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Old 09-02-2006, 11:22 AM   #1
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ella/TO's Avatar
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Posts: 797
Party for Husband's 80th

Help!!!!!...lol.....daughters and I are planning a dinner party, in our condo restaurant (which has a chef, etc.) for about 40 guests.
I'd like to give chef suggestions for the dinner (preferably an Italian theme), as he really is not too creative or innovative. Would appreciate any ideas you can give us. Thanks in advance.


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Old 09-02-2006, 03:02 PM   #2
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Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Straits of Juan de Fuca
Posts: 893
Well,let's see -
- a Crab and/or Shrimp dish mixed with leek/bechamel sauce - maybe some spinach and parmesan added.

- osso buco served with polenta

- a pasta, ham and vegetable gratin

-chicken florentine (chicken cutlets topped with spinach and mozzarella cheese and baked in a tomato/wine sauce.)

- Rack of Lamb with a Green Peppercorn sauce

- Beef Burgandy

- Beef Stroganoff

- Pork Tenderloin with Chinese Plum Sauce

-here's a dish I made for one of my husband's Christmas parties a few years ago - it's a wonderful buffet dish.

* Exported from MasterCook *
Roasted Butternut Squash Penne al Burro

Recipe By : a Chef's Journey
Serving Size : 6 Preparation Time :0:00
Categories : Pasta - hot Vegetarian dishes
Amount Measure Ingredient -- Preparation Method
-------- ------------ --------------------------------
6 fluid ounces unsalted butter
1/3 cup heavy cream
3 ounces freshly grated Parmesan
1 pound Butternut squash -- peeled, cut in ~1/2" chunks
1 T. Olive oil
2 teaspoons minced garlic
1 1/2 T. fresh mincced sage leaves
salt & pepper
1 pound Penne
the following are optional garnishes for the dish -
24 fresh sage leaves -- (24 to 36)
1 " depth of veggie oil in a small fry pan
Optional adds: toasted pine nuts

al Burro sauce:
With a mixer, beat the butter till light & fluffy; add the heavy cream gradually, beating constantly till all cream is added.
Add the Parmesan, mix just till blended; cover and reserve.

Butternut Squash:
Put the 1/2" cubes on a baking sheet and toss together with the 1 T. olive oil, minced sage, garlic, and salt & pepper.
Roast in a 400° oven for 15 - 20 min. till tender, turning the pieces once during roasting. Remove from oven and set aside.

Sage Leaves garnish:
Heat the fry pan with ~1" veggie oil till a couple of drops of water sizzle.

Drop in individual leaves top side down - after 30-45 seconds, turn over and let just brown; remove quickly w/a slotted spoon and drain on paper towels.
Set aside.
Cook Penne according to pkg. directions, drain.

Finish dish:
Add the penne to the al burro sauce mix together well, then add the roasted butternut squash, toss gently to completely mix - add salt to taste and lots of freshly grated pepper.

Top each plate with addtl. grated parmesan and a few fried sage leaves and/or pine nuts. And, a little more freshly ground pepper, if desired.

NOTES : When you feel flush, try a bottle of E. Guigal Condrieu (a White Rhône wine) with this dish - delicious!!

Hope those give you some ideas to discuss with the chef! Happy Birthday (early) to your husband! And have a great party.

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Old 09-03-2006, 06:22 PM   #3
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Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Caracas, Venezuela
Posts: 655
Originally Posted by ella/TO
Help!!!!!...lol.....daughters and I are planning a dinner party, in our condo restaurant (which has a chef, etc.) for about 40 guests.
I'd like to give chef suggestions for the dinner (preferably an Italian theme), as he really is not too creative or innovative. Would appreciate any ideas you can give us. Thanks in advance.
Is your husband Italian, or of Italian descent?

In which case:
1) Antipasto: Fresh figs,pickled aubergines, tonno e fagioli, carciofi alla Romana, coppa, salami di Milano, prosciutto di Parma, peperonata, parmigiano...
2) Zuppe: Straciatella
3) Pasta: papardelle with Napoli sauce - but add some strips of sundried tomato and some fresh basil - and REAL olive oil!
4) Pesce: See if you can find some San Pietro - (John Dory in England) and simply grill it with a little olive oil and salt. Then make a fresh sauce with chopped, marinated tomatoes ( marinate in olive oil, garlic and fresh basil), chopped capers and some oregano. Squeeze of lemon juice before serving.
5) Osso buco is the thing! Otherwise look for a leg of lamb with rosemary!
6) Insalata : Keep it simple. Just some fresh red and green radicchio with a splash of white wine vinegar, salt and olive oil.
7) Dolci : ask for tiramisú. Did I mention tiramisú? ( now how did you guess that was my favourite...)

Fresh fruit.

These last four items help the digestive processes...!!!
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Old 09-05-2006, 02:32 PM   #4
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Join Date: May 2002
Location: Edmonton, Alberta
Posts: 23,194
From ella/TO,

Thanks for your reply....good suggestions!!! Actually, we're Jewish...but,
we love Italian food, as do our family and many of the guests who will be
Thanks again......ella.....
You're only given a little spark of madness. You mustn't lose it. Robin Williams
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Old 09-05-2006, 02:51 PM   #5
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Location: Metro New York
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In that (or any other ) case, I'd add to Clive's menu... Carciofi alla Giudea... There are/were Jews in Italy, too! and these artichokes are my favorite!
Wine is the food that completes the meal.
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