Help with dinner party menu

Discussion in 'Food and nutrition' started by Ginny Sher, Mar 9, 2005.

  1. Ginny Sher

    Ginny Sher Guest

    I'm having a small dinner party this weekend for a friend's birthday.
    He has asked for cheeescake and I've decided to try my hand at
    Damsel's Pecan Cheesecake made with Hag's Toffee Nut Crust.

    W're also having pork ribs. Please don't flame me because I'll be
    using a store bought BBQ sauce, preparing them in an oven and
    finishing on a grill. We 'test drove' this method last week and were
    very satisfied with the results. Yesterday I found some near perfect
    artichokes at a local produce store for $1.49 each. We ate them last
    night and I plan to serve them again this weekend. I'll be making the
    Cook's Illustrated cornbread recipe with jalapeno pepper too.

    My question is what else to serve with this meal as far as side dishes
    and appetizers? The meal is already heavy with the ribs and a very
    rich dessert. I was thinking of potato salad (also heavy) but not
    sure if that is the best choice. If any of you have a suggestion for
    something else including any appetizers, I'd much appreciate it.

    Many thanks,
    Ginny

    Note: the BBQ sauce is more smokey than sweet, if that matters...
     
    Tags:


  2. Dimitri

    Dimitri Guest

    "Ginny Sher" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]
    > I'm having a small dinner party this weekend for a friend's birthday.
    > He has asked for cheeescake and I've decided to try my hand at
    > Damsel's Pecan Cheesecake made with Hag's Toffee Nut Crust.
    >
    > W're also having pork ribs. Please don't flame me because I'll be
    > using a store bought BBQ sauce, preparing them in an oven and
    > finishing on a grill. We 'test drove' this method last week and were
    > very satisfied with the results. Yesterday I found some near perfect
    > artichokes at a local produce store for $1.49 each. We ate them last
    > night and I plan to serve them again this weekend. I'll be making the
    > Cook's Illustrated cornbread recipe with jalapeno pepper too.
    >
    > My question is what else to serve with this meal as far as side dishes
    > and appetizers?


    IMHO ribs almost demand a good recipe slaw and baked beans are of course
    always appropriate. I would use a vinagar not creamy based slaw unless you
    are using a spicy bbq sauce.

    Lets see:

    Ribs
    Slaw
    Artichokes
    Beans
    Cornbread

    I think I would skip the appetizer and serve the artichokes alone as a
    first course.


    Dimitri
     
  3. Hahabogus

    Hahabogus Guest

    Ginny Sher <[email protected]> wrote in
    news:[email protected]:

    > I'm having a small dinner party this weekend for a friend's birthday.
    > He has asked for cheeescake and I've decided to try my hand at
    > Damsel's Pecan Cheesecake made with Hag's Toffee Nut Crust.
    >
    > W're also having pork ribs. Please don't flame me because I'll be
    > using a store bought BBQ sauce, preparing them in an oven and
    > finishing on a grill. We 'test drove' this method last week and were
    > very satisfied with the results. Yesterday I found some near perfect
    > artichokes at a local produce store for $1.49 each. We ate them last
    > night and I plan to serve them again this weekend. I'll be making the
    > Cook's Illustrated cornbread recipe with jalapeno pepper too.
    >
    > My question is what else to serve with this meal as far as side dishes
    > and appetizers? The meal is already heavy with the ribs and a very
    > rich dessert. I was thinking of potato salad (also heavy) but not
    > sure if that is the best choice. If any of you have a suggestion for
    > something else including any appetizers, I'd much appreciate it.
    >
    > Many thanks,
    > Ginny
    >
    > Note: the BBQ sauce is more smokey than sweet, if that matters...
    >


    I'd suggest veggies...grilled asparagus is easy and fast. Take some
    asparagus, toss with a oil you like and sprinkle well with salt. Grill on
    high turning the asparagus often. When grill mark appear they are
    done(maybe 2-3 minutes). Also coleslaw goes well with ribs and can be
    made ahead of time.

