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Apr 24, 2014 06:20 AM

Need ideas for spring meatless entree for a crowd

I am responsible for providing an entrée for about 20 people for a Friday supper next week. Feeling totally cluefree about what to make and I'm seeking wisdom here.

Other parameters: Mostly prep ahead of time and cook/assemble quickly onsite. No chicken or red meat but eggs, beans, dairy, everything else OK. Not wanting to break the bank on pricey ingredients. Somewhat seasonal and suitable for a warm evening. Not too soupy as someone else is providing a soup course.

Nicoise salady type platters? In the past I've done gypsy stew (moosewood) and vegetable-heavy lasagna but I'm not feeling the hot cheesy vibe this time.

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  1. what do you think about a spring savory tart, with or without crust, involving lots of greens and maybe some pureed caramelized onions, herbs, eggs, and feta or goat cheese? Can be served at room temp or reheated briefly on site.

    1 Reply
    1. re: Madrid

      Quiche is sounding good. I could bake early AM and then serve at room temp or briefly reheat.

    2. Puttanesca, or a vegetable Korma (or maybe veggie Thai curry) would be my initial thoughts. Is seafood available/allowed/affordable?

      3 Replies
      1. re: Robin Joy

        Would you make the thai curry in advance or try to slow cook? I make it often but generally right before serving.

        Seafood allowed but I am budget conscious.

        1. re: tcamp

          No veg curry is really a slow cook dish. Cook up to 24 hrs. prior, & a quick re-heat.

          1. re: tcamp

            Seafood + budget + crowd >, dare I suggest it, tuna noodle casserole? A recent thread on chowhound showed a lot of people full of nostalgia for this old friend. I've noticed that when I serve an old cliche', I hear snickers and then I quickly find empty dishes.

        2. Maybe a farro casserole? You can stir in chopped kale or another cooked green at the last minute.

          3 Replies
            1. re: tcamp

              I made an Italian version with lots of chunky mirepoix, canned tomatoes, dried herbs and added a bag of Trader Joe's greens when it was still hot and brought it to a function and it was a hit!

              1. re: tcamp

                Baked farro risotto with some stewed whitebeans made from dried and grilled (or roasted) veggies.

            2. Moroccan tagine with chickpeas ( I make one involving butternut squash, chopped tomatoes, and chopped fresh cilantro and parsley; but there are lots of types to choose from) Serving on a big platter with tagine in center and rice around the edge is dramatic. Add currents and tumeric to to the rice for a great look.

              Trick is to not to make the tagine spicy, just nicely flavored with cinnamon and cumin)... Then offer a bowl of harissa on the side for those who like it hot.

              1 Reply
              1. re: AdinaA

                I've had couscous with apricots and prunes that was luscious.

                I am planning to make this week a green salad with roasted parsnips, dates, blue cheese crumbles, and a lemon vinaigrette. I may add some pumpkin seeds, something like that ...

              2. Pasta w/peas. Delish at room temp. I've done this for after ballgames etc. and it went over very well. Use lots of shredded parm or pecorino