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Progressive Dinner Ideas

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My neighbors are hosting a progressive dinner in early Decemberand I have the soup/salad course. Any ideas?

I was thinking a sweet potato bisque and some kind of festive salad.

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  1. Don't know what part of the country you are in, but pumpkin soup (with toasted seeds as garnish) and beet salad with either grapefruit or tangerine supremes and some toasted nuts would be in season here.

    1. Is there a theme or cuisine to be featured? Do you have any idea what dishes come before and after? Hate to suggest something that repeats ingredients folks have already had or are about to have.

      1. We do progressive dinners every May, and we always have a theme. My favorites have been 'Islands' Themed, Virginia themed, and Greek themed. A theme makes it so much fun. For the 'Islands' theme, every host house picked a different island, and we featured drinks from our island, and I decorated with flags, maps, etc from the island I chose (Cuba). So much fun. How about a butternut squash soup ? With maybe mixed greens with pear slices, gorgonzola and walnuts?

        1. No real theme. We did this last year at Christmas too. Overall the food was really good. I just want to wow them with my course this year. I like the pumpkin soup idea and the butternut squash. Any suggestions for how to serve the soup. I like the shot glasses idea but that seems like it would just be one sip of soup.

          3 Replies
          1. re: katiekakescooks

            Leek and potato soup topped with chives. Fish soup. French onion soup. Mushroom soup.

            Salad nicoise or just fresh greens etc. with homemade croutons, lentil salad.

            1. re: katiekakescooks

              Is it too late to get a bunch of those little pumpkins that they sell at Halloween? You could make cute little bowls with them. I think you could cook and mix the innards into the soup, A shot glass is NOT enough soup!

              1. re: katiekakescooks

                Or what if you did a "flight" of soups in shot glasses? There are so many great fall/early winter soups to choose from. You could make 4 or 5 different soups and serve them in shot glasses. That would mean renting a lot of shot glasses, I'm sure, but I think it would be a neat idea. If you wanted to do a salad with it, you could do a series of salads to go with the soups that are one or two bites and hand-held. Just thinking off of the top of my head (so this may not work practically), you could pair the soups with salads that are served as hors d'oeuvres... on endive leaves, rolled up in romaine leaves, small salads served in phyllo cups, etc. I think the shot glass is a great idea, and you could really run with it, creatively.

              2. I forgot this one, "Tuscan Bean and Swiss Chard" soup. It is really, really good, but the ingredients are on the expensive side. If you have Parmigiano-Reggiano rind, I would definitely recommend this soup. I substitute a couple of ham hocks for the pancetta and I like it better with kale instead of swiss chard. The fennel in it is delicious. Use the recommended dried beans - I think I have used all three and I'm sorry, but I can't remember which was better. They were all good, but one had better texture.