    --
    No Bread Crumbs were hurt in the making of this Meal.
    Type 2 Diabetic 1AC 5.6mmol or 101mg/dl
    Continuing to be Manitoban
     
  4. salgud

    salgud Guest

    Store bought BBQ! STORE BOUGHT BBQ!!! My God woman, what are you
    thinking???!!!!
    O yes, you asked us not to flame you! Sorry!
    Seriously, sounds like a great dinner. I agree with the other
    reccommendations except about the slaw. Nothing's as good with BBQ as a
    nice creamy cole slaw!
    And the idea for grilled asparagus is also great. I've grilled them the
    way Hahabogus does, but I think they come out better if they're
    blanched first. Takes a few minutes.

    Back to the BBQ. I make a home made tomato based BBQ that gets
    consistent raves. Still not as good and the Holy Grail of BBQ, Texas
    style, as at Smoliks' in Karnes City, Tx., but very good. I just throw
    together some combintion of the following:

    Ketchup
    Worstechire Sauce (sp?)
    Mustard (the good stuff, not the yellow stuff)
    dried mustard
    Molasses
    Garlic powder
    Onion powder
    Ground Ginger
    Tobasco or ground dried peppers
    Pepper to taste
    Salt to taste

    It would be even better if I took the time to grill some finely chopped
    onions and garlic, instead of the powdered stuff. Might just do that
    next time I make up a batch. It keeps a few weeks in the fridge.
     
  5. Boron Elgar

    Boron Elgar Guest

    On Wed, 09 Mar 2005 06:16:34 -0800, Ginny Sher <[email protected]>
    wrote:

    >I'm having a small dinner party this weekend for a friend's birthday.
    >He has asked for cheeescake and I've decided to try my hand at
    >Damsel's Pecan Cheesecake made with Hag's Toffee Nut Crust.
    >
    >W're also having pork ribs. Please don't flame me because I'll be
    >using a store bought BBQ sauce, preparing them in an oven and
    >finishing on a grill. We 'test drove' this method last week and were
    >very satisfied with the results. Yesterday I found some near perfect
    >artichokes at a local produce store for $1.49 each. We ate them last
    >night and I plan to serve them again this weekend. I'll be making the
    >Cook's Illustrated cornbread recipe with jalapeno pepper too.
    >
    >My question is what else to serve with this meal as far as side dishes
    >and appetizers? The meal is already heavy with the ribs and a very
    >rich dessert. I was thinking of potato salad (also heavy) but not
    >sure if that is the best choice. If any of you have a suggestion for
    >something else including any appetizers, I'd much appreciate it.
    >
    >Many thanks,
    >Ginny
    >
    >Note: the BBQ sauce is more smokey than sweet, if that matters...



    How about a coleslaw? It needn't been heavily laden with mayo, but
    dressed lightly. A fruit salad might also make a nice side, or just an
    interesting tossed salad will do.

    Boron
     
  6. kilikini

    kilikini Guest

    Dog3 wrote:
    > Ginny Sher <[email protected]> wrote in
    > news:[email protected]:
    >
    >> I'm having a small dinner party this weekend for a friend's birthday.
    >> He has asked for cheeescake and I've decided to try my hand at
    >> Damsel's Pecan Cheesecake made with Hag's Toffee Nut Crust.
    >>
    >> W're also having pork ribs. Please don't flame me because I'll be
    >> using a store bought BBQ sauce, preparing them in an oven and
    >> finishing on a grill. We 'test drove' this method last week and were
    >> very satisfied with the results. Yesterday I found some near perfect
    >> artichokes at a local produce store for $1.49 each. We ate them last
    >> night and I plan to serve them again this weekend. I'll be making
    >> the Cook's Illustrated cornbread recipe with jalapeno pepper too.
    >>
    >> My question is what else to serve with this meal as far as side
    >> dishes and appetizers? The meal is already heavy with the ribs and
    >> a very rich dessert. I was thinking of potato salad (also heavy)
    >> but not sure if that is the best choice. If any of you have a
    >> suggestion for something else including any appetizers, I'd much
    >> appreciate it.
    >>
    >> Many thanks,
    >> Ginny
    >>
    >> Note: the BBQ sauce is more smokey than sweet, if that matters...
    >>

    >
    > If you can find decent corn I'd say grill it and serve up some cole
    > slaw.
    >
    > Michael


