Iraqi (see recipes for Sabich, a sandwich buffet with hard boiled eggs, hot sauce, hummus, etc)
Side. Seasonal salad, green or composed.
Dessert. Fruit pie topped with vanilla bean ice cream.
I find marscapone stuffed strawberries are always a big hit, they can be done ahead of time, and the balsamic vinegar helps sweeten, out of season strawberries, Prep 1 pint of strawberries by cutting off tops and coring with a peeler or paring knife. Make a large enough hole to pipe in filling. Set aside. With a hand mixer or stand mixer, mix 8 oz. mascarpone, 2 Tbsp. honey and 2Tbsp. milk. Place mixture in a piping bag and pipe into the strawberries. Arrange strawberries on a platter and drizzle with balsamic just before serving!
For a veg, wrap asparagus in phyllo dough and bake until the phyllo is crispy, serve with 1 cup mayonnaise and 1/2 cup roasted red peppers that have been mixed together in a food processor. They're great warm, room temperature, even chilled.
I like to bake mini muffins for brunch, they're easy to eat and can be made the night before, my preference is a cinnamon sugar donut muffin.
For a protein try an egg boat. Mix eggs, cheese, bacon bits, chives, salt, pepper and pour into a hollowed out French bread and bake until the eggs have set, serve warm. The bread can be sliced and served for a pretty presentation.
Thank you Amy
Not sure what the time of day is, but I am thinking it might be brunch? I would do a soup, maybe mushroom, but definitely a cream soup not clear. Quiche or frittata with a couple of salads - green and tomato or citrus. I would have a couple of rustic breads and if you have a good local baker you could get some bakery goods for desert. And I would do a great cheese plate with crackers - here is a video on making a stunning one that would certainly have them talking - in a good way.
BerryBaby is trusted source on General Cooking
Is it brunch, lunch or dinner?
Hi Berry. Its supper after our evening prayer
1st Tossed baby green salad with a light dressing
2nd Ina’s (Barefoot Contessa) Lemon chicken served with roasted asparagus
3rd Lemon bars with garnished with fresh raspberries
Likely to criticize if they receive a substandard meal? Yikes! Perhaps you could ask your pastor to give a sermon on grace at the service before your meal.
Slightly Greek Supper
Greek Salad - at least lettuce, cukes, red onion, couple cherry tomatoes; add a little feta, red pepper fresh or roasted, olives as desired. Oregano vinaigrette made with combo of red wine vinegar and lemon juice is nice.
Spinach/Feta or Ricotta Pie (if you want to make it mild for all palates, use ricotta instead of feta, increasing the amount--it works). Good hot, warm, room temp
This one is more like a quiche
Lemon pudding cakes - make ahead in individual ramekins and serve cold for convenience. Garnish with a few blueberries if you like. There are several recipes here on the site.
OR sliced lemon pound cake with some strawberries. you can serve two thin slices of this offset from each other with berries, cream optional.
March Corned Beef Supper - using some genius recipes from this site
A simple carrot puree soup - optional as this dinner doesn't need a first course
Corned Beef - if you find some on sale get several, point cut is usually cheaper. using special method from Suzanne Goin Sunday Suppers at Luques cookbook. The parsley sauce takes it over the top, it is so different and delicious.
I would boil some carrots (omit of you make soup) and boiling potatoes. But for cabbage, you have to make World's Best Braised Cabbage. Make 2 pans so there is no crowding and use as much cabbage to get the 10 wedges you need (or more it is soooo good).
I think you can figure out how to do most of this ahead and reheat. I'd poach the beef, cool and store in the liquid. Bring to simmer then into oven just before meal. Prep cabbage, store pans in fridge, set on counter then bake off ahead. Room temp service is okay.
Chocolate Stout cake - there are many versions, Suzanne Goin has one I found a little dry but fixed with dollops of whipped cream. There's a teriffic one on this site. Make 2 and just serve a wedge, maybe whipped cream and a couple of raspberries on each plate, or I have stacked and frosted it in two layers too.
Moroccan Carrot Salad - great one here of Food52. Find a jarred mild harissa to make it guest friendly.
Moroccan Chicken - delicious. If you don't want to buy or make the preserved lemon, google for quick and dirty shortcuts. I also use dried plums (prunes) when not the season for fresh. Great recipe. Use all thighs so you have one or two per guest. Use boneless if that's neater.
I forgot to add the link to Eric Ripert's Chicken Tagine, it is a recipe he makes at home, so delicious.
And by the way, these people are not classy who would criticize a hostess like that. I don't know you should go out of your way for these beotches.
Got it. Thank you
Thank you all
I just had a small dinner party of mostly Food52 recipes.
Beet, goat cheese and baby greens salad course
Miso Chicken ( https://food52.com/recipes...)
French Onion Tart ( https://food52.com/recipes...)
Stuffed Pears (https://food52.com/recipes...)
I think a log of goat cheese was the most expensive individual item. If you do not have miso and want to skip buying it sub another oven baked chicken recipe. ( tho this recipe justifies having miso on hand) The pears are guaranteed to impress.
Except for putting 2 items in the oven everything was done ahead. I actually took a walk with one of the guests the hour preceding the stated invitation time. By the time we drank some wine, ate a few nuts and had the salad course the chicken was ready to go.
Please let us know what wonderful meal you decided on serving.
Hoping to hear what you made....