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Harvest Party Food Ideas/Recipes Please

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I need some help :)

Every year I have a Harvest Party. This year I want it to be really simple (Probably 8 people). I was considering just making pumpkin soup from scratch served in pumpkin bowls? From my past experience this it is time consuming.

In the past I've made pork tenderloin and two sides with cocktails and hors d'oeuvres, rustic apple tart for dessert and food favors too... But to say the least it was a lot of work and the party was a little disappointing. So this year I want to "down-size".

I thought of making it a cocktail party but making little hors d'oeuvres can be even more time consuming and I don't have a lot of room for mingling. So being that we're going to have to sit around the table - I figured something easy for dinner would be good. Maybe serve cocktails before dinner- with one "snack"? then salad and something "pre-made"?

I want to simplify things so maybe something that I can make ahead and not make myself crazy preparing. A Harvest pasta bake? A Hearty Harvest Soup made earlier, warming on the stove? I really would like it to be scrumptious :) but not a "stay home all day slaving" dish. Something simple and rustic- updated Harvest Food.

Any ideas? Anything at all will be greatly appreciated!!!

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  1. If you have access to The Silver Palate Cookbook they have a few recipes that would work just great. The ones I've made with great success, and are all do ahead, are the Dilled Blanquette De Veau, Osso Buco and the Winter Pork and Fruit Ragout. I serve these with a crusty artisan bread and of course the wines of your choice.
    A nice green salad with shaved Parmesan cheese or some blue cheese or feta with some dried fruits sprinkled on would be nice with a balsamic vinaigrette. That along with a lighter soup of carrot and orange or a green pea soup would be nice. My thinking is that a lighter soup before such a heavy meal would be preferable however, a nice potato leek soup is great for a winter meal.
    A nice snack with cocktails and easy do ahead is a saute of peppers. Thinly slice some green, red and yellow peppers, saute in olive oil. Just before they are done add finely chopped garlic, to your taste, and some capers and whole pitted black olives. Serve this on a piece of baguette that has been sliced diagonally, toasted or grilled and rubbed with a cut piece of garlic. The peppers are served room temperature. I give the olives a "smoosh" <yes that's a cooking term> so they won't roll off the bread.
    I also have a recipe for a goat cheese spread layered with pesto and sun dried tomatoes if you are interested.
    O.K. ramble off. I was just typing as things popped into my mind. Hope some of this makes sense. I'm afraid to proof read it ;-)

    http://www.kokoscorner.typepad.com

    1. This Scallopine recipe is easy http://www.foodnetwork.com/food/recip...

      You might also do baked apples as well as some roasted root vegetables or a gratin of cauliflower and broccoli and cheese.

      1. For dessert I made a pumpkin log last year with cream cheese filling...can be made ahead - fits the occasion, & was easier than I thought....but decorated with "autumn" things like leaves etc. it had the "wow" factor.