    I agree, Michael. Corn and asparagus and the meal should be complete.

    kili
     
  7. In article <[email protected]>,
    > My question is what else to serve with this meal as far as side dishes
    > and appetizers? The meal is already heavy with the ribs and a very
    > rich dessert. I was thinking of potato salad (also heavy)


    Cole slaw? Baked beans? Just think of all that fiber.
    --
    -Barb, <www.jamlady.eboard.com> Sweet Potato Follies added 2/24/05.
    "I read recipes the way I read science fiction: I get to the end and
    say,'Well, that's not going to happen.'" - Comedian Rita Rudner,
    performance at New York, New York, January 10, 2005.
     
  8. In article <[email protected]>, Boron Elgar
    <[email protected]> wrote:
    (OP snipped)
    > How about a coleslaw? It needn't been heavily laden with mayo, but
    > dressed lightly. A fruit salad might also make a nice side, or just an
    > interesting tossed salad will do.
    >
    > Boron


    Am I the only person who makes an oil and vinegar dressing for coleslaw?
    I can't put my hands on Mom's recipe at the moment but it was oil,
    vinegar, sugar, grated onion, celery seed, and paprika. I prefer the
    oil & vinegar kind over mayo-based.
    --
    -Barb, <www.jamlady.eboard.com> Sweet Potato Follies added 2/24/05.
    "I read recipes the way I read science fiction: I get to the end and
    say,'Well, that's not going to happen.'" - Comedian Rita Rudner,
    performance at New York, New York, January 10, 2005.
     
  9. Dimitri

    Dimitri Guest

    "Melba's Jammin'" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]
    > In article <[email protected]>, Boron Elgar
    > <[email protected]> wrote:
    > (OP snipped)
    >> How about a coleslaw? It needn't been heavily laden with mayo, but
    >> dressed lightly. A fruit salad might also make a nice side, or just an
    >> interesting tossed salad will do.
    >>
    >> Boron

    >
    > Am I the only person who makes an oil and vinegar dressing for coleslaw?
    > I can't put my hands on Mom's recipe at the moment but it was oil,
    > vinegar, sugar, grated onion, celery seed, and paprika. I prefer the
    > oil & vinegar kind over mayo-based.
    > --
    > -Barb,


    Nope - this is one of my favorites:

    This is a great one it comes from the American Jewish cookbook.

    Caution when cooking with vinegar DON'T TAKE A BIG WHIFF!

    Snappy Cole slaw dressing (cooked - vinegar)

    1 tablespoon butter
    1/2 cup vinegar ( I like cider)
    1/2 Teaspoon powdered mustard
    1/2 Teaspoon celery seed
    1/2 Teaspoon salt
    1/8 Teaspoon paprika
    1/8 Teaspoon ground black pepper
    1/4 Cup sugar

    In a sauce pan blend all ingredients and bring to a boil. Boil for 2 to 3
    minutes and remove from heat. Cool slightly and pour over Slaw. Toss and
    refrigerate.

    This ends up being a very "bitey or sharp" dressing you may want to cut
    down on the pepper and/or increase the ratio of sugar.

    Dimitri
     
  10. Hahabogus

    Hahabogus Guest

    Dog3 <[email protected];ajklsd;ajlds.nutz> wrote in
    news:[email protected]:

    > I don't know where Ginny is located but decent tomatoes on the grill
    > would be terrific. Tomatoes are lousy here. Drizzle olive oil, throw
    > on some S&P and basil or oregano and you're set.
    >
    > Michael
    >
    > --
    > Opinions founded on prejudice are always sustained with the greatest
    > violence.
    > -- Hebrew proverb
    >
    >


    Or grilled red onion slices.

