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Menu planning help for casual dinner.

I'm having a casual early evening dinner by the pool when my brother comes to visit with my nephews. I want to be able to make most everything in advance so I have plenty of time to play with my nephews. So far, for the main course I am planning to make a pork butt using the marinade from monkeymom's caramelized pork and pickled veggies and serving with rice and butter lettuce leaves so people can either make a lettuce wrap or a rice bowl. I'll serve with a few sauces - hoisin sauce, spicy cilantro sauce, and a honey-Srichacha yogurt sauce. I'm struggling with appetizer and side ideas. For dessert, I am thinking Merrill's Lime Ice Cream with either cookies or a simple cake. So, any ideas for apps, sides, and accompaniment to the ice cream?

asked by melissav about 6 years ago
6 answers 1069 views
8c5e3e9f 1b4a 49bc b261 442225295683  stringio
added about 6 years ago

How about Thai inspired rice paper spring rolls stuffed with some rice noodles and matchsticks of carrot, celery, and red pepper that you can pair with your sauces you are using already or make up a peanut sauce. You could also do a green mango/papaya salad with an avocado dressing (I'll post these recipes). Crab cakes would go nicely with your menu as well. With the ice cream, a crisp cookie that you could do ice cream sandwiches with or just serve alongside would be nice and berries are always a great accompaniment to ice cream or in your case, perhaps roasted bananas/pineapple/mango to complete your Asian theme.

36da2be9 52d9 4197 887b d6388fd7dba2  winter2010
added about 6 years ago

I honestly have to second what testkitchenette said; was thinking a spring roll as a side, and serve a crispy, wafer, pie crust-like shortbread cookie with the lime ice cream. Dinner sounds wonderful!

23b88974 7a89 4ef5 a567 d442bb75da04  avatar
added about 6 years ago

I'd add a simple salad of shredded cabbage dressed with sesame oil and rice wine vinegar, to which you can add any or all of the following: sesame seeds, sliced green onions, shredded carrot, diced jicama, diced red or orange peppers for color and contrast.

D22e715c 166f 4578 8ad4 1e169fc809ba  ry 400
added about 6 years ago

Thanks everyone. I love all the suggestions. testkitchenette - I definitely would love that recipe for the salad. That sounds awesome.

Fbc31129 dd77 4f50 92da 5ddc4a29c892  summer 2010 1048
added about 6 years ago

melissav, it such a great marinade; love your idea of lettuce wraps and dipping sauces. Might have to steal that one!

8c5e3e9f 1b4a 49bc b261 442225295683  stringio
added about 6 years ago

Here's the link to the salad...http://www.food52.com/recipes...
and a link to my summer rolls on my blog http://testkitchenette...

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