In-laws coming!

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Taboo

Cook
Joined
Sep 25, 2004
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52
Location
Cooperstown,NY
I've invited the in-laws for dinner. I'm trying to make a good impression. Of course of been trying to do that for 11 years :)

Anyway, I need some food ideas. Something good but not too exotic. They like things rather plain. I also need a wine that we all can enjoy or can I serve 2 wines..one for me and one for "Mother"?( She's Boone's Farm I'm Robert Mondavi... :cry: )

So far, my menu consists of baked lemon chicken, pan roasted new potatoes with rosemary, mixed italian green salad with balsamic, and green beans. Are the green beans to "blah"? For dessert I am trying a lemon tart that was in the New York Times Sunday magazine 2 weeks ago.

Help, help, help!
 

kitchenelf

Chef Extraordinaire
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North Carolina
Instead of green beans why not roasted asparagus? Or Brussels sprouts with a shallot, butter, dill, lemon, s & p sauce???
 

kitchenelf

Chef Extraordinaire
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Feb 21, 2002
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Forgot to say - I made lemon chicken a couple months ago from a winery cookbook and it called for marinating overnight in 1 1/2 cups of lemon juice, and there were other things too but the lemon juice was #1 - OMG - it was so sour we couldn't eat it! So if your recipe calls for THAT much lemon juice be afraid, be very afraid ;)
 

jkath

Hospitality Queen
Joined
Sep 2, 2004
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11,447
Location
Southern California
I think that sounds lovely! Maybe you could also make some homemade yeast rolls. That's always good with every meal!
As for the wine - YUM to the mondavi! Hubby loves the cabernet and I love their whites.
With you already planning the meal, you are sure to impress the people who raised your spouse!
 

Chopstix

Head Chef
Joined
Oct 3, 2004
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Location
Singapore
Taboo,

If you use Asparagus in place of the green beans, this recipe is always a winner!

Baked Asparagus with Parmesan

1 pound asparagus
1 tablespoon olive oil - divided use
2 1/2 tablespoons freshly grated Parmesan cheese
1 1/2 tablespoons soft white bread crumbs
Preheat oven to 450*F (230*C).
Melted butter

Blanche asparagus spears and shock in ice water. Drain.
Toss asparagus spears in 1 to 2 teaspoon olive oil and arrange in baking pan .
Mix some melted butter into bread crumbs.
Sprinkle asparagus with Parmesan cheese and bread crumbs. Drizzle with remaining olive oil.
Bake uncovered until bread crumbs are golden brown.
Makes 4 servings.

P.S. A chef advised me before to try not to repeat the same ingredient or flavor when planning a menu. I notice you have lemon chicken and lemon tart. Just something to think about...
 

luvs

Master Chef
Joined
Aug 24, 2004
Messages
9,671
Location
da 'burgh
if you want to stay with green beans, a little minced garlic and lemon zest added to them, or green beans amandine would be nice.
 

Juliev

Washing Up
Joined
Sep 3, 2004
Messages
2,394
Location
USA
Try to find out if they are chicken or beef people...or even seafood. If you can't find that out, then make a couple main dishes with chicken and one with beef. Have a couple side dishes, the asparagus sounds good.. or even dress up green beans, like luvs suggested. Have some great dinner rolls or fresh french/italian bread..and a simple dessert.
 

WayneT

Washing Up
Joined
Sep 23, 2004
Messages
825
Location
Australia
You will never please the Outlaws even if they pretend that they are pleased. I know, I am one. :LOL:

Hey, Try tossing the beans in butter and throw in a dash of nutmeg. Simple but delicious. Tip from my Dutch mate.

No, don't TRYDO IT!
 

Taboo

Cook
Joined
Sep 25, 2004
Messages
52
Location
Cooperstown,NY
Chopstix- I will try the asperagus! I'm trying to remember IF they like asperagus! Brussels sprouts are good only if they are made by their son-in-law( he COOKS you know!).

About the dessert...you are probably right. I make a killer chocolate cake or neopolitan cassata BUT "Mother" finds them too rich. Seasonal fruit? I really do want to try that tart. Hmmmm.
 

buckytom

Chef Extraordinaire
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Aug 19, 2004
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My mountain
WayneT said:
You will never please the Outlaws even if they pretend that they are pleased. I know, I am one. :LOL:

Hey, Try tossing the beans in butter and throw in a dash of nutmeg. Simple but delicious. Tip from my Dutch mate.

No, don't TRYDO IT!

waynet, i'm curious. does your friend always insist on each of you paying your own way?
 

Taboo

Cook
Joined
Sep 25, 2004
Messages
52
Location
Cooperstown,NY
kitchenelf said:
Forgot to say - I made lemon chicken a couple months ago from a winery cookbook and it called for marinating overnight in 1 1/2 cups of lemon juice, and there were other things too but the lemon juice was #1 - OMG - it was so sour we couldn't eat it! So if your recipe calls for THAT much lemon juice be afraid, be very afraid ;)
:shock: Wow that sounds potent! No, I will fill the cavity of the chicken with lemon slices then put some garlic under the skin, then bake. Ideally this should produce a moist bird with a lemon essence!

Thanks for your help everyone! I'll let you know how it goes!
 

WayneT

Washing Up
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Sep 23, 2004
Messages
825
Location
Australia
waynet, i'm curious. does your friend always insist on each of you paying your own way?

Buckytom
You had me stumped on that one for 20 seconds. Maybe I should have said "my mate from Holland". Wise minds think alike. :P
 

Chopstix

Head Chef
Joined
Oct 3, 2004
Messages
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Location
Singapore
Taboo, you probably don't need reminding, but I forgot to include in my recipe that you need to get rid of the fibrous skin on the lower 3/4 of each asparagus stem.

I usually hold each spear about 2 inches into the tip, laying it horizontally on the cutting board (tip pointed at me). Then with a peeler using a single outward stroke, peel with light pressure down the stem. Turn the spear to peel all sides.

Here's a neat tip a chef taught me: Where exactly to cut off to discard the dry fibrous bottom of the spear? Hold the dry end with thumb and index finger and try to bend it to break if off. Where it naturally breaks off is that point.

Good luck with the in-laws!
 

WayneT

Washing Up
Joined
Sep 23, 2004
Messages
825
Location
Australia
Chopstix said:
Hold the dry end with thumb and index finger and try to bend it to break if off. Where it naturally breaks off is that point.


I learnt that one from a TV chef, works well. I believe it works with bamboo chopstix also. :LOL:
 

Chopstix

Head Chef
Joined
Oct 3, 2004
Messages
1,321
Location
Singapore
WayneT said:
Chopstix said:
Hold the dry end with thumb and index finger and try to bend it to break if off. Where it naturally breaks off is that point.


I learnt that one from a TV chef, works well. I believe it works with bamboo chopstix also. :LOL:

Keeps away those bamboo fibers from between the teeth, huh? :D
 

choclatechef

Washing Up
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Sep 1, 2004
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USA
If you are making lemon chicken, why not try another dessert so you don't have lemon twice?
 

buckytom

Chef Extraordinaire
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you could make every dish something that has lemon in it, and pretend it's an episode of iron chef! i'd bet they would be impressed, and your cuisine would reign supreme!!!!
 

mish

Washing Up
Joined
Oct 4, 2004
Messages
4,355
Hi Taboo.

Sounds lovely. Would you be interested in serving some soup - i.e. French Onion or Carrot Bisque (think I have the recipes)? I have an easy cheese soufflé recipe (looks fancy, but, a no-brainer - though I know you'd like to keep it simple). Perhaps some hors d'oeuvre, to sit, munch & chat?
 
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