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make ahead and elegant dinner party-- can these words go together?

having another couple over for dinner this weekend. The catch? we're trying to do an adults-only dinner after the kids go to bed. There will be time earlier in the day for prep, but we'll only have a few minutes right before for last-minute assembly. Any good ideas for dishes? I'm drawing a blank and am sick of kid-friendly roast chicken, lasagna, etc...

Jan 06, 2010
cookingthatworks in Home Cooking

what to do with pear chutney?

I just received a delicious-looking jar of pear chutney from Frog Hollow Farms. How do best make use of it?

Dec 21, 2009
cookingthatworks in Home Cooking

pork shoulder is tough-- keep cooking or deal with it?

update: success! thanks for the tips. you guys are great. With about 3 hours in at 225, it was/is awesome!

Dec 06, 2009
cookingthatworks in Home Cooking

pork shoulder is tough-- keep cooking or deal with it?

I have a new Blu Star, so it should be pretty accurate. Do you think I should put it back in there? That wouldn't make it tougher, would it? Maybe I should put it in for another 1 or so @250? There is skin, but it was really only on one section. Liquid was in the casserole. I did just realize that it was uncovered for part of the time. is there a way to recover this? It smelled amazing while cooking.

Dec 05, 2009
cookingthatworks in Home Cooking

pork shoulder is tough-- keep cooking or deal with it?

first time making braised pork shoulder. I seared it first and then put all of my seasonings and liquid in a La Creuset casserole. I put it in (convection oven) for about 5 hours @200. I checked it out today and it seems pretty tough. Oh wise ones, should I put it back in the oven?

Dec 05, 2009
cookingthatworks in Home Cooking

what should I make: firm tofu, cooked couscous, arugula, tomatoes, garlic?

Please help me come up with something to do with these ingredients. Non stir-fry ideas are especially appreciated.

Sep 28, 2009
cookingthatworks in Home Cooking

ISO *somewhat hip* with good food in SF

totally agree with the rec-- it is one cool place that we have been to! any other thoughts in that vain. to clarify, this is for an evening out without the kids.

Jul 08, 2009
cookingthatworks in San Francisco Bay Area

ISO *somewhat hip* with good food in SF

my husband and I have 2 young children, and I'm planning to take him out for dinner for his upcoming b'day. The problem? It's been so long since I've been to a new place that I no longer know where to go. Looking for something that is not fussy, serves really good food and is somewhat hip (although not so hip as to make people who are 35+ feel really old). We live in Noe Valley, so someplace close would be great. We love all kinds of food.
TIA!

Jul 08, 2009
cookingthatworks in San Francisco Bay Area

what to do with a lot of half-and-half?

We don't have an ice cream maker. Any ideas to use up a bunch of half-and-half before leaving on vacation?

Jun 27, 2009
cookingthatworks in Home Cooking

help me use these ingredients in 2 dinners

I need to clear the following out of the fridge and come up with 2 dinners in the process:

white beans (homemade, not canned)
eggs
bacon
arugula
mozz cheese
stale artisan bread

I have a well-stocked pantry and plenty of herbs (extra points if you can use a lot of sage!). Also, we have frozen shrimp and frozen cheese ravioli.

Meals will need to feed 2 non-picky adults and one mostly non-picky 4 year-old.

Thanks in advance! You're limited only by your imagination!

Jun 09, 2009
cookingthatworks in Home Cooking