Ladies Holiday Luncheon Ideas

doinitoverDecember 3, 2007

I host an annual ladies holiday luncheon (30-35 attend). I am tired of my used up recipes and am hoping some of you have some ideas to shoot some pizzaz into my plans!

I typically have a few crudites for guests to enjoy because I am always running behind getting lunch out. I serve a buffet with a main, salads, fruit, sweets, etc. Past years include a variety of quiches, roasted chicken/spinach lasagne with bechamel sauce, and a variety of enchiladas. I'd like to keep my main a bit simpler so I am able to greet and enjoy the party guests.

I am into elegant holiday entertaining. I make it all myself, but will typically get some nice baked items from a bakery and a few salads from Wegman's. I serve buffet style with formal holiday china and silver. In the past I have opted for paper napkins, but after reading some of your posts on other threads, might use cloth this year. It's hard to find paper napkins that do a good job and are pretty....does anyone know where to buy the thirsty big restaurant-style paper napkins like they have at Pei-Wei?

Though alcohol is not the focus, I do serve white and red wine along with iced tea, water, and bottled soda.

Do you have some suggestions?

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Sounds like a lovely party! Have you thought about serving mimosas? Simple and elegant in a champagne glass.(champagne and OJ) You can also make a non-alcoholic version with sparkling grape juice. The link below takes you to some fancier versions.

Here is a salad that can be made ahead (no lettuce to wilt) and looks festive, too.

Holiday Broccoli Salad

Toast 2.25 oz slivered almonds. Sprinkle on salad just before serving.
16 oz broccoli slaw (I like to make it with half slaw, half florets)
6 oz pkg craisens (about 1 cup)
3 oz dried apricots (I omit these)
4 oz shredded sharp cheddar (about 1 cup)
1/2 sm purple onions or 3 spring onions

1 Cup Miracle Whip or mayo
1/4 Cup sugar (I also like it with no sugar)
1/4 Cup red wine vinegar
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp freshly grated pepper

Here is a link that might be useful: Mimosa recipes

    Bookmark   December 4, 2007 at 7:22AM
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How about a fritatta or 2? Raspberry hot wings...or just raspberry hot sauce on boneless chicken strips. would look and taste good.
Seems to me you are missing some shell fish...unless maybe you served a crab about a baked pasta with shrimp mushrooms and perhaps artichoke hearts in an alfredo souce?
Sounds like fun to me!
Linda C

    Bookmark   December 4, 2007 at 1:01PM
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Chicken a la King along with a salad makes a lovely lunch dish. I was just mentioning it to a friend this morning.

The nice thing is the "filling" and the shells can be made well ahead and then just warmed and assembled, which is no work at all.

Crab cakes and a salad is another idea. Make them the day before and then just heat them up in the oven.

Sounds like a lovely afternoon. Let us know what you decide on.

    Bookmark   December 4, 2007 at 1:56PM
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THanks for the FB!

LindaC: as a matter of fact, I did do a crab quiche! I always have to be careful with shellfish as a dear friend is allergic, so I label all the items on the buffet that are not obvious....I like to label them with festive placecards anyway.

I like the rasberry chicken cutlet idea too! Do you have a recipe link or can you email me one?

greyhounds: the salad looks great for a buffet, thanks! I do like mimosas, but admittedly I don't have champange flutes for a crowd, only wine stems and water goblets. Thoughts?

Chase: I actually thought of this..but doing Seafood newberg.....since my one friend is the only one with a shellfish issue. The chicken would probably be a better choice though....The puff pastry shells would be easy to do the day before....

thanks everyone for some inspiration!

    Bookmark   December 4, 2007 at 5:29PM
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Raspberry wings....that also work with breast tenders and boneless thighs.

Raspberry Wings
1-1/2 c seedless raspberry jam
1/3 c balsamic vinegar
3 T soy sauce
1-1/2 tsp crushed red pepper
1 pkg (5 lb) frozen chicken wings, thawed
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Line two baking sheets with aluminum foil. In a small saucepan, combine all the ingredients, except the wings, over medium heat, stirring until smooth. In a large bowl, toss
the wings with half of the jam mixture. Place on the baking sheets and
bake for 50 minutes. Turn the wings and brush with the remaining jam
mixture. Bake for 8 to 10 more minutes, or until no pink remains in the
chicken and the sauce glazes the wings. Serve immediately.
NOTE: If you substitute boneless, skinless chicken tenders for the wings, just reduce the baking time to about 15 minutes. And, for a change, you might even want to try this with apricot jam instead of raspberry.
Serves: 4 to 6

    Bookmark   December 4, 2007 at 6:26PM
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One of my luncheons I made this and everyone loved it. I made Cream of Cauliflower soup & served in a variety of dainty cups & saucers I picked up at garage sales. For the entree-I served thin slices of Roast Pork tenderloin over a bed of wild rice and a side of plum sauce. In addition, I hollowed out medium sized tomatoes & baked them in the oven and when done-I placed bright green steamed frozen peas. Very colorful.I have also done Chicken Ala King served in pastry shells with the tomato dish.
Seafood Newburg is a great one too-sprinkled with the frozen garden peas. I've served these in crepes also.
No doubt you have perhaps done this, but if not-consider using a vegetable to hold your entree or soup, etc. (small acorn squash, red, yellow or green peppers,etc.)
I made mini muffin sized breads (date, zucchini & banana) and molded butter pats to serve w/the muffins.
Desserts have been varied, but the favored was my Bluberry delight with warm butter sauce. Also my Raspberry English Trifle. Other ideas might be fancy cupcakes.

    Bookmark   December 5, 2007 at 7:35AM
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Thanks for the recipe LindaC! It looks yummy!

Since I am just now gathering my menu ideas, I have decided to forgo anything requiring a knife to cut, so tenders and thighs are out. I will try some drumettes/wings though! I have a Gagg Combi steam and wings and ribs are a breeze to cook in there...dress them and turn on the switch.

I think I will do Seafood Newberg and Chicken Ala King for mains and serve in shells. A few salads and some fruit and I'll be good to go!

Thanks for your help ladies!

    Bookmark   December 10, 2007 at 6:44PM
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