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Time, and room in the frig and freezer - Corinne - 08-18-2008

I don't understand how you can do it all. You make such fancy foods for your friends and family.

I have a few big parties a year and I'm always looking for the easiest recipes to make. I have a refrigerator with a side by side freezer and another tiny upright freezer in the basement.

I would love to make fancy appetizers and special foods for my guests/family but I want to spend time with them instead of baking and frying while they are visiting.

For instance, my husband's birthday is over Labor Day and I always serve the same things:
Ribs, cheeseburgers, sausages, chicken, lasagne, baked beans, coleslaw, potato salad, chips & dips, cheeses w/crackers, watermelon and 2 desserts. Same old same old. This is easy but since this is his 65th birthday, I'd like to make it special.

If you have read my posts, you understand that I'm not a great cook but I really try hard.

Do you have suggestion of foods, sides, appetizers or desserts that can be made in advance and frozen (then heated up)? I want to spend time with friends and family so I'd love to be able to thaw and serve.

I have had parties catered but it's just not the same. I love it but it seems like it's not as family oriented. Hard to explain, but the kids like old timey food.

I'd appreciate any ideas and recipes. OK , bottom line, the exes and the trophy wives are always invited so I want to seem together, kinda cool and a good cook. Any ideas for a 30# weight loss and a face lift?

Re: Time, and room in the frig and freezer - Gourmet_Mom - 08-18-2008

I LOVE these kind of threads! So many ideas come out!

I recently made Jean's Gorgonzola and Brie torte, and it would be easy to make ahead and have in the fridge. You could use a good bakery style bread or just plain crackers with it. It was really impressive. The modified version of the Veal Ricotta Oddballs would make a good appy also. I'm sure this would freeze and reheat...especially in a vacuum sealed bag. Then there's beef, pork, or chicken satay or Yakatori. Those could be skewered and left to marinate until ready for the grill.

Depending on numbers of people, the Pork Wellington's were VERY impressive. I made these ahead and froze before the baking step. It worked very well. Filets Oscar is another impressive dish. The bernaise could be made ahead and warmed over your steaming asparagus while the filets cooked. Plating that would be simple. Then there's stuffed pastas or stuffed fish that impress as well. These can be prepped ahead and just stick them in the oven while you visit and serve the appies. I've got a Shrimp Primavera, Shrimp with a Roasted Pepper Sauce, and an Alexander Sauce that could be used on steak or pasta that could be made ahead.

Don't forget "make your own" tacos or pizzas. Those would be fun! Oh, and the Taco Salad from the Sandwich and Salads is a good recipe and could be made ahead.

Sides to consider are marinated slaws, salads, and salsas. Although, I love a good Caesar, just don't mix until ready to serve. I also have an Insalat Blu recipe we love as well as a Spinach with Pine Nut dressing we enjoy. Don't forget Jean's Honey Mustard Dressing...that's a good one, too!

Something I've not made, but think would be great is a tiramisu. The NY Cheesecake recipe is awesome...even with my recent blunders with the dang thing. Only my own stupidity messed that one up. Don't forget fruit trifles. They always impress. I'm not big on desserts, so I'm not a good one to ask.

Re: Time, and room in the frig and freezer - Gourmet_Mom - 08-18-2008

OH! Don't forget the shrimp sushi parfaits...they'd hold well in the fridge! We had those again last night! YUM!

Re: Time, and room in the frig and freezer - Corinne - 08-18-2008

I lost my entire post. I have no idea what I did wrong. Thank you Daphne. I answered every suggestion that you supplied and added more of my own.

I'll be back later. This is very frustrating.

Re: Time, and room in the frig and freezer - Gourmet_Mom - 08-18-2008


I lost my entire post.

I HATE when that happens. Oddly, I saw sysadmin on here a while ago. Wonder if there was a problem in our little universe here...LOL!

Re: Time, and room in the frig and freezer - Old Bay - 08-18-2008

We made peach sorbet from fresh peaches and added a little peach schnapps while it was freezing--to die for!! How about a watermelon boat--easy, and impressive. Boil some shrimp and serve with red sauce and remoulade sauce. Texas caviar. Nachos. All this can be done way ahead. Oh, do a pasta salad.

Re: Time, and room in the frig and freezer - farnfam - 08-18-2008

How about a watermelon sherbert bombe? That can be made ahead and when served it looks like each guest got a slice of watermelon, always impresses me.
Empress for Life

Re: Time, and room in the frig and freezer - - 08-18-2008

I have one dish that I like to use for celebrations - it can be made ahead and frozen - it is good hot or cold - it is great with spiral ham, pulled pork, um, anything

Pineapple Casserole
2 cans of pineapple chunks (drained - SAVE six tablespoons)
8 oz. cheddar cheese shredded
1 cup of sugar
6 tablespoons of flour
6 tablespoons of saved pineapple juice
1 sleeve Ritz Crackers crumbled
1 stick of butter of margarine melted

Mix sugar, flour, juice, pineapple chunks and cheese. Put in 9 x 13 baking dish (spray with cooking spray) - mix melted butter with crackers - top casserole with cracker mixture - bake at 350 for thirty minutes or until cheese has melted.

This freezes well - the day I am planning to use it I put it in the fridge in the morning so it is partially thawed when I bake it -

Re: Time, and room in the frig and freezer - Gourmet_Mom - 08-18-2008

Speaking of the shrimp, I did a really cool ice ring using dill and lemon slices in it recently. I thought it looked pretty impressive.

[Image: 7237a24d4398.jpg]

You could duplicate this by using two bowls, with the top one weighted.

I LOVE the Sorbet Bombe (is there supposed to be an e on there?) idea!

Re: Time, and room in the frig and freezer - cjs - 08-18-2008

I'm thinking...but I have to go look at trailers in a minute. will be back.