Menus and cookbooks
From: Dahako (
Date: Wed, 30 Jan 2002 07:21:01 -0700 (MST)
Hi all -

I've been on a tear this past year to try to set up menus that can be done in 
advance, served with about 20 minutes last minute prep and make people feel 
they've gotten a yummy home-cooked meal. To do this while meeting our 
community's commitments to food preferences has been a challenge.

So far my favorite summer menu is pan bagnat (a type of French salad/sandwich 
that must be made in advance to be wonderful).  Last minute prep is slicing and 
plating.  I do one steamed side veggie with this (preferably something from the 
garden), with fruit 'n ice cream dessert.  We virtually always have plain rice 
or pasta available as well.  And I hold out some of the sandwich stuffing when 
I expect any diners with gluten issues will be present.  The trick with this 
meal is to use truly fabulous bread.

Meals like our annual Hanukkah celebration and breakfast for dinner nights are 
also easy.  You just break out every griddle in the place and fry latkes or 
cook pancakes and eggs until diners quit coming.  Prep can be quickly handled 
in the Cuisinart and food processors. Sides of fruit, crudites and toppings can 
be put out on tables or buffet style.

My two favorite cookbooks are both by Deborah Madison: Savory Way and 
Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone.  I mostly use the Moosewood Cooks for a Crowd 
to figure out how to size recipes up to the number of diners I expect.  
Jessie Handforth Kome
Eno Commons
Durham, NC
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