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Need Dinner Idea Quickly!

I just found out my best friend is coming for dinner tomorrow night. This is the first time she will be visiting since having twins 5 months ago. She always looks forward to my dinners - but I am at a loss for a good idea. The problem is I have a 1 year old and don't have the time like I used to for elaborate meals. But I don't want to let her down. She's been thru a really rough 6 months. I'd like to make or prep it all tonight if possible. And I don't want to make lasagna, stew, wtc... b/c I know she has her fill of those recently. My only though so far would be an antipata platter I can jsut assemble and a nice shrimp scampi....but I'm not set on that by any means.

Help me out guys! I'd like to stop at the store on my way home in a few hours.

They will eat just about everything. But I live in a rural area, so I won't be able to get to a "Gourmet" grocery store. Just my local one - so the recipe can't call for anything to crazy that I won't be able to find.

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  1. I think antipasta is good. Salad, bread and maybe since she's got a toddler, you could do spaghetti carbonara which is easy to throw together and the little one may like it. Glass of wine, some juice or milk and you're good to go. Wait to see what others come up with.

    1. What kind of things does she like? Beef? Seafood? Spicy? Chocolate? Can you remember going out with her and her really enjoying a meal you could attempt?

      1. An easy and yummy soup that tastes gourmet is a simple roast cauliflower soup.
        You need a head of cauliflower,
        one medium white onion, chopped
        4 cloves of garlic, diced
        1 small leek (optional)
        one carton chicken or vegetable broth
        salt and pepper to taste

        Cut the cauliflower into chunks or florets and roast in a 425 degree oven till golden and yummy.

        in a medium to alrge soup pot, sautee the onion and leeks in a splash of olive oil or butter till transluscent. Add the garlic cloves and sautee till fragrent. Add the pre-roasted cauliflower and broth. bring to a simmer and simmer for 10 minutes. Let cool sightly, then process in blender in batches, or use an immersion blender. Process till smooth, adding water or broth if too thick. Salt and pepper to taste.

        This works very well with any cauliflower, and you can add other veggies (I think a recipe on here uses parsnips, too). I like to do it with yellow or purple cauliflower.

        It makes an elegant first course, and is just as good cold as hot.

        1. I feel your pain! My great and fast dinner is;
          Stuffed Chicken Breasts
          Boneless, skinless breast pounded thin (1/4 inch or so)
          Lay chicken breast fleshy (not smooth) side up and spread any of the following on it
          Basil and sliced Mozzerla
          Chopped bacon and cheddar cheese
          goat chees and roasted peppers (rinse if using the jar kind)
          Then roll up from the pointiest side.
          Mix nice pasta sauce with a little red wine,
          Spread some sauceon bottom of baking dish,
          Add breasts seam side down and pour rest of sauce on top (to cover, not submerge)
          Cook fro EXACTLY 20 mins on 425 Salad, bread, done!
          Sounds like you could both use a night out:)

          1. How about a nice Chicken Piccata (a little different spin on the Shrimp Scampi). Simple - chicken, lemon, butter, oil, capers, white wine -- and some rice or noodles on the side, with a nice salad.