    --
    No Bread Crumbs were hurt in the making of this Meal.
    Type 2 Diabetic 1AC 5.6mmol or 101mg/dl
    Continuing to be Manitoban
     
  11. Boron Elgar

    Boron Elgar Guest

    On Wed, 09 Mar 2005 10:30:25 -0600, Melba's Jammin'
    <[email protected]> wrote:

    >In article <[email protected]>, Boron Elgar
    ><[email protected]> wrote:
    >(OP snipped)
    >> How about a coleslaw? It needn't been heavily laden with mayo, but
    >> dressed lightly. A fruit salad might also make a nice side, or just an
    >> interesting tossed salad will do.
    >>
    >> Boron

    >
    >Am I the only person who makes an oil and vinegar dressing for coleslaw?
    >I can't put my hands on Mom's recipe at the moment but it was oil,
    >vinegar, sugar, grated onion, celery seed, and paprika. I prefer the
    >oil & vinegar kind over mayo-based.



    I make it that way, too.

    I also have a similar recipe that eliminates the oil & uses mayo &
    sour cream. I like them both. Oh...I also add carrots for color &
    maybe some purple cabbage, too.

    Boron
     
  12. jmcquown

    jmcquown Guest

    Ginny Sher wrote:
    > I'm having a small dinner party this weekend for a friend's birthday.
    > He has asked for cheeescake and I've decided to try my hand at
    > Damsel's Pecan Cheesecake made with Hag's Toffee Nut Crust.
    >
    > W're also having pork ribs. Please don't flame me because I'll be
    > using a store bought BBQ sauce, preparing them in an oven and
    > finishing on a grill. We 'test drove' this method last week and were
    > very satisfied with the results. Yesterday I found some near perfect
    > artichokes at a local produce store for $1.49 each. We ate them last
    > night and I plan to serve them again this weekend. I'll be making the
    > Cook's Illustrated cornbread recipe with jalapeno pepper too.
    >
    > My question is what else to serve with this meal as far as side dishes
    > and appetizers? The meal is already heavy with the ribs and a very
    > rich dessert. I was thinking of potato salad (also heavy)


    Ginny, you could make that a German style potato salad; that is,
    vinegar-based and served hot, rather than one with a heavier creamy sauce.
    I love the addition of artichokes; gotta pick up some more next time I go to
    the store.

    Jill
     
  13. Nexis

    Nexis Guest

    "Ginny Sher" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]
    > I'm having a small dinner party this weekend for a friend's birthday.
    > He has asked for cheeescake and I've decided to try my hand at
    > Damsel's Pecan Cheesecake made with Hag's Toffee Nut Crust.
    >
    > W're also having pork ribs. Please don't flame me because I'll be
    > using a store bought BBQ sauce, preparing them in an oven and
    > finishing on a grill. We 'test drove' this method last week and were
    > very satisfied with the results. Yesterday I found some near perfect
    > artichokes at a local produce store for $1.49 each. We ate them last
    > night and I plan to serve them again this weekend. I'll be making the
    > Cook's Illustrated cornbread recipe with jalapeno pepper too.
    >
    > My question is what else to serve with this meal as far as side dishes
    > and appetizers? The meal is already heavy with the ribs and a very
    > rich dessert. I was thinking of potato salad (also heavy) but not
    > sure if that is the best choice. If any of you have a suggestion for
    > something else including any appetizers, I'd much appreciate it.
    >
    > Many thanks,
    > Ginny
    >
    > Note: the BBQ sauce is more smokey than sweet, if that matters...


    Ginny,
    What about a cous cous pilaf? It's simple, light, and tastes great. All you
    need is the cous cous, some chicken stock, and some veggies, really. I use
    the Near East 5 minute cous cous. Lightly sauté the veggies and cous cous in
    a little olive oil or butter, add the stock, put a lid on and turn it off. 5
    minutes later, you got a side dish. I use diced roma tomatoes, zucchini,
    yellow squash, asparagus tips, green beans. You can use any veggies you like
    really.
    A salad would likely be nice with the ribs too. Mixed greens, I'd use a
    vinaigrette that compliments the BBQ sauce.

    kimberly
     
  14. Dimitri

    Dimitri Guest

    "Nexis" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]
    >


    <snip>

    >> Note: the BBQ sauce is more smokey than sweet, if that matters...

    >
    > Ginny,
    > What about a cous cous pilaf? It's simple, light, and tastes great. All
    > you
    > need is the cous cous, some chicken stock, and some veggies, really.



    I like using diced sun dried tomatoes.......


