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Author Topic: Re: What to serve? TACO's #20 Success! #33  (Read 14960 times)

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Re: What to serve?
« Reply #15 on: November 04, 2012, 08:26:29 PM »

It depends on your audience, but I'd be tempted to go with Indian.  Satisfying, but totally different than the T-day meal, and well suited to keeping it warm/making in big batches, and with good vegetarian options.

You can do a meat based curry (chicken tikka masala) and a vegetarian one (chickpea curry or dal), and a vegetable side dish or two (palak paneer, creamed green peas),   For starch, you can pick up pre-made flatbread, and do a big batch of saffron rice.  There are lots of great sides, many of which can be made ahead - do a cucumber and mint raita (yoghurt based), a chutney or two, buy some pre-made mango or lime pickles, and a simple salad of onion, tomato and cucumbers, dressed with lime juice. 


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Re: What to serve?
« Reply #16 on: November 05, 2012, 07:31:57 AM »
If you do Jambalaya, please be aware that recipe contains worcestershire sauce which contains anchovies so your vegetarian or non-seafood eating guests might not want this.

Vegetable broth should work in place of chicken stock. Also I have previously bought Kosher chicken powder which didn't actually have any chicken in which added flavour, but I don't know if you'll be able to get this.
« Last Edit: November 05, 2012, 07:36:38 AM by DaisyG »


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Re: What to serve?
« Reply #17 on: November 05, 2012, 11:32:03 AM »
Just wanted to add that I've had great success with the soup, salad, sandwich menu in the past.  I think that there is time to find some inexpensive bowls, too. 

Depending on how many guests you are having, and how hungry they are, you could also put out a platter of sliced turkey/deli meats. 

When my vegetarian friend comes I generally put out a bowl of greens, and then put the other salad ingredients in little bowls so that people can put their own salads together.  That seems to work for my group.  Maybe there is some sort of a hearty thing, like bulgur or nuts or tofu that your vegetarians would like on their salad.

All of the good ideas here have made me hungry!  Best of luck with this, and let us know how your party went!


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Re: What to serve?
« Reply #18 on: November 05, 2012, 05:47:21 PM »
If you decide you want to go the soup route, I have a really good pumpkin curry soup I could dig up the recipe for. It's something different, but it's delicious, and made with veggie broth or water is vegetarian.
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Re: What to serve?
« Reply #19 on: November 05, 2012, 08:47:53 PM »
1. I can do this in my roaster, right? ( That's not going to mess up the rice, is it?

Seems to me I've seen people make jambalaya in roasters like yours.  I'd just make sure to stir every so often, so things don't stick at the bottom.

2. I'm thinking 6x's the recipe. Will that be enough?

6X will make 24 servings -- but that depends on what Emeril considers to be a "serving."  Based on the ingredients, the servings don't sound to be terribly big.  For example, it works out to -- per person -- about 1/2 cup cooked rice, 3 shrimp, 1 oz chicken, and 1-1/4 oz sausage, plus seasonings.  Fine as a side dish, but it doesn't sound like very much for a main course.  It sounds like you've made this recipe before, though, so you probably have a better idea of serving sizes than I do.

3. For the shell-fish allergic, since the meat/shrimp isn't added until the last minute I can simply put a couple of servings in a separate pot after the rice is cooked, then just add sausage and chicken to that batch.

4. For the vegetarian (not sure if either of the 2 I know will be in attendance, but I want to be prepared) Is there anything offensive in the recipe? I know I'll have to make a separate pot of rice because of the chicken broth, but will vegatable broth work? Or should I use a different liquid?

As someone else posted, Worcestershire has anchovies in it, so this may be a problem for many vegetarians.  For the broth, I'd probably just use vegetable broth for the entire dish -- easier, and just as tasty.

5. Sides? Apps? Any suggestions/recipes?

I'm thinking corn bread, dinner rolls, fresh garden salad . . . and then I'm stuck.

Bread and salad sound plenty delicious to me!


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Re: What to serve? TACO's #20
« Reply #20 on: November 10, 2012, 01:31:17 PM »
Okay. I think I've settled on a taco bar. LOL! Yeah, I know, the first one I dismissed. ::)

Thinking about the soups . . . For the split-pea, I'll need a left-over ham bone with lots-o-ham chunks in order to make it the way I usually make it. I'll need cornish hen left-overs (bones and all) for my wild rice soup.

Neither of the DDs were interested in the jambalya. Since they are co-hosting/helping with the cooking I should take their thoughts into consideration.

So, I'm back to a taco bar. I'm thinking that I could pretty much prepare everything on Wednesday, then on Friday just warm and serve.

When I make tacos it's the ground beef with a package seasoning mix. I'll probably do this with about 3lbs. of ground beef. It's quick and easy.

I'd also like to do a chicken taco and a steak with the steak more along the lines of fajitas for variety. Is there a difference in spicing for the meats? Any recipes here would be greatly appreciated.

I'll also serve:

Sauteed onions/peppers (for the fajitas, doing this the day of)

Refried beans (I found a recipe for this on-line) or does anybody have a bean dish recipe? I have a great red-bean & rice recipe, but that's more Cajun style.

