balancing the dinner buffet menu

barbukSeptember 25, 2006

Need your help please in planing a buffet dinner for sixteen coming up in October. Thought I'd cook either beef Bourguignon or beef tenderloin with roasted root vegetables -- I fancy the rich wine sauce, but need another main dish as an alternative. I was thinking of a pork and orange casserole with a pilau rice, but do you think that would be too rich? Should I serve something plain to contrast with the beef dish, and should I also serve a salad? Your suggestions will be apreciated. I plan on small nibbles and finger food for appetizers and a choice of two desserts to follow.

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I think the pork would probably go, but I'm not not seeing many choosing it over the beef.

Maybe you could do a Chicken Cordon Bleu or a chicken dish with a white sauce to balance it out - maybe even a chicken pasta dish. Or, how about a totally different direction: Salmon?

I love salads so I always think they should be served! I think a Caeser Salad would be good.

    Bookmark   September 26, 2006 at 12:03AM
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I think you need something very different to contrast with that rich, dark beef.
Perhaps a buffet friendly version of chicken picatta? or a chicken or veal marsala.
And yes, I think you need a green salad as well.
Linda C

    Bookmark   September 26, 2006 at 12:12AM
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Do you have any non-meat-eaters attending? Consider a vegetarian or fish choice, if you really feel you must offer a second main dish.
I agree with Lindac about the salad.

    Bookmark   September 26, 2006 at 12:55PM
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Ditto about the salad, most people these days seem to expect and enjoy a salad with their meal. A few months ago, I had some of dd's friends over. I put out a bowl of mixed greens. I have a pretty ceramic popover pan (7 cups, for some odd reason), that I filled with things like: dried cranberries, mandarin oranges, nuts, crumbled blue cheese, etc--sort of a salad bar, but since we were eating family style, the multi-cupped serving piece made it easy to pass the toppings. The guests all loved the salad, and really dug into it.

As to the second main dish, I'd go with something lighter, remembering that some people don't eat pork for religious or health reasons. And a lot of people don't eat red meat, either. If the idea is to give your guests a real choice, then I'd think chicken or fish, served in a light style, would be a good choice. There's a good orange chicken recipe that's all over the web--google Orange Walnut Chicken and look for a recipe that uses orange juice concentrate. I've made it several times--it's easy, light, and always a hit with guests.

    Bookmark   September 26, 2006 at 4:08PM
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I agree do a chicken dish. Something light. An artichoke light cream sauce over it. Or not a cream but a wine or olive oil type set up. I am trying to get away from making too many dishes with creams with my guests.

    Bookmark   September 28, 2006 at 11:43AM
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Have you had this party yet? How did it go?

    Bookmark   October 12, 2006 at 11:46PM
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Yes, the food was great and all your comments most helpful. They made me totally rethink. I had appetizers --- including shrimp wraps from T.Joes which come with a sweet chili dip and were excellent. I scrapped the beef and offered chicken masala, small cubed roasted root vegetables, roasted asparagus, pilau rice, parisienne salad (Costco) and to relieve the boredom of chicken, I made a rogan ghosht with mint/coriander yoghurt and mango chutney. Everyone loved it. It was a deliberate ploy to have one entree in a crock pot --- the curry, so no bother on the night, and good left overs! I had made lemon mousse, fruit salad and chocolate raspberry roulade the previous day. I'm glad I was daring enough to offer the curry and surprised --- better than playing it safe, and the chicken was prep. earlier and just had to be broiled off, so I didn't get frazzled! Thank you all, Barb.

    Bookmark   October 27, 2006 at 8:00PM
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It sounds great!!! Glad it was such a success.

    Bookmark   October 28, 2006 at 1:51PM
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