"For some reason, I feel that since we're hosting I should cook."
IF, you can get past that feeling (which I cannot either...
) I'd say go for the costco things.
But if you can't - how about some
- wraps - can be done ahead
- an antipasto - big bowl of mushrooms, artichokes, kalamatas, feta, provolone, tomatoes (add at last minute) tossed with an olive oil/Balsamic vinaigrette. can do a day or two ahead.
- a coleslaw - two days ahead, shred the cabbage, prep the green onions, make the dressing - toss at the last minute with some currants and/or pineapple.
-tortellini salad - couple days ahead, just add little more dressing to moisen up
ANTIPASTO TORTELLINI SALAD
4 16 oz. packages cheese tortellini -- fresh or frozen
1 lb. Salami -- chopped, ~1 cup
1 lb. provolone cheese -- cut into 2X1/4X1/4" trips
4 11 oz. cans whole kernel corn
4 9 oz. packages frozen spinach -- thawed, squeezed to drain
4 6 oz. jars marinated artichoke heart -- drained, chopped
4 6 oz. cans ripe olives -- pitted, drained, sliced (~1 1/2 cups)
~4 1/2 cups Creamy Italian Salad Dressing
4 teaspoons Dijon mustard
8 ounces Parmesan cheese -- grated
7 1/2 oz. jar diced pimientos -- drained
Cook tortellini to desired doneness. Drain; rinse w/cold water.
In a very large bowl, combine tortellini with salami, provolone, corn, spinach, artichoke hearts & 1 cup of the olives.
In a small bowl, combine dressing, Dijon & 1/4 cup of the Parmesan cheese; blend well.
Pour dressing over salad; toss gently.
Top w/remaining olives and Parmesan cheese.
Cover; refrigerate 1-2 hours to blend flavors. (or a day or so ahead, just add more dressing to moisten)
Just before serving, garnish w/pimientos and other garnishes.
Serving Ideas : This is a wonderful buffet dish.
- mini sandwiches - dinner rolls with cold roast beef, ham, etc with the condiments in bowls couple days ahead.
or go to costco, come home and put your feet up with a glass of champagne to toast your little one!!