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What are your best 'friends round for dinner' recipes

(17 Posts)
messybessie Thu 28-Jul-11 23:12:27

2 friends are coming for dinner this weekend. What shall I cook. Want it to look effortlessly accomplished rather than out to impress.

Hopefully it will mainly be wine and good catching up.

Was thinking of making Nigella's easy fruit tart for pud but not sure what else. I made risotto last time!

LordOfTheFlies Fri 29-Jul-11 00:43:04

We are vegetarian so most people expect a meat-free dish.
I do a roast vegetable lasagne with a big mixed sald
Garlic and parmesan( vegetarian parmesan) croutons

Heston Blumenthal chips.
Most of it can be made in advance, then do the salad at the last minute, cook croutons and finish chips.

If you are doing fruit tart can you do individual ones? Maybe with different fruits?

DioneTheDiabolist Fri 29-Jul-11 00:50:25

Coq-au-Vin, salad and bread. Again, aim for something that can be done in advance so you spend as little time doing stuff when your friends are there.

MayorNaze Fri 29-Jul-11 00:55:30

some sort of tagine, can be meat or veggie as required

pavlova looks far more impressive than it actually is grin

CheerfulYank Fri 29-Jul-11 01:03:33

I usually do a sort of pasta, tortellini or something. Or we just make something on the grill. Or order pizza. blush

CheerfulYank Fri 29-Jul-11 01:03:53

Oh yes, and spinach/artichoke dip.

fraktious Fri 29-Jul-11 01:49:08

Braised pork with prunes
Tapas type stuff
Big slab of grilled white fish with lime and golden rice

All require little/no prep whilst they're there and look disproportionately impressive

messybessie Fri 29-Jul-11 08:08:09

These sound great. How do I make braised pork with prunes?

fraktious Fri 29-Jul-11 08:47:17

Recipe here

I use apple juice rather than wine to make it fruitier, a generous helping of prunes and usually a better cut than shoulder. Also make sure the prunes are stoned!

Best served with rice IMO although I have served it with polenta and it might go well with potatoes, either mashed or dauphinoise. I'm also quite tempted to try it with celeriac mash.

MrsKitty Fri 29-Jul-11 08:56:01

Greek Chicken -
Diced chicken breasts, olives, red onion, sunblush tomatoes, chopped chilli pepper, sliced pointed red pepper, oregano, lemon juice. Chuck the lot in to a roasting dish, drizzle with olive oil and put in the oven for about 30-35 mins. After around 20 mins give it all a bit of a mix around, and sprinkle with some cubed/crumbled feta, then put back in the oven.

Serve with salad & new potatoes.

Easy grin.

Skimummy Fri 29-Jul-11 15:38:05

We make this but with lamb shanks. It's amazing - make the sauce the night before and it means stress free entertaining!

RemusLupinsBiggestGroupie Fri 29-Jul-11 15:41:31

My favourite things to do are a veggie tagine, a big bowl of cous cous and some Middle Eastern style salads OR a big pan of veggie curry, a couple of side dishes, rice and various salads and chutneys.

Trifle or icecream and 'stuff to go with it' for pudding.

ButWhyIsTheGinGone Fri 29-Jul-11 15:51:56

I really like chicken breasts stuffed with Stilton, baked in foil with chorizo slices on the top. I cook for around 25 mins but open the foil for the last few minutes to allow the chorizo to get slightly crispy. To accompany I do roasted slices of Butternut squash and broccoli.

I'm not a pudding fan so much, but I particularly like Butterscotch tart or a ... oh hell, what's it called... I think it's called a chocolate tipsy cake. It involves chocolate, sponge fingers, cream and Brandy, that much I can tell you!

I don't live in a big enough place to have friends round for dinner, so I envy you!

msbuggywinkle Sun 31-Jul-11 19:25:11

I like doing a couple of different kinds of curry and samosas, bahjis etc. Means there is something that suits everyone and it looks very impressive in serving bowls on the table!

It works well as everything can be done beforehand and re-heated, thus meaning I can keep people who want to talk to me out of the kitchen which will be a mess by then!

NemesisoftheVole Sun 31-Jul-11 19:35:22

I quite often do roasted chicken legs (easy portion control) maybe with some lemon and garlic in the pan, roast new potatoes (more garlic grin) and green beans or something.

Antipasti to start (meat, good mozzarella, bread/oil for dipping) and Nigella's chocolate loaf cake to finish, served with raspberries and clotted cream or ice cream.

I have a reputation for being something of a feeder blush

RemusLupinsBiggestGroupie Sun 31-Jul-11 20:47:41

MsBuggy - please share recipes as this is what I'll be doing for my next 'friends around for dinner' evening!

Needs to be veggie though, so currently I'm thinking:

chickpa and vege curry (homemade)
mushroom curry (homemade)
mattar paneer (homemade)
normal rice and sweet rice (homemade)
coconut chutney (homemade)
cucuumber and onion salad (homemade)
mango chutney (bought)
pakora (bought)
breads (bought)

Shazzystar Mon 01-Aug-11 12:31:01

This is a brilliant recipe if you're having veggies over for dinner. But even my non-veggie friends love it:

Also I really enjoy cooking a thai sea bass dish by Jamie Oliver. I've got the recipe saved here:

Thai themed meals seem to impress friends a lot of the time. They're quite easy to cook but always seem more difficult. A nice Thai meal that I would put together might include:
- chicken Thai green curry
- green beans fried with ginger, garlic and chilli
- steamed rice

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