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Mother's Day pairing help


I'm putting together a multi-course meal for my wife and mother in law for Sunday.

I plan on starting with a chilled tomato consomme (served shot glass style) paired with a small arugula and shaved pecorino salad.

I'm planning something very simple for dessert - either vanilla ice cream with berries and a sprinkle of cinnamon or grapefruit sorbet.

I'm struggling for a main. I'm contemplating either lamb with something like english peas or fava beans or some kind of shrimp dish but am open to ideas.


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  1. That's really nice of you to make a special meal for them. :)

    Here are some ideas:
    Seafood risotto
    Roasted herb Lamb Shanks with cauliflower-potato mash (my favorite garnish for lamb shanks is hollowing out the bone and filling it like a vase with herbs!)
    Homemade Ravioli (fillings and sauce can be based on their personal tastes)
    Salmon Wellington
    Eric Ripert's sea bass in barolo sauce

    Good luck!

    1. Well usually this would all be a little high brow for me but how about paella or Osso Bucco?

      One more if you have a fat wallet... crown roast of lamb. At $16/lb you might have to make payment arrangements.

      1. A rack of lamb would be delicious and easy to prepare. Fresh peas are in the markets now and are beautiful. A simple baked potato would be a tasty go with, too, and very easy to make.

        1. How nice!

          I made a rack of lamb for Easter, and it is really a very easy and elegant main course. I served it with lemon orzo, an artichoke salad and roasted provencal tomatoes.

          A boneless leg of lamb is equally delicious and easy. Butterfly it, or order it that way, and marinate overnight with olive oil, dijon mustard, garlic and rosemary and grill or broil. Asparagus spears that have been grilled or roasted also go well with the lamb. Fava beans are wonderful, but usually a labor of love, having to blanch first and peel twice. But I recently came across a recipe where you grill or broil them whole, in the pods, and eat them, pods, skins and all. It has gotten some good reviews, but I have not tried it yet myself. But if you are willing to do the fava beans and prep a day in advance, I love making them into a bruschetta type topping with feta and crumbled bacon, some fresh lemon juice and black pepper. You can also toss them in a salad dressed that way. Really good.

          1. How about a roasted shrimp and orzo salad, with asparagas, sundried tomatoes, and mozzarella cheese, I make a lemon vinagarette for it.

            1. very sweet of you to do! i voting for the lamb too. if you cut the rack into 2-bone pieces they're easy to manage on the plate as well as giving everyone their preferred doneness. seasonal always works for me. fingerling potato salad would balance the arugula bite, peas or asparagus.

              depending on personalities you could do the meal as a finger-food meal. your consomme, roll your arugula and pecorino in a bib lettuce leaf (add a grilled shrimp to each roll and surf and turf it is), the lamb lollipops, roasted fingerling potatoes with garlic butter to dip in, roasted asparagus. strawberries with whipped cream for dessert. warm water finger bowls and plenty of cotton napkins. a very nice way to spoil two special women.

              6 Replies
              1. re: appycamper

                Nice, appycamper! I assume you do this for the women in your life, regularly??!

                I'll be by next mother's day....!! LOL!

                1. re: Phurstluv

                  lol! i *am* one of the women in my life...come by any time, we can cook and eat until the wheels fall off.

                  1. re: appycamper

                    Oh, friend, I should have known a lovely dinner such as that could not have been imagined by a *man*!!!!

                    I will and we can spend it together cooking, eating and drinking, until, as you so eloquently put it, "our wheels fall off"!! Love that quote!!

                    1. re: Phurstluv

                      too funny phurst! until the wheels fall off is our family descriptor of something totally used up and no longer reparable. can't recall who started it or when.

                      so what do we drink with this? limoncello spritzers sound good.

                      1. re: appycamper

                        Oh yes, they do!! I'd be happy to bring a pitcher of my white grapefruit cosmopolitans, too!!

                        1. re: Phurstluv

                          woo hoo! no such thing as too much citrus around here. well now we know what we're having we'll have to see what everyone else decides on.

              2. Another vote for lamb. Here in central Ohio, the spring lamb is at its peak. I am doing a lamb BBQ Saturday night for 6 people. Have a boned & butterflied leg in the freezer just waiting to be marinated. I use basically an Italian vinaigrette with balsamic vinegar, Dijon mustard, lots of garlic and rosemary. On a med high gas grill, it takes about 10 min per side to get to 125F and then I let it rest while we have appetizers (artichoke cheese tartlets). As the grill will be on, I am also planning a ratatoille "salad" with grilled eggplant, zucchini, yellow squash, red & green peppers and onions. Will serve with a spinach, onion, and strawberry salad with sherry wine vinaigrette.

                Dessert will be a blackberry cobbler with vanilla bean ice cream. My local Costco has some great prices on blackberries right now.

                8 Replies
                1. re: Diane in Bexley

                  So.... I think I've decided to stick with the tomato consomme and field green salad as a duet, a white bean and spicy clam stew, with a duo of dulce de leche and grapefruit sorbet.

                  1. re: Mr Bigglesworth

                    Sounds good, Mr. Bigglesworth, but isn't is a little redundant to have a soup first and then a stew? I'm thinking it's like a portuguese stew, right? Like a caldo nero?

                      1. re: Mr Bigglesworth

                        Ah, okay, a chilled soup for the consomme. Sounds delicious. But, I guess my point is similar textures, soup and stew, which is a chunky soup.

                        1. re: Phurstluv

                          I also was contemplating a roasted fingerling potato, fennel and green bean with yogurt salad in lieu of the consomme.

                          1. re: Mr Bigglesworth

                            That sounds nice also. But may be a touch heavy to have before a stew full of beans and clams.

                            I like the original idea of the lighter starter, I'm a sucker for that arugula - pecorino salad.......perhaps you could top the arugula salad with some roasted fingerlings & green beans and those baby grape tomatoes for color.....

                            1. re: Phurstluv

                              Good call... but I think I'll loose the fingerlings, keep the green beans and take the grape tomatoes :-)

                              1. re: Mr Bigglesworth

                                Nice. Don't need them anyway, since you have starch in your caldo nero.

                                I'm sure your ladies will enjoy it all immensely!! Everything always tastes soooo good when you don't have to cook it yourself!!