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Theme dinner this weekend (French)

post #1 of 22
Thread Starter 
So we were invited to a French theme dinner this weekend and I am not sure what would be the best to bring. We ordered a loaf of bread from Poilane bread for the meal but I still have to make something.

Roast chicken?
Braised leeks?
Ratatoullie?
Salad Nicoise?

What do you guys think?
Thanks,

Nicko 
ChefTalk.com Founder
All About Braising: The Art of Uncomplicated Cooking
All About Braising: The Art of Uncomplicated Cooking
Bacon (I made)
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Thanks,

Nicko 
ChefTalk.com Founder
All About Braising: The Art of Uncomplicated Cooking
All About Braising: The Art of Uncomplicated Cooking
Bacon (I made)
(26 photos)
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post #2 of 22
Coq au Vin?
Boeuf Bourguignon?
Cassoulet?
Fricassee de Poulet a l'Ancienne (Mastering the Art of French Cooking, pg 258)
Chef,
Specialties: MasterCook/RecipeFox; Culinary logistics; Personal Chef; Small restaurant owner; Caterer
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Chef,
Specialties: MasterCook/RecipeFox; Culinary logistics; Personal Chef; Small restaurant owner; Caterer
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post #3 of 22
Thread Starter 
Would you believe I don't own a copy of MTAFC? Sounds great. Cassoulet would take too long but a great idea non-the less.

Thanks.
Thanks,

Nicko 
ChefTalk.com Founder
All About Braising: The Art of Uncomplicated Cooking
All About Braising: The Art of Uncomplicated Cooking
Bacon (I made)
(26 photos)
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Thanks,

Nicko 
ChefTalk.com Founder
All About Braising: The Art of Uncomplicated Cooking
All About Braising: The Art of Uncomplicated Cooking
Bacon (I made)
(26 photos)
Reply
post #4 of 22
Much as I love all those braises, it's SUMMER!!! :smoking:

So maybe something on the same order but more attuned to hot weather (well, I see from Weather.com that it's not so bad where you are, but still. ;) ), like a boeuf à la mode, a nice jellied beef. Or maybe jambon persillade, a ham-parsley terrine. In any case, I'm thinking something that doesn't have to served hot and is light on the palate.

Ratatouille would also be great, since it can be served at room temperature, and the main vegetables for it are in season now -- eggplant, zucchini, tomatoes, peppers. (I'm a big fan of bringing vegetable dishes to potlucks, since they're something pretty much everyone can eat.) Just don't do what my mother did once: when she had just discovered the joys of fresh ginger, she added large lumps of it to her (Julia Child-learned) ratatouille. :eek: Not a pleasant surprise to bite into! :lol:


ETA: Nicko, how can you not have that book????? Publishers Weekly says that it's been outselling Julie and Julia (much cheaper -- in so many ways :p), so get with it! Besides, some of those recipes are absolutely classic, and not even all that hard, like the Chocolate Mousse.
"Notorious stickler" -- The New York Times, January 4, 2004
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"Notorious stickler" -- The New York Times, January 4, 2004
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post #5 of 22
As you've ordered the bread ... a selection of cheese and olives.
"If we're not supposed to eat animals, why are they made of meat?" Jo Brand
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"If we're not supposed to eat animals, why are they made of meat?" Jo Brand
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post #6 of 22
Hi Nicko,

Do you know what the others are bringing? I agree with Suzanne......summer.

Belons with Mignonnette
Celery root remoularde with cured or smoked fatty fish
A great plate of fine French meats and cheeses
Baruch ben Rueven / Chanaבראד, ילד של ריימונד והאלאן
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Baruch ben Rueven / Chanaבראד, ילד של ריימונד והאלאן
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post #7 of 22
Thread Starter 
We actually are bringing a selection of French cheeses (haven't decided yet) but I thought it would be nice to bring something else. Even though it is summer I still enjoy a good batch of braised leeks but hey what can I say.

I thought a nice salad nicoise would be refreshing. I have lots of ideas just can't seem to pin one down. The idea of terrine is nice but I don't have the time to put that together.
Thanks,

Nicko 
ChefTalk.com Founder
All About Braising: The Art of Uncomplicated Cooking
All About Braising: The Art of Uncomplicated Cooking
Bacon (I made)
(26 photos)
Reply
Thanks,

Nicko 
ChefTalk.com Founder
All About Braising: The Art of Uncomplicated Cooking
All About Braising: The Art of Uncomplicated Cooking
Bacon (I made)
(26 photos)
Reply
post #8 of 22
French Champagne? :)

grilled figs in proscuitto?

Both!
 Don't handicap your children by making their lives easy.
Robert A. Heinlein

 
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 Don't handicap your children by making their lives easy.
Robert A. Heinlein

 
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post #9 of 22
Thread Starter 
Ooh I like that grilled figs and prosciutto.
Thanks,

Nicko 
ChefTalk.com Founder
All About Braising: The Art of Uncomplicated Cooking
All About Braising: The Art of Uncomplicated Cooking
Bacon (I made)
(26 photos)
Reply
Thanks,

Nicko 
ChefTalk.com Founder
All About Braising: The Art of Uncomplicated Cooking
All About Braising: The Art of Uncomplicated Cooking
Bacon (I made)
(26 photos)
Reply
post #10 of 22
If you like braised leeks, how about Leeks Vinaigrette? I also second the Ratatouille. Everything for it is pretty much at their peak right now. Or how about an Onion Tart. Again, it can be served at room temp with a nice salad. Not a fan of Salade Nicoise-seen it done too many times and I'm over it, but that is only a personal preference.
post #11 of 22
Hehe nice n fast to make too Nicko....washed down with loads of the bubbly stuff :)
 Don't handicap your children by making their lives easy.
Robert A. Heinlein

