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ISO Fireside Picnic Ideas

CocoTO Nov 18, 2013 02:34 PM

Planning an evening fireside "picnic" in a hotel room (so no access to oven/stove for re-heating). I'm planning an antipasti platter to start but would love some creative ideas for something to make ahead for a main course that won't need to be reheated. Leaning to an Italian menu ...

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  1. c oliver RE: CocoTO Nov 18, 2013 02:44 PM

    If you'd like to "lean" Spanish, how about a tortilla Espanola.


    Are you sure your room doesn't have a MW?

    3 Replies
    1. re: c oliver
      Ttrockwood RE: c oliver Nov 19, 2013 12:29 AM

      Love this idea! Its best room temp, and a simple side of roasted veg (brussel sprouts, green beans, etc)
      If you want it to be italian just call it a potato frittata......;)

      1. re: Ttrockwood
        c oliver RE: Ttrockwood Nov 19, 2013 08:44 AM

        We were in Barcelona about a year ago and ate them regularly. Still haven't made one myself by thinking about for part of a Christmas Eve brunch.

        1. re: c oliver
          Ttrockwood RE: c oliver Nov 19, 2013 09:03 PM

          Estoy enamorada con bar(th)elona! Ever since i make tortilla and pan con tomate most often. Practice the tortilla before your lunch, it takes a few times to figure out how you like it best.

    2. monavano RE: CocoTO Nov 18, 2013 02:52 PM

      I think the antipasti platter will cover it all, really. Meat, cheese, olives, nuts, marinated eggplant and cippolini onions, bread.

      7 Replies
      1. re: monavano
        Springhaze2 RE: monavano Nov 18, 2013 07:06 PM

        I agree with monavano that an antipasti platter will pretty much cover it. Think of it as a deconstructed antipasti, not as a single dish. A selection of nice dry/cured meats, Italian cheeses, olives, marinated mushrooms, artichokes, eggplant, etc. roasted peppers, with some nuts and dried fruits like apricots, figs, some fresh grapes. Some fresh veggies like grape tomatoes, red/orange/yellow pepper slices, endive leaves. Maybe some roasted garlic to spread on bread. A bread basket with crusty Italian bread, whole grain rolls, crunchy bread sticks. Not served on one platter, but each served on/in separate plates or bowls and presented as a spread, not as "one" dish (i.e. an antipasti) would do it. If you want something hot and have a thermos or two or a crock pot, some homemade minestrone soup would be nice.

        I would do something fairly sweet and simple for dessert.

        How many people are you serving?

        1. re: Springhaze2
          CocoTO RE: Springhaze2 Nov 18, 2013 08:17 PM

          Really appreciate the thoughts on the antipasti, but really do want something for a "main" I'm starting to think a parmesan polenta with a rich tomato sauce in a thermos (no micro in room for Chowhound who asked)

          1. re: CocoTO
            Springhaze2 RE: CocoTO Nov 18, 2013 08:48 PM

            To ask again, how many people are you serving? Did you read my whole post? I also suggested a thick soup like a minestrone in a thermos. I don't see how you would do polenta with a sauce in a thermos. Isn't that basically a soup?

            1. re: Springhaze2
              CocoTO RE: Springhaze2 Nov 18, 2013 09:46 PM

              That would be baked polenta with the tomato sauce separate in the thermos until serving. There will be three of us.

              1. re: CocoTO
                hill food RE: CocoTO Nov 18, 2013 09:52 PM

                oh, then maybe I mis-read the scenario (or maybe not) either way, a spread of nibbles and casually grilled odds and ends on the open fire sounds like a relaxed and pleasant time whatever the plan. just leave housekeeping a nice tip if you make a mess.

                1. re: hill food
                  CocoTO RE: hill food Nov 18, 2013 10:03 PM

                  LOL! No there will be no romance on this occasion

                  1. re: CocoTO
                    hill food RE: CocoTO Nov 18, 2013 10:59 PM


                    yet I stand by my remarks regarding casual eats around a fireplace.

      2. m
        momoftwo RE: CocoTO Nov 18, 2013 06:04 PM

        Bring a crock pot with homemade meatballs and sauce. Grab a fresh bread and some fresh grated parm reg, yummy

        1. hill food RE: CocoTO Nov 18, 2013 08:27 PM

          room service.

          fireside? things on skewers? most hardware/home stores have cheap 2-pronged ones intended for s'mores that can be used for vegetables, kebabs etc. it's not a make ahead, but as an activity in regards to romance it sure beats playing cards.

          ehh call it a day, throw some foil wrapped potatoes into the fireplace and have a cracked crab or lobster packed in ice for after/with the antipasti.

          2 Replies
          1. re: hill food
            CocoTO RE: hill food Nov 18, 2013 08:34 PM

            Good idea. Gas fireplace ;-))

            1. re: CocoTO
              hill food RE: CocoTO Nov 18, 2013 09:36 PM

              those work just fine (but maybe a potato would take a little longer).

          2. a
            autumm RE: CocoTO Nov 18, 2013 08:30 PM

            Sounds like crock pot stuffed shells time! I'm assuming (dangerously) that you will be preparing this in a kitchen and then moving to the hotel later?

            Basically, cook the shells, then stuff them, place in crock pot with sauce of choice and put on low. Not "fancy" but yummy. Add a nice salad and some vino. . .

            1. m
              mr99203 RE: CocoTO Nov 18, 2013 09:55 PM

              Mmm, when I read your post's title, it immediately took me back to a traditional winter picnic during my years in San Francisco.

              A cold, rainy night; a blazing fire; cold cracked crab, big salad, wonderful loaf of bread, and a cold bottle of a crisp white wine. Heaven.

              2 Replies
              1. re: mr99203
                c oliver RE: mr99203 Nov 18, 2013 10:16 PM

                My favorite meal is Dungeness crab with sourdough bread and an artichoke. Served on the floor with newspaper as the "plate."

                1. re: c oliver
                  sweethooch RE: c oliver Nov 20, 2013 12:20 PM

                  Love this -- I usually do beach towels on the table, but I think I will be switching to the floor in front of the fireplace.

                  For the OP -- melted butter in the thermos.

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