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Easter Cooking Woes #359968 04/06/09 05:38 PM
Joined: Dec 2005
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Niki Offline OP
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So I offered, like a genius, to come up and cook for my parents and grandparents for Easter Sunday. I had called to find out they weren't doing anything, grandpa had just gotten out of the hospital, and my parents are broke. So I thought, hey, we have extra money so we'll come up for the weekend and cook for them!

Now I'm freaking out. =( Cooking for my hubbie and bro-in-law is one thing, cooking for my chefs of a mother and grandmother is another! I have a bunch of great recipes but 3 of them I've never cooked before, including the main dish: Leg of lamb.

I'm concerned about a number of things: 1.) Cooking in a kitchen I'm not accustomed to (grandparent's), 2.) Having everything done and hot right in time for dinner which I'm TERRIBLE at doing, and 3.) Having everything taste wonderful!

Luckily my husband is a great help in the kitchen... but I don't want to put a lick of stress on my grandma, she's too stressed about grandpa's poor condition.

Here's my tentative line up:

Appetizers:
*Devilled eggs
*Cocktail shrimp

Main dishes
*Basil and min roasted leg of lamb with provence viniagrette
*Sausage stuffed yams
*Asparagrus (?)
*Gratin asagio potatos
*Summer Squash w/romano cheese
*Macaroni casserole (?)

No idea what to do for desert. I'm also nervous about salt/fat content. But I think only the potatos will be a no-no for grandpa (they're baked in bacon and heavy cream)...

I'm freaking out about the lamb. I did lamb chops last week which everyone loved, sure, but a leg of lamb is pretty big. That and as I said I'm really bad about timing my cooking.

Help! =(

---

I'm thinking about a soup too... I have this recipe for a Red Bliss potato and Leek clam chowder, but I haven't made a soup before.. the receipe looks simple enough and catches the hubbies eye, but I'm nervous!

Last edited by Niki; 04/06/09 05:40 PM.
Re: Easter Cooking Woes [Re: Niki] #359970 04/06/09 05:59 PM
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Wow you really are laying out quite the feast!

In my experience with cooking at someone else's house I make it a point to prepare as much as possible at my place using my dishes (cause you just know you'll be missing some crucial pots & pans once you get there). The casseroles are easy to make in advance, even the devil eggs can either be made in advance or even the night before make the "deviled" part & assemble it there (thats when I find a little helper who can do that for me out of the way).
Even if you do the cooking there you can pre-mix the spices & put them in labeled baggies so you dont have to worry about lugging around spice jars & measuring there.
Just transport it all in a large ice chest & make a list of what needs to go in the oven at what time & that should help calm your nerves.
Another thing i do when I have to make a multi-dish meal is I choose recipes that require the same temperature so I can throw them all in the same oven at the same time.

Hope this helps & good luck!


Re: Easter Cooking Woes [Re: nacho's human] #359973 04/06/09 06:29 PM
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luv my bird
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Wow, that sounds so delicious. I'm busy preparing for Passover. I'm not much of cook and I tend to get very stressed-out when entertaining. I'm just trying to breathe and take it easy.
It's just 11 people...no biggie.
Here's my menu:
Gefilte fish
Chicken soup with matzo balls
A pickle and olive tray
Brisket with roast potatoes and carrots
Turkey and matzo stuffing
String beans almondine
Apple sauce
Broccoli and matzo souffle
Apple and Pinapple souffle
For dessert, fresh fruit and a tray of cookies
Chocolate fudge cake
and last but not least...lots of matzo
Oh, and about 10 bottles of different wines. I'm going to need that to get through the night.
My daughter's future in-laws are coming to dinner
Niki, good luck with your dinner, it sounds yummy


Re: Easter Cooking Woes [Re: ] #359988 04/06/09 07:38 PM
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Babies and Birds Offline
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Your dinner sounds good. You will do great, have faith in yourself. If you need some great recipes go to allrecipes.com (my fav. site) where ppl post their own and other ppl can rate them so you know you're getting the best. smile I hear you about having to cook it all. My parents, grandparents, aunts and uncles used to do all the cooking but for the past 2 and a half yrs since my daughter's diagnosis of anaphylactic food allergies I have to do most of it so I know that there won't be any accidental ER visits from well meaning relatives and since we don't live near there, I save the grocery shopping for when I get there, except for the special ingredients I have to order for my daughter on the allergy-free site. Have a great time cooking, relax and enjoy it. I know for one I was stressed the first time I had to cook for them (my Dad could be a chef his food is so good lol) but my Mom came in there and gave me a few tips and I ended up w/ compliments and tips and secrets for next time. After that, it was much more enjoyable b/c I wasn't worried as much. So have lots of fun, it will be great!

