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Old 12-04-2009, 09:56 AM
 
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I always host Christmas for a large crowd (20 people) and struggle with veggie side dishes! I found one for cauliflower that actually looks very tasty that I thought I'd share. Anyone else have any good ideas? Top Chef's Stephanie Izard's roasted cauliflower on Yahoo! Video (http://video.yahoo.com/watch/6484397/16812570 - broken link)
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Old 12-04-2009, 11:11 AM
 
Location: Hampton Roads, Virginia
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I think the best plan with that many people, is to make a good combination of cold, stovetop and oven dishes. Things like deviled eggs, potato salad and copper penny carrots are good cold dishes (make ahead too!). Then simple sides on the stovetop. Add some hearty veggie casseroles and you will have a nice mix.

When I try to decide on sides I always look at color too. We don't want too many green veggies - so add carrots, squash and a tomato dish to add variety. Just a few thoughts to help you out!
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Old 12-04-2009, 11:57 AM
 
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thanks for the great tips!
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Old 12-04-2009, 07:08 PM
 
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Default this is really delicious, especially with ham!

PINEAPPLE BAKED CASSEROLE

1 can (20 oz.) pineapple chunks with juice
1 can (20 oz.) crushed pineapple with juice
1 cups shredded cheddar cheese
1/3 cup plain flour
2/3 cup sugar
cup butter, melted
1 to 2 cups crushed Ritz crackers, or saltines

Combine sugar, flour and juice from pineapple, mixing until smooth. Add pineapple, cheese, stirring to mix all.

Combine cracker crumbs and melted butter, making sure crumbs are well coated.

Pour fruit mix into 8 x 8 buttered square dish and top with buttered crumbs. Bake at 350 for 35 to 40 minutes.
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Old 12-04-2009, 07:18 PM
 
Location: Los Angeles>Little Rock>Houston>Little Rock
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I love cauliflower gratin...Cauliflower Gratin Recipe : Ina Garten : Food Network

My Mom used to make a huge salad of raw cut up veggies (cherry tomatoes, mushrooms, broccoli, zucchini, cauliflower, carrots,no lettuce) and marinate it overnight in a vinaigrette dressing. It can safely sit out for a while after it is marinated overnight.

My sister's in-laws make big pans of garlic-cheese grits.
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Old 12-04-2009, 07:24 PM
 
Location: Middle Tennessee
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I always want candied sweet potatoes.
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Old 12-04-2009, 07:28 PM
 
Location: Vermont, grew up in Colorado and California
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Shrimp cocktail, cheese n crackers, scalloped potatoes, chicken wings, veggiesw/dips.
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Old 12-07-2009, 11:14 PM
 
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Here is a very yummy spinach casserole recipe that even spinach haters like -- at least the ones I've fed! It's pretty for Christmas. Mix and cook as two separate casseroles (instead of doubling) and you'll have twenty servings. This is a recipe from an early 80s Southern Living cookbook. 3 (10 ounce) packages frozen chopped spinach, 3 (3 ounce) packages cream cheese, 4 tablespoons butter or margarine, divided, salt and pepper, generous dash ground nutmeg, grated rind of 1 lemon (yellow part only), 1 cup packaged herb dressing. Cook spinach according to package directions. Drain thoroughly. Return to hot saucepan and immediately blend in cream cheese and half the butter. Season with salt, pepper, nutmeg and lemon rind. Turn into buttered casserole, cover and regrigerate until ready to bake. This may be done in the morning of the day it is to be served. About 45 minutes before baking, remove from refrigerator, spread dry herb dressing over top and drizzle with remaining 2 tablespoons melted butter. Bake at 350 degrees for about 25 minutes. (The ingredients are for one casserole).

Last edited by antiquesmountainapache; 12-07-2009 at 11:16 PM.. Reason: Left out amounts
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Old 12-10-2009, 07:27 AM
 
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This wild rice/dried cranberry/pecan salad is wonderful & you can make it ahead of time:

Wild Rice Cranberry Pecan Salad Recipe | Simply Recipes

I have made it with all wild rice rather than mixed rice.
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Old 12-11-2009, 02:31 PM
 
Location: St. Croix
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My gift this year to my friend who has EVERYTHING except the desire to cook/bake a lot of food was to prepare a Christmas meal and deliver it, already prepped with directions on how to re-heat, plate serve and which garnish to use (I will also prep those). The star of the show is a tenderloin prepared by her. So after reading her recipe, I came up with the following for a six-person sit-down but also included a buffet-style portion of the menu:

The Hors d’oeuvres - not a big deal there
Bread- available throughout until the cheese course
Starter – Smoked salmon roulades on dark rye bread garnished with finely chopped chives (plated)
Soup - crab soup with saffron and scallop quenelles garnished with croutons
Fish - best available, garnish asparagus encased in carrot, wrapped in parchment paper with truffle oil (plated)
Salad – Waldorf salad, traditional
Palate cleanser – sliced cucumber garnished w/ rose cut cherries or chilled lychee nuts served in the liquid with a lemon peel garnish (plated)

Here is the buffet portion - sides only:
Starch - my version of potatoes au gratin (garlic, onions, thinly sliced potatoes, cream, fontina and fresh parmesan cheese)
Creamed spinach
Baby carrots with a honey/brown sugar/butter glaze with a hint of saffron
Pearl onions in a brown butter sauce
Baked tomatoes, stuffed with fresh mozzarella, drizzled in olive oil and garnished with fresh basil
Broccoli and Cauliflower au Gratin, slight hint of paprika on top for additional color

Then:
Palate cleanser – lemon sorbet garnished with fresh cranberries - cran is cooked stove-top 3 hours on low with rum, butter, sugar, and then taste to determine more/less or optional ingredients like grapefruit juice (plated)

Cheese plate - obvious but garnished with fresh and sugared fruit and home-made crackers

Dessert - home-made ice-cream and shortbread cookies, some drizzled in butterscotch, the rest drizzled with chocolate.

Point is, a LOT of this can be prepared days in advance (shortbread cookies can be frozen for at least 6 weeks); so even though it sounds like a lot of food, the plated food is served in small portions. As you can see, the buffet portion of the meal is very colorful and different textures. There are a lot of recipes for the above but if you get stuck, DM me.

Best of luck.

Last edited by SunsetBeachFL; 12-11-2009 at 02:36 PM.. Reason: change out some of the plated foods here for a buffet, like crudite or cheeses
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