Need your best make-ahead potluck recipe!
I'm still on the hunt for a good main dish to bring to a parents' group party/potluck. I got a great suggestion for mac & cheese, but am hoping for other ideas. It's got to be easy/quick to prepare & ideally, can be served at room temp-any ideas?
This is my favorite potluck dish, amazing and very simple. It takes 15 minutes of preparation, 10 minutes of bone removal in the middle and 15 minutes of reducing the sauce at the end. (Plus unattended cooking and an overnight stay in the fridge to solidify the fat for skimming.) It perfumes the whole house.
This recipe serves 4, but multiplies well.
2 medium oxtails (3 to 4 lb.) cut in 2" pieces and well trimmed
6 whole sticks cinnamon, broken into 2" pieces
1 handful (1/3 to 1/2 cup) whole star anise
4—5 T dark soy sauce
2-1/2 T sugar
1/4 tsp MSG (optional)
1. Put the meat in a kettle with water to cover, heat to a boil and cook 5 minutes. Drain and rinse the meat and the kettle.
2. Return the meat to the kettle with water to cover, add the cinnamon and star anise and MSG, if using. Heat to a boil and cook uncovered for 45 minutes over medium heat, occasionally skimming off any scum.
3. Add the soy sauce and sugar, reduce the heat to a slow simmer, cover and cook until the meat is falling off the bones (2 to 3 hours).
4. Remove the meat to a platter. When it's cool enough to handle, remove the fat and bones. Refrigerate the meat and sauce separately overnight.
5. The next day, skim the fat from the sauce and reduce it in a non-stick frying pan. When it starts to thicken, strain out the solids. Continue reducing until thick, almost a syrup (1/2 to 2/3 cup).
6. Reheat the meat, plate over white rice and pour the sauce around and over.
I have had nothing but compliments when I serve this dish of green beans with chicken. It is my little brother's favorite. And, it is lo-calorie and healthful (just to save up for the holidays!)
Whole roasted chicken
Whole green beans, blanched (2 large pkgs)
3 or 4 Tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1 Tbsp Italian Seasoning or Herbs d'Provence
SAlt and Pepper to taste
Make dressing by infusing garlic and herbs and seasonings into the olive oil - DO NOT COOK the garlic. Heat very minimally while stirring, remove from heat - repeat. Add the chicken juice for extra flavor (and less oil). Let it sit while you prepare the chicken. Beans should be defrosted. Add benas and chicken to dressing and stir. Adjust salt and pepper to taste.
Keeps great while serving at room temperature. Keep in refrigerator if made ahead.
It's really simple, but I always use a roasted chicken.
Tear chicken into large bite-size pieces (don't cube - make them kind of like the beans - looks better and plates easier) The flavor and texture of the chicken makes a huge difference - so . . . . . I get my roasted chickens from Albertson's.
Buy a few large packages of frozen whole green beans. I get mine at Trader Joe's, but have sometimes gotten them at the grocery store when TJs was out. I use 2 pkgs of the TJs - about 6 to 8 cups?
Put about 1/4th cup (maybe less) of extra virgin olive oil in a stove top vessel. I use a metal mixing bowl You should not heat it enough to burn you, to a metal bowl isokay. (still be careful). If you use a deep pan, don't heat it too much or let it remain heated - DONT COOK the garlic.
Add fresh minced garlic (about 2 cloves) (The frozen Dorot brand crushed garlic at Tradee Joe's is what I use for crushed garlic > always extremely fresh and already crushed.
Add herbs and seasonings with a gentle hand - not too much.
It sounds more complicated than it is - that's just me.
How about roll up sammys ?? Use very large flour tortillas or fresh lavosh. Make several types. Tuna, turkey, chicken tenders, vege -hummus and roasted pepper, meat, bacon, etc....Make them fat and slice in half on the diagonal, then line up in a baking dish and you're off. Great for the kids and adults alike. Self serve and at room temp. Go to your favorite deli and add potato salad, slaw and/or salsa ?? I also keep a 1.5 qt size crock at hand for chocolate fondue but, you could probably make an easy cheese sauce -melt velveeta or ?, then your "eaters" could pour warm cheese and a little salsa over the sammy's. Fun eating! :)KQ
After reading a thread here about pork shoulder, i've made it twice. It is absolutley delicious and couldn't be easier. I remember from your previous post about this that you have two events that day. You can season the roast, pop it in the oven at 450, jump in the shower. After 45 minutes turn the heat down to 250 and let it cook all day while you head off to your first event. My 4-5 pounder cooked for about 9-10 hours, I think. It came out incredibly tasty, very moist and tender. We did not eat it piping hot as it was ready before we were and it was still wonderful.
I used loads of fennel seed, garlic and fresh sage to season it.
Couldn't be easier. Everyone, kids and adults alike, kept wandering over to the pan to grab "just one more" little bit of the crispy skin or tasty meat...it was addicting.
The price is right, too. Not an expensive cut.
I love putting together Southwest Rice with Chicken... was a huge hit at the last potluck I was at.
Ingredients: brown rice, whole roasted chicken, can of black beans, cherry tomatoes, 6-8 green onions, 2 limes, few spoons of honey, cumin
Take all the meat off the chicken and shred it into bite sized pieces. Add to serving bowl. Prepare brown rice as you normally do, let cool somewhat and add to the chicken. Rinse and drain the beans and add to the rice. Cut cherry tomatoes in half and add to the rice. Slice green onions finely and add to the bowl.
Make dressing: squeeze the limes, add honey to taste (til the sharpness of the citrus is mellowed) and add about a half teaspoon of cumin. Whisk well.
Pour the dressing over the rice mixture and toss to coat. Make more dressing and add if the mixture gets a little dry (rice tends to absorb dressing). Can be made the night before (in fact, it tastes better after a day, flavors come together) Serve at room temp.
Except for the limes, I usually keep these ingredients on hand all the time, so I went ahead and tried this recipe- I doubled it, so my rice ended up a little mushier than I would have liked, and I really increased the amount of dressing & seasoned the whole thing really well- the flavors were good, the recipe was simple, and I would certainly try it again and play with the ingredients/ratios a little more to suit my family's tastes. Thanks amandine!
A piece of beef, maybe chuck, maybe 1-1.5 pound
A can of kidney beans
A can of whole tomatoes
One yellow onion
3 sweet green peppers
Half a head of garlic
Red pepper flakes
Course ground black pepper
Quickly brown the meat on both sides, cut into bite sized pieces.
Seed and slice the green peppers into strips, roughly chop the onion, finely chop the garlic. Wash the beans until free of packing liquid (or just rehydrate dried beans), drain and roughly chop the tomatoes.
Cook the green pepper, onion, and garlic in maybe 5 Tbs oil at medium high for a few minutes - don't let the garlic brown. Add beans and tomatoes, maybe some water to let things mix. Add red pepper and cumin to taste (I tend to use a lot of cumin, also add a chipotele pepper if you have one) and cook over low heat for around two hours until things are looking good. Regarding the beef, if you add it too early it could get overcooked, so I wait 'till near the end as it's already been browned.
Serve with chopped scallions, grated cheddar cheese, and crushed nacho chips.
re: sweet ginger
If it were me, I'd make something like a strata or quiche egg-based thing that is good at room temperature and can be made ahead like http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/rec...
This way, kids/toddlers can eat it too, so long as there aren't too many "icky" ingredients, and those "icky" ones get hidden anyways.
Otherwise, I might do a pasta salad that needs to be made ahead, so that the flavors marry and meld.