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tammylc

Dinner for 40

288 posts in this topic

Hello Tammy!

I really enjoyed this thread-- thank you for keeping it going for so long. You're amazing! I have a couple of suggestions; I hope they help.

1. BBQ pork sandwiches: pork shoulder butt is often very cheap-- if you rub the butt with spice rub, put it in a 275 degree oven, and let it cook slowly for 8 hours, it becomes very soft and delicious. You could do this in the AM, then have your prep cooks shred (ie pull) the meat. The meat can be mixed with BBQ sauce and served with buns, beans, and cole slaw. Maybe the vegetarians could have bbq seitan.

2. When you were discussing chicken thighs, I was reminded of another Fine Cooking recipe: Chicken Thighs Baked with Lemon, Sage, Rosemary, and Thyme. It looks like it would serve your purposes well. It's from FC #46, Aug/Sept 2001.

http://www.taunton.com/finecooking/recipes...emon_herbs.aspx

3. Black beans and rice were mentioned upthread. I usually stew the beans separately from the rice and combine them, as you mentioned you like to do. This is very adaptible for vegetarians, and small children seem to enjoy it too. It's amenable to great garnishing-- avocado, sour cream, salsa, etc.

Good luck and please continue posting your adventures!

Cheers, Jen


Edited by iguana (log)

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Thanks for the comments, Jen! I love your idea about pork shoulder - that's the kind of make-ahead meal that would actually make sense for me, and will be quite seasonal come summer! And I could add my own special touch by making a couple of different homemade BBQ sauces to serve it with. The chicken recipe looks good too!

This would usually be my week to cook, but I'm going away for training, so I'm not back up for a couple more weeks. It will be the day of my son's 3rd birthday, so I'm cooking his favorite foods - macaroni and cheese, grilled cheese sandwiches, steamed broccoli and baby carrots. I'm planning to make a fairly "adult" mac and cheese, since the kids will have grilled cheese sandwiches too. Anyone want to share their favorite recipe for grownup mac and cheese?


Tammy's Tastings

Creating unique food and drink experiences

eGullet Foodblogs #1 and #2
Dinner for 40

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...I love your idea about pork shoulder - that's the kind of make-ahead meal that would actually make sense for me, and will be quite seasonal come summer!  And I could add my own special touch by making a couple of different homemade BBQ sauces to serve it with....

It's Gretchen's Pulled Pork, from the Fine Cooking forum "Cook's Talk". (Wouldn't want to take undue credit!)

Jen

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Anyone want to share their favorite recipe for grownup mac and cheese?

I recently (for the first time in a long time) followed a recipe for "potluck mac and cheese" by an otherwise respectable source, and it was a total disaster. I can't remember the last time that I made mac and cheese (for grown ups) and it wasn't great. I was so embarrassed as I was cooking for guests, to boot!

Anyway, I don't have a specific recipe for you (I'm sure others will chime in with that), but a suggestion, since I know that you are concerned with the budget at your job. The best mac and cheese that I ever make is with "cheese ends" that I buy from my supermarket's deli. I go in early in the morning (or call ahead) and ask if they have any cheese ends (the various left over pieces unsold). Usually, these are available at a very low price, and you will get an amazing assortment (of often very expensive cheeses). This odd product makes the best mac and cheese or cheese fondue. Just melt the cheese into a basic white sauce and flavor/season, to taste. I personally like to add roasted garlic to my mac and cheese, and a splash of vermouth or sherry as the spirit moves me. Homemade garlic breadcrumbs on top do it for me.

KBJ

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I agree with KBJ about the mixed cheese. Depending on your budget, I would use about 1/3 to 1/2 lb. of cheese for every pound of pasta. Instead of a white sauce, you could use 1-2 eggs plus 2 cups of cream. It's less fussy, but may cost more than sauce made with butter, flour and skim milk. I suppose it also depends on concerns re: fat content, etc. Maybe you have mentioned that up-thread somewhere, but I have not read *all* the posts, just about 50%.

My last dinner party I made mac and cheese "by request" for the kids, but the adults ate it up, too.

Am totally enjoying all the posts on quantity cooking, here, and also making note of the menu suggestions. My latest gig is Community Meal Chef at the church up the road. Dinner for 100 on $300 or less. :)


Karen Dar Woon

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Thanks for the reminder that I should report back. The birthday dinner went well - people raved about the mac and cheese. As they should, given that it had 8 lbs of cheese in it! (And actually, I should have made at least one more batch - we had enough, but no leftovers.) I used this Martha Stewart recipe for the proportions, and made four batches of it. I used different kinds of cheese - fontina, gruyere, irish cheddar and gorgonzola. The blue cheese definitely pushed it up a notch and made it grown-up. And the kids still liked it.

This Thursday I'm making the Arroz con Pollo that kbjesq suggested a while ago. After this I don't cook again until the 31st, and I think I'll make the pulled pork like iguana suggested. With coleslaw, I think - anyone have a favorite recipe for slaw? I might like to make a couple different kinds, for variety.


Tammy's Tastings

Creating unique food and drink experiences

eGullet Foodblogs #1 and #2
Dinner for 40

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This Thursday I'm making the Arroz con Pollo that kbjesq suggested a while ago.  After this I don't cook again until the 31st, and I think I'll make the pulled pork like iguana suggested. With coleslaw, I think - anyone have a favorite recipe for slaw?  I might like to make a couple different kinds, for variety.

Tammy, there are several coleslaw recipes in RecipeGullet. I'm rather partial to the one I entered, and JAZ's Spicy Asian Coleslaw wins raves, especially from those who like a little zip.


Susan Fahning aka "snowangel"

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My favorite creamy cole slaw recipe is from the Complete Meat Cookbook. The two of us can eat almost the whole batch in two sittings. There is also one for an Asian Slaw in the How to Cook Everything book that has just a few ingredients and is very good. If you want recipes, pm me.

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I am still doing it. Tonight, in fact, so I came back to the thread to look up an old meal that I'm re-running tonight. I rarely cook anything new these days - just rotate through a menu of staples and favorites, so I never feel inspired to update the thread!

Tonight is pecan-crusted tilapia with brown butter sauce, cajun rice, and green salad. I mostly don't cook this one anymore because it's so labor intensive to fry all that fish. But cooking on the 23rd of December I figured people would be out of town and I'd have a small group, so it wouldn't be too bad, and that was indeed the case - only 29 diners (19 meat eaters, 3 vegetarians, and 7 kids).


Tammy's Tastings

Creating unique food and drink experiences

eGullet Foodblogs #1 and #2
Dinner for 40

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Tammy,

This Maracell recipe has become a regular at our house. It should be easily scaled. I don't care much for rosemary, so I use thyme instead. DH loves this! I have made it with several types of fish. I think tilapia would work, but you will need to adjust the timing because tilapia filets are thinner than grouper, snapper, etc.

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Thought I'd bump this thread as I found it very fascinating and thought others might too.

Thank you Tammy!

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Thought I'd bump this thread as I found it very fascinating and thought others might too.

Thank you Tammy!

And I'm glad you did! That's how I just found it, and have now read the entire thread. My eyes are burning & droopy, but now I know I'll be able to follow it. There are lots of fabulous ideas here - and I especially like having it all costed out.

thanks, Tammy, for this great thread.

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