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Old 01-04-2007, 07:16 PM   #1
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Retirement Party

My husband has retired, after 42 years of working for the same company, as mine manager in a large strip mine (coal).
Well, actually, he's on vacation, until his retirement is official on Jan 11.

I'm having a big party for him February 10...that's when he'll be getting his first Social Security check. This will be a big deal...we'll have people coming in from out of town, as well as local friends, family and co-workers.

As most of you know, I don't get around so well, so a lot of the work will have to be delegated, which is no problem. I have lot's of helpers. But it will take planning and organization, so it's time I started getting my act together.

Foodwise, all I know right now is that DH wants to cook a fresh ham...a REAL pork butt. He's planning on using the big Hamilton Beach enameled cooker, so it will be really tender.

I'll make my hot Carolina Slaw, and I have friends who specialize in potato salad, pasta salad and baked beans.
A couple of others bring jello shots and fixin's for chick drinks. My girlfriend who manages a liquor store always takes care of the Margarita's.

My daughter and I are the dessert specialists...whatever we fix, it will be chocolate.

Other things I am going to need: appetizers, some sort of relish to go with the pork, side dish suggestions, easy desserts...you name it.

We are very casual people, but I want the party to be be REALLY special.
I have a very cool tropical shirt for him, and we're going to pierce his ear that night. It will be a very Jimmy Buffet kind of party.

So, please, help me with your ideas...any kind!

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Old 01-04-2007, 07:35 PM   #2
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Connie,
sounds like so much fun..Off the top of my head, some of the thinks my kids like are proscuitto and melon, instead of wrappin a large slice of cantaloupe, I cut it into a bite size and top with proscuitto or a nice honey ham sliced thin just cut it in squares and stick it on toothpicks, put on a platter with some greens or stick it into a styro cone,platter it and garnish, I do lightly sprinkle it with salt and a little coarse ground black pepper, we also love and I make a large platter of chicken wings, for some reason people just love the things and they are tasty with garlic,onion powder and lemon pepper marinated with evoo then baked..Yummy, My family loves small finger sammies, belgin endives partially filled with cream cheese gorgonzola or blue cheese and toasted chopped walnuts, deviled eggs, stuffed celery and above all small squares of foccacia topped with either salami,proscuitto, copa, soprasetta and a mild cheese..If there are things you and Kim love let me know and I'll see what we do that might work for ya
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Old 01-04-2007, 07:41 PM   #3
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Your party sounds like it's going to be lots of fun! Off the top of my head for dessert (since your into chocolate) how about a mousse with some liquor inside, or maybe those chocolate cups that you pour your favorite liquor into? (well thats probably more like a cordial but still it has chocolate!) I'll think more and get back to you Constance.
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Old 01-05-2007, 07:22 AM   #4
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Constance, some ideas for appetizers. Greek pumpkin & feta cheese pie or spinach pie baked in a pan to simplify your work, meatballs, pumpkin fritters, prawn fritters, deep fried wantons and baked chicken wings.
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Old 01-05-2007, 07:39 AM   #5
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Constance, congratulations to Kim! This party sounds like a blast. I don't have any suggestions for food ideas, just to have a great time!
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Old 01-05-2007, 08:07 AM   #6
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Here's a great chutney to go with your ham - it's from the Natl. Pork Council and it's delicious.

APPLE-FENNEL CHUTNEY


1 1/2 cups chopped apple (1 large)
3/4 cup diced fennel (1 bulb)
3/4 cup packed brown sugar
1/4 cup chopped pecans
1/3 cup raisins
1 tablespoon chopped crystallized ginger
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup cider vinegar

In a medium saucepan, combine all chutney ingredients; mix well. Bring mixture to a boil. Reduce heat to low; cover and cook 15 minutes more.

Remove cover and cook 15-20 minutes more, or until fruit is tender
------

and an appetizer for you - this is really a fast and easy dish if you buy pre-made meatballs.

