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Cooking: Ever made a seven course meal?

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McGlory
Southeast, NE
(Zone 5a)

December 12, 2009
10:42 PM

Post #7362698

I haven't, but I'm thinking about it. For Christmas there will just be Handsome Man and me, Handsome Man's mom, and our two sons for all day long. I've asked what everyone wants to eat, and the response has been varied to say the least! I thought since there were only five of us and the boys (24 and 21) don't live close enough to eat at home often, it might be kind of fun.

My oldest son said he didn't care as long as it involved clam chowder. The youngest said any kind of beef and "your famous potatoes." My mother-in-law said brunch would be nice. (I have a hunch she's thinking of my Mother's Day brunch which she completely enjoys.) Handsome Man suggested prime rib and sour cream raisin pie.

We are actually having Christmas on the 26th, since the boys both work Christmas Day, so I'll have all day Christmas Day to do prep work and some cooking. I won't feel tucked away from the action if I'm in the kitchen a lot - what tends to happen is people lean against the bar separating the kitchen from the dining room, so a lot of good visiting happens while I'm in the kitchen.

So the question is what courses make up a seven-course meal? I found online where the courses are:
1) appetizer
2) seated appetizer (I guess this isn't finger food like Course #1?)
3) salad
4) sorbet
5) main course
6) dessert
7) latte

And then another site where the courses were:
1) appetizer
2) soup
3) salad
4) sorbet
5) meat such as poultry
6) meat such as red meat or fish
7) dessert

Then the second question would be what goes well with what? I'm no expert cook, but I'm not a complete novice either. I don't own a blender, which might make sorbet difficult.

Any ideas or help? I'm hoping to have some fun here! I know this will be filling, but we have all day to eat!
planolinda
Plano, TX

December 12, 2009
10:58 PM

Post #7362733

small portions and presentation is more of a focus with the smaller portions
also--sherbert can be used for sorbet
McGlory
Southeast, NE
(Zone 5a)

December 13, 2009
4:11 AM

Post #7363538

Good about the sherbet! That makes one course super easy. Yes, my own mother said small portions were crucial. And I was planning to use the fine china. Have never been great at garnishing, but I'll have time to practice, right?

greenhouse_gal

greenhouse_gal
Southern NJ
United States
(Zone 7a)

December 13, 2009
12:16 PM

Post #7364033

You can take a leaf out of French chefs' books and serve a cheese course at the end, before dessert. That's always nice: a tray or cutting board with a variety of soft and hard cheeses that people can select from.
Dea
Frederick, MD
(Zone 6a)

December 13, 2009
3:22 PM

Post #7364361

Sounds like great fun!! I got real ambitious a few years ago and did a 7 course for Thanksgiving with wayyyy too many people. Still though, it was a blast. Here are some photos of things we did if it helps - oh...the plates look like china but there were plastic -hehehe :)

I made little 'forts' out of asparagus spears and then filled them salad greens. I've done this since using whole green beans and it works great - makes a very small salad, but with 7 courses, you're right on the portion control :)

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Dea
Frederick, MD
(Zone 6a)

December 13, 2009
3:23 PM

Post #7364366

The night before, DH made a cookie cutter for me in the shape of a fish. We cut out puff pastry (the frozen kind!!!) and put peppercorns in for the eye. Took a knife and made some fins and tail and made scales with the end of a spoon. We got better as we went along - the first ones were...mouthless...


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Dea
Frederick, MD
(Zone 6a)

December 13, 2009
3:25 PM

Post #7364374

that didn't load too well - hope this one is better

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Dea
Frederick, MD
(Zone 6a)

December 13, 2009
3:27 PM

Post #7364379

so we made some salmon mousse from canned salmon and threw on some tiny pieces of smoked fish we had; I know this doesn't look too appetizing - LOL :)

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Dea
Frederick, MD
(Zone 6a)

December 13, 2009
3:29 PM

Post #7364386

Little fishie now looks much better - just snagged some thyme sprigs and added for some green.

These were a bit hit - I imagine you could use anything as the base depending on what your family likes.

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Dea
Frederick, MD
(Zone 6a)

December 13, 2009
3:30 PM

Post #7364387

The prime rib sounds wonderful as does your pie - hope you have a GREAT time with the family :)
planolinda
Plano, TX

December 13, 2009
3:48 PM

Post #7364422

dea that is really cool!
i think garnish can be easy if you do sprigs,
McGlory
Southeast, NE
(Zone 5a)

December 14, 2009
11:39 PM

Post #7368926

Oh, wow, Dea! Now THAT'S a fish course! LOL How cool is that??

What courses did you have? I like greenhousegal's cheese course idea. Sounds good, and would make for one more easy one.

Garnishing with sprigs was exactly what I was thinking. Asparagus, rosemary, what else?
planolinda
Plano, TX

December 14, 2009
11:40 PM

Post #7368931

parsley
McGlory
Southeast, NE
(Zone 5a)

December 15, 2009
12:09 AM

Post #7369019

Oh, duh! I forgot the obvious... :-)
Dea
Frederick, MD
(Zone 6a)

December 15, 2009
12:42 AM

Post #7369108

I want to know - seriously - what is your famous potato recipe that your guys are clamoring for? Please share it !!! We love our taters and would be appreciative of another recipe!
McGlory
Southeast, NE
(Zone 5a)

December 15, 2009
1:01 AM

Post #7369169

Oh, there's no recipe. My sons grew up with me making typical mashed potatoes, hash browns, cheesy potatoes (leftover boiled ones sliced and baked with cheese), baked potatoes, etc. They insist I make the best potatoes in the world, hence the phrase "your famous potatoes." Funny kids!
MichaelZ
Portland, OR
(Zone 8a)

December 15, 2009
1:04 AM

Post #7369178

I am a big believer in a soup course. This past turkey day I did a shrimp pumpkin bisque that was ok. Since it was never tested it needed tuning and hot sauce helped, but on Friday it dawned on me that the perfect complement to pumpkin is curry. But I digress. Soup is a course that I support.
McGlory
Southeast, NE
(Zone 5a)

December 16, 2009
2:43 AM

Post #7372841

So we're all in agreement on (out of order):

1. fish course
2. sorbet (sherbet) course
3. cheese course
4. soup course

That would logically leave:
5. main (meat) course
6. dessert
7. Not sure about this one... Salad maybe?

That leaves out an appetizer, but maybe the cheese course could go first? What do you think?
planolinda
Plano, TX

December 16, 2009
3:33 AM

Post #7372959

is sorbet considered a course?
McGlory
Southeast, NE
(Zone 5a)

December 16, 2009
3:38 AM

Post #7372976

According to both things I found on the internet (which are subject to speculation), sorbet is the course served prior to the main course. It "cleanses the palette," they say, and is considered one course. I even found specific instructions on how to make it and present it, although I'd rather take your previous suggestion of using sherbet instead. :-)
MichaelZ
Portland, OR
(Zone 8a)

December 16, 2009
4:04 AM

Post #7373050

Let us not forget course number eight. In my family a big meal was always followed by a living room filled with a symphony of snores. Nap time. :-)
McGlory
Southeast, NE
(Zone 5a)

December 16, 2009
4:28 AM

Post #7373109

LOL! And for preparation I could have pillows and quilts already on the couch! With mints for garnishment perhaps?
Dea
Frederick, MD
(Zone 6a)

December 16, 2009
12:51 PM

Post #7373577

"waffer thin" :)

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