Salsa (I have a yummy recipe that I haven't made in a while. If you have a good one, please post.)

Guacamole (doing this the day of, I usually wing it to taste, but recipes would be appreciated.)

Spanish rice -- again, looking for recipes. I've found a few on-line. Can this be prepared on Wednesday to warm up and serve on Friday? Or should I do this the day of?)

Tortillas. Both flour and pre-formed corn crunchy.

Chopped lettuce, raw onion, tomato, jalapeno's, sour cream, grated cheese.

Nacho chips

Salad -- either a garden salad or a cucumber salad. Both?

What am I missing?

I'm thinking about 3lbs for each ground beef, chicken, steak, which would come out to about 1/2 lbs. of meat per person . . . Is that enough? Would you add more to one or another meat dish?

P.S. mandycorn -- if you wouldn't mind, please post your pumpkin curry soup recipe just in case I change my mind again.


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Re: What to serve?
« Reply #21 on: November 10, 2012, 01:46:52 PM »
A really simple, different and delicious app is seedless grapes, covered with soft goat cheese then rolled in pistachio pieces.

This sounds delicious for an appetizer. Would you please expound on this a bit? Where do I get goat cheese? What kind? Is it spreadable like cream cheese? What type of grapes work best?


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Re: What to serve? TACO's #20
« Reply #22 on: November 10, 2012, 03:07:23 PM »
For the chicken I like to marinade in a fajita marinade.
1 part lime juice
1 part soy sauce
.5 parts oil, usually corn but what you have on hand. 
For the seasoning, I consider 1 tb as one part
1 part chili powder
.5 part cumin
.25 garlic powder

Marinate chicken for 2 hours before grilling. 


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Re: What to serve? TACO's #20
« Reply #23 on: November 10, 2012, 03:44:40 PM »

P.S. mandycorn -- if you wouldn't mind, please post your pumpkin curry soup recipe just in case I change my mind again.

Sure thing.

Pumpkin Curry Soup
2 Tbsp. butter
1 c. chopped onion
2 lg. garlic cloves, minced
1/2 tsp. salt
1 1/2 tsp. curry powder
1/4 tsp. ground white pepper (I've always used black.)
3 c. chicken broth
1 15-oz. can pumpkin
1 12-oz. can evaporated milk
Melt butter on medium heat. Add onion and garlic. Cook 2-3 minutes until tender. Stir in curry, salt, and pepper. Cook 1 minute.
Add broth and pumpkin. Bring to a boil, then reduce to low. Cook, stirring occasionally, 15-20 minutes. Stir in evaporated milk.
In slightly cooled batches, transfer mixture into blender and blend until smooth. Serve warm.

And good luck with the tacos, they sound great!
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Re: What to serve? TACO's #20
« Reply #24 on: November 10, 2012, 04:39:03 PM »
Instead of the red beans, you can do a nice lime/parsley or cilantro (if you like it, alot of people don't) white rice with black beans as found in most burritoes.
As for the quacamole, it depends if you like it chunky or smooth.  But it's usually lime, onion, choice of pepper, garlic and avocado.  A touch of cumin and salt right at the end.
As for the steak, you marinate it in lime, garlic, salt/pepper and grill them on high heat for a nice char.  If you do chicken, you do the same basic marinade but with a touch of chili powder and cumin.  Chipotle in adobo sauce can also be used with chicken to make a nice smoky chipotle chicken.
« Last Edit: November 10, 2012, 04:51:31 PM by Zilla »


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Re: What to serve? TACO's #20
« Reply #25 on: November 10, 2012, 08:01:51 PM »
For sides, add a dish of fresh chopped cilantro, another bowl of sliced or chopped black olives, and bowl of fresh lime slices. I use Goat Yogurt in place of sour cream; tastes fabulous with fewer calories. If you have any vegetarians coming I suggest getting the Beef-less Ground Beef and Taco Seasoning Mix at Trader Joe's. That makes great tacos!


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Re: What to serve? TACO's #20
« Reply #26 on: November 10, 2012, 10:13:01 PM »
Since you are making a lot of taco meat, I would look into making your own taco seasoning mix.  There are some good ones online.  I use a low-salt version that I keep in an old spice jar.  The packets are way overpriced


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Re: What to serve? TACO's #20
« Reply #27 on: November 11, 2012, 06:07:30 AM »

no advice or recipes but i don't think ou need to add a salad (unless you *have to* with your crowd).

and i am major salad/veggie lover - to me, a meal isn't a meal if there is no fresh salad. and for big/holiday meals, there are many many vegetable dishes (raw and cooked).

but you will have a "salad bar" option - lettuce, onion, etc plus the sauteed peppers/onion, salsa, and guacamole. I would maybe add some corn to your toppings, but i wouldn't add another salad.

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Re: What to serve? TACO's #20
« Reply #28 on: November 11, 2012, 07:18:31 AM »
Unless it's against your (or many guests') religion, I recommend adding bacon strips to the fillings options.  This was always a hit at my parties.


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Re: What to serve? TACO's #20
« Reply #29 on: November 12, 2012, 10:14:53 AM »
I like to do my chicken taco filling in the crock pot - throw in chicken and salsa, cook on low 8 hours. You can also throw a can of beans in there.

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