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Old 05-21-2014, 10:07 PM   #1
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ISO menu ideas for 50th birthday

The DH's 50th is in July. I have invited some people to join us (he doesn't know a lot of people). I have three guests who are vegetarian, two that don't eat garlic or anything spicy, one who follows the Paleo diet, another who doesn't eat red meat (chicken, seafood are fine). The rest of us (the minority), eat anything. The time is 3:00 p.m. - 8:00 p.m. (Chickens have to be put to bed, dogs fed) so "go home, NOW."

I want things I can make the day before.
I want to use whatever veggies are ready in the garden.
I only have one BBQ and my smoker, so can't do a lot of grilling.

My thoughts so far include:

Potato salad (I am so making an Indian-inspired potato salad with fennugreek leaves, greek yogurt, grated paneer, green onion, etc.)
coleslaw
a big tossed salad
skewered grilled veggies
skewered grilled shrimp / chicken / beef
chickpea curry
I was thinking ribs but guest of honor doesn't like anything with fat--so lean, lean, lean
cucumber salsa with pita bread chips
Root veggie "fries" (beet, carrot, potato)
stuffed grape leaves (vegetarian and with meat)
Desserts will be chocolate cake / almond cake / lemon tartlets

I am only in the "thinking" phase. Other than asking folks to reserve the time and date, I haven't done anything else.
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Old 05-21-2014, 10:34 PM   #2
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WOW that looks like an ambitious and great menu. What a challenge it seems with so many restrictions. The menu is lacking color so I'm thinking something colorful like a big fruit salad. Summer fruit will be in peak season in July. Marinated grilled pineapple spears on a stick would be great too.
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Old 05-21-2014, 11:18 PM   #3
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WOW that looks like an ambitious and great menu. What a challenge it seems with so many restrictions. The menu is lacking color so I'm thinking something colorful like a big fruit salad. Summer fruit will be in peak season in July. Marinated grilled pineapple spears on a stick would be great too.
There will be lots of veggies (hopefully) from the garden. Raspberries will be in season here, so those will be added. I like the idea of pineapple--good with chicken and shrimp. All that is missing from the guest list is someone with diabetes and another with gluten intolerance! Oh, and a vegan, instead of vegetarian. And, someone who keeps a Kosher kitchen.
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Old 05-21-2014, 11:21 PM   #4
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This is the recipe for the cucumber salsa:

Crisp Cucumber Salsa:
Note: 1/4 cup is only 16 calories! YES!!!
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2 cups finely chopped seeded peeled cucumber
1/2 cup finely chopped seeded tomato
1/4 cup chopped red onion
2 Tbsp minced fresh parsley
1 jalepeno pepper, seeded and chopped
4-1/2 tsp minced fresh cilantro
1 garlic clove, minced or pressed
1/4 c reduced-fat sour cream ( I would Use Greek yogurt instead of sour cream)
1-1/2 tsp lemon juice
1-1/2 tsp lime juice
1/4 tsp ground cumin
1/4 tsp seasoned salt
Tortilla chips

In a small bowl, combine the first seven ingredients. In another bowl, combine the sour cream, lemon juice, lime juice, cumin and seasoned salt. Pour over cucumber mixture and toss gently to coat. Serve immediately with chips.

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Old 05-21-2014, 11:23 PM   #5
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...All that is missing from the guest list is someone with diabetes and another with gluten intolerance! Oh, and a vegan, instead of vegetarian. And, someone who keeps a Kosher kitchen.
I know a guy. He's a kosher vegan and is a diabetic with gluten and lactose intolerances. Oh, and he is Italian so only eats red, white or green foods when he's not cleansing.
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Old 05-21-2014, 11:25 PM   #6
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I know a guy. He's a kosher vegan and is a diabetic with gluten and lactose intolerances. Oh, and he is Italian so only eats red, white or green foods when he's not cleansing.
Sounds like the guest we're missing--send him my contact information so I can send him directions...NOT. This is challenging enough.
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Old 05-21-2014, 11:29 PM   #7
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Sounds good. Are you putting red cabbage in the cole slaw? How about making red cabbage?
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Old 05-21-2014, 11:40 PM   #8
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Sounds good. Are you putting red cabbage in the cole slaw? How about making red cabbage?
Yup. I might make a kohlrabi slaw instead. It all depends on what is availble in the garden.
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Old 05-22-2014, 01:07 AM   #9
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I know a guy. He's a kosher vegan and is a diabetic with gluten and lactose intolerances. Oh, and he is Italian so only eats red, white or green foods when he's not cleansing.
ROTFL....everybody's dream dinner guest.
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Old 05-22-2014, 02:49 AM   #10
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It sounds good to me!

How about asking the guests to bring a dish to pass?

Maybe some skewered mushrooms on the grill or some grilled eggplant for the vegetarians.

Drop one dessert and add an ice cold watermelon!

I would also drop the veggie fries and make it easier on the cook.

The hardest part of the whole menu planning process is the editing, relax and have fun!
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