I mentioned last week that I was going to have a soup supper this past week. I actually had two of them on back to back nights. I enjoyed it so much. Each group was made of different dynamics which made each night fun in its own way. They ate heartily and that made my preparations so worth it! Our fellowship was rich and sweet; all based around our love for the Lord. It is a blessing to have guests in our home!
For the meals I made three different soups – Baked Potato
, Senate Bean
and Corn Chowder.
These are all recipes I’ve shared before, but this wasn’t a time to try something new! I needed to stick with things that I knew could either be made ahead of time, or were put together easily.
To me doing a big get-together is all about planning ahead as well as working ahead. I make as much food as possible and freeze it. I’ve mentioned before that I’m the queen of freezing. If you store it properly, which means double wrapping, it will save you so much time in the future!
Not only do I cook ahead, but I set things out before guests arrive. I make sure the coffee cups are out and ready for dessert. I set out the sugars, and get the coffee ground and fill the coffee pot with water. All that needs to be done is to pour it into the reservoir.
I am very much a list maker. Not only did I assign lists for the days before the suppers, but then on the day of I detailed the last couple of hours so I’d know what needed to be done just before guests arrived in order to have everything finished and unforgotten. It would be very like me to forget to serve something I’d made! See at 5:00 where it says, “dress?” That’s not because I’d forget to change my clothes, but just so I’d know when was the best time to stop the work and freshen up.
As the guests arrived I served appetizers on the buffet in the living room. I wanted the evening to move along slowly and not feel rushed. We snacked on these things before heading to the kitchen for the main course.
Spinach Balls ** Recipe to follow
Brie with Apples and Dried Cranberries **Recipe to follow
Fresh Vegetables and Ranch Dip
I made the spinach balls about a week and a half ago and froze them unbaked. I made the pastry bites early in the afternoon and then warmed them up right before everyone arrived.
The linens were ironed early in the week and the table was set early in the day.
I made the layers for the Coconut Cake with Lemon Filling
last week and put them in the freezer. The lemon filling was made on Tuesday and the icing was made on Wednesday, the day I iced the cake and put the whole thing together.
I made the apple pie last week and froze it unbaked then baked it the day of the first supper.
The cake served as my husband’s birthday cake since he celebrated his “forty-twelve” (his take on 52nd) birthday this weekend.
Breaking up the tasks into little pieces makes entertaining much more do-able and more fun! I wasn’t having to scurry around to finish up the meals because of a little prep ahead of time. It was a blessing having the guests in our home and sharing not just a meal, but our hearts with them.
Here are a couple recipes for the appetizers:
Brie-Apple Pastry Bites
1 pkg frozen puff pastry (this stuff is soooo good!)
1 round (8 oz) Brie cheese cut into 1/2 in. cubes
1 medium apple, chopped
2/3 cup sliced almonds
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
1/4 cup dried cranberries
Unfold puff pastry; cut each sheet into 24 squares. Gently press squares onto the bottoms of 48 greased miniature muffin cups.
Combine the cheese, apple, nuts and cranberries; spoon into cups. Bake at 375 degrees for 12-15 minutes or until the cheese is melted. Sprinkle with nutmeg. Serve warm.
2 10-oz. pkg frozen spinach
3 cups Pepperidge Farm Herb Dressing
3/4 cup melted Margarine
1 tbl. black pepper – Yes, this is lots, but it makes it nice and spicy. Use less if you don’t want the heat.
1 1/2 tbl. garlic salt
1 large onion chopped finely
1/2 cup Parmesan cheese
1/2 tsp thyme
Thaw spinach. Squeeze out all the water by hand. Beat 6 eggs. Add all ingredients to eggs. Make into balls. Place on pan sprayed with cooking spray. Bake at 325 degrees for about 15 minutes or just til browned on bottom. May be frozen also cooked ahead; place in fridge; warm before serving.
What’s been cooking in your kitchen this week?