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Oct 26, 2010 09:27 PM

Preparing an "American" Dinner Party

Sometime in November I'll be hosting a dinner party for a Japanese family that treated me and a couple of friends to a fabulous dinner in their beautiful home. There's no way I can live up to the house, but I'd like to serve them a delicious (and impressive) meal if I can. Since it's November I'm thinking of Thanksgiving-inspired foods, especially American style foods that they may not be familiar with.

The problem is that my cooking space, implements, and ingredients are limited. I have a stovetop and a toaster oven, but no "real" oven. Chicken, good beef, and some pork are available, but no turkey.

I'm already thinking of doing a brie or roasted garlic on toast appetizer and roasted rosemary potatoes, but I'm stumped for other meat and vegetable dishes. Any ideas?

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  1. American? You mean French!
    Julia Child Boeuf Bourguignon (I think they might have messed with the recipe a lil)

    and Julia's Coq au Vin

    As far as thanksgiving, well you could have nice mashed potatoes on the side or whatever else. Maybe some pumpkin pie for dessert.


    Now you could do some nice pork chops if you are committed to the American theme, or a simple roast.

    1. Its about giving thanks for the harvest! So whatever they've got going on at that time of year to show off the harvest would be the thing. if you want to try fusion or substitution that is something else

      1. Do you have access to a grill? Beercan chicken would be unusual and tasty.

        Chicken-fried steak with cream gravy.

        Sauteed green beans and caramelized onions.

        Cornbread. No cornmeal? Maybe the shops have polenta. With careful monitoring and perhaps shielding the top with foil partway, you can bake this in a toaster oven.

        Creamy pumpkin or butternut squash soup. Kabocha may work. Puree by passing the soup through a sieve if you have one.

        I know Japan has sweet potatoes, but am not sure if they're suitable for the usual Thanksgiving treatment. I myself am grossed out by the canned stuff with marshmallows on top.

        1. I'm thinking chicken and dumplings: browned chicken and vegetables (onions, shallots, mushrooms) braised in wine and stock with herbed dumplings. Perfect for stovetop. Plum/applesauce if cranberries are unobtainable. Those potatoes of yours, certainly. Green salad with vinagrette; some sauteed choisum with garlic, or rabe...yum.

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