Wednesday, June 8, 2011
The Reluctant Hostess
My friend Macie hates to cook. We meet once a week for lunch and I secretly suspect she is only doing it so that she can serve the leftovers to her family for dinner.
Well, imagine her surprise when she found herself in charge of lunch for 40 at her sister's baby shower recently. She turned to me and I turned to Jen, hostess extraordinaire. Jen's advice: "Don't cook; assemble."
What does it mean? This:
Assembling: Fresh mozzarella, basil leaves and cherry tomatoes on skewers, with oil and balsamic vinegar drizzled on top
Assembling: Chef salad
Assembling: Costco Cake
OK, that last one might not followed the concept exactly, but you get the idea.
Above all, be flexible. Macie was thrown when many of the ingredients she needed were out of stock/out of season/too expensive. ($3.50 for a red bell pepper?!) So her tray of grapes and brie became a mixed berry salad, and the magic salad she'd planned on became chicken salad sandwiches made with chopped chicken and the basil dressing she'd made the day before. (She served it to rave reviews and ended up with a new recipe.)
Follow these tips and who knows? You might actually get to enjoy the day too.
Macie's Menu: Baby Shower Luncheon for 40
Mixed fruit salad
Spinach dip with pita chips and raw veggies
Chicken salad sandwiches
Lemonade, sparkling water, juices