    Dimitri
     
  15. aem

    aem Guest

    Ginny Sher wrote:
    > I'm having a small dinner party this weekend for a friend's birthday.
    > [snip] I've decided to try my hand at
    > Damsel's Pecan Cheesecake made with Hag's Toffee Nut Crust.
    >
    > W're also having pork ribs. [snip] Yesterday I found some near
    > perfect artichokes at a local produce store for $1.49 each. We
    > ate them last night and I plan to serve them again this weekend.
    > I'll be making the Cook's Illustrated cornbread recipe with
    > jalapeno pepper too.
    >
    > My question is what else to serve with this meal as far as side
    > dishes and appetizers?


    Appetizers include drinks, right? What's your weather like? If warm,
    chips, guacamole, salsa, beer and sangría should do. If folks will be
    indoors, then a cheese log, crackers, a smoked salmon spread (recipe
    follows), beer and wine.

    You've got ribs, cornbread, artichokes and cheesecake. Besides the
    other good suggestions how about considering a cold pasta salad with
    shrimp? Can be made ahead and is slightly more festive than beans and
    corn.

    Here's a smoked salmon spread:

    6 - 8 oz. smoked salmon, preferably hot cured rather than nova
    8 oz. cream cheese
    2 TB milk
    2 TB lemon juice
    1/2 cup finely chopped red onion
    2 TB fresh or 1 TB dried dill weed
    Louisiana red hot sauce, e.g., Frank's, to taste

    Mix all together well in advance, chill, bring back to room temp for
    serving. Fresh dill works way better in this than dried, and the red
    onion is NOT optional. If you're making large quantities, you can even
    mix in some canned smoked salmon if you can find a good product.
    Trader Joe's has an alder smoked salmon in small cans that isn't bad
    when the good stuff is not available.
     
  16. Bob

    Bob Guest

    Dimitri replied to Ginny:

    >> I'm having a small dinner party this weekend for a friend's birthday.
    >> He has asked for cheeescake and I've decided to try my hand at
    >> Damsel's Pecan Cheesecake made with Hag's Toffee Nut Crust.
    >>
    >> W're also having pork ribs. Please don't flame me because I'll be
    >> using a store bought BBQ sauce, preparing them in an oven and
    >> finishing on a grill. We 'test drove' this method last week and were
    >> very satisfied with the results. Yesterday I found some near perfect
    >> artichokes at a local produce store for $1.49 each. We ate them last
    >> night and I plan to serve them again this weekend. I'll be making the
    >> Cook's Illustrated cornbread recipe with jalapeno pepper too.
    >>
    >> My question is what else to serve with this meal as far as side dishes
    >> and appetizers?

    >
    > IMHO ribs almost demand a good recipe slaw and baked beans are of course
    > always appropriate. I would use a vinagar not creamy based slaw unless you
    > are using a spicy bbq sauce.
    >
    > Lets see:
    >
    > Ribs
    > Slaw
    > Artichokes
    > Beans
    > Cornbread
    >
    > I think I would skip the appetizer and serve the artichokes alone as a
    > first course.


    Of all the replies, I think this one was the best. Others have suggested
    asparagus or grilled vegetables, but if you're already serving the
    artichokes, this strikes me as a bit of overkill. If there will be more than
    eight guests or so, then maybe add the other vegetables, but as it is, I'd
    stick with the menu that Dimitri gives.

    You haven't given much in the way of clues regarding the characteristics of
    the barbecue sauce you intend to use, and it can make a BIG difference in
    what accompanies it well. Take note of Dimitri's comment about matching the
    barbecue sauce to the cole slaw dressing: If your sauce is spicy, you'd want
    a creamy dressing; if your sauce is sweet, you'd want a vinegar-based
    dressing.

    I'd consider adding the potato salad anyway, just because potato salad is
    usually *expected* at barbecues. Yes, it's a bit on the heavy side, but I'm
    assuming that your guests aren't going to be *forced* to load up on it. If
    you Google in this newsgroup, you'll find plenty of potato salad
    discussions. As with the cole slaw dressing, you'd want to pick a potato
    salad recipe which complements the barbecue sauce. You could also put out a
    plate of assorted pickles; I think that barbecue and pickles go together
    well. And don't forget lots of squishy white bread.

