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Ideas for an impressive but easy starter for fussy FIL please!!!

(19 Posts)
JolieGirl Wed 29-Oct-08 12:31:36

FIL coming for dinner Saturday night and I am struggling for inspiration. He is used to fine dining and eats extremely lavishly, and can be very critical when any food that passses his lips is not up to scratch!! It's his first time here for a meal and I'd really like it to go well as I do get on extremely well with him - not out to dazzle with haute cuisine, but I am a reasonable cook and I'd love any ideas for a starter. Main course will be sea bass. Limitations are that he does not eat cheese, pasta or tomatoes. Over to you...!!

catrin Wed 29-Oct-08 15:37:51

Soup - maybe something like Jerusalm artichoke (with drizzle of truffle oil if flush)

ouefs en cocotte (which i believe to be baked eggs with cream)

or don't do starter, do posh nibbly bits like blinis with smoked salmon and pretend caviar

rislip Wed 29-Oct-08 15:37:56

I always do Jamies warm squash salad for starters. Easy, looks nice and is tasty. Parma ham, roasted butternut squash, rocket and parmesan. I've got the recipe if you would like.

Tillyscoutsmum Wed 29-Oct-08 15:47:18

Have been having a think and can't believe how many of the starters I do include cheese blush

How about chicken liver parfait with brioche toasts

Or seared scallops with lemon chilli butter (too much fish ?)

Or a risotto ? (mushroom perhaps)

Or Asparagus with lemon breadcrumbs and poached egg

Let me know if you want the recipes to any

Tillyscoutsmum Wed 29-Oct-08 15:49:00

Caramelised onion tart (or tartlets) is another one which goes down well and can be done in advance

rislip Wed 29-Oct-08 15:50:19

Oh sorry, I didn't read the bit about cheese.

SquiffyHock Wed 29-Oct-08 15:51:12

I would second chicken liver parfait as it's nice to do in advance.

Beef carpaccio with horseradish cream, parmesan and rocket is lovely (can also be changed into capapes by putting onto toasted bread)

Spicy parsnip soup

notamumyetbutoneday Wed 29-Oct-08 15:52:58

I would do a tartlet type thing, possibly wild mushroom with pancetta- easy but looks impressive. But maybe not posh enough? Are there any foods he particularly likes? Struggling for inspiration!

runningmonkey Wed 29-Oct-08 15:53:09

How about a nice french onion soup? You could do cheeseless croutouns (sp?)/nice crusty bread. Not that posh but it pleased my incredibly fussy grandad last crimbo!!

Can post recipe if you like.

notamumyetbutoneday Wed 29-Oct-08 15:53:47

A terrine? Salmon ones always look so impressive, and whilst ive never made one i imagine they are made in advance?

Carmenere Wed 29-Oct-08 15:54:23

Salmon tartar with avocado and horse radish is really easy and incredibly delicious. Also |i reckon he would be very impressed by being served raw salmonwink

JolieGirl Wed 29-Oct-08 19:33:59

Yum yum !!! Dribbling now quite frankly! Thank you for all your brilliant ideas.

I think I would prefer a meat or soup starter given we are having a fish main course. And most DEFINITELY one that can be prepared in advance - I have a 5 month old and a 2 year old to get to bed before dinner and will not have any spare time to twiddle about cooking something from scratch!

Rislip - how funny, we had that warm salad for our wedding starter 4 yrs ago! Delicious.

Could I have the chicken parfait recipes please and the soup ones as well if possible?

Also any more ideas gratefully received...

Tillyscoutsmum Wed 29-Oct-08 21:11:00

chicken liver parfait Bit of a faff - but gorgeous.

Tillyscoutsmum Wed 29-Oct-08 21:12:40

lovely terrine. Serve with crusty bread and a sauce/chutney

ComeOVeneer Wed 29-Oct-08 21:14:30

Wild mushroom tartlets.

Potted spiced crab with melba toast.

Avocado, prawn and crab terrine wrapped in smoked salmon.

Tillyscoutsmum Wed 29-Oct-08 21:21:42

some lovely soups the carrot and cumin and butter bean and pancetta are especially lovely

yogabird Wed 29-Oct-08 21:25:42

i made pumpkin, sweet potato & ginger soup yesterday and it was delicious

runningmonkey Thu 30-Oct-08 09:59:17

French onion soup

Makes 2 big portions...
25g butter
3 large spanish onions thinly sliced
1 tablespoon caster sugar
2 garlic cloves crushed
150ml dry white wine
600ml hot chicken or beef stock (whatever you prefer)
1 tablespoon worsceter sauce
1 tablespoon brandy (optional)

Melt butter, add sliced onions and sugar. Cook over a med heat for 10-15 mins. Stur frequently. You want to soften the onions and cook until they get a lovely caramel brown colour. will smell lush!!

Add garlic and cook for another 30secs.

Add wine and cook vigourously for a couple of mins

add stock and worcester sauce. Bring to the boil and simmmer for 15-20 mins until onions are really tender.

Stir in the brandy just before serving.

Serve with some toasted french bread and melted gruyere cheese (or not if you're serving non cheesy people!)

Hope you enjoy! The recipe is easy to scale up/down as needed.

slim22 Thu 30-Oct-08 10:08:57

mushroom medley stir fried in olive oil garlic parsley
(prepare in advance - reheat 2 mn before serving )

On a bed of rocket

drizzle balsamic and truffle oil (sparingly) if you have

for something really lush add a few strips of smoked magret de canard

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