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SOS....Vegetarians, please help! Cooking for a large crowd......

(15 Posts)
gerbo Mon 10-Feb-14 17:53:22

I'm not veggie but am soon to be cooking for a crowd at a new school club thingy my daughter and I are doing together. At the club one family has to cook for everyone (!!!) and it will be our turn soon.

The will be approximately 12-15 families, each with one adult and up to four kids, and you seem to be able to pad out the main with garlic bread/bread/salad etc. there are only facilities to warm food up there, not really cook, so I need to cook at home then take it along.

Last week (the first week) we had a pasta tomato bake (dead simple, hardly any sauce), garlic bread and cucumber/tomatoes. It was definitely extremely simple and basic. Not really tasty. The children we eating, though.

The crowd are a bit of a tough one as made up of parents and lots of children of all ages, so the meal really has to be simple, filling, cheap ish, etc. I feel limited to pasta bakes to be honest as can imagine a room of kids turning their noses up at stews, curries or soups, and I'd feel terrible if they did!

For tea tonight we just tried a pesto and courgette creamy pasta bake and to be honest it was rubbish (sickly, weird texture) ... my kids wouldn't eat it and they love pasta pesto!

Ideas so far: lasagne with quorn mince, tomato soup in cups with jackets, jackets with quorn spag Bol sauce, and a sausage pasta bake I do that's really rich without the sausage (with tomatoey and red wine sauce, homemade cheese sauce etc.) or shepherds pie with quorn mince????? Would a vegetarian mind fake mince? I don't want to upset anyone.

Help, please!! Many thanks in advance......

Ps excuse my veggie ignorance!!!

OldBeanbagz Mon 10-Feb-14 18:00:22

How about a big pot of veggie chilli with crusty bread?

I use this recipe from the BBC Good Food website. There's plenty of other good ideas on that site too.

Or you could do your saugage pasta bake with quorn sausages? Or a sausage & bean casserole?

RoleyMo64 Mon 10-Feb-14 18:07:33

Jackets with a choice of stuff to go with them might be a good option - beans, tuna, cheese, chilli (meat or pretend) and plenty of salad stuff.
Veggies are unlikely to mind fake mince but bear in mind not everyone likes quorn. Veggie lasagna could be a possibility but it is a bit time-consuming.

Sausage pasta bake sounds like a really good idea through if you use pretend sausages - don't suppose you could pass on the recipe?

gerbo Mon 10-Feb-14 18:07:48

Thanks, old bean! I hadn't thought of quorn sausages, we quite like those, that could really work. I have two children who refuse any kind of beans (pain in neck as we love them) but bean cass could really work for most children. Thanks lots....will do a trial run of things using quorn sausages.

gerbo Mon 10-Feb-14 18:12:52

Roley the sausage pasta bake is truly delicious, it's a BBC Good Food one. Will attempt to attach it. I need to consider the practicality of cooking jackets en masse I guess, as my ovens both awful and small....

http://www.bbcgoodfood.com/recipes/1197/rigatoni-sausage-bake

I use frozen leaf spinach and no nutmeg. But do use the wine. It's a bit of a faff but well worth it. And extremely filling.

LittleBabyPigsus Mon 10-Feb-14 20:20:11

Asda own-brand veggie sausages are really nice, much better than quorn. Sausage pasta bake sounds great! Chilli is also a veggie crowd-pleaser.

Have you got a larger slow-cooker? You can cook jacket potatoes in there. You could always microwave the potatoes and crisp them up in the oven as well.

Onykahonie Mon 10-Feb-14 20:25:39

Anything tasty would be fine with me and my (veggie) kids. The sausage casserole, spag bol, soup or chilli all sound good. We're happy to eat Quorn mince, but you could use dried red lentils for a cheaper alternative.
One word of warning though...I'm not sure if you're doing veggie food just for vegetarians or because some are Muslim? If they eat Halal, then you can't add wine to the sauce (sorry if that's obvious!).

Lurleene Mon 10-Feb-14 20:28:24

A lentil dahl and naan bread is tasty and filling.

FunkyBoldRibena Mon 10-Feb-14 20:36:45

I do lunches for our volunteers regularly and I stick to vegan chunky soup, with bread, butter/soya marge and a salad. I'd stick to the same formula just because it makes it easy and you can cook it the night before, which makes it taste so much nicer the next day...and it's the cheapest way as there are no extra things to buy on top of veg, bread and butter.

21mealspluscake Wed 12-Feb-14 10:40:55

What about a coconut chick pea curry like this - http://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2014/feb/11/coconut-chana-saag-vegan-recipe - with rice, naan and things like cucumber raita, onion sambal and grated carrot with dill as side dishes. Kids like the sweet creaminess of coconut milk and the adults can spice it up a bit with sides. Chick peas are really cheap especially if you buy dry ones and you can do all the side dishes beforehand, easy if you choose ones that don't need cooking.

21mealspluscake Wed 12-Feb-14 10:42:27

Or a link that works -here

PasswordProtected Sun 16-Feb-14 12:24:21

Lentil, mushroom & spinach curry with raita.
Chickpea & spinach curry.

Vatta Sun 16-Feb-14 12:39:22

Careful with quorn, it causes digestive problems for quite a lot of people - I'm veggie but don't eat it all.

MisForMumNotMaid Sun 16-Feb-14 12:48:06

My default for a big crowd is fajitas/ English take on mexican

You could do wraps, a mildish chilli bean mix, grated cheese, fried onions or even battered onion rings, peppers, salsa, guacamole, sour cream, shredded lettuce and salad stuff, potato salad, coleslaw, tortilla chips, jacket potato skins (so people could have those rather than wraps).

It works for me because theres enough there for people to pick at and make a meal they'd enjoy.

DrownedGirl Sun 16-Feb-14 13:01:17

Home made pizza?

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