    Bob
     
  17. Ginny Sher

    Ginny Sher Guest

    On Wed, 09 Mar 2005 14:43:02 GMT, "Dimitri" <[email protected]>
    wrote:

    >
    >"Ginny Sher" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    >news:[email protected]
    >> I'm having a small dinner party this weekend for a friend's birthday.
    >> He has asked for cheeescake and I've decided to try my hand at
    >> Damsel's Pecan Cheesecake made with Hag's Toffee Nut Crust.
    >>
    >> W're also having pork ribs. Please don't flame me because I'll be
    >> using a store bought BBQ sauce, preparing them in an oven and
    >> finishing on a grill. We 'test drove' this method last week and were
    >> very satisfied with the results. Yesterday I found some near perfect
    >> artichokes at a local produce store for $1.49 each. We ate them last
    >> night and I plan to serve them again this weekend. I'll be making the
    >> Cook's Illustrated cornbread recipe with jalapeno pepper too.
    >>
    >> My question is what else to serve with this meal as far as side dishes
    >> and appetizers?

    >
    >IMHO ribs almost demand a good recipe slaw and baked beans are of course
    >always appropriate. I would use a vinagar not creamy based slaw unless you
    >are using a spicy bbq sauce.
    >
    >Lets see:
    >
    >Ribs
    >Slaw
    >Artichokes
    >Beans
    >Cornbread
    >
    > I think I would skip the appetizer and serve the artichokes alone as a
    >first course.
    >
    >
    >Dimitri
    >



    I'm almost overwhelmed by all the good suggestions. Dimitri, I very
    much like the idea of serving the artichoke as a first course and
    skipping the appetizer. Done!

    I think I will go with some baked beans and cole slaw since those
    items were recommended most often. Someone said to look into corn,
    but that isn't a good option this time of year in my area...

    Thank you all for your ideas and help.

    Ginny
     
  18. Ginny Sher

    Ginny Sher Guest

    <snip>

    >Appetizers include drinks, right? What's your weather like? If warm,
    >chips, guacamole, salsa, beer and sangría should do. If folks will be
    >indoors, then a cheese log, crackers, a smoked salmon spread (recipe
    >follows), beer and wine.
    >

    Oh... yes, drinks. I was on a scuba diving trip in Cozumel, Mexico
    about a week ago and picked up a bottle of Kahlua for $9. I was
    thinking... Black Russians. It's been MANY years since I've had one
    of those.

    Ginny
     
  19. aem

    aem Guest

    Ginny Sher wrote:
    >
    > Oh... yes, drinks. I was on a scuba diving trip in Cozumel, Mexico
    > about a week ago and picked up a bottle of Kahlua for $9. I was
    > thinking... Black Russians. It's been MANY years since I've had one
    > of those.


    How about White Russians, too? 2 oz. vodka, 1 oz. Kahlua, fill tall
    glass with light cream.

    Kahlua is also really good over ice cream, either vanilla or one of the
    coffee-flavored ones. But I guess not till a couple of days after your
    cheesecake.
     
  20. Ginny Sher

    Ginny Sher Guest

    On 9 Mar 2005 16:32:52 -0800, "aem" <[email protected]> wrote:

    >Ginny Sher wrote:
    >>
    >> Oh... yes, drinks. I was on a scuba diving trip in Cozumel, Mexico
    >> about a week ago and picked up a bottle of Kahlua for $9. I was
    >> thinking... Black Russians. It's been MANY years since I've had one
    >> of those.

    >
    >How about White Russians, too? 2 oz. vodka, 1 oz. Kahlua, fill tall
    >glass with light cream.
    >
    >Kahlua is also really good over ice cream, either vanilla or one of the
    >coffee-flavored ones. But I guess not till a couple of days after your
    >cheesecake.


    I did consider White Russians and will probably get some light cream
    for that, but initially I was thinking enough is enough. I'll be
    waddling into the gym on Monday morning as it is... *if* I can squeeze
    into my shorts.

    The Kahlua bottle is 980 ml. I'm not sure what that equates to in
    litres, but it's a big honkin' bottle, that's for sure. :)

    Ginny
     
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