Re: Easter Cooking Woes [Re: Babies and Birds] #359993 04/06/09 08:25 PM
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luv my bird
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NIki, do you think you need soup? You're having soo much food.

Last edited by luv my bird; 04/06/09 08:25 PM. Reason: her name is Niki, not Nike
Re: Easter Cooking Woes [Re: Babies and Birds] #359994 04/06/09 08:26 PM
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Niki Offline OP
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Thanks for the encouragement!

Luv my bird, your set up sounds like a lot! Sounds great! I hope your family meal goes really well!

I'm probably gonna be on the phone with my mom a lot trying to figure out stuff. Luckily I know how to cook most of my list... the sausage stuffed yams and the summer squash dish are new to me. That and asparagrus, never cooked it.

I want to pre-prepare stuff really bad, but we're going to be taking a greyhound bus there. If I was driving, then sure, but I don't want to be carrying cooler's on a bus. I'm probably just going to bring my slow-cooker,and buy all the ingredients I need while up there. I wanted to buy food for my parents anyway...

I feel a little bit better though! So thanks a lot. When my mom called me this morning and said me and Steve would be staying with my grandparents, it threw me off. I was all set to cook with my parents and have them there to help if I needed.

First family meal as a married couple with my family! Thanksgiving we went up to visit and Steve spent the WHOLE week in the hospital... not cool. So this is our chance to entertain and show I can cook!

----

Yeah... the soup I was thinking of either cutting out, or cutting out a vegetable dish for. I'm not too sure yet... I like both the squash and asaragrus.. but a soup is a nice addition... but I never cooked soup! Oh I don't know..

I was so stressed this morning though that I threw my back out. =( So I'm in searing pain. Luckily it only lasts 36-48 hours if I don't move too much.

Last edited by Niki; 04/06/09 08:28 PM.
Re: Easter Cooking Woes [Re: Niki] #360002 04/06/09 08:59 PM
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luv my bird
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Please don't get so stressed about the meal. Take your time, relax and it will be fine. Trust me, I'm the queen of stressed out. I need to take my own advice. LOL

Re: Easter Cooking Woes [Re: ] #360594 04/10/09 12:50 AM
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Carl Offline
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Menus can be changed. If a leg of lamb stresses you, you can go with the simpler thing that you're comfortable with.

I think we stress so much about the "what" that we do for someone that we forget that it is the "who" and "why" that is far more important. It's you showing love and concern for them.

I tend to stress over details, also, so like Di said, I'm talking to myself as much (or more) than to you, Niki.


Marge is the love of my life.
Re: Easter Cooking Woes [Re: Carl] #360637 04/10/09 01:21 PM
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PDM Offline
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I hope it goes well.

I tend to think that a simple meal, that you feel comfortable with, is likely to work out better ~ and probably be more popular ~ than a complicated one, that you feel less confident about.

Those meals sound huge for a small family gathering! smile

Last edited by PDM; 04/10/09 01:22 PM.

"The secret of success is constancy to purpose" - Benjamin Disraeli.
Re: Easter Cooking Woes [Re: PDM] #360641 04/10/09 01:46 PM
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luv my bird
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My dinner went well, except for my oven breaking down with the turkey still cooking. I cried "WHY ME, WHY NOW"? Fortunately, the turkey was almost done. The sweet repairman came out in an hour and found nothing wrong. Go figure. 60 dollars later.....
The dinner, with my daughter's future in-laws was wonderful and her boyfriend asked her to marry him right before dessert.
What a night!!!!
Niki, I'm sure that your dinner and everyone elses will be absolutely perfect and delicious. Don't get excited and take time to actually enjoy the food and family.

Happy and Healthy Easter to Everyone.

Diane

Last edited by luv my bird; 04/10/09 01:47 PM.
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