 
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 Don't handicap your children by making their lives easy.
Robert A. Heinlein

 
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post #12 of 22
I concur about the ratatouille - or what whipping up some aioli - really summery, too!
post #13 of 22
Classic french, a cold poached salmon with Sauce Mayonnais
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My latest musical venture!
http://myspace.com/nikandtheniceguys
 
Also
http://www.myspace.com/popshowband "I'm at the age when food has taken the place of sex in my life. In fact I've just had a mirror put over my kitchen table." Rodney Dangerfield RIP
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post #14 of 22
Thread Starter 
I am really starting to consider doing a french country pate. It has been so long since I have done one I would love it. Just need to get a terrine.
Thanks,

Nicko 
ChefTalk.com Founder
All About Braising: The Art of Uncomplicated Cooking
All About Braising: The Art of Uncomplicated Cooking
Bacon (I made)
(26 photos)
Reply
Thanks,

Nicko 
ChefTalk.com Founder
All About Braising: The Art of Uncomplicated Cooking
All About Braising: The Art of Uncomplicated Cooking
Bacon (I made)
(26 photos)
Reply
post #15 of 22
Could always use a loaf tin to save on getting a ceramic terrine, if you are turning it out anyway to serve....
 Don't handicap your children by making their lives easy.
Robert A. Heinlein

 
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 Don't handicap your children by making their lives easy.
Robert A. Heinlein

 
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post #16 of 22
Hi Nicko, so what did you end up taking along?....c'mon we waiting to hear :)
 Don't handicap your children by making their lives easy.
Robert A. Heinlein

 
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 Don't handicap your children by making their lives easy.
Robert A. Heinlein

 
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post #17 of 22
here's a link to a local restaurant's menu. It's about as classic french comfort food as it gets. no innovation there, but man, this place is awesome.

Sophie's Bistro

ate there wed night and despite 90 degree weather, i had coq au vin and a friend had cassoulet.

how about profiteroles? (if you haven't gone already)

if not check out the menu, it might give you an idea.
post #18 of 22
Yes Nicko what did you end up making?

Tonight my in laws flew from France and I wanted to make them feel right at home, so.... roasted chicken, sauteed new potatoes, a nice salad with french dressing (the secret is in the shallots that you first marinate in the vinegar and salt), grilled mushroom skewers, a nice Vacqueyras, cheese platter, fresh grapes, and chocolate brownies with vanilla ice cream.

OK so that desert didn't sound all that French. But I didn't hear them complain. :lol:

Tomorrow, ratatouille!!
post #19 of 22
Thread Starter 

Some big surprises

First, thank you all for your feedback. The dinner was incredible and I mean it, these friends really stepped up their game and I was totally blown away. To tell you the whole truth I felt like I was a little out classed on the dishes so here is the whole story.

Couple #1 - The Hosts. As we entered the their home the husband has a whole tenderloin of wagu beef perfectly roasted with three different sauces (Bordelaise, Bernaise, and Blue Cheese). As we were all gathering and getting ready for appetizers the wife pulls out a plate of foie gras (Really) and starts sauteing it up and the serves it to everyone with toast points and basalmic glaze.

Couple #2 - The entered the house and with three crocks with roasted cornish hens and quails with root veggies (Winter idea I know but they were killer). The wife enters with home made chocolate ice cream, home made crepes and fresh cut strawberries. Fantastic crepes and ice cream.

Couple #3 - The wife enters with a tart tatin and an awesome bacon and cheese quiche. The husban enters with a 79 bottle of dom perignon (really). The bacon quiche was amazing and it was my first taste of dom peringnon.

Couple #4 - (Yep thats us) enters with hard boiled eggs and salmon tar tar and some macaroons purchased from a pastry shop. Actually the eggs were Ouefs ala Russe (sp?) and believe it or not they were the hit of the party. I made two dishes I thought would be very typical in a French bistro or home and purposely tried to keep it simple. I was amazed (and a little proud) that the eggs were so well received (everyone wanted the recipe) and the salmon tar tar was also a big hit.

As we started desserts the host of the party pulls out a bottle of absinthe. Oh man that was a terrible idea is all I can say. First none of us had ever had absinthe before and the pours were supersize pours. Like an idiot I drank all of mine and I felt terrible the next day. Not hung over at all just spaced out all day. So to all you potential absinthe drinkers beware. :)
Thanks,

Nicko 
ChefTalk.com Founder
All About Braising: The Art of Uncomplicated Cooking
All About Braising: The Art of Uncomplicated Cooking
Bacon (I made)
(26 photos)
Reply
Thanks,

Nicko 
ChefTalk.com Founder
All About Braising: The Art of Uncomplicated Cooking
All About Braising: The Art of Uncomplicated Cooking
Bacon (I made)
(26 photos)
Reply
post #20 of 22
Awesome! Thanks for the report! Sounds like an amazing party!!

What's your secret for your oeufs à la russe? Just the plain regular one or do you have a secret ingredient to make them extra-good?

I never tried them, but it gives me an idea!
post #21 of 22
Yummers Nicko! What a night of fantstic food.

Oscar Wilde would have polished off the Absinthe all by himself :)
 Don't handicap your children by making their lives easy.
Robert A. Heinlein

 
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 Don't handicap your children by making their lives easy.
Robert A. Heinlein

 
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post #22 of 22
I first drank absinthe in Paris when I was about 22. The hangover was so intense and sooooo long lasting.

I feel your pain!
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