Vegetarian dinner for guests - cooking with baby on hip - help!

(31 Posts)
aufaniae Sun 01-Sep-13 21:19:29

DP usually does all the cooking. I'm massively out of practice! We have friends coming for dinner tomorrow, they'll be looking forward to one of DP's legendary meals.

But ... DP's been called away for a job at the last minute, he won't get there till it's time to eat!

I'd like to pull something good out of the bag. However I will have with me DS (4.5) and baby DD who likes to be held at all times, pretty much.

Help - I need an easily prepared vegetarian feast for 6, what would you do?

aufaniae Mon 02-Sep-13 11:23:12

Oops I've double counted an hour there, this doesn't bode well grin

aufaniae Mon 02-Sep-13 11:27:33

New plan:

- check ingredients as soon as DD stops feeding
- tidy house
- 3pm shop
- 4pm cook, with DS
- 5pm more cleaning
- 5:30 tidy DS's room, with DS
- 6pm guests start to arrive
- 6:30 make quick salad

Tweet2tweet Mon 02-Sep-13 13:07:51

Normal potatoes are fine, I've done it with them before. Just make sure they are well seasoned and cheesy as cherrytom says. As a guide I reduce the amount of water used so that the filling is not too runny. Cut back by about a third and then if it looks too thick you can add a bit more boiled water when cooking. Better to be too think than runny!

Maybe go for 1.5kg of potatoes if you don't want too thick a topping. You don't want it to be too thin though as the filling will bubble up. If you think that there's too much once boiled, keep some aside for a potato salad.

If the guests like custard what about a trifle? I buy a simple off the shelf mix but add fresh berries and strawberries to the jelly so it's a fruity trifle, I believe you can add sherry to the sponge too. Just don't go for too runny fruit or the jelly won't set. On a plus the birds trifle mix is vegetarian form memory.

You can make everything in advance and pop main in the of just before guests arrive. Bare in mind if the filling has cooled you'll need to up the cooking time a little. Trifle takes 5mins ish and then just put it in the fridge to set. As a tip I cover on cling film so no other food smells taint it.

Don't worry about it not being too fancy. If one guest is American you can say that you wanted to do a vegetarian twist on a British traditional meal. Shepherd's pie followed by trifle, a good honest spread if you ask me;)

Hope you all have fun and it works out.

Tweet2tweet Mon 02-Sep-13 13:11:11

PS- if you want to occupy DS, I find giving some pre rolled puff pastry and asking little ones to cut into cheese straws is a good attention grabber. Just unroll the pastry, cut one to show what should look like (a pastry finger) and give a bowl of finely grated cheese to sprinkle on top. Then when guests come it can be a nibble with drinks and DS can get all the credit which usually goes down very well!

Tweet2tweet Mon 02-Sep-13 13:11:59

PPS- and obviously bake the cheese straws, usually about 15/20mins at around 180.

Tweet2tweet Mon 02-Sep-13 13:21:30

PPPS- you can use dry thyme, just reduce amount as not fresh, again reduce by about a third

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