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Make-ahead vegetarian meal for a crowd?

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I am hosting my book club on a weeknight (which is, of course, also a work night). Do you have any ideas for a vegetarian meal that can mostly be made ahead of time? My book club ladies are an international group with sophisticated foodie taste :)

I thought about something like mushroom bourguignon, but we'll be eating on our laps, and the sauce would probably be too messy. Same problem with making a huge tureen of lentil soup. I also considered making an Indian curry, which could be thick enough to eat from a tray on your lap, but one of the book club ladies is Indian, and I'd hate to embarrass myself in front of an expert :)

A pan of veggie lasagne would be easy, but maybe a little uninspired.

Any ideas?

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  1. Idea: Use bowls for your soup/curries/stew ideas. :)

    Other suggestions:
    -raw kale salad (I like mine with lemon, shredded beet, almonds and raisins/dried cranberries) - it tastes better as leftovers
    -dolmas made in advance
    -instead of Indian, go Ethiopian since it is pretty similar
    -quinoa or bean salad
    -no bake chocolate mousse pie for dessert!

    __
    http://tastespace.wordpress.com

    1. How about mini tofu quiches.

      1. what's your book about?? I'd work on a theme.. there's no such thing as a cuisine which doesn't have vegetarian food (except for maybe argentina!)

        1. How about something like empanadas? Or maybe a butternut squash lasagna with a fennel and cream sauce? Or spanikopita? You could also do a mezze platter of hummus, olives and such.

          So many possibilities.

          1. How about this Vegetarian Mapo Tofu with Peas?

            http://www.seriouseats.com/recipes/20...

            I'm making it later this week but it sure sounds good.

            1 Reply
            1. re: c oliver

              I made this last night and LOVED it!!!! I used Chinese noodes instead of rice. I'm going to be making this a lot
              ETA: Although OP asked for make ahead, this comes together in minutes and the mise en place could certainly be done ahead.

            2. I made this the other night and afterwards decided that the next time I had to bring a dish to a veggie potluck, I'd bring this:

              http://www.101cookbooks.com/archives/...

              I added a can of great northern beans, garlic, zucchini and spinach to make it a little heartier, but I think it'd also be good as is.

              1. What about some type of vegetarian taco? My personal favorite is a spiced red lentil filling, like this - http://www.joyofkosher.com/recipes/re...

                You can make most of it (salsas/toppings) ahead of time, and just cook up a pot of lentils when everyone is ready to eat. It usually only takes me about 20 minutes.

                1. Are veggie enchiladas too low brow?
                  http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/foo...