DANISH MEATBALLS W/DILL SAUCE

1 pound grd. beef
1/2 pound grd. veal
1/2 pound grd. pork
2 teaspoons salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
2 eggs
1/3 cup onion -- finely chopped
1/2 cup heavy cream
Panko
1/2 cup butter


Dill Sauce:
1/2 cup butter
1/4 cup flour
2 cups chicken broth
2 cups sour cream
1/4 cup chopped fresh dill or 1 1/2 T. dry dillweed


Mix beef thru heavy cream together; beat till very smooth & well blended.

Shape mixture with wet hands into 1" balls. Roll balls in panko & place side by side in a shallow baking pan; cover & chill.

When ready to serve, melt 1/2 cup butter. Drizzle over the meatballs; bake in 375 oven for 30-35 min., or till brown - turning the meatballs after 15 min.


Melt 1/2 cup of the butter in a large pan; stir in flour; grad. stir in broth. Cook over low heat, stirring constantly, till sauce bubbles & thickens.

Stir in sour cream & dill. Taste; add addt'l salt & pepper, if needed.


Place meatballs in chafing dish; pour sauce over & serve hot w/skewers for spearing. Sprinkle w/addt'l chopped fresh dill.


NOTES : Makes 75 meatballs & 2 cups sauce
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Old 01-05-2007, 01:43 PM   #7
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There are so many tings to choose from, Constance, it might help us to make better suggestions if you told us what some of your husband's favorite are... since this is a party for him, it would be fun to feature all foods he loves.

That said, my mom used to make the best cocktail meatballs, and I have to say that as much as I like "fancy" appys, these are so good, and so easy they're scandalous -- especially if you buy already made meatballs! The sauce consists of just two ingredients: a bottle of Heinz Chili Sauce and a large jar of Grape Jelly. Melt the two together, and keep the saucy meatballs hot in a chafing dish or crock pot.

I have a great recipe for a very easy salmon mousse. If you'd like that recipe, let me know and I can post it for you.
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Old 01-05-2007, 01:47 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChefJune
There are so many tings to choose from, Constance, it might help us to make better suggestions if you told us what some of your husband's favorite are... since this is a party for him, it would be fun to feature all foods he loves.

That said, my mom used to make the best cocktail meatballs, and I have to say that as much as I like "fancy" appys, these are so good, and so easy they're scandalous -- especially if you buy already made meatballs! The sauce consists of just two ingredients: a bottle of Heinz Chili Sauce and a large jar of Grape Jelly. Melt the two together, and keep the saucy meatballs hot in a chafing dish or crock pot.

I have a great recipe for a very easy salmon mousse. If you'd like that recipe, let me know and I can post it for you.
Connie,
ChefJune is right on here, we did the meatball thing for Christmas Eve, the only thing I did different was to sub black cherry preserves for the grape jelly. We picked up several bags of meatballs at Costco, all gone
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Old 01-05-2007, 03:01 PM   #9
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Jimmy Buffet huh? Island shirt...ok Lots of Margaritas...Oh yes!!! Jimmy Buffet music playing....Oh Yeah!!!


How can you not have boiled shrimp ("the shrimp are beginning to boil") for an appetizer!! (Peel your own of course)

Uncle Bob...


Oh..I have Feb. 10th penciled in on my calendar..See you then!!
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Old 01-08-2007, 11:54 AM   #10
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That's great, Uncle Bob...we'll be looking for you. In fact, Peel and eat shrimp are definately on the list.
Chef June, those meatballs are actually one of my husband's favorite appetizors. In fact, he used to fix that very recipe before we were married. They will be on the list!
Cjs, I like the idea of a chutney to go with the fresh ham, but I'm not fond of fennel.
We'll probably do some chicken wings also. I'd like to have a recipe for some good baked ones, so I don't have that frying mess. Or, I guess I could make them ahead of time and warm them up. Have any of you all ever found any frozen ones that are good?
I'll also do a nice antipasto platter, as Kadesma suggested.

Sure wish I could transport you all to my kitchen! No telling